Building in Public for Introverts
In a society where social media increasingly depicts picture-perfect lives, people seek transparency.
This need has translated into a new trend in the startup world: building in public. It’s a strategy where companies share the journey of building their product, from the wins to the losses and everything in between. It is a new way of communicating, and it highlights that the days of corporations towering over us in order to win us over are gone. Companies now employ vulnerability to build long-lasting relationships with their customers. It’s become a new business must-have.
The problem? No one likes feeling exposed. Especially introverts.
It’s a problem I’ve been reflecting on extensively. I spent my summer writing a book, a personal project I was excited to tell the world about. But vulnerability felt outside of my comfort zone, and when I got to posting about my book journey on social media, I froze. Did I really need to tell people that I spent two hours and 37 minutes agonizing over how to word a single sentence in order to get them to buy my book?
In an attempt to find answers, I went down many rabbit holes of the Internet, and happened to stumble across the story of Superhuman, a startup co-founded by Cal grad Vivek Sodera.
Superhuman is a startup committed to making email faster, easier, and more fun. While Apple users race to delete the iPhone equivalent off their emails, people love Superhuman so much they leave the “Sent by Superhuman” default email signature.
The bottom line of my Superhuman-Twitter-stalking adventures was that building in public can be really fun. More than raw vulnerability, it’s about embracing the imperfections of your product and maintaining a two-way conversation with your audience.
It’s like that moment when you’re working at a coffee shop. You’re getting excited about your project coming together and a stranger happens to strike up a conversation about what you’re working on. The energy you exude is contagious.
Now, make it many strangers that you can’t see but know are there. That’s building in public. Introverts, go show them how it’s done.
By Vedika Dayal