Truth Social and HustleMob

Hosted By Matt Watson

Full Scale

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Billy Boozer

Today's Guest: Billy Boozer

Founder - HustleMob

Atlanta, Georgia

Ep. #1124 - Truth Social and HustleMob

In today’s episode of Startup Hustle, our guest Billy Boozer shares his experiences with Matt Watson of building Truth Social and HustleMob. Our guest is the founder of the latter mentioned company. And he has worked with President Donald Trump on creating a social media platform. Moreover, he has excellent insights on software development, product roadmaps, and team building.

Covered In This Episode

Billy is passionate about catalyzing more small business opportunities in America. But why did he make this his goal? What does working with President Trump look like? And what does HustleMob do for everyday hustlers out there?

Hear the reasons for his goals and insights in his conversation with Matt. Enjoy Billy’s advice on how to police your product roadmap and enable your team to be mission-oriented. And dive into more details about how he built Truth Social and HustleMob.

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  • Why Billy went all-in on technology after college (01:50)
  • How software development empowered Billy (02:31)
  • Can you say Ruby on Rails is dead now? (03:20)
  • The whirlwind evolution of software development (04:28)
  • Let’s talk about Billy’s entrepreneurial journey (05:30)
  • On creating a good user experience (08:12)
  • Josh Adams and Elixir (09:25)
  • Building a great product is the key to success (12:32)
  • What was it like to meet Donald Trump? (14:14)
  • The launch of Truth Social (16:53)
  • Why Truth Social built a waitlist (19:28)
  • The fastest social network to acquire 1,000,000 users (20:44)
  • The implementation of “unacceptable” industries (24:11)
  • All about Billy’s podcast, Everyday Hustle (25:30)
  • What happens with a mission-aligned team? (25:50)
  • Hear about Billy’s new company, HustleMob (28:11)
  • What does a valuable product roadmap look like? (30:52)
  • The value (and potential harm) of conversations with customers (35:20)
  • Bill Smith’s (founder of Shipped) feedback as an investor (38:06)
  • Words of wisdom from Bill for fellow entrepreneurs (41:11)

Key Quotes

A lot of people want to be software developers and engineers. But the real trick and magic in all of it is the product. The “product visionary” part of it is being able to say how the hell do we build this thing. That’s where the magic happens.

– Matt Watson

When you’re building a social media product to scale to millions of people in the first moment of its existence, every moment counts. And we all did that in about four months for Truth Social.

– Billy Boozer

When you can find a group of people that are mission-aligned to what your business is doing, and they all feel on that same kind of congruent path, you get this kind of flow state.

– Billy Boozer

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Rough Transcript

Following is an auto-generated text transcript of this episode. Apologies for any errors!

Matt Watson 00:00
And we’re back for another episode of Startup Hustle. This is your host today, Matt Watson; really excited to be joined today by Billy Boozer. He worked at Truth Social, which is gonna be an interesting conversation today. And he has a new company called HustleMob; we’ll talk about that today as well. Before we get started, I wanna remind everybody that today’s episode of Startup Hustle is powered by Hiring software developers is difficult. Full Scale can help you build a software team quickly and affordably and has the platform to help you manage that team. Visit to learn more. Billy, welcome to the show, man.

Billy Boozer 00:34
Hey, how’s it going?

Matt Watson 00:37
So before we get started, tell me a little bit about your background. You know, you’ve worked as a CEO on the product side. Or you also have an engineering background. Like what is your background?

Billy Boozer 00:48
Yeah, so I’m a self-taught engineer. I was an architecture student in college. And during the 2006 to 2008 recession, nobody could get a job as an architect. At least the ones that were coming out of college. And I was also dual majoring in computer science and software engineering at the time, and I just decided to drop off of doing the whole architecture thing and focus on technology. And at the time, they were teaching C++ and Java. And I didn’t enjoy either one of those things. So I picked up PHP and Ruby and realized that they were teaching me things that may not have had enterprise value at the time. It did not have the same enterprise value as a Rails developer did at the time. And so I started to pick up consulting gigs. And before too long, you know, I was charging $150 an hour to be a software engineer. And I stopped going to school and just started building things. And so I’m just a self-taught engineer. I have a passion for software engineering. It brought me empowerment in my life when I felt powerless to a certain extent in the industry that I was working in. And my wife will say that while I was learning software engineering, she would go to sleep by the light of her laptop. And it was just, I just found a passion and something that I felt like other people needed. I felt like a magician, and everyone else was muggles, I guess. So I could go out there and do things that no one else could. And it was, like I said, very empowering.

