June 7, 2018

It’s probably just a phase

Glenn on Twitter wrote:

The concept of productizing services doesn’t work for software developers, because much of the software development craft is designed to eliminate repetitive, duplicate work. I’d love to be proven wrong on this. maybe @Philip_Morgan, @jonathanstark or @brennandunn know of some good counterexamples?

I disagree with Glenn’s assertion that productized services don’t work for devs. Off the top of my head, I was able to give him four examples of devs who are successfully selling productized services.

Well, not exactly. One of them started out as a productized service and over time was so thoroughly optimized that it transformed into a SaaS.

Which raises the point that I want to share with you today:

Productized services are probably a transitional step.

One of the great things about a productized service is that you can optimize it more and more over time. This allows you to decrease your costs while keeping the price the same, or perhaps even increasing it. Yay! Increased profit margins!

But here’s the thing...

If you keep optimizing your productized service, eventually you’ll remove most all of the high touch service-y bits from it and end up with a straight product (e.g., course, workshop, SaaS, app, plugin, extension, etc)

IMHO, creating a productized service is a good transition step for devs who know how to code but have no idea how to do marketing, pricing, and sales.

So... if you’re a dev who’s skeptical about productized services, maybe think them as a phase and not an end goal.



P.S. Bill from shipping tells me we’re almost out of ebooks, so you better get yours now before they’re gone! http://hourlybillingisnuts.com