The Power of Strategy: From Building in Private to Owning Your Audience


Hatched by Glasp

Sep 13, 2023

4 min read


The Power of Strategy: From Building in Private to Owning Your Audience


In the fast-paced world of entrepreneurship, there is a constant quest for success. For many, this success is measured by the size of their audience and the impact they make. But how does one go about building a thriving audience? In this article, we will explore the strategies used by successful entrepreneurs and delve into the tradeoffs and benefits of various blogging platforms. We will also discuss the importance of regulation in maintaining a competitive advantage. So, let's dive in and uncover the secrets to building a loyal and engaged audience.

The Benefits of Product First and Building in Private:

Justin Kan, a renowned expert in audience building, emphasizes the importance of focusing on the product and building in private. He believes that it is better to be rich and anonymous than rich and trapped by your business. This approach allows founders to refine their product without the distractions of public scrutiny. By keeping their work private, entrepreneurs can experiment, iterate, and perfect their offering before unveiling it to the world. This method also allows for a more controlled launch, ensuring a positive user experience right from the start.

The Obsession with Product vs. Distribution:

In the entrepreneurial journey, there is a shift in focus from product to distribution. First-time founders are often obsessed with perfecting their product, while second-time founders understand the importance of effective distribution. Creating a remarkable product is only half the battle; getting it into the hands of the right audience is equally crucial. This realization highlights the need for a comprehensive distribution strategy to achieve widespread adoption and sustain long-term success.

The Tradeoff Between Blogging Platforms:

When it comes to building an audience through blogging, entrepreneurs face a tradeoff between ownership and discoverability. Blogging on one's own site offers more control and the opportunity to build an email list, which is invaluable for direct communication with the audience. On the other hand, blogging on community sites like Medium,, or Hashnode provides greater discoverability and access to social features. Finally, microblogging on social media platforms like Twitter, LinkedIn, or Facebook offers even more discoverability and the potential for viral reach.

The Recommended Approach:

Considering the tradeoffs, it is advisable for aspiring entrepreneurs to start blogging on a community site to gain initial traction and exposure. This allows them to tap into an existing audience and benefit from the social features that facilitate engagement and sharing. As they establish themselves and build a loyal following, it becomes advantageous to do a strategy turn and focus on their own site. This shift provides greater ownership and control over the content and audience, allowing for a deeper connection and more targeted communication.

The Role of Regulation in Industry Success:

While the focus has been on audience building and distribution strategies, it is crucial to acknowledge the role of regulation in maintaining a competitive advantage. Established entrepreneurs understand the importance of regulatory frameworks that make it difficult for newer startups to replicate their success. By advocating for industry regulations, entrepreneurs can create barriers to entry, ensuring that newcomers must navigate the same challenges and comply with the same standards. This not only protects their business but also creates a level playing field for all stakeholders.

Today's Success Stories and Yesterday's Rules:

It is often said that today's success stories are based on yesterday's rules. This statement highlights the ever-evolving nature of entrepreneurship and the need to adapt to changing circumstances. As entrepreneurs, we must constantly reassess our strategies, embrace new technologies, and stay ahead of the curve. What worked yesterday may not work tomorrow, and by staying agile and open to innovation, we can continue to thrive in an ever-changing landscape.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Focus on your product: Take the time to refine and perfect your offering before launching it to the public. Building in private allows for experimentation and iteration without the pressure of immediate feedback.
  • 2. Develop a comprehensive distribution strategy: Recognize the importance of effective distribution in reaching the right audience. Invest time and resources into understanding your target market and identifying the best channels to connect with them.
  • 3. Embrace regulation as a competitive advantage: Advocate for industry regulations that protect your business and create barriers to entry for newcomers. By complying with the letter of the law, you can establish yourself as a trusted player in the industry.


Building a loyal and engaged audience is a vital aspect of entrepreneurial success. By understanding the benefits of product first and building in private, as well as the shift in focus from product to distribution, entrepreneurs can develop effective strategies to reach their desired audience. The tradeoff between blogging platforms requires careful consideration, but starting on a community site and transitioning to one's own platform can provide the best of both worlds. Furthermore, recognizing the importance of regulation and embracing it as a competitive advantage can help entrepreneurs maintain their market position. As the rules of entrepreneurship continue to evolve, it is essential to stay adaptable and open to change. So, go forth, refine your product, develop a distribution strategy, and embrace the power of regulation to build a thriving audience.

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