First of all, this is a non-technical approach to API’s, so if you want in-depth tech insights, I recommend you get in touch with Hitch — the API experts.

However, if you’re looking to get insight in why you should use API’s to strengthen and grow your business, and what metrics you should be aware of when taking advantage of an application programming interface (API), you’ve come to the right place.

A whole or core product?

To really understand how your company can utilize API’s we need to understand the concept of the core product and what many call the whole product.

Famous marketer Regis Mckenna that helped launch the first microprocessor for Intel and the first computer for Apple said it like this:

(…) A whole product is a generic product augmented by everything that is needed for the customer to have a compelling reason to buy.

So for example a computer is a core product, and the mouse, the software, the screen and any other necessity being part of the whole product.

It’s very important to understand these definitions, because having insight here will help you know how to approach your customers, potential partners and competitors.

Hacking partnership agreements

As your startup grow, you’ll probably be looking to form partnership agreements with other complementary products and companies.

This can be super valuable, but often takes a lot of time and effort, in other words, it’s often very expensive.

So to hack this time-demanding and expensive process of partnering up with other companies, and API can provide this kind of partnership without all the hassle, often at a fraction of the cost.

Bruno Pedro is the CTO of Barcelona-based API startup Hitch. He explain that many underestimates the cost connected with taking use of an API, especially the cost of support.

The thing with building or using an API is that it doesn’t matter if you consider yourself as a part of a whole or a core product. If you’re able to see through your customers (or potential customers) eyes, you’ll probably discover how your product can transmit value both as an integration into a bigger product, or as an integration to enrich smaller products.

The cost of integration

Integrating your product with other businesses through an API offers many possibilities, but also new costs related to integration.

Development costs start out high, but turns to zero as the product finishes. The maintenance costs remains low but stable with a few peaks around new releases with bugs attached. The big cost related to support which will be higher as your API becomes more popular.

Development costs: very high at first, but becomes zero when the API is launched.

Maintenance costs: high after the launch because of bugs, and for every iteration you do you’ll have peaks with your maintenance costs, as well as routinely maintaining the API itself.

Support costs: This will depend on how well your API is performing, but the more users you have, the bigger the support cost will be, so this is the really expensive one.

And remember, these costs need comes with each separate integration.

So, is your API worth the effort?

In other words, we need to understand the life time value (LTV) of our integration.

First you need to measure where your customers come from, then you need to identify the new customers that are using one of your integrations within a specific timeframe and estimate the lifetime value (LTV) of those customers.

Then, when you know the LTV of each particular integration, you can easily know which is giving you growth, and which that are only causing costs to rise.

The last thing you need to figure out to see if your integration is worth doing is the payback period (PBP), i.e if your integration or your API is earning you more money than what you’re spending on it.

To find this number you have to take all of your costs (as mentioned above) and divide it by your monthly recurring revenue (MRR), and again, you have to do this for each integration.

https://upscri.be/285782-2

Getting to the good stuff — growth!

Your product can be the core product which is the big one in the middle, or part of the whole product which is one of the smaller ones on the side. No matter where you are in the ecosystem, you’ll have costs related to the integration.

To be clear, with growth we don’t mean a profitable company, but a business that is multiplying their growth month over month, or year over year. It can even be unprofitable.

So what is growth for an integration?

  • In most companies it’s considered growth if the lifetime value of the integration is three times higher than the cost of integration. If not you’re loosing money. Some experts say that 4 times higher LTV than costs is the number to aim at.
  • And not enough with with a high LTV, it also considered necessary to have a payback period of less than 12 months. If not, you’re also loosing money.

So remember, if you think about how your company is used in a broader context, and not only how its used as intended, there may be many possibilities with using API’s.


This post was written by media manager itnig, Sindre Hopland based on the presentation of Hitch CTO Bruno Pedro.

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E.

Essential Podcasts for Entrepreneurs & Tech Lovers

Podcasts are a great way to discover new subjects and new people. Whether you are a tech lover or an entrepreneur, bellow you will discover podcasts for entrepreneurs you should – without a doubt – listen to. 

Itnig Podcast with César Migueláñez, Bernat Farrero and Carlos Pierre
Itnig Podcast with César Migueláñez, Bernat Farrero and Carlos Pierre

« Masters of Scale » 

with Reid Hoffman

The host: Reid Hoffman decides to turn to the corporate world instead of pursuing a university carrier. He worked for Apple, Fujitsu for then starting his own business: SocialNet and left it in 2000 to join Confinity. Confinity gives life to Paypal after fusionning. Finally, in 2003, Hoffman co-founds LinkedIn. He is Master of Scale’s host. 

About: The podcast welcomes some of the greatest entrepreneurs. You will discover throughout the talk how they managed to take their companies from 0 to a lot of zeros. You can listen to Masters of Scale’s special guests like Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook), Selina Tobaccowalla (Evite), Brian Chesky (Airbnb) or Nancy Lublin (Crisis Text Line). Must-hear: one of the top tech podcasts for entrepreneurs.

