My startup created an enterprise product, and within 3 months of beta had signed up 3 high profile customers, the revenue of which covers our basic operating costs (but not salaries).
Since then, we have discovered that our enterprise offering doesn’t have enough revenue potential to be worth the long sales cycle and enterprise feature demands (certain companies demanding that you build out specific features before they will work with you, etc). At the same time, we have been getting a lot of inbound sales from SME and individuals, and it appears that a consumer product with an enterprise option may actually be a better revenue source and market for us, and actually has HUGE potential.
The problem is, we are bootstrapped and essentially out of resources, and we need to maintain and add critical features to the enterprise product so we a can keep our high profile enterprise customers, while essentially forking and refactoring our enterprise product into something with SME onboarding and a different marketing approach. It’s critical that we keep our high profile customers during this process because they will greatly aid us in getting more small customers.
I want to try to get funding for this, but not sure how investors would react to the complexity of maintaining an enterprise product while building the more promising product. I’m not sure what other options we have – I’m cash poor from bootstrapping the business for a couple of years, so am about to take freelance work and hoping to use my income to pay developers, but not sure if that’s the most efficacious approach because we need more than one or two part time developers to keep things running. Because we’ve been around for a while, I’m not sure I can tempt people with equity anymore.
Any advice or suggestions?