Matt Watson 02:32
So it’s funny is, you know, you’ve been doing this for, you know, 15 years or whatever now. And you’ve, you’ve already been doing it long enough that something like Ruby and Rails is almost dead already. Yeah, I know, right? Like, it’s funny, I was the cool hotness. And now it’s like dead.

Billy Boozer 02:48
So one of my first jobs as a software engineer was a Rails developer. And then you learn this fast that these technologies die in these life cycles, right. And the first job that I had as a software engineer was kind of dedicated to a specific project. When I showed up the screen that I was using, or I was assigned to it, the desk was being held up by a cobalt book. It was like, that was my first experience of, hey, there’s something that has been deprecated for me to do the thing that I’m doing today. And then, as you know, we’ve seen the JavaScript revolution with every JavaScript framework that exists. We’ve seen server-side server lists. We’ve seen client-side everything, and then you know, consolidated code bases for everything, and then every single frame but work saying they can also do mobile. But yeah, it’s been an interesting experience. It’s been a whirlwind of learning technologies.

Matt Watson 03:49
Yeah, we, as I talked to people, and they asked me, they’re looking for Ruby on Rails developers. I’m like, Ooh, good luck. Yeah. It’s fallen out of favor.

Billy Boozer 03:59
Yeah. I mean, it’s, it’s interesting. What’s funny is I see a guy that’s on. I don’t remember his name right now. He’s been pushing Ruby on Rails a lot on Twitter lately. And it feels like there have been people trying to pick it up again because of some of the new things that have been out there. But we really focus a lot on Elixir and Phoenix lately. And so we make a lot of applications that require high concurrency, multi-threaded newness, and the ability to, you know, have open connections and live connections to people. And so I think, I think those technologies have done better at scaling for those things than Ruby and Rails have.

Matt Watson 04:35
So tell me about your entrepreneurial journey. Where did you kind of start there?

Billy Boozer 04:39
So honestly, when I went to start, really, you know, I guess commercializing my skills as a software engineer was because I had an interesting project that I wanted to build for people. And it was like this consolidation of, you know, calendars and events to get people to get together in person at a higher frequency. And so, you know, like, one as a kid, I was always entrepreneurial. So I liked having the little books that I published, or I sold magic cards out of my locker or candy, you know, from Costco or Sam’s Club back then. And so I’ve always been that way. But really, what pushed me into doing software was I wanted some agency for myself; I wanted to feel as though I wasn’t controlled by someone that wasn’t either as intelligent or as driven as I am. And so I just kind of dove into building software. The first real project that I worked on as an entrepreneur was a job application that shot me an Applicant tracking system. And so, I built a high-volume applicant tracking system for a client while I was working at an agency. And we decided to spin that out as its own entity, and it ended up not working out very well. But we got some really interesting customers. And it basically allows you to create your own hiring algorithms with knockout questions so that as for high volume manufacturing facilities, they will get like 1000 job requests, or maybe 1000 job applications for a single role. And they need to be able to find the best people in that 1000 people, maybe 15,000. And so we just created an application that did that. And so that set me on fire for doing it; I quit my job, after all, that didn’t work out and was an EIR at a small venture fund in Birmingham, Alabama, where I’d developed three or four more pieces of software. And then a lot of it came down to I was a service provider. So I was an entrepreneur that had an entity that could build software for people. And so I started building software for large enterprises. So Southern Company and NASCAR and a bunch of big, big, big enterprise businesses that couldn’t move fast internally but could get external resources to build software for them fast and solve problems. And I was the product guy slash software guy that could distill out what they needed and then actually go build it myself. Well, and that’s the key is being the product guy, you know, product person.

Matt Watson 07:17
You know, a lot of people want to be software developers and engineers, but the real trick and magic and all of it is the product, the visionary part of it, being able to say, how the hell do we build this thing? And yeah, we’ll figure it out. Like, this is what we need to do and create a good user experience and good business and all those things. And that is by far the hardest part of it. And a lot of people do not have that gift.

