No Code MVP is an online course that teaches how to quickly turn business ideas into MVPs, without coding, helping you decide whether you should pursue, pivot or stop. After taking the course, I took some time to write my thoughts about it.
Disclaimer: This article contains affiliate links. If you buy the course after registering with my link, I will get some $$. Having said that, I’ve made this article 100% unbiased.
I’ve personally taken the course, wrote my own notes and analyzed the documents provided. The course has brought a lot of comments among my Twitter network, so I want to help everyone that’s wondering whether to invest or not into the course decide.
No-Code MVP is a $159 course that teaches how to quickly and cheaply turn a business idea you had into a prototype without writing a single line of code.
Throughout the +60 lessons & documents, you’ll be learning a framework that will help you turn your ideas into reality, validate them, and take action based on users’ replies.
The whole course goes around a “lean mindset”, which consists of using few resources and staying small at first, as the unique objective of an MVP is to find out if there’s any interest in the business.
Apart from the technical (or not-technical, in reality) part, the course does also cover topics like how to analyze your idea, how to identify potential customers and their problems, how to write a solid value proposition and how to set assumptions for the MVP experiment.
Then, you will move on to the MVP development part, where you will see how 8 no-code tools work and how you can integrate them to build a solution for your customers’ problem. Along with these explanations, there are 6 detailed examples of building real products with these tools.
The course starts from 0, so don’t worry if you’ve never set up a business. It even starts by explaining what “lean startup” and “MVP” mean. If you already know what this goes about, Podia, the platform in which the course is hosted in, makes it super easy for you to skip it.
No-Code MVP has +40 video lessons and +20 text lessons/documents, which can be consumed in 6-8 hours. It took me only 2 days to complete the course as it is super digestible and interesting. However, if you want to create your MVP as you go, as the course is thought like, it will take you around 2 weeks.
The creator and instructor is called Bram Kanstein and has vast experience in the no-code and MVP areas. He’s super committed to helping the course buyers become successful.
When having an idea for a business, you need to validate it soon and move on to something different if it doesn’t work. We’ve previously interviewed many entrepreneurs who have spent months working on the first prototype just to find out no one cares about their solution.
Coding is quite time-consuming and expensive, so it doesn’t really allow entrepreneurs to validate ideas using the few resources, both in time and money.
Instead, the no-code tools suggested by the course, allows people to build powerful solutions in an uncostly (they all have a free plan, for example) and a quick way (it can take a few hours instead of weeks and months of waiting).
I have to say that the no-code tools require, however, a learning curve. I’m pretty sure though, that it is much simpler than even learning how to hire a developer, posting a freelance gig, getting on calls with the different applicants and selecting one.
I’ve personally built Failory using a no-code tool that’s called Webflow. I knew nothing about the tool when I created the blank site to start. Anyway, I was able to learn the basics really quickly and then begin experimenting, just to have a functional site 7 days later.
The no-code movement has grown a lot lately and has enabled thousands of non-technical people to build their own digital businesses. Lots of no-code tools & content sites were launched in 2019, with Makerpad winning Product Hunt’s award in this category.
Here’s a huge list of no-code tools (and there are more launching every day!):
Here’s a great article if you want to keep reading about the no-code trend and compare it with coding at the early stages of a business.
Bram sold Startup Stash in 2017 to focus on other projects, like Startup Watching, a newsletter with curated articles about startups with +11,000 email subscribers, which he has also sold.
But not everything was a success. Many of his products didn’t make it, including an online talk show about startups, a second-hand e-ticket marketplace and a lyrics site for rap songs.
For some months, in late-2018 and early-2019, Bram stopped publishing on Twitter, where he has over 20,000 followers. But in mid/late-2019, Bram was back, with lots of news about the No-Code MVP course.
What’s the Structure of the Course?
The course is structured in 9 modules, with 3-10 lessons each. Each lesson varies in length - some last 5 minutes, while some other last 20. On each module, there tends to be a final document with many links for you to keep reading about the topic, and, in some modules, quizzes or assignments for you to do.
The format of the videos generally is a presentation on the left and Bram’s camera on the right. There are some lessons in which there’s no presentation and some others in which it’s just the recording of the screen. Overall, the video and audio quality are high.
The first module is called “Introduction” and is an introduction to the course as well as the explanation of some key concepts that will constantly be mentioned across the lessons, including “lean business”, “MVP” and “MVP Canvas”.
The second module is short. It’s called “Your big idea” and consists of a video lesson about how the Business Model Canvas works, an assignment for you to write down your big idea (not necessary, of course) and an example of a business idea that he will be talking about across the whole course and will use it as an example.
“Understanding your customers and their problems” is the third module and it goes all about choosing a customer segment, interviewing them, asking great questions and analyzing the results. If you’re interested in this, Grow and Convert has one of the best articles on the topic.
The fourth module is “Turning your idea into a value proposition” and it’s just one video lesson on what are, how to write them and some templates for value propositions and one assignment for you to do it, along with an example of one Bram has written.
