Jacques Mattheij

Technology, Coding and Business

So you're making good money. STFU

Every now and then someone hits the jackpot. An easy concept, maybe an app or a small website that makes a ton of money. Or one of those 10 year overnight successes.

Congratulations! Seriously! I’m really happy for you and I hope that it will last you for a long long time to come.

One thing you probably don’t want to do (edit: if your ‘trick’ can be easily cloned) is to brag about it in an open forum. The reason why is very simple: A runaway success is what almost every wanna-be business guy is looking for, and you’re just out of the gate so you are still vulnerable.

Of course it is fantastic that you want to contribute to the knowledge base and that you want to tell the world exactly how you did it. Which marketing tricks made the difference and why this works and how much it is making.

But really, you’re killing your advantage. Copying your concept (or even your website or your binaries) is about a hundred times easier than coming up with the original. You’ve already validated that it works! And suddenly you find yourself competing with yourself. At a lower price-point (after all, the investment was much lower too). You really can’t win that way.

It’s a dog-eat-dog world out there, and the web and the app stores in particular are brutal when it comes to having any kind of success.

Be a submarine. Stay underwater, rake in the $ and be happy with your success. Loose lips sink ships. At some point you will be able to afford being open but right now, on the eve of your first success it is not the right time. Of course, if you’re an altruistic type and you don’t care about the money by all means, tell all. But if you have hit a home-run for the first time and you could do with a bit of extra cash then do yourself a favor: count your blessings and STFU.

If you don’t I guarantee you that your app or website will be cloned multiple times before the digital ink on your income report is dry.

HN Submission/Discussion
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