Billy Boozer 07:44
Yeah, a lot of people have described me as weird, like, to my face, they’ll be like, you know, you’re kind of weird, like, like, it’s easy to talk to you about things. And we don’t actually have to guide you too much. And I was like, that’s really the entrepreneurial nature of myself, like, I want to go out and solve problems, I want to be the one that actually has not just agency but responsibility over that problem. And so that intersected with a skill of building software that just had enterprise value; I guess I could add value to people that really had to deal with people that either just wanted to talk about the technology or had no ability to execute the technology itself.

Matt Watson 08:28
You are a visionary CTO; I just started a blog. And that is you. I love it. I’m the same way. Need a real login? Yeah, I’ll send you a link. So how in the hell did you end up involved in Truth Social.

Billy Boozer 08:44
So one of my best friends in the world is a guy named Josh Adams. And he is and was pretty influential on the Elixir and Erlang world. I’ve done a lot of functional programming, talked at conferences, and then committed to those core code bases. And there was a current CTO at Truth Social just in its very nascent phase, maybe there were like five total people on the project, and three of them were, or they call it what the show The Apprentice, they were apprentice, ex-apprentice contestants is, so are like, just like NBA guys, basically, that had small businesses of their own that were loyalists to Trump, and they had started this, I think it was like, just after the January 6 event happened when President Trump got kicked off of Twitter and everywhere else in the world. They went to him and said, hey, you know, you’re gonna need to start something new, and you’re gonna need to start something that you own that no one else can control. And so they started an entity with him, and it was actually two guys against him. Let’s see, his name is Andy Liptonski and Wes Moss, and one of them is a local Atlanta guy that likes to focus on finance and owns a finance business. And then the other one was like a radio personality. Okay. Yeah, I mean, it was just this hodgepodge of people like, one of the first people that I had engaged with that was there was he, they were calling him the head of the product at the time. And he was an ex-insurance sales guy basically, like, and was on The Apprentice. And he was great. Like, he’s probably one of the best support people I’ve ever met in my life because he knew how to support people through insurance issues. He knew how to be very empathetic, but he wasn’t a product guy. And so he’s very much a hodgepodge of people. And so the current CTO had reached out to a friend of Josh’s that was doing a podcast with him. And they had run one of the larger elixir podcasts that existed, and they knew that they were going to build this thing off of Mastodon, which is, you know, an open-source social network. And it’s the basis for Gab, and a couple of other social networks, and, but they knew that they were gonna get a lot of scales initially because everything was President Trump. If you put something out there in the world, it’s going to get a lot of attention. Sure. And so, there was a variant of Mastodon called Pleroma. And I think it’s actually called Soapbox or Rebase now or something like that. And it was an open-source project that was built off of Elixir. And so Josh knew it really, really well. And, and said, they said, Hey, can we bring you in to kind of consult on this? And he said, Well, yeah, but I’ll bring in another guy with me because he’s great at product. And we’re going to need to make it actually a good product because, like, out of the box, not a great product. And so we’re gonna have to build a mobile application, and, you know, all kinds of other services that stood around it, and doing that alone was not going to be realistic. And so he brought me on the first day. And then I think within about three or four weeks, because of just the stress and the expectations, the existing CTO quit, and it is, yeah, and they asked me to be the CTO, and I was like, No, I’d rather be the, you know, the head of product or the chief product officer. So Josh ended up taking on the CTO role, which was fantastic because he’s one of the smartest people I’ve ever met in my life, got a degree in mathematics, graduated really fast from college, you know, just has always understood how to make systems work at scale, and also understood how to make systems work at scale without the crutch of Amazon Web Services or any of the existing systems that you would, we wouldn’t be able to leverage.

Matt Watson 12:45
So you knew going into this that Trump was involved when you when you’re doing okay?

Billy Boozer 12:51
Yeah, we didn’t believe it, to be honest with you. Like, we thought it was like, just kind of like, we’re gonna go show up at this place, and there’s gonna be people telling us this, but it’s not going to be real. And come to find out, it was real. And within, I think, a month or two, I was down in Mar a Lago meeting with the president, you know, pitching and what we were doing?

Matt Watson 13:09
Was he still the president at that time?

Billy Boozer 13:12
No, no, no, no, no, this was in, yeah, I think it was in October of a year ago, like, October of 2021, or something like that.

