Hey everyone 👋
Seven months ago I launched Instaaa - my attempt at building a tool that would help startups with their outreach by promoting them across a list of 100 different websites, directories and communities.
I've learnt a lot since then and have been quietly working to ship an all-new version of the service with a ton of improvements. I'm happy to announce that today is the day I get to share them all with you. Here's what's new:
- New AI powered submissions. Your startup is now matched with a curated list of websites, directories and communities based on a range of data collected when signing up. The new database saves and constantly pings new places, removing them if they go offline or become irrelevant
- New affiliate system powered by Rewardful (https://www.getrewardful.com)
- New packages, including Bolt and Enterprise
- Customer support and email improvements
- All new look and design across the website
- This plus a whole lot more...
The first version of Instaaa was a huge learning curve for me and dealing with startups from all sizes and parts of the world has been awesome but also extremely challenging. I've tried to implement the feedback received from everyone who used it into this new version and I hope that shows. Building a service that constantly learns and adapts to post results was difficult, but is something I think can make a service like Instaaa a lot more useful than other mass outreach or PR tools. You can try the new matching system out by submitting a startup on the homepage & I'll be providing a demo of how I built it on Twitter tomorrow.
I'll be online all day to answer any questions you may have. You can also reach me on Twitter @ryanheybourn
PS: Anyone who used the first version of Instaaa is eligible to use it again free of charge. Simply send an email with your name and details to email@example.com so I can get you set up.
Marin Dragomirov Gerov
We used Instaaa for DULO when we launched and it helped us in spreading the word on quite a few communities. It is a good investment, especially if you consider the effort and time it takes to make a submission on every platform. Well done, Ryan
@marin_dragomirov_gerov thanks Marin!
Instaaa seems really interesting!
As a designer, I really liked your website, it's super well designed and easy to understand what you're doing.
On a less positive note: I want you to be aware that watching your video made me sick (for real) because of the "flashing" of the white and blue backgrounds. I assume this is not an effect you're trying to get out of this so I thought someone should tell you. More about this: http://www.headacheexpert.co.uk/flicker-illness.html 😕
@syswarren thanks Julie! I can totally understand where you're coming from and I'm sorry the video made you feel that way. I made this myself (no video or editing experience whatsoever) but I plan on comissioning a much better one in the future 🤮
@ryanheybourn Well, the video wasn't bad, apart from the flashing you did a good job, I just wished it didn't come with vertigo 😭🙃
I used the first version of this product. It must have been when it just came out. I was excited about the concept and I paid for the full list at $129.
I barely noticed any changes in my traffic so I requested the link to where my submission ended up, and what I got was an airtable link to links that I never seen or recognise as a site I would post to.
Majority of the links are PHP sites. The links seem generated and are really bad practice to SEO and link building. I really think you should be more transparent about your process and how you do link building on your home page.
I requested a refund after seeing the links. I emailed 4 times, and yet to get even a response.
Its just unacceptable and really bad support. :(
I would not recommend this service.
@tharshanmuthulingam hey Tharshan, I'm sorry to hear about that. The first week after launching last year was definitely a tough one and as far as I'm aware I emailed everyone who paid and/or requested a refund at that time. In no way does Instaaa submit to those types of sites now and I've made a massive amount of changes to improve the overall service.
Mind getting in touch with me on our live chat? I'll help sort your refund out immediately.
@tharshanmuthulingam Same experience. Pass on this site at all costs.
Don't trust this site. It posts your URL on a bunch of spam websites and will hurt your SEO. We paid for it before they rebranded. Ended up spending a bunch of time cleaning up everything.
@bcackerman hey Bruce, sorry for the experience you had. Since Printavo used Instaaa these issues have been addressed and I'm more than willing to process a refund for you if I haven't already. Feel free to view some examples of where you'll be posted by filling out the form on our homepage.
@bcackerman I was considering this but thank you for this review. The testimonials on the site look sketchy af and they have been around the same since the last time I got on this site which was around 6 months ago, I’d say. All of them mention ‘got this many upvotes on PH’ so it seems like he’s charging to post on PH as well. Didn’t know that was allowed.
@bcackerman @faisal_hassanx hey Faisal. Testimonials are 100% real - feel free to reach out to anyone and ask about their experience! We also don't post on Product Hunt as that is against their guidelines.
@bcackerman @ryanheybourn 3 of the 4 products on your testimonials page have you listed as the hunter so that kinda contradicts your last sentence. 😐
@bcackerman @faisal_hassanx it used to be an option when I initially launched the service. I was later notified that this was against their ToS and quickly removed it. Anyone from the community team could happily vouch for me if need-be.
Like I said, happy to provide a demo so you can actually test the service yourself rather than jumping to any assumptions. I've been putting in the work in order to address everything brought up by initial users and am confident enough to now launch.
@bcackerman @ryanheybourn No need for anyone to vouch for anything. I know the PH ToS. I was curious because your testimonials page is all about PH.
