How I Grew Notion Template Brand from 0 to $5000+ in 5 Months

How I Grew Notion Template Brand from 0 to $5000+ in 5 Months

Nail your niche.

Startup Notion

October 15, 2023

On Sept 2nd, I hit my first $1,000 in Notion templates sales.

41 days later, I’ve hit $5,000!

I started in May 2023.

It may look like a meteoric rise, but there were multiple key components that I had to align. There were moments of doubt and no traffic that I had to overcome.

This is the story and the process I went through, and what I learnt.

1. Testing the market

I launched StartOS, my flagship system to test demand first- priced at $197 in early May 2023.

Yes it was expensive. 

But it’s designed for a very specific audience- startup founders.

I bundled sub-modules as separate products to make it accessible to lower price points.

This was the Minimum Viable Product (MVP). 

I was initially surprised when I got sales, especially on the full priced template, not just the modules!

I used this to:

a. Figure out which sub units have the most demand.

b. Figure out what my customers want with calls with them whenever possible.

2. Taking a step back (to take a leap forward)

From June to July I was quiet. Very quiet.

In the background I was cooking.

a. I remade StartOS into a cleaner system. No more MVP vibes.

b. Added modules that were standalone. This would play a major role in the next step- the Product Hunt launches.

c. Added new graphics and branding. Crucial to establish a brand identity, this definitely helped conversions later!

d. Added AI features that solve specific pain points based on feedback from my users!

The focus? 

Brand building before a big marketing push.

I also prepared the material (copies, icons etc.) for the new module launches and Product Hunt Launches

Pushed these templates to the Notion gallery where they were accepted quickly and started generating traffic and sales!

I had the validation for the high level need!

3. The (massive) marketing push

At this point (August) I had validated the need and the acceptable price points for my end users.

I had about $800 in Sales. Nothing spectacular. But something was brewing.

I committed to 9 launches in 9 weeks on Product Hunt! I knew I could do it cos I was ready.

Rohan Chaubey came on board and guided me with my Product Hunt launches (another article on this coming soon).

I built a dope landing page in Framer designed to yield better conversions than Gumroad.

From Aug to Oct 2nd (before the StartOS launch on Product Hunt), I launched the 8 modules that I had built in step 2. The modules redirected traffic to StartOS via their landing pages.

StartOS converted more than the modules even before I launched it!

Now, I knew I had nailed the demand.

4. The Big Launch

I will never forget Oct 2nd and 3rd ever. 2.5 hours of sleep, literal tears and what not.

When months of work came down to 24 hours. I will never forget the friends who helped me!

We made the impossible happen.

#1 Product of the Day on a Monday

#8 Product of the Week

2nd highest rated Notion Template on Product Hunt. EVER.

$2,259 in revenue in 11 days post launch!

The odds of a solo maker doing this on the first launch of a Product on Product Hunt, on a Monday are slim to none. 

But the traction I had gained through consistency build a brand that made it happen.

The conversions surprised me too- but looking back I believe there were already signs of Product-Market Fit!

Here’s the breakdown of my learnings.

Here’s what I learnt that worked for me

1. Talk to customers.

They will tell you what they need and how it can help. Build that.

I onboarded beta testers from my Founders circles- the same personas as my target end users.

I made it a point to get on calls with as many of my early customers as possible.

You don’t need a million features. You need the right ones.

Fit the features to their pains.

2. Stop copying others. Carve your own niche.

If you try to use someone else’s model, you’re going to just be an inferior version of them.

Find the intersection of your unique edge and experience, and NAIL THAT.

Side Note: Is there saturation?

In niches where everyone is building, for sure.

I see new creators coming in and building templates that others have already built- and built quite well!

The only way you can win that market share is by insane marketing and brand positioning. 

Not impossible, just extremely tough.

But there are other markets completely untapped where people are literally waiting for someone to build something useful!

Its a demand-supply game. 

Don’t fight in the red ocean.

