A lucky break comes from the absence of a much-loved draft tool. And I feel the stress of paying users suffering from product bugs.
I had a bit of a break when Ryan Brock announced that there would be no 2023 Big Board. Big Board is well-loved on Reddit, and soon after the announcement people were asking for a replacement.
I saw an opportunity for DraftKick, so I jumped in the discussion on Reddit. I ended up with 13 sales over the next couple of days, mostly from that post!
While a rush of sales generated some positive feelings, I also had some negative ones. There is a big risk in starting off an app as a paid product, especially when it's an app with millions of potential configurations and lots of use cases, making it hard to test all of the possibilities.
A couple users contacted me with serious issues: One where DraftKick failed near the end of his draft, one where DraftKick lost all of the keeper data he had entered. Both times the problems were on my end.
I was able to fix the issues pretty quickly, but the damage had already been done. I refunded both of them their money and let them continue to use the full version of DraftKick for free.
I'm still weighing this in my head. I could have offered DraftKick for free for 2023. Users would have found the bugs and I would fix them, but there would be no bad feelings since it was free. In 2024, I'd be much more confident about putting out a paid product, one that I know had been battle-tested from heavy use the previous year.
Instead, I've made $400, but I've also disappointed some early adopters. And I really want the early adopters to love the product, since they are the ones who can keep recommending it on Reddit in future years, just like people keep recommending Big Board.
Is the money worth it? I think so, but I feel sick about people having a poor experience with DraftKick.
I've tried to slow DraftKick development of new features, but the last month has had a surge of new projection data.
Sales for DraftKick have slowed as the Big Board post sank into the depths of Reddit. I'm staying alert, though, as there should be more opportunities to get it in front of people who want it.
If you're still tracking your draft with a custom spreadsheet or even just pen and paper, you need to try DraftKick.
It is packed with features to help you succeed on draft day:
It's completely free to try out!
I'm Mays. I've been playing fantasy since I was in high school (over two decades ago).
My speciality has always been player valuation—converting player stats into rankings and salary values. VBD for fantasy football? Rotisserie z-scores? We go way back. In 2009, I started Last Player Picked, a site that generated fantasy values customized for your league.
These days, I'm building DraftKick and Projectile, a fantasy baseball site with in-season projection visualizations.
You can find me on Twitter at @MaysCopeland or email me at email@example.com.