Matt Watson 13:21
So what is that? Like? What does that like to go to martial art Mara Lago and meet with him? It is crazy.

Billy Boozer 13:27
He is, I’ll tell you, one of the more endearing parts of him, in general, is that he looks you in the eye and listens to you when you talk to him. And I’ve been around a lot of people that have significant influence in life, or at least significant influence over a lot of people. And those people typically are not listening to you when you’re talking to them. They’re the type of people that will look through you and are thinking about what they can extract from you. Not to say he wasn’t, but you know, like, he actually gave you his attention. He is not technology savvy whatsoever. There’s a funny story where we were talking about one of the initial features of Truth Social that we might implement to kind of coax users into wanting to sign up early because we weren’t exactly sure about the demand. And so we were going to offer him this badge that said, you were like the first million or something like that, you know, like this, you know, you got to something that showed who you were in the grand scheme of, of, of the Truth Social product. And he immediately was like, Yeah, I know a guy that can print out these badges and give them to everybody else, like none of that. We’re talking about digital badges here, like we’re talking about, just like things that show up on your profile, you know, like, you go to his office in Mar Lago, he doesn’t have a computer in his office, he’s got like a TV screen, and that’s it. And it’s not even like a newer TV screen. So it was interesting to be explaining technology to somebody that really wasn’t technology. Literate per se. Also an interesting person.

Matt Watson 15:02
Do you feel like he actually writes all of his own tweets and stuff?

Billy Boozer 15:06
Yeah, he and a guy named Dan Scavino. Do it. So that’s an even crazier story. So Dan, apparently, this is the story I’ve always been told. He’s like Trump’s right-hand man when it comes to social media. And the way he got the job was, at one point in time, he was Trump’s caddy. Okay, so he went from caddy; the come-up was amazing because he’s like, right-hand man always next to him type of guy. But that guy is the guy that really helps manage a lot of things socially. But Trump is the one either dictating it or typing it in himself. I mean, he is that guy that wants to be; he wants that connection with the underlying body of people that he engages with.

Matt Watson 15:49
So how did the launch of Truth Social go? And like today’s Truth Social still exists? Or is it kind of limping along?

Billy Boozer 16:00
So we left a year ago in March, Josh and I did, and then I think a couple of other people did at the same time. And most of the reason why all this left was we didn’t have a lot of confidence in some of the new people that the leadership team was bringing in. And a lot of it also came down to I’m a general free speech purist. And I think that advertising is an anti-pattern against free speech. And the reason why is actually very just like, I guess, functional or practical, if you have an ad, every eight spaces in a feed-based social network, that means you’ve taken the voice away from one of one out of every eight people, okay, and so like, I would rather find a different monetization model. And we all kind of bifurcated on that and decided that wasn’t necessarily the right project due to that. And, so, like, when we launched it was, it was this frenzied craziness. Because we had built all the infrastructure, we had deployed data centers across the United States, basically cold and racked our own servers. We had multiple clouds and open-source cloud frameworks deployed to different systems because different systems have different hardware. And we had built a really interesting scaled system that managed the moderation, that managed the mobile application, the API, the web service, all of these different things, even analytics; we had only done everything that was open source. And what we found was, if any, any of the points of failure that we were going to engage with were going to be any service that we just didn’t have enough time to build. So like, CD ends like we had one CDN D platform like the week before we were going to launch. And also try to like doxa. So they tried to find the credit card information of that person and then tried to send it out to other places. We had, we had one underlying infrastructure provider that just did not ever live up to the expectations that we had. And we’re never; we were supposed to have an extra 100 servers the week that we launched. And then Apple launched just an hour earlier than we expected, which, as you know, you wouldn’t think that was a big deal. But when you’re building a social media product to scale to millions of people in the first moment of its existence, and you have to build all of the underlying infrastructure yourself, every moment counts. And we all did that in about four months. Like, it wasn’t like a thing where we had plenty of time to take care of every issue. And so when we launched, they had suggested Apple, suggested that we create a waiting list. And we built a service that created a waiting list. And funnily enough, we got so much user demand that there was an unknown race condition that was created in the number of users like that you would get a ticket number; that ticket number was off by the hunt orders of hundreds of 1000s fairly quickly because the demand was so just immediate. I mean, it was like a lightning bolt hit our servers, right. And you just saw this flash when everything went on. And everybody in the room started getting these messages. Because what we did was we did this pre-order strategy where Apple allows you to set your app up for pre-order. And within six months, the app has to go live. I think it’s six months or four months; it has to go live. And as soon as it goes live, everyone that was pre-ordered it immediately downloads it to their phone. And so all of a sudden, we had millions of people getting this app downloaded and onboarded to the application. And I think within, you know, maybe 10 seconds, we went down, and then within 45 minutes, we were back. Got up and limped along, we would have SMTP providers hit their maximum limit. So we had to build our own SMTP service and rack our own servers for that specific service that can handle 20 million, you know, email per, you know, whatever. It was just, it was just like band-aid after band-aid after band-aid. But the thing about it is it worked like we were actually on board. I think we’re the fastest social network with 1 million users; we did it in less than one month.

