We asked Startly founder, David Griffin, about building an app that helps new entrepreneurs turn their ideas into fully funded companies. David has a background in IT, primarily in Project & Product Management roles. He is also the Founder & Managing Partner of ANZU.One. He chose Bubble's no-code platform because it offers a low-cost solution with all of the features and tools necessary to build a fully-functional web app without having to write a single line of code.
Tell us about your app and what it does.
Startly is the #1 Startup Management Platform, offering a gamified All-in-One approach to help new Entrepreneurs turn their ideas into fully funded companies. At the core of Startly are 3 essential modules:
- Learning, which offers simple courses around the topics of entrepreneurship, such as Market Research, Project Management Methodologies and working with Investors.
- Concepts, which offers a guided tool-kit for entrepreneurs to turn their ideas into investor-ready products, including a Lean Canvas, Business Plan, Project Management, Surveying & more
- Community, which offers entrepreneurs, freelancers and investors a space to connect, exchange ideas and build partnerships based on the data showcased for/by their startup projects.
All of the modules are tightly connected. Entrepreneurs can review relevant courses on any objects they're asked to create in the concepts section, to better understand terminology and/or learn how to create, for instance, a proper competitor analysis. Another example would be the way in which every task in the Concept section can easily be outsourced to the community. Don't know or plan to develop the content calendar yourself? No problem. Hiring a Marketing Specialist to help you drive your idea forward, is just a click away!
Lastly, of course, you can submit your concept to thousands of investors in our database, once you have successfully completed all your tasks, build a team around your idea and feel confident about the potential success of your project.
How does your app work?
Once a new User has registered, they're asked to complete their profile: add name, interests and career-path. This brings them to their "Startly Account" page, where they can either complete their professional background for the community profile, create a "Linktree"-like page for their Social Media presence, or choose to create their first Startup Project to start planning their venture.
Most users dive right in and build their concept by describing the problem, the solution, and target audience. Others may choose to leave these sections blank when creating their project and explore the platform first. Within the Dashboard, customers will see a set of "Recommended Tasks" they can select to complete, each has dedicated Learning Resources associated with it to help the user better understand how to complete these tasks. For the gamers among us, these are "quests" you are asked to complete, and once you've completed all "Questlines" your startup is ready to be pitched to our investors. We're actively working on adding more features and communicating with the audience to see which ones they'd like to have next.
Tell us a little about your background and how you discovered no-code tools like Bubble.
For the past decade, I've been working in IT primarily in Project & Product Management roles. But before moving to develop Applications for Web & Mobile, I was active in the Gaming Industry, where the utilization of engines to realize projects is very common. Among those engines is the Unreal Engine, a software which always captured my fascination due to the easy at which you can realize complex tasks through drag & drop. It features a Low-Code approach to everything, from simple animation to complex AI operations. However, there was nothing alike for the web, except Bubble, for the past few years. Now the Low & No-Code landscape has drastically changed but Bubble is still unchallenged at its pricing level.
Why did you build your app on Bubble?
Though I see the benefits of building apps by coding them from scratch, for the majority of actions a user would take on a platform, it feels incredibly over-kill to write the code line-by-line.
I like to compare developing products to building cars. You don't go ahead and "re-invent the wheel" so to speak. No, you purchase most of the products from suppliers and assemble, and focus on how users interact with their car, how they drive it, improve suspension, electronics and accessories. You don't go out and invent an entire new metal and design its chemical structure.
Writing code, developing something that deep, feels like studying and doing chemistry, when all you want to do is add a spoiler to your car. So, here we are, drag & dropping our way to success.
What have been your milestones or successes so far?
Obviously, launching the product publicly was a major milestone we accomplished just recently. A few up-votes on Product Hunt here and making our first 100 registered members happy there. Now, we're off to a long journey to build an environment which can be enjoyed by thousands of users. By Summer 2021, we'd like to have minimum of 10,000 registered members in our community. In order to achieve that, we'll have to refine our features, and most importantly, connect marketing campaigns that target our specific audience: Entrepreneurs, Freelancers & Investors.
I'd say our greatest success so far, are the positive responses we get from current and future business partners in relation to our plans for the platform. Connecting the many different tools out in the wild to offer a "source of truth," while guiding our users step-by-step.
What are your future plans for your app?
Let's build a next-generation Business Community ready for Mars. This may seem a bit far fetched, but small dreams result in small success, so we aim BIG! The next step on our journey however, is to significantly improve our Marketing so we can achieve our target to onboard 10,000 members till the summer. In the process of doing so, we'll develop additional micro-tools to help our members, and entrepreneurs alike, to make their daily lives just a little bit easier. Among that are, currently in production & Betas:
- Scheduling tool to reduce the pains around managing your appointments with potential business partners
- CRM tool to reduce the pains around keeping track of guests/visitors at your location, for COVID-19 tracing
- Freelance Platform with built-in Project-, & Contract Management to reduce the workload when outsourcing tasks.
- Persona Management tool which automatically gathers data from public (i.e. census) sources for your Personas & Target Market
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.