15-year-old builder balances school and 2 SaaS ventures

Age is just a number: Witness the rise of a SaaS prodigy.

Let’s step into the fascinating journey of an incredible 15-year-old builder who’s building two SaaS products alongside his daily school classes.

Meet Mehdi Khoudali, a 15-year-old student from Casablanca, Morocco, who started his journey by hacking mobile phones at the age of 13.

He has now embarked on creating two innovative SaaS products, TagU and FeedbackLoop

In this exclusive interview, he shares his daily routine, the sparks of inspiration that ignited their startups, the hurdles they faced in the early days, and the genius strategies they used to bring their products to life. 

This is an epic tale of how Mehdi hustled for funding through pre-sales and the invaluable lessons he’s learned in his journey. 

This interview is like a backstage pass to the mind of a young trailblazer who’s preparing to shake up the entrepreneurial world.

Illustrated portrait of Mehdi by FoundrsHub

1. Tell us a little bit about your background and how did you end up with what you’re doing today.

I’m a 15-year-old SaaS builder. I started by looking at how to hack mobile phones from my small room when I was 13, then started learning coding, did some little tinny projects, and now, I’m building 2 SaaS products with my friends.

2. What does your day look like?

I wake up at 5 am, have breakfast, and start working. I get 2 hours before going to school to work.

During these 2 hours, I either work on my content and schedule more social media posts for both X/Twitter & Linkedin, or I start coding if I have features to add or bugs to fix.

My class starts at 8:30 am and gets over at 16:30 pm.

When I get back home after class, I work a bit on coding for my products, content planning, or marketing.

3. What does your startup do, and what inspired you to start it?

I have two main products.

One of them is still under development.

It’s called TagU, and it aims to boost collaboration on the web by allowing team members to leave messages as sticky notes where they can either leave a screenshot or simply a message.

The other one is up and running.

It’s a 100% free tool I created mainly for myself, but I decided to make it public. It helps startups to collect bug reports from their users easily.

It’s called FeedbackLoop.

4. What’s your company’s revenue & profit for last month, and what’s its valuation at the moment?

Right now, both of them are fully free, but TagU was pre-sold before we even started building it.

It generated 150$-200$ in pre-sales, which gave us the necessary funding to build it.

FeedbackLoop is free, but we’ll be adding the paid plan soon.

5. What were some of the biggest challenges and obstacles you faced in the early days of your startup? And How did you overcome those challenges?

The main challenge I faced was the complexity of TagU. 

Fortunately, my senior dev friend helped me with it. 

And I had to learn a lot.

6. Do you have a team? If yes, how did you build your team, and what qualities do you look for in team members?

TagU’s team has 4 members. It’s my friend Rohan who reached out to me and two other co-founders for this project.

The main role I look for in this is communication.

7. What marketing strategies did you use or planning to use to acquire customers and grow your user base?

For FeedbackLoop, which is currently on the market, I’m using blogging & social media along with community building.

With these marketing tactics, I got more than 100 users in less than one week.

8. How did you get your first 10 and 100 customers/users?

I wrote a Tweet about the launch of FeedbackLoop, which got 100 likes and many retweets. 

I also wrote 2 articles on Medium that got almost 2k views and brought the main traffic for the tweet.

I also shared it in my community, SkyRing, and some others.

9. How did you fund your startup, and what advice do you have for entrepreneurs seeking funding?

I mainly funded TagU with pre-sales & it’s by far the best way to fund a bootstrapped SaaS.

It’s not necessary to look for VCs in the early stages.

Pre-sales allows me to get both funding and idea validation from people, and I believe it’s way more motivating than someone pressuring you to make money.

10. What are some of the most important lessons you’ve learned as a founder, and how have those lessons influenced your approach to entrepreneurship?

SHIP FAST!

You need to be fast and ignore details. You don’t need a logo or a big landing page. 

Just build the MVP fast and make it public rather than spending time designing little things.

This idea of Shipping fast is what allowed me to get the first users on FeedbackLoop quickly, and I’ll do the same with TagU.

With this approach, I can launch many products quickly and test which idea is good and worth building.

11. How do you stay motivated and focused when faced with setbacks and obstacles?

There’s no secret sauce to it.

I always take a look at what I need to do and do it even if I don’t feel motivated.

We’ll all face obstacles, things that will try to stop us, but at some point, we need to beat them.

12. Looking back, what advice would you give to your younger self when you were just starting out on your journey?

Don’t rely on following courses, build projects, join communities, build a social media presence, meet people and continue learning while building.

Don’t try to find shady ways to make money; it will barely work.

That’s a wrap!

Check out how Tim built $80K a month SaaS business by learning to code in 6 months.

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