The Sparkline — a blog for independent creatives and entrepreneurs building matterful things.

Learn how to set goals that actually stick The tuneup your website desperately needs

In my first couple of startups, I built things in the traditional order: product first, then audience. With Think Traffic, I started blogging first, then figured out which products and services to deliver to the audience that gathered here.

One of the questions I hear most is "how do I find a mentor?" Mentorship has always been a strange concept to me. For a long time I thought it was common for people to have "official" mentors, but eventually I realized I had never met anyone with an explicit mentor relationship.

Two weeks ago we first wrote about the launch of our new training platform for online business builders in 5 lessons from a $213,000 launch. Today we have 5 more lessons from our launch to share with you. If you're building an online business or launching a new product, this post is for you.

Two weeks ago our little 3-person company launched a new video training platform and community for online business builders. The launch (which was actually iterated over 3.5 months) was a hit. We exceeded our expectations and brought in a nice chunk of revenue (which I'll detail below).

In my hurry to launch my first product, an eBook called The App Design Handbook, I almost made a mistake that would have cost me over $10,000, a mistake that I see being made with products all around the web. Luckily for me, a few people were kind enough to lead by example and show how important it was to fix this.

A little over a month ago, we intentionally launched a very unfinished product. Functionality was missing, content was meager and many questions were unanswered, yet we opened the doors to real customers anyway, on a date we had scheduled months in advance.

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