Andrew Chen never ceases to amaze me with his exceptional insight into how to grow your startup. Anyone with a socially based startup is going to grapple with this big big issue and almost all of them will fail. We are working through this topic with a client right now for his launch and there will never be an easy solution. We’ve chosen to have a tightly focused launch based on geography and common interests to build a core group of users for this particular app and are convinced that the model will work and it’s always great to see someone like Andrew Chen verify the veracity of this approach.
So if you want to go with the big launch, make sure that it either targets a network that’s hyper-connected, and who will onboard nicely into your product. Or make sure there’s a very strong single user value prop, and even if they can’t find anyone they know in the product, that’s OK.
Read his post and then read his linked posts so you can avoid the classic errors of most socially based startups.