The Email Parser Journey: Bootstrapping to Freedom

I, like many single founders out there, have this perfect scenario mapped out in my head and i think I’m on that road.

My perfect scenario really looks a bit like this:

Location independence

I have this notion of being able to travel. Now i have read about a lot of these single founder types who travel around working where they want. These digital nomads who seem to be “living the dream”. I’m not sure i 100% believe it all. Aside from the fact that a successful SAAS business takes time, the less time you spend on your business, the more time your competitors spend catching up to you. That means your location may be irrelevant if you spend most of your hours locked to your laptop supporting, marketing or building. Being location independent has some financial implications too. And it also implies you dont need to necessarily be in one place. I have an amazing wife and twins who are 18 months old. One day theyll be at a school which will be location dependent.My location independence really just centers around one ideal; that i dont necessarily need to be at an office, at a location, with a boss I may not like.

Parserr’s ultimate success will fulfill my location independence desires.

Financially independence

Financial independence for me centers around only one ideal at the moment: meeting my current salary at my current job. I work at an amazing company right now that rewards me satisfactorily. I pay a mortgage and my needs are taken care of. I dont live extravagantly. However working at a company affects points 1 and 3. It is location dependent and time dependent.My perfect scenario is to be independent of my current company to fulfill location, financial and time independence.

Parserr’s revenue matching my current salary will facilitate that independence.

Time independence

I want to choose to have a guitar lesson at 3pm on a Monday or work from 630am to 3pm any day i wish. By travelling to and from a location dependent company, i am bound to a 1.5 hours in a train and working hours stipulated by my colleagues (for meetings) and company. This doesn’t facilitate a time independent scenario.

Employee independence

Firstly without people, I don’t have a business. I need people to buy into Parserr otherwise it doesn’t exist. I love people, don’t get me wrong… but I’m talking about employees. I¬†often find that work can bring out the worst in people. People also cost money and need a desk to work at. I’m naturally an introvert and find that people will most certainly affect location, time and financial independence. I am building Parserr in such a way that most of it is automated. Unfortunately the nature of parsing documents means that support is inevitable. However until the load becomes overwhelming, I’m aiming to do this myself until it becomes overwhelmingly time dependent. Then i will most likely bring on a support engineer to handle the load.

Parserr on the other hand will most likely not need a a sales team in the beginning. My somewhat unknown is that i will funnel potential customers from SEO efforts. Whether that is achievable or not, remains to be seen. However we are getting good traction so far and I am trying to get as much quality traffic from quality websites as possible. To me that means really appealing to the right customer audience, the websites where people go to find solutions to the email parsing problem. More on that in another post.

Conclusion

Setting these goals upfront for myself has somewhat narrowed the type of business I want to start. Its not a unicorn. Its a solid SAAS business.