Matt Watson 20:30
That sounds like a total nightmare to me. Because you’re, unless you’re able to thoroughly load test all these things in advance, which we know you can never really do perfectly. Like, so you’re just running around putting out fires and playing whack a mole for, like, all hours of the night, I assume, right?

Billy Boozer 20:51
I mean, it was like, it was like 36 hours, everyone, me and Josh and a few other kinds of technology leadership, we’re on like 36-hour schedules where we were not sleeping for 36 hours, somebody would come. And we’d come back, you know, 12 hours after 10 hours after we had not slept for 36 hours. And the only thing that saved us, honestly, in that time was we did a really good job and the infrastructure. And I give all the credit to Josh for this putting together dashboards and things like Prometheus and Grafana. That enabled us to be able to see where the problems were in our underlying infrastructure, like seeing the sawtooth graphs of SMTP requests falling off or errors cropping up. And, or, I mean, the biggest one was our SMS provider. We couldn’t use Twilio. So we used another one. And they did not like none of these people would do business with you. Yeah, they wouldn’t do business with us at all; like some of them, we would set up extra shell entities or use our vendor entities to make sure that they didn’t know who you were. But you know, like, once you start processing requests through it, and they’re able to see where the requests are coming from, right like it was, it would be very clear, and then they would shut us down. And so we ended up using another SMS provider that we asked about a week or two before to make sure that we could get 10,000 requests per second going through there, their thing because we need to really about 60, or 70,000 requests per second to be able to feel like we’re going to be in the right spot. And they ended up not being able to execute on that. And they got us about 1000 requests per second. And so all of our SMS verification fails. And so that was just then we loaded balanced across multiple keys and all kinds of stuff that happened. So we had to buy new phone numbers. It was just, it was just a crazy nightmare.

Matt Watson 22:46
Man, if I was you, I feel like I’d be trying to figure out who all the providers were for, like porn websites or something, because, like, I know, they would take our business.

Billy Boozer 22:56
Yeah, yeah, I have an ethical, moral problem with that in general, so that they would And funny enough, most of the people that when you get into the conversations of things like digital sovereignty, or the ability, like even in the decentralized world, the crypto world, a lot of it devolves into that conversation of, you know, how can we house the things that no one else wants to house and you get, like, lumped in with gun manufacturers deal with this. Pornography deals with this. Online gambling is a big one that deals with this, although, Well, you know, with the deregulation of online sports betting, they have gotten a little bit more, I guess, accepted into the hosting community; marijuana in these places just won’t do it, you know. And so we had to figure all those things out that all those people had probably already figured out for years.

Matt Watson 23:49
Well, that is absolutely crazy. And I can relate to some of that from scaling systems before. Yeah, do you want to take a minute to remind everybody that finding expert software developers doesn’t have to be difficult, especially when you visit, where you can build a software team quickly and affordably? Use the Full Scale platform to define your technical needs and see what developers are available to join your team. Visit to learn more. Well, so we’ve talked a lot about Truth Social, and I definitely want to talk more about your new company and what you’re doing, but I guess maybe my last question for you about Truth Social looking back, was whatever they paid you worth it for the bullshit that you had to do. Would you do it over again?