3. Stop focusing on follower counts and other vanity metrics

I barely have 900 followers on X.I have about 2,000 on LinkedIn, but rarely use it as a marketing platform.

I know people with less followers who are generating even more revenue.

If revenue is your goal, follower counts are a small part of the story.

Focus on creating value.

Value builds trust.

Trust builds a brand.

Brands sell.

It’s happened time and again that my customers have told me that they bought from me because of well… me!

4. Growth compounds

If you’re chasing something in the short term, you’ll most likely get frustrated and give up.

Building great things takes time.

The most important part of my journey was the step back.

The graph shows a huge decay in visibility. It was painful.

But wasn’t it worth it?

Once you know you’ve hit a demand, makes sure your sales funnels have no leaks.

Branding again plays a huge role here, but so does market positioning.

Then it’s just about distribution- the top of the funnel. 

5. Having a plan and executing it is an unfair advantage in itself!

Ask yourself- where do you see yourself 5 months from now? Then work backwards to execute that vision.

If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.

Start by identifying your target audience and where they are located.

The answer for me was clearly Product Hunt.

For you it might be different.

I have friends making 4 figures selling Notion templates via YouTube and TikTok, as well as Instagram.

Get creative and explore!

Closing Thoughts

The struggle of new creators is competing in crowded segments thinking that since some famous creator made 1M on a second brain template you can too.

Truth is, you are directly competing with them for market share.

Instead, find a unique use case you understand better than anyone and solve it- better than anyone.

That’s the secret sauce to building a successful brand.

On Sept 2nd, I hit my first $1,000 in Notion templates sales.

41 days later, I’ve hit $5,000!

I started in May 2023.

It may look like a meteoric rise, but there were multiple key components that I had to align. There were moments of doubt and no traffic that I had to overcome.

This is the story and the process I went through, and what I learnt.

1. Testing the market

I launched StartOS, my flagship system to test demand first- priced at $197 in early May 2023.

Yes it was expensive. 

But it’s designed for a very specific audience- startup founders.

I bundled sub-modules as separate products to make it accessible to lower price points.

This was the Minimum Viable Product (MVP). 

I was initially surprised when I got sales, especially on the full priced template, not just the modules!

I used this to:

a. Figure out which sub units have the most demand.

b. Figure out what my customers want with calls with them whenever possible.

2. Taking a step back (to take a leap forward)

From June to July I was quiet. Very quiet.

In the background I was cooking.

a. I remade StartOS into a cleaner system. No more MVP vibes.

b. Added modules that were standalone. This would play a major role in the next step- the Product Hunt launches.

c. Added new graphics and branding. Crucial to establish a brand identity, this definitely helped conversions later!

d. Added AI features that solve specific pain points based on feedback from my users!

The focus? 

Brand building before a big marketing push.

I also prepared the material (copies, icons etc.) for the new module launches and Product Hunt Launches

Pushed these templates to the Notion gallery where they were accepted quickly and started generating traffic and sales!

I had the validation for the high level need!

3. The (massive) marketing push

At this point (August) I had validated the need and the acceptable price points for my end users.

I had about $800 in Sales. Nothing spectacular. But something was brewing.

I committed to 9 launches in 9 weeks on Product Hunt! I knew I could do it cos I was ready.

Rohan Chaubey came on board and guided me with my Product Hunt launches (another article on this coming soon).

I built a dope landing page in Framer designed to yield better conversions than Gumroad.

From Aug to Oct 2nd (before the StartOS launch on Product Hunt), I launched the 8 modules that I had built in step 2. The modules redirected traffic to StartOS via their landing pages.

StartOS converted more than the modules even before I launched it!

Now, I knew I had nailed the demand.

4. The Big Launch

I will never forget Oct 2nd and 3rd ever. 2.5 hours of sleep, literal tears and what not.

When months of work came down to 24 hours. I will never forget the friends who helped me!

We made the impossible happen.

#1 Product of the Day on a Monday

#8 Product of the Week

2nd highest rated Notion Template on Product Hunt. EVER.

