One of projects I’m contributing to is a micro-ISV service. Maybe it’s not the perfect example of micro-ISV, because at least several people are engaged. It’s not single-person business, but the basis is the same. Whole idea was in its origin a world-changing service (or close). The main person working on the idea is a guy who loves it and strongly believes that the service will be great success. The rest of team keeps adding new brainstormed ideas to current concept, keeping ourselves on fire.
Just like most of micro-ISVs. Just like most of micro-ISVs which failed. I wrote some time ago that faith and will to contribute in the long run are essentials when trying to build a product or service as the micro-ISV. But that’s not all. Another factor which is probably even more important is consistency.
I’ve seen different “micro-ideas” (like you can call micro-ISV’s ideas for products or services) which had potential at least to earn for themselves. I played my role in those projects as a co-author, as a supporter, as a user. Range of ideas was wide – from a very fresh look on Internet entertainment services to yet another communicator. All of them I can call (more or less) failures. None of them fulfilled author’s expectations in area of revenue, number of customers or users etc. Many weren’t even born to be shown to the world – they died during pregnancy.
When you have your application completed in 90% it’s usually much less than halfway to successful release. And when you’re 90% completed all the fun is the past. You developed the most enjoyable and the most challenging parts of a code. You exploited all your creative ideas during design. Now you have to focus on boring little improvements of website. Now you have to force your creative soul to think how to make your customers happy instead of thinking how to enjoy yourself with the work. Now you have to fix all those unrepeatable tiny little bugs which allow your frustration to grow. Now you have to deal with The Boring Time. And if you allow yourself to become bored – you lose.
90% of completeness is just the beginning of the road. In this case 90% finished often means 100% failed.