Billy Boozer 24:32
So I would do it over again specifically for the team that we brought on. I’ve never been able to build, never had the funds specifically to build a team like what we build. I mean, we hire unique experiences. Yeah, like elite people like, and I say that elite people also had an aligned set of values and a mission that they were all bought into. And I’ve talked about this recently in another podcast. I’m on my podcast, Everyday Hustle, but when you can find a group of people that are mission-aligned with what your business is doing. And they all feel that same kind of congruent path that needs to go directly towards this thing, you get this kind of flow state of, we’re going to execute, and if we’re not executing, someone’s going to call you out, and then you’re going to realign yourself and move forward. And we got this core team of about 30 people that were just amazing. They were not in the leadership structure; they were all just individually executing things. And I would go back for them because they were my favorite part of the project. The money wasn’t good enough, in the end, and in the end, you know, just like contract disputes and things like that were difficult to deal with at the end of the situation. And it was also difficult because we had to deal with, you know, a lot of externalities that weren’t executing on the mission. I mean, you know, dealing with whether family members, you know, wanted a piece of a thing or whether they wanted to bring in some political figure to be able to help with something that they had no business acumen or an understanding of what to do. We had to deal with that on a daily basis. And everybody’s involved. I mean, cronies were just left and right. And yeah, the thing that sucked about it was that every single week, we had a meeting with someone that wasn’t a part of the team that was evaluating whether we were the right people to do it. And, you know, having to prove yourself every week was one of the most painful things because it took our focus away from what we were doing and what the mission was. And what was crazy about it is every person they ever brought in we would chat with them for five minutes and realize they did not have the technical acumen to even be in the room with us or have the conversation with us. And then they would realize it within about 10 minutes. They’d be like, and these guys were executing on a different level. So like it was, it was really funny to watch that part. But it was just distracting. And definitely, the money wasn’t worth it, at least at this point. It definitely hasn’t been so well.

Matt Watson 27:21
So that is definitely a fascinating journey. And I’m sure a lot of people like talking about this. It’s very interesting. Well, so tell us more about your new company HustleMob.

Billy Boozer 27:31
Yeah. So HustleMob originally started out as this thing right here, a tiny POS. And it was basically like a Venmo alternative for very early-stage businesses. And what we realized was in the current banking crisis and in a tumultuous financial environment is very difficult to start a business like that. And so what we did was we took the software that we had developed and kind of repurposed it for being able to create a better experience for merchants to sell products in person through NFC devices. And so right now, that’s what we’re working on executing is just a really good point of sale that is initiated from NFC devices, just tapping on something or scanning a QR code and enables the end consumer actually to be the point of sale with their mobile device. And so that’s really what we’ve transitioned to with HustleMob; you can go to and pre-register your username. There’s my shameless plug. But that’s what it is, is it’s a, it’s a product for being able to make sales for the merchant, merchant services. And our hope and our goal are to build up enough of an audience around it and also to provide a community that helps bring those merchants better value and more experience to help scale their business and grow. So think someone that mows lawns to get more jobs to mow lawns, or do lawn care, someone that, you know, cleans homes and wants more homes to be able to clean? How do you have conversations, or who are the mentors for those people? And our hope is to be able to build a product that provides a significant amount of value and then build a community around it that gives them more information on how to scale their businesses.

Matt Watson 29:21
And so, would you describe it as still a point of sale?

Billy Boozer 29:24
It’s, yeah, it’s a purchase point of sale right now. And what we do is we use NFC devices to initiate any of those sales. So we can give you stickers and cards that enable you to allow a user to tap the back of a phone or a device that accepts an NFC response and or an NFC request. And it will open up a web page that enables you to take payment for either recurring services, individual product sales, or even take tips. So think a valet person could have these cards on them and be able to take their tips as opposed to going through Venmo, where they’ve probably got half of their weed purchases and splitting pizzas with people. It’s just to professionalize those things a little bit more.

Matt Watson 30:09
Yeah, separating your business transactions from your personal ones. So. So once you get into payments like this, there are so many different ways you can go, right? Like, I’m sure customers today are like, Oh, well, that’s great. I can sell my service, but what if I want to sell it online? Or do I need to send an invoice or, you know, the, from a product perspective? I’m just curious, how are you? Like policing that and like forcing like, hey, no, this is what we’re going to do. We’re not going to do all these other things. Because I feel like from a product-like roadmap and what the product does from a perspective, you’ve probably got people trying to pull you in all different directions.

