Fudeo is a learning-platform for the Italian market, with courses on the latest technologies, aimed at developers.
We started working on it in April 2019, debuting with a course on Flutter. This choose was after Gabriel put this skill on his LinkedIn profile, and he started receiving multiple job offers. It was clear to us that there was a strong demand from the market in terms of jobs, and a lack of supply of developers, particularly in Italy.
Our first move has been testing the market fit, to see if it made sense to invest money and time in the development of this platform. Before we started writing code, we decided to sponsor a Facebook post to generate leads. The result was about twenty emails in a few days. It was enough.
After taking some time to analyze in detail the idea, we asked ourselves what could be the best distribution platform. We evaluated the most famous ones and they simply did not seem worth it: it was clear that a better idea was to spend time and some initial money (around 10 bucks) to develop our own platform, rather than giving away most of the revenues in fees.
We spent about a month planning and developing the platform. Initially we were using the YouTube player to serve our videos, which unfortunately allowed also anyone who purchased the course to click on the title of the video embedded in our platform, open it on YouTube, copy and share the link with anyone. It has been a good decision looking back, it allowed us to move fast and not pay for a more premium service.
So, here was the validation strategy: record the first three video lessons of the fifteen planned and make them accessible for free in exchange for the email. Everything was ready by the end of May. We published the platform and started the sponsorship on Facebook.
After about a week, a call arrived to Alessandro’s personal phone: the number was taken from the Stripe checkout, there for assistance purposes.
We had made the first sale and the buyer was worried because, after the first three lessons, he saw nothing else.
At that exact moment, we realized that the “fake it until you make it” method is dangerous for a product. We reimbursed the entire amount and gave him a 50% discount code that he could use when we arrived to publish the eighth lesson (just to be clear, we left him access to the course anyway). The next day, the situation repeats itself: purchase, refund, e-mail apology.
We decided, therefore, to record the other video-lessons and to post throughout the site, that we were in the pre-launch phase and therefore some lessons were still missing.
We updated the strategy: we decided to record and publish at least two video-lessons a week, communicating to all the contacts of the newsletter (which meanwhile was growing) news about the newly released videos and giving them a discount code with a small time-window to make the purchase.
Two weeks after its launch, Fudeo paid its own costs: it was self-sustainable. All the money collected had always been reinvested to improve the platform: one of the most important was the replacement of the video player, from YouTube to Vimeo Pro.
One of our main characteristics that allowed us to keep a good reputation has been paying lot of attention to problem resolution. We respond within 10 minutes to all requests / bug reports that came to us.
At the beginning of October 2019, we launched Fudeo 2.0, with completely redesigned graphics, new features and additional in-depth video lessons.
Consistent with the values of Alea Makers, we are working to launch Fudeo in the world of Open Startups: soon we will publish our metrics (cash flow and user metrics) that can be viewed in real time.