3 min read

The Beginning of an Idea

How Interseller was born

February 2016

I quit my full-time software engineering job to work knowing that I always wanted to build my own company. I jumped into building an educational startup with two other co-founders upon quitting. The idea was like QuizUp but for entrance exams (e.g., SAT, MCAT). We built something sensational, but we had two difficult hurdles: building a business plan and retaining users. We couldn't find a path forward, so we decided to part ways.

May 2016

I still had an urge to build my own company, so I tried a few more ideas ranging from Instagram for video game clips, optimizing a jewelry business with software, to an iPhone app that replicated a disposable camera. In retrospect, I should have realized here that I'm more interested in business optimization problems. None of them took off so a couple of months later, I felt a little burnt out from the ideas and decided to take on a consulting gig.

July 2016

This consulting gig allowed me to work with a former colleague and friend of mine again. I was tasked to build a website version of their iOS app. After about two months, the startup folded, and I found myself back to building my own ideas. Since the timing was right, my friend and I started to work together building Perf Labs, Inc.

September 2016

We officially incorporate and decide to work on performance monitoring software for website developers. We finished an MVP, and it was time to find an investor to help us continue our journey. A few conversations later, we find ourselves without one and the feedback boiled down to, "we need to see more sales." This is where we begin our journey.

November 2016

I started looking into products to help run sales processes and found that we couldn't afford any of them. I asked a few former colleagues of mine in sales how an efficient organization runs and realized a lot of the products were disjoined. I began writing a few scripts on my computer that scraped Product Hunt and sent emails automatically which helped us bring on a few websites for Perf.

2017

I kept working on building our customer base, which meant I kept working on those scripts. Eventually, a friend of ours at our previous job convinced us that we should build an app. It took my co-founder 10 seconds to conjure the name Interseller and a week or so later, that same friend subscribed. This was about when we decided to pivot into the idea and work on it exclusively.

2019

Interseller wasn't initially a recruitment sourcing product, it was more advertised as email marketing and outreach software for both sales teams and recruitment teams. In the beginning of 2019, we decided to refine our offering to only recruiters. Later that year, refining even more to recruitment agencies. Each refinement helped us focus and made our goal, our pitch, our roadmap that much clearer.

That's it!

My journey wasn't really the sexiest way to create a business. I hope I pointed out that ideas are a dime a dozen but the idea you build a business around may not be the most obvious one. It reminds me of Slack's story when they pivoted from a gaming company.

If you're interested in some additional stories about Interseller, he's some other light reading:

Interseller’s Origin Story - Interseller
A story about how we came up with Interseller
Earning while building - Freelancing while bootstrapping a company
6 lessons learned during the ups and downs bootstrapping Interseller and doing freelance work at the same time and what I would do differently