$2,259 in revenue in 11 days post launch!

The odds of a solo maker doing this on the first launch of a Product on Product Hunt, on a Monday are slim to none. 

But the traction I had gained through consistency build a brand that made it happen.

The conversions surprised me too- but looking back I believe there were already signs of Product-Market Fit!

Here’s the breakdown of my learnings.

Here’s what I learnt that worked for me

1. Talk to customers.

They will tell you what they need and how it can help. Build that.

I onboarded beta testers from my Founders circles- the same personas as my target end users.

I made it a point to get on calls with as many of my early customers as possible.

You don’t need a million features. You need the right ones.

Fit the features to their pains.

2. Stop copying others. Carve your own niche.

If you try to use someone else’s model, you’re going to just be an inferior version of them.

Find the intersection of your unique edge and experience, and NAIL THAT.

Side Note: Is there saturation?

In niches where everyone is building, for sure.

I see new creators coming in and building templates that others have already built- and built quite well!

The only way you can win that market share is by insane marketing and brand positioning. 

Not impossible, just extremely tough.

But there are other markets completely untapped where people are literally waiting for someone to build something useful!

Its a demand-supply game. 

Don’t fight in the red ocean.

3. Stop focusing on follower counts and other vanity metrics

I barely have 900 followers on X.I have about 2,000 on LinkedIn, but rarely use it as a marketing platform.

I know people with less followers who are generating even more revenue.

If revenue is your goal, follower counts are a small part of the story.

Focus on creating value.

Value builds trust.

Trust builds a brand.

Brands sell.

It’s happened time and again that my customers have told me that they bought from me because of well… me!

4. Growth compounds

If you’re chasing something in the short term, you’ll most likely get frustrated and give up.

Building great things takes time.

The most important part of my journey was the step back.

The graph shows a huge decay in visibility. It was painful.

But wasn’t it worth it?

Once you know you’ve hit a demand, makes sure your sales funnels have no leaks.

Branding again plays a huge role here, but so does market positioning.

Then it’s just about distribution- the top of the funnel. 

5. Having a plan and executing it is an unfair advantage in itself!

Ask yourself- where do you see yourself 5 months from now? Then work backwards to execute that vision.

If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.

Start by identifying your target audience and where they are located.

The answer for me was clearly Product Hunt.

For you it might be different.

I have friends making 4 figures selling Notion templates via YouTube and TikTok, as well as Instagram.

Get creative and explore!

Closing Thoughts

The struggle of new creators is competing in crowded segments thinking that since some famous creator made 1M on a second brain template you can too.

Truth is, you are directly competing with them for market share.

Instead, find a unique use case you understand better than anyone and solve it- better than anyone.

That’s the secret sauce to building a successful brand.

On Sept 2nd, I hit my first $1,000 in Notion templates sales.

41 days later, I’ve hit $5,000!

I started in May 2023.

It may look like a meteoric rise, but there were multiple key components that I had to align. There were moments of doubt and no traffic that I had to overcome.

This is the story and the process I went through, and what I learnt.

1. Testing the market

I launched StartOS, my flagship system to test demand first- priced at $197 in early May 2023.

Yes it was expensive. 

But it’s designed for a very specific audience- startup founders.

I bundled sub-modules as separate products to make it accessible to lower price points.

This was the Minimum Viable Product (MVP). 

I was initially surprised when I got sales, especially on the full priced template, not just the modules!

I used this to:

a. Figure out which sub units have the most demand.

b. Figure out what my customers want with calls with them whenever possible.

2. Taking a step back (to take a leap forward)

From June to July I was quiet. Very quiet.

In the background I was cooking.

a. I remade StartOS into a cleaner system. No more MVP vibes.

b. Added modules that were standalone. This would play a major role in the next step- the Product Hunt launches.

c. Added new graphics and branding. Crucial to establish a brand identity, this definitely helped conversions later!

d. Added AI features that solve specific pain points based on feedback from my users!

The focus? 

Brand building before a big marketing push.

