I am soon launching Pimee.fi
(in Finnish, sorry) with Jussi Virtanen
, who got inspired by my idea and helped to develop it further. Jussi has worked with the visual look and implementation of the site.
Besides being a April Fools Day joke, Pimee.fi is an experiment on viral spreading. The day just turned to first of April, but the real launch of Pimee will be in the morning as it's better for getting the attention than midnight.
The cost of setting up a web site is now counted in some tens of euros (for a year) plus work time, so not a big deal to test an idea. Who remembers the early dot-com era when companies paid 50.000 FIM (8ke) for a simple site consisting of a few static web pages to be manually updated for 150FIM/h? Now anyone can set up Wordpress or some other blog platform for free and modify the look and keep it updated without the need of a ponytail and a fancy title.
The entry barrier for setting up a site is low. Thus, the challenge is how to gain attention and get traffic and the real question is how to create stickyness.
If we are able to get the word spreading beyond our own contacts, this experiment probably will yield some hundreds of unique visitors during the first days of April. Thousands of visitors would mean that the Pimee.fi link needs to be seen by hundreds of thousands of persons in blogs, Twitter or Facebook. This probably won't happen unless some media would pick this up - which is unlikely as the jokes are quite start-up focused to be of mainstream interest.
Many Finns probably can recognize Valkee as a device, but probably most have not seen their web site ever. If too few people have seen the site or read about Valkee any further than the price tag, the viral spreading of Pimee will not work and our experiment ends up with less than a hundred visitors.
Remember the million dollar home page
from 2005 and part of internet history? Sometimes totally crazy ideas actually can make it to the headlines - albeit to be soon completely forgotten. But have you been to the site more than once?
I'll post some statistics on this site after our experiment is over. I strongly recommend for many start-ups this kind of dummy web site approach as a way of doing market validation. It's not so easy to get attention.