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Are you building or capturing an audience?

JR Farr



JR Farr


August 5, 2022



In the most recent episode of the Make Lemonade podcast, I did something a little different.

I decided to just sit down and hit record.

I like what we’ve built so far with the podcast and the interviews have been great — but I want to make sure it’s a unique show. What better way than to a behind-the-scenes look at how we’re building Lemon Squeezy? The idea of bringing people into our journey of building a company from the ground up seems perfect.

At the moment, customer acqusition is a major focus. Lately, my mind has been thinking a lot about how to attract new customers to Lemon Squeezy. More importantly, the right customers.

It got me thinking about building vs. capturing an audience.

What’s the difference?

Which way is better?

What the pros and cons?

Let’s start with pros and cons.

Like most things in life, there are pros and cons to everything. When I reflect back at the businesses I’ve built over the past decade, I can clearly see when I was building an audience vs. capturing an audience.

With that said, there’s no right or wrong here but I think it’s important to consider what position you’re in so you can create the right strategy.

Pros and cons of building a business.


  • You own everything
  • You have complete control over the customer experience
  • You have limited dependencies
  • You can build integrations to capture an audience down the road


  • You start with zero audience
  • There’s a lot of investment into education
  • You may have a new market to expose
  • You’re convincing customers to switch from platforms

Pros and cons of capturing a business.


  • You have customers instantly
  • You’re not 100% reliant on marketing
  • You can leverage existing marketplaces / app stores / audiences
  • You’re not asking someone to switch / it’s usually adding value to their existing platform


  • You’re at the mercy of the platform
  • You run the risk of the platform replicating your product
  • Your control of the customer experience is limited

Tips on building and capturing an audience

Whether you’re in the same boat we’re in, where we are focused on building an audience or you’re trying to capture an audience. Here are some tactics you can try to speed up the process.

  • Start talking with potential customers from day 1
  • Start investing in content from day 1
  • Don’t be shy to build in public
  • Define a target market / customer
  • Make sure you’re different. Know your USP.
  • Don’t be afraid of cold outreach.

Remember, no matter what you’re doing — building or capturing — keep it simple.


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