Listen to the podcast: On their website, Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Youtube

The Team: Reid Hoffman, June Cohen, Deron Triff and Jai Punjabi

« Rocket » 

with Christina Warren, Simone de Rochefort and Brianna Wu

The hosts: Christina Warren started as a Freelance Writer. Then, she worked at Mashable as a Senior Tech Analyst and Tech Correspondent and ended the journey at Microsoft as a Senior Cloud Developer Advocate. About Simone de Rochefort, she is  Senior Video Producer and co-host of The Polygon Show. Brianna Wu founded her first startup at the age of 19, Giant Spacekat. She was Head of Development at the time. She is now running for US Congress. 

About: In this podcast, you will discover three passionate women and their “geek conversation” as they like to call it.  No guest speakers, but you will be able to listen to a panel of tech subjects from Apple to Comics, you will not be disappointed. 

Listen to the podcast: On their website, Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Pocket Casts, Spotify and Castro

« This week in Startups »

with Jason Calacanis

The host: Jason Calacanis starts as an internet industry journalist in New-York. In 2003, he co-founded Weblogs, Inc and then a few years later he joined Sequoia Capital, launched the web directory Mahalo. He also founded ThisWeekIn.com. Furthermore, he created This Week in Startups podcast and a startup named Inside.com. Finally, he was part of the creation of the Sydney Launch Festival. 

About: Either you are looking to start your own company, or you are a successful entrepreneur, or you just love technology, this podcast will give you a peek to the entrepreneurship world. You will hear stories of all kinds! On his website, you will also find his events and some research on transportation, healthcare and more. This is one is part of the tech podcasts for entrepreneurs not to be missed.

Listen to the podcast: Apple Podcasts, Youtube, SoundCloud and RSS Feed

You can also subscribe to their newsletter in order to receive episodes directly. 

The Team: Jason Calacanis, Jacqui Deegan, and Tony Agapiou

« Recode / Decode » 

with Kara Swisher

The host: Kara Swisher is an American journalist specialized in the technology industry. She first started to work for an alternative newspaper in Washington for then working for the Washington Post. She wrote articles for the Wall Street Journal and New York Times and wrote her own books. Finally, in 2014, she created Recode, a website dedicated to the latest technology news. In 2015, she initiates Recode Decode. 

About: The weekly podcast welcomes tech experts and great entrepreneurs. They review how they got there, what’s on their mind about the current industry and what they would improve or create. Her recent guests were Elon Musk (Tesla CEO), former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Mark Zuckerberg. 

Listen to the podcast: Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, and TuneIn

« K Fund PodKast »

with Jaime Novoa

The host: Jaime Novoa’s background is quite diverse. He is a writer and an investor, but he also worked in data analysis and social media analysis. In 2014, he founded Novobrief, a newsletter for startups. Then, in 2016, he becomes an investor at K Fund and he founds, in 2019, Dealflow, a weekly tech newsletter. 

About: The podcast discusses startups, entrepreneurs and Venture Capital. You will discover enterprises and their story. From data science, unicorns or digital platforms, you sure will find more than one interesting podcast. 

Listen to the podcast: On their website and Soundcloud

« Clockwise »

with Dan Moren and Mikah Sargent

The hosts: Dan Moren is an active author and writer as well as podcaster. He was a Senior Editor at Macworld. Today, he hosts two podcast shows: Clockwise and The Rebound. As for Mikah Sargent, he started as a Website Designer and Developer for then switching as a Senior Editor at Newsy. He now hosts few podcasts such as Clockwise on Replay FM or on TWiT.tv. 

About: The weekly podcast discusses technology and welcomes each time 2 special guests. For 30 minutes, they address 4 topics where all four speakers get to elaborate on the matter, highlight the issues and expose their thoughts. 

Listen to the podcast: On their website, Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Pocket Casts, Spotify and Castro

« Itnig Podcast»

with Bernat Farrero

The host: Bernat Farrero starts his career as a Developer. In 2009, he founded Itnig, a startup ecosystem that organizes entrepreneurship events. They also have a coworking for startups, a podcast and a fund for early-stage projects. Furthermore, he is a Founder of Factorial, Quipu and Camaloon. He is also a Board Member of Playfullbet, GymForLess and Parkimeter. Finally, he hosts Itnig’s weekly Podcast. 

About: The podcast welcomes every week a new guest. If you wish to learn from successful entrepreneurs, you are on the right platform. The discussions turn around Technology and its industry. You will come across guests like Carlos Pierre (Badi), Vincent Rosso (BlaBlaCar) or Oscar Pierre (Glovo).

Listen to the podcast: Youtube, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Ivoox, and Google Podcasts

You can subscribe to their newsletter if you want to receive the podcast’s link every Monday. 

Whether you are at an early stage of your project, an investor or you are just curious, these podcasts for entrepreneurs give you the opportunity to be updated on tech and business news. Also, you get to learn from successful international entrepreneurs, which can definitely be very useful for your business.