I also prepared the material (copies, icons etc.) for the new module launches and Product Hunt Launches

Pushed these templates to the Notion gallery where they were accepted quickly and started generating traffic and sales!

I had the validation for the high level need!

3. The (massive) marketing push

At this point (August) I had validated the need and the acceptable price points for my end users.

I had about $800 in Sales. Nothing spectacular. But something was brewing.

I committed to 9 launches in 9 weeks on Product Hunt! I knew I could do it cos I was ready.

Rohan Chaubey came on board and guided me with my Product Hunt launches (another article on this coming soon).

I built a dope landing page in Framer designed to yield better conversions than Gumroad.

From Aug to Oct 2nd (before the StartOS launch on Product Hunt), I launched the 8 modules that I had built in step 2. The modules redirected traffic to StartOS via their landing pages.

StartOS converted more than the modules even before I launched it!

Now, I knew I had nailed the demand.

4. The Big Launch

I will never forget Oct 2nd and 3rd ever. 2.5 hours of sleep, literal tears and what not.

When months of work came down to 24 hours. I will never forget the friends who helped me!

We made the impossible happen.

#1 Product of the Day on a Monday

#8 Product of the Week

2nd highest rated Notion Template on Product Hunt. EVER.

$2,259 in revenue in 11 days post launch!

The odds of a solo maker doing this on the first launch of a Product on Product Hunt, on a Monday are slim to none. 

But the traction I had gained through consistency build a brand that made it happen.

The conversions surprised me too- but looking back I believe there were already signs of Product-Market Fit!

Here’s the breakdown of my learnings.

Here’s what I learnt that worked for me

1. Talk to customers.

They will tell you what they need and how it can help. Build that.

I onboarded beta testers from my Founders circles- the same personas as my target end users.

I made it a point to get on calls with as many of my early customers as possible.

You don’t need a million features. You need the right ones.

Fit the features to their pains.

2. Stop copying others. Carve your own niche.

If you try to use someone else’s model, you’re going to just be an inferior version of them.

Find the intersection of your unique edge and experience, and NAIL THAT.

Side Note: Is there saturation?

In niches where everyone is building, for sure.

I see new creators coming in and building templates that others have already built- and built quite well!

The only way you can win that market share is by insane marketing and brand positioning. 

Not impossible, just extremely tough.

But there are other markets completely untapped where people are literally waiting for someone to build something useful!

Its a demand-supply game. 

Don’t fight in the red ocean.

3. Stop focusing on follower counts and other vanity metrics

I barely have 900 followers on X.I have about 2,000 on LinkedIn, but rarely use it as a marketing platform.

I know people with less followers who are generating even more revenue.

If revenue is your goal, follower counts are a small part of the story.

Focus on creating value.

Value builds trust.

Trust builds a brand.

Brands sell.

It’s happened time and again that my customers have told me that they bought from me because of well… me!

4. Growth compounds

If you’re chasing something in the short term, you’ll most likely get frustrated and give up.

Building great things takes time.

The most important part of my journey was the step back.

The graph shows a huge decay in visibility. It was painful.

But wasn’t it worth it?

Once you know you’ve hit a demand, makes sure your sales funnels have no leaks.

Branding again plays a huge role here, but so does market positioning.

Then it’s just about distribution- the top of the funnel. 

5. Having a plan and executing it is an unfair advantage in itself!

Ask yourself- where do you see yourself 5 months from now? Then work backwards to execute that vision.

If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.

Start by identifying your target audience and where they are located.

The answer for me was clearly Product Hunt.

For you it might be different.

I have friends making 4 figures selling Notion templates via YouTube and TikTok, as well as Instagram.

Get creative and explore!

Closing Thoughts

The struggle of new creators is competing in crowded segments thinking that since some famous creator made 1M on a second brain template you can too.

Truth is, you are directly competing with them for market share.

Instead, find a unique use case you understand better than anyone and solve it- better than anyone.

That’s the secret sauce to building a successful brand.