We asked Teaching Startup founder, Joe Procopio, about building an app that offers an affordable on-demand substitute for a traditional startup advisor. Joe is a coder and a tech entrepreneur who is on a mission to help other entrepreneurs. He chose Bubble because the no-code platform almost immediately felt like coding, but without all the syntax and with a lot of the framing already built in.
Tell us about your app and what it does.
Teaching Startup is a membership based app where entrepreneurs can ask questions about starting and growing their business, and get answers from vetted expert entrepreneurs.
The company's mission is to make more and better entrepreneurs. The app takes the most valuable parts of a startup advisor session, removes all the friction, and the result is useful advice, affordably delivered, and on the entrepreneur's own schedule.
It works for everyone, from first-time founders to serial entrepreneurs who want to keep learning.
How does your app work?
New questions are answered in a weekly newsletter, which anyone can get on a free trial basis.
Members can ask their own questions, and they also get access to a searchable knowledge base of hundreds of previous answers, posts, and polls.
Answers cover leadership and management, tech and product, sales and marketing, operations, and of course, growth and investment.
Tell us a little about your background and how you discovered no-code tools like Bubble.
I'm a multi-exit, multi-failure, still-working tech entrepreneur, and since my very first success, I've been on a mission to help other entrepreneurs.
I reach a lot of entrepreneurs every week via articles in publications like Inc. and Built In -- that advice helps a lot of people a little bit. I'm also a formal advisor for a handful of startups -- that advice is a lot of help for the small number of people who can afford it.
I needed to find some middle ground -- a way to advise a lot of startups affordably. And I needed a platform that would allow me to experiment to find the right solution. No-code was an obvious choice.
Why did you build your app on Bubble?
I'm a coder, and I've built startups around apps like Teaching Startup with traditional software tools, including one company that was eventually acquired. Bubble almost immediately felt like coding, but without all the syntax and with a lot of the framing already built in.
So I had an idea. To show Teaching Startup members it was possible, I committed to building the app and most of the company infrastructure using Bubble and without writing any code. So far so good, and there's a nice synergy that comes from talking about building a startup from scratch while I'm actually building a startup from scratch.
What have been your milestones or successes so far?
Well, most importantly, the solution is working -- the theory of being able to advise a lot of entrepreneurs for not a lot of time and money. We get tons of awesome unsolicited customer feedback and appreciation that comes in weekly, including from members who haven't even asked a question.
I just completed an intensive customer survey process, and the results were extremely encouraging. Teaching Startup's NPS Is 87. The entrepreneurs find the product valuable, and at $10 a month, they agree that it's an affordable substitute for an advisor that might cost hundreds of dollars an hour.
But the proof is in the profitability, and I reached my paying customer goals quickly, so the project is already generating revenue, profitable, and growing. That's thanks to not having to sink a bunch of money, time, and resources into standing up a full-stack app to start solving the problem.
What are your next steps or future plans for your app?
I'm still building out the automation on the expert advisor side, which is fine, because there's a good balance right now between questions and answers. I'm still learning how to solve the affordability vs. time problem, and I've got a list of 21 features that I wanted to implement yesterday. All of those features will take the interactivity to the next level.
I feel like I'm in the first inning of solving a pretty big problem, and that's right where I want to be.
Bubble is a leader in the no-code movement. Bubble offers a powerful point-and-click web editor and cloud hosting platform that allows users to build fully customizable web applications and workflows, ranging from simple prototypes to complex marketplaces, SaaS products, and more. Over 500,000 users are currently building and launching businesses on Bubble - many have gone on to participate in top accelerator programs, such as Y Combinator, and even raise $365M in venture funding. Bubble is more than just a product. We are a strong community of builders and entrepreneurs that are united by the belief that everyone should be able to create technology.