Module 5 is the step before the building starts. It's called “Setting up your MVP Experiment - Part 1” and it’s about selecting the distribution channels for the prototype, the strategies to engage with the testers, the analysis of the “riskiest assumption(s)” and the different existing MVP formats.
Module 6 is when the action begins and Bram goes over the different no-code tools he recommends. It’s called “The tools to build an MVP without code” and it has 11 lessons. The first one is the intro & the last 2 are videos mentioning many other design & no-code tools in the market. The other 8 videos are one for each of these tools: Carrd, Google Suite (Docs, Sheet & Drive), Airtable, Revue, Trello, Zapier, Stripe & Google Analytics.
In module 7, which is called “Setting up your MVP Experiment - Part 2”, Bram talks about MVP workflows, how to measure the results of your experiment, and how to decide whether to put more effort into that idea or not, after you have run your MVP experiment
“Step-by-step building guides” is module 8 and it consists of 6 video lessons (all with a similar structure) + 1 introductory, where Bram, in 15-25 minutes, builds 6 functioning prototypes using the 8 no-code tools previously explained. These are the MVP’s he builds:
Finally, in module 9, which is titled “Launching & Learning from your MVP experiment”, Bram will teach you how to turn the results of your MVP into insights and learnings and decide whether you should pursue, pivot or stop with your idea.
Every week, I’ll send you Failory’s latest content, curated resources, and updates on how I’m growing the site to $10k/mo. Join +7,000 other startup founders!
Documents & Worksheets
Within the course, Bram shares 10 documents and worksheets, especially for those creating the MVP as they go. These are:
Business Model Canvas
MVP Experiment Canvas
Customer Interview Topic Map
Customer Interviews Analysis Document
Value Proposition Canvas
Value Proposition Description
Channels Ranking Tool
Riskiest Assumptions Ranking Tool
No-Code MVP Experiment Timeline
They are all PDFs or Sheets (suitable for any operating system) where you can complete fields to keep organized your MVP experiment. That’s a lot of work put in and a lot of hours saved for you, so you’re getting part of the $$ invested in documents & tools.
There’s a module called “Extras” where you can find:
A video interview with the founder of Catch Notes and a review of their MVP.
A cool framework to easily choose a name for your business. Not as great as this one, anyway ;)
A list with +300 articles, videos & podcasts to inspire you at every stage of the startup journey.
Free premium access to Secret (as we also offer by signing up for our newsletter). Secret is a tool that has +80 deals on business tools. They are worth many thousands, so you’re getting $$ your back here as well.
Apart from this module, there’re some more extra things along the course:
25% discount on Carrd, a no-code website builder.
Access to Bram’s stack of no-code tools, an information website about the stack of no-code tools that are being used in the course. That’s accessible by anyone, anyway.
Short quizzes to test if you’ve got the information.
Requests for your feedback, such as "Why are you here?", “Share your idea / product / MVP”, and "What do you think about the course?".
Direct contact with Bram through email, which is super valuable in case you’re building your first MVP’s. At the end of the course, for example, there’s a message saying: “That was the last video lesson of this course! I'd love to hear about the progress you've made. Is your startup idea still the same? Do you have a clear idea for your MVP? Or did you run your experiment already? I'll send you my personal feedback. Hopefully, I can share some insights and tips to help you!”
Everyone who has bought the course has access to a Telegram community to interact with other students. Some people use it to share their experiments and gather feedback, others for questions, etc.
Until now, they were mostly positive things. However, there’re some points that could definitely be improved:
No English subtitles. I’m not a native English speaker, as you’ve probably realized, and I had no subtitles to read. It wasn't difficult to understand, anyway.
The text below each lesson could be much more detailed, with links, images, etc. Some videos have really extensive descriptions below, but some others have almost nothing.
The community isn’t really active. This is something that gets more valuable as more students enroll in the course, but I have been into the Telegram group for a few weeks now and have seen really few comments.
I think the tutorials on the tools could be more in-depth. I have to say that fully explaining one of these tools could be done in one course apart. They have many features and configurations. But, if tutorials can’t cover everything, maybe there could be some partnership with other courses about these tools.
3 out of 8 no-code tools have a discount. I think that’s something that can be improved easily and a great way to show the course’ value. Anyway, some of the other tools can be used for free in the MVP stage.
Bram uses Stripe, which isn’t available in many countries (such as Argentina, where I’m from). That’s not his fault though, Stripe is the best and only tool to easily integrate with these no-code tools nowadays.
Conclusion - Who Should and Shouldn’t Buy?
$127 - with our 20% discount - might be a big investment for some people. If you really have business ideas and want to validate them through MVPs, I think it’s 100% worth it. The worksheets and documents provided + the tutorials on the tools + the discounts + the constant contact with Bram create a nice package of benefits that I think are worth more than $159.
However, if you’re considering the course because you want to learn more about no-code tools, I probably wouldn’t get it. To learn no-code tools, there are some other education platforms focused on the topic, such as Makerpad. But what if you only know the tools?
This course is not specifically about no-code tools, it's about a method to validate your business ideas super soon and decide whether to focus, pivot or stop that startup.