Billy Boozer 30:46
Yeah, I mean, I think one of the things you have to do as a product person or a person that has a vision around a product gets to that initial set of features that allows your customer to begin to give you that feedback of what value they’re extracting from a product. And so, you know, the way I think about it is, I’ve got intuition about something, I’ve seen a behavior that I would like to change and or I would like to enable in a different way. And I want to create a product that does that initially but then enables the actual underlying user to give me feedback as to, you know, what they actually extracted as that valuable magic moment. And right now, a lot of times, it comes down to they’re getting an SMS when they’re not next to the products they’re selling. And that SMS is telling them they just sold a product. So that’s like a really exciting magic moment where, like, oh, I wasn’t there, and I was able to make a sale. And I think what it does for us is it creates that same moment that if you’ve got an e-commerce Store, you’re able to begin to see those sales come through when you’re not actually present and selling those things. But in the real world, that’s actually a difficult thing to replicate. And so that’s what we’re doing right now. I think we’re consolidating around that level of feature. But I think most of them are like kiosks. So that is more like thinking about a kiosk. Exactly. Yeah, exactly. Or let’s say you’ve got multiple remote sales, people that are out there going door to door selling something, or have you got different teams that are going out there selling all of that stuff that gets consolidated into SMS as to whoever owns the merchant services Got it, okay. And so, like, you’re just like seeing the sales come through, and you would have had to look in the dashboard. And like, it’s like the difference between, you know, requesting something and something being passively sent to you. Right, push notifications, right? And I think that that magic is what I’ve seen be the differentiator between a product that people care about and a product that people don’t ever show up at the front door; they don’t want to pull things out of it; they want to be pushed to things.

Matt Watson 32:57
Well, I think part of my point here is you’re trying to solve problems for a specific niche or type of customer, right? And it’s very easy to get pulled into, like, oh, and I was trying to compete with Square or QuickBooks or 1000, other different things that exist out there. And that’s always a challenge. And you talk about taking the customer’s feedback and listening to that and reacting to it. But part of the struggle, there could be that the customer you’re talking to isn’t actually the right customer, like, you know, you could be getting this feedback like, well, that’s not actually a niche I’m trying to target, you know, and so I think that’s the reason I bring it up, I think it’s a struggle that a lot of entrepreneurs have, right when you’re early on, you’re trying to get that, get that feedback and improve the product, but at the same time trying to stay true to what your actual target focus is, or otherwise the people may drag you into like now I compete with all these other things like I failed the mission that I was after.

Billy Boozer 33:52
Yeah, and I think probably throughout my career, I’ve struggled with this more because I lean toward the engineering side. So I like building. And if you like building, a lot of times you will build before you have the problem at hand. Right? And or at least a finite problem that has bubbled up to make it very clear that you need to build something to solve that problem. And I think, you know, we built a little bit before we decided to go to market, and I probably would flip that on its head a little bit before I did it again. But I think what’s nice about being able to build fast is that the technical debt or the cost of building isn’t actually the problem for you. The problem is going out and selling and having conversations with customers. And so I think what we focused on recently as we built something, it took us two or three months to build the thing and then putting it in their hands and seeing what it was like to play with it and asking, asking them where they found value or what Problem was, I think it was like the, it was like the pamphlet we were able to give prior to closing the sale, right? Like, we began to see what they looked at and what they pointed out so that we could then know, okay, these are the things that they actually are concerned about within their business. And one of the things that it did for us was it helped us realize that there is a segment of services called ISOs, which are basically payment processors that are very localized to regions and areas that actually house a lot of merchants. And those ISOs don’t have a lot of good software that’s built for them; most of the software was built by their parent’s super ISO or bought by their parent’s super ISO. And those super ISOs don’t really care about the merchant services or software; they care about getting the merchant to do transactions through their payment processor. And so now what we’re doing is really focusing on building quality software for those specific merchant services providers. And then enabling those merchant services to go out with a better product because, like, they’re now competing with the squares of the world. Now they’re competing with the rebels and these other points of sales that have really focused on not just the software but the hardware and also have a backing bank. And so they’re still, they’re still in the space, they still get customers, it’s just they don’t have a great differentiated product outside of really high-quality support. And so I think what we want to be able to do is build better interfaces for those people, and then build the kind of, like, first-in-class technologies that these very large technology providers have built, but scale them to the rest of the kind of merchant services community.