The testimonials page has got 4 testimonials of products that were posted on PH at least 7 months ago but it also says that Instaaa has helped ‘thousands of startups gain press coverage and media attention’. Is it just me or does this not add up?
@faisal_hassanx I haven't really adjusted our testimonials page since launching but will do now to hopefully make things look better. I can confirm we've assisted over 1,200 startups with their outreach since launch last year. Happy to provide a demo if you're still unsure with how Instaaa works.
@ryanheybourn 1200? Im sorry but I kinda find it hard to believe after doing a quick google search about Instaaa and reading the comments on this thread. If all these startups are looking for help with their outreach why aren’t they listed on your website? Don’t you think that’d improve the legitimacy of this?
@faisal_hassanx like I mentioned - I plan on updating the testimonials page ASAP as I definitely agree it would be beneficial.
If you're still finding everything hard to believe I'm more than happy to jump in a call or chat with you and share the names and (if applicable) the public contact details of the 1,200 clients we've had so you can reach out to them yourself.
I have been considering purchasing this plan to see how it goes. My experience with a similar service StartupLister was really bad and they've literally stopped replying to messages.
Do you guarantee some coverage?
@jitesh_dugar we don't gurantee coverage from journalists, however we gurantee coverage/posts on other sites such as reddit. We'll only reach out to journalists and tip lines if we truely believe they'll be beneficial for your startup.
Last year around Oct (2017) they launched. First they said its free on the site, once you put up url they said you are in queue. I said ok no problem will wait. Its June 2018 No update nothing. They even removed my site from the queue to check status.
Last update of queue was on 4 Nov.
Its best way to market on PH. First say its free and then get upvote and then never provide service for free :D
I wanted to try the product a while back, but everywhere I looked there were only bad reviews. Seeing all the bad comments in this thread makes me think how Product Hunt allows the promotion of this and being number 3 on the day? Don't really understand how people vote, unless you paid for the upvotes?
@ivandrag hey Dragos. Many of these reviews were from the original version of Instaaa which I launched last year. For the first week or two I struggled with the sheer amount of submissions but eventually figured everything out. I refunded those who weren’t happy but it still left a permanent negative mark on the Instaaa name.
2.0 is my attempt at mending this. I’m aware there’s still some skepticism but I’m more than confident in the service and wouldn’t be sharing it here if I wasn’t.
Ermek Rysbek Uulu
Come on guys, how can you copy Howler with @juhaszhenderson so shamelessly. We used Howler for Richie Invest, and it got us few interviews.
It's tiring that Product Hunt has become a place where "developers hunt" for ideas to copy, not use. https://howler.media
Matt Henderson 🚀
@bsmoder Thanks Ermek! No worries though––all is fair in love & capitalism. We've also recycled ideas. 🙂
Happy to hook up a discount code for anyone here who wants to try out Howler! 🚀
Jacques van Heerden
@bsmoder @juhaszhenderson Matt, drop me line, definitely something to try for my wife's company instead of the traditional pr approach.
@juhaszhenderson @bsmoder hey Ermek. I've been working on Instaaa for almost a year now, wheras Howler launched only a few months ago. I've used Howler myself and was not happy with the way they dealt with my submissions but I'm glad they worked out for you.
@bsmoder @juhaszhenderson i’ll take a discount code if that offer is for real 👍
This is the first time, that I see bad comments and reviews for a product on PH. Like how do you plan to fix all of that, why continue in a space that you did a bad job in? Like I get this if it were a ground breaking idea like Theranos, but you're literally just emailing people about other startups.. what's so innovative and worth trying a second time about that?
@edisonjoao6871 Umm you know Theranos is a fraud right? I dunno if you were trying to be sarcastic here lol
@tharshanmuthulingam i know that... come on.
It is tough to launch a product kudos to you Ryan.
Many product need iterations so keep up the work.
No need for the total negativity on this and really believe there is a NEED for this.
I will not mind giving it a try I think it will save some time.
How much would you pay someone to list your company in these directories alone?
So I find this useful especially at the new price.
Keep up the good work and I hope to be wow by this.
@yan_moukoury thank you Yan, I appreciate it!
We used Instaaa on the initial launch of Promoe and we were impressed with the results we received by using Instaaa. We had gained over 40 upvotes on ProductHunt and had acquired over 100 new users within the first day of launching using Instaaa. We at Promoe were pleased with the service and support that we received from Instaaa that we are now planning the launch of Promoe 2.0 using Instaaa. Thank you Instaaa team!
@julian7silva thank you for the kind words Julian! I look forward to helping out with your 2.0 launch.
@ryanheybourn no problem and likewise!
I still don't know where my money went or what happened with this... Would really love a refund
@kopahkah Same here… Paid money, zero results except a link to an airtable. No replies to email (the default email is a 'no-reply from zapier'). Can't conclude other than that this is a scam, @ryanheybourn.
@producthunt @rrhoover these are the kind of products you don't want to have listed here (looking at the negative reviews/comments, this should be auto-flagged, no?)