Today marks one of my proudest days being a business owner.
Why? Because today…I achieved a goal I’ve been working on for a long time.
Today, we officially lowered the price of Nucleus by 50%. Keep reading to learn why we did it.
The Story Of Nucleus
If you’re unfamiliar with the backstory of Nucleus (or even what it is) – here’s a quick summary to this point:
- Summer 2011: I, Brady Shearer, having just completed my first year of Bible College, join a local church plant to be their Media Director
- Spring 2013: The first content ever published on the Pro Church Tools blog begins to appear – here’s my first ever YouTube video (beware: it’s painful to watch – for some reason I keep pointing my chin upwards)
- September 2016: Heading to a speaking engagement in Atlanta, I’m struck by the idea for Nucleus – a new kind of church website builder…made for next steps
- November 2016: Initial development on Nucleus begins
- April 25th, 2017: Nucleus opens to charter members at 11:00AM Eastern
- March 20th, 2018: After working with more than 1,000 charter members privately for close to a year – Nucleus officially launches to the public
What is Nucleus?
Nucleus is a new kind of website builder for churches…made for next steps.
You see, most church websites exist as digital Yellow Pages listings. You’ll likely find some basic information. But very little when it comes to next steps and taking action.
Here’s the bottom line:
Yellow Pages websites made sense in years gone by – but consider this, we’re living through the biggest communication shift in 500 years – we need better solutions.
Everything you and I do in our churches boils down to two words: next steps. More next steps equal more life change.
And I don’t know about you, but I want a church full of active participants – not a church of passive spectators taking up space.
How does this translate to Nucleus?
Our success is measured by the success of our churches. If Nucleus isn’t contributing to an increase of next steps at your church, we’re not doing our job.
The Cost Of Building Software
Nucleus is a SAAS product. SAAS (pronounced ‘sass’ like sassy) is an acronym that stands for “software as a service.”
There are two things you may not know about software. Here’s the first one:
If you want to do it right, software costs a lot of money…like a lot of money.
This is why most software companies seek out investors. Investors will give founders money to fund their software in exchange for an ownership stake in the company. That’s a basic explanation of how it generally works.
Here’s the problem:
Investors aren’t exactly lining up to pour money into the world of church tech.
More importantly, I don’t want money from investors. I don’t want to answer to a board of rich executives – I want to answer to our churches. Investment capital compromises that aim.
Pro Church Tools and Nucleus have always been 100% independent and bootstrapped – and I want to keep it that way.
I don’t want to answer to a board of rich executives – I want to answer to our churches
Now, you might be wondering…
If software is so expensive to build and Nucleus wasn’t funded from outside sources – how did you build Nucleus in the first place?
I ran a successful business for three years, saved most of the profits, and then spent about $1 million of my own saved money to fund the construction of Nucleus.
Crazy? Yeah, maybe. But in my mind, it was absolutely necessary.
Because churches are incredibly unique organizations. I don’t expect a board of investors to understand the needs of churches. I expect investors to demand higher profits. I expect executives to push for acquisition to the highest bidder to bolster their investment.
And that’s not something I can accept.
The Risk Of Building Software
Here’s the second thing you may not know about software:
Software is risky. And most software companies fail. Here’s how it generally works:
- Founder seeks out investor capital to fund their idea
- Founder successfully raises capital
- Founder burns through capital to develop and market their idea
- Founder doesn’t acquire customers quickly enough, eventually runs out of money, and is forced to shut down
Here’s the good news:
Because Nucleus was self-funded, we didn’t have the luxury of burning through money. We needed to validate our idea early.
So when Nucleus launched, I set the prices high. Or, at least higher than what many churches were used to paying for software.
Why did I do this?
Longevity. I want Nucleus to be around for a long time. Most software companies fail due to lofty ongoing expenses and/or poor fit with their customers.
- Launch Nucleus with higher-than-expected pricing (it’s easy to sell something cheap)
- Validate the idea of Nucleus with churches (if churches are willing to pay more than what they’re used to – that’s a good indicator we’ve built something special)
- Secure the longevity of Nucleus by building a passionate customer base and a healthy profit margin (again, I want Nucleus to be around for a long time)
Because here’s the deal…
Once you’re through the first couple of years of building software, once you’ve built a strong customer base, once you’re profitable…
That’s when you can revisit your pricing and make adjustments.
So that’s what we’re doing today.
The New Prices Of Nucleus
As of today, the following Nucleus pricing adjustments have been made:
- The Nucleus Pro Annual plan used to cost $159/month – as of today, it costs $79/month
- The Nucleus Pro Monthly plan used to cost $199/month – as of today, it costs $99/month
- The Nucleus Pro plan has been combined with the Nucleus Basic plan and renamed Nucleus Web
- Click here to see the updated Nucleus Pricing page
In addition to the lower prices of Nucleus, we’ve also launched a brand new product and plan – The Nucleus Sermon Engine!
- The Nucleus Sermon Engine Annual plan will cost $39/month
- The Nucleus Sermon Engine Monthly plan will cost $49/month
- Click here to learn more about the Nucleus Sermon Engine
Finally, a new plan combining BOTH Nucleus Web and Nucleus Sermon Engine is also now available – Nucleus Complete:
- The Nucleus Complete Annual plan will cost $99/month
- The Nucleus Complete Monthly plan with cost $125/month
- Click here to see the updated Nucleus Pricing page
What About Existing Customers?
How does this pