How did you acquire your first paid customer and what did you learn from it?

Sharath Kuruganty
53 replies


Our first paid customer came when we didn't even have the upgrade buttons. The user wanted to see "who likes them" and found a way to trigger the paywall.
Sharath Kuruganty
@jason_neuman Wow insane! Where did you find them?
For us it took a decent amount of time. We are a browser company so we made sure the user falls in love with product and sets it as their default browser before asking for any form of payment. We learned to build publicly with our users makes them a lot more likely to trust us enough to pay us!
Sharath Kuruganty
@mahyad Build in public works insanely well when it comes to acquiring users
@5harath yep 100% that’s our entire believe at SigmaOS, and think you only build products that are incredible when you build it with your users
Kyleigh Smith
I accidentally triggered an "end of free trial" paywall to be sent to all users. Face with tears of joy Surprisingly some who had only just started their free trial converted. Very anti-climatic haha
Solene Oudet
Our Product Hunt launch got picked up by a very legit news source that wrote a review about our tool. Several readers immediately signed up for our premium plan 🙌 👉 Credibility & trust do matter!
Stefan Smiljkovic
The first paying customer actually acquired us. He found it somehow, and literally said "take my money, I wanna get in. I don't care if it's ready or not". We were still creating Stripe checkout integration, but in the end, he ended up sending money directly over PayPal and we gave him access. Our first customer was worth $1,000 I am talking about the project.
Luke Embrey
@stefan_smiljkovic Did you ever figure out how that user found you, very impressive for pre-launch!?
Stefan Smiljkovic
@luke_embrey Well, he was one of the 4,600 people who subscribed for our early access (not paying subscribers) He probably found one of my videos I created back then and shared on YT, FB groups, IH and other communities. When you build something people really need, they will find you.
Chris Daniel
I am still working on getting my first paid customer for [URL Shortener]. Right now I have bing ads and I am planning to get in touch with some digital marketers.
My story is rather simple. Someone liked what I was wearing and I told them I made it. Word of mouth is evergreen.
Lucas Gray
I began mailing design and consulting services to my friends. I started out sending an email with a questioning, open-ended subject line like "Do you need a logo?" or "How can I help you with designing your website?" Many of them ignored the mail, but others replied and asked what their options were.
Matthew Browne
My first time ever selling software, I got an introduction from a friend to the decision maker. I created a powerpoint mockup and presented it like I would a live app and managed to get them across the line. My learning was you can sell software before you have software but you have to paddle incredibly quickly to deliver, lots of communication dealt with the speed of delivery!
Mike G
First customer was word of mouth, then Facebook and Google ads. We run a saas company.
Through social media, Facebook and Instagram particularly :)
Alexander Moen
Many of my early customers tend to be face-to-face, networking, or 1st and 2nd degree connections. Selling face to face (or at least over Zoom or on the phone) helps me pick up on all sorts of cues you miss when you're fully virtual right out of the gates. I can see when they are confused, when they have questions, which pitches work or don't work, what their actual objections or issues are specifically, etc. Then, I use that to refine my copy, my FAQs, my marketing in other places, and just kind of expand from there.
I made Facebook ads to acquire customer from all over INDIA. I learnt that it takes time to build trusted customer
The tactics you should be using to get your first 100 customers are a mix of both marketing and customer development. With each tactic, you should aim to not only get a new customer, but also find ways to dig deeper into who they are and what they’re interested in. You need to really know who these people are that are buying from you more than anything else and then use that information to increase your ROI.
Rani Treasa
For us, it was through contacts and was close to 'free'. Gained lots of learnings - regarding product needs, use cases etc.
Aaron Woolf
Hustle. Spoke to hundreds of people and found one to take a punt
Larry Dobson
I was like wow, God is in control and about making it for me. This is real OMG
Fatima Rizwan
I was approaching creators to try I think after 50 cold emails, one creator agreed to try and I made my first dollar too.
Gleb Braverman
By doing things that don't scale - just talking to customers, offering them trials, extended trials and building personal relationships!