Matt Watson 36:40
Well, I think you’ve nailed it earlier. You know, as engineers and product-focused people, it’s easy for us to sit in our office or at our home and think, Well, if I just add this new feature, then we consulted these people; if I just add this feature, then we can sell it to these people, right? And you just keep stacking up all these features; we’re really the problem is we don’t go deep enough into a specific type of customer, right? Like, like you said, I need to spend more time talking to people that own kiosks, I need to spend more time with people in this specific industry or whatever, to really, really understand their pain points and go deeper to exactly what would help them. So I become the best product for them instead of becoming a mediocre product for a whole bunch of people. Oh, yeah, that’s the mistake we all make.

Billy Boozer 37:26
We’ve spoken to a couple of investors. One of them was a guy named Bill Smith; he founded a grocery delivery company. And Josh and I both wrote code in that Josh actually built the first prototype for shipping. And we were talking to him, he was like, listen, there are so many of these businesses that exist out there in the world that just throw off piles of cash, but they’re not sexy at all. And some of them are HVAC businesses and plumbers. And you know that they’re doing that because when you call them, you get put on a schedule, and you get put in the future because they have too much inflow of customers for now, right? And then, if you want to know, they’re going to charge you three and five times what they would charge you if you just waited for a few weeks. And so he said, You know, there are all of these businesses, and what you need to realize is, is there are products that need to support those businesses, and the current technology company in the world that you know, your square, or even your Googles, or whoever, they aren’t supporting those businesses, they’re actually gatekeepers to those businesses. And what you want to do is find a product that isn’t gatekeeper by Facebook, or, you know, Google or something like that, that you can directly call and make a sale to them. And so it was good sage advice because he was like, at that point, when we were developing the product, it felt like we were boiling the ocean to a certain extent trying to build too much. And, it really helped us focus on, hey, we’ve got a couple of positive signals here from this payment processing community. Let’s see if we can really focus on that double down and see if they can unlock a set of customers for us. And it seems like it’s working right now, but you know, we’re very early in the business. So we’ll see. We’ll see where it goes. But we’re excited to be building this community because it feels like it’s been a neglected community at times.

Matt Watson 39:19
It still feels like Excel spreadsheets, you know, and that’s good. That’s why I made jokes about, like, most people’s competition is actually Excel because so many Oh, yeah. Which is now turned into Monday and Air Table Table, which is like the online version basically, a little more sophisticated than Excel.

Billy Boozer 39:37
So yeah, the intermediary step was not related. No SQL databases when everybody was dumping everything into Mongo. It was like that was your new version of your back end. So it was fun to watch that hopefully go and pass since then.

Matt Watson 39:53
Well, I do want to remind everybody if you need to hire software engineers, testers, or leaders, Full Scale can help. We have the people and platform to help you build and manage a team of experts. When you visit, all you need to do is answer a few questions and let our platform match you up with our fully vetted, highly experienced team of software engineers. At Full Scale, we specialize in building long-term teams that work only for you. Know more when you visit Well, thank you so much for being on the show today. As we wrap up the show, I’m curious if you have any final tips or words of wisdom for other entrepreneurs that are listening today.

Billy Boozer 40:31
Hmm. I think I think something that’s really important, as an entrepreneur, as you learn how to not neglect yourself or the people around you, I think it’s really, it’s really easy to get enthralled with the problem that you’re solving and get lost in it. And I know at times in my career. I’ve, you know, there’s always a sacrifice somewhere as an entrepreneur, whether it be your family, your home, your faith, your community, whatever it is, you’re going to have to sacrifice time somewhere to be able to execute on something that you feel passionate about. And I don’t; I would just encourage people not to take that lightly. And I would encourage people to really focus on family overwork in business if they could because they’re the people that will stick with you when you know this business has gone and the next business is coming along. And they’re the support that enables you to do those things. And so I think that would be the biggest tip I could give to people. And then the other thing is, I’m a faithful Christian. And so finding, finding in a higher power is an important thing that helps you to make sure that you know that you’re not the center of the universe because if you’re the center of the universe, that’s a very small universe. I would encourage people to find that as well.

Matt Watson 41:55
Awesome. Well, everybody, this is Billy Boozer, and his company is HustleMob; you can check them out at And thank you so much for being on the show today, Billy.

Billy Boozer 42:05
Absolutely. Thank you.

Matt Watson 42:06
All right.