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Highlights

 

Welcome to another episode of Category Visionaries, the show that explores the future of tech with innovative B2B founders. In today’s episode, we’re speaking with Paul Kim, CEO of Notify, a Web3 communication infrastructure platform that has raised over $12 million in funding.

Key topics discussed in this episode:

  • Paul’s background in Web2 cloud infrastructure services, working for companies like Amazon, Microsoft, and Oracle, and the decision to pursue opportunities in the Web3 space
  • The experience of working under Andy Jassy at Amazon Web Services, participating in intense project reviews and learning the importance of diving deep, having all the answers, and maintaining a culture of excellence
  • The value of building an imaginary “board of directors” comprised of admired leaders, using their perspectives to guide decision-making and inspire teams
  • The origin story of Notify, born from the realization that Web3 lacked basic customer experience elements like notifications and alerts, leading to a broken user journey and adoption process
  • The thesis of connecting Web3 builders with Web2 users through familiar communication channels like email, SMS, and Telegram, rather than forcing them to adopt new platforms
  • The target market of SaaS companies with recurring revenue and established business models, and the approach of working with design partners to build and validate the product
  • The challenges of estimating total addressable market (TAM) in the nascent Web3 space, and the belief in the potential for mass adoption and exponential growth in builders and applications
  • The intentional decision not to create a new category, focusing instead on solving today’s problems and preparing for the future by abstracting complexity and delivering seamless Web2 experiences
  • The importance of magical, simple user experiences in driving mass adoption, and the role of builders in optimizing for the next billion users rather than catering solely to existing Web3 natives
  • The business model of charging based on message volume, mirroring Twilio’s approach, and the ability to accept both cryptocurrency and traditional payments
  • The three-year vision of enabling Web3 applications to rival and surpass Web2 experiences, expanding across multiple layer ones and layer twos, and establishing notifications as a prime, chain-agnostic category

Actionable
Takeaways

Focus on Solving Today's Problems While Preparing for the Future:

Identify the current pain points and inefficiencies in your target market, and build solutions that address these needs while laying the groundwork for future growth and expansion.

Abstract Complexity to Deliver Magical Experiences:

Strive to create user experiences that are so seamless and intuitive that the underlying technology becomes invisible. Users shouldn't have to understand the intricacies of blockchain or other infrastructure to benefit from your product.

Prioritize Web2 User Adoption Over Web3 Maximalism:

Recognize that the path to mass adoption lies in catering to the needs and preferences of Web2 users, rather than forcing them to adapt to unfamiliar Web3 paradigms. Bridge the gap by providing familiar, accessible experiences.

Build an Imaginary Board of Directors:

Assemble a mental "board" of leaders and mentors whose perspectives and decision-making frameworks you admire. Use their insights to guide your own choices and inspire your team to embody the best qualities of these role models.

Embrace a Pragmatic, Chain-Agnostic Approach:

In the rapidly evolving Web3 landscape, maintain flexibility by building solutions that are compatible with multiple layer ones and layer twos. Focus on the core value proposition of your product, rather than tying yourself to a single ecosystem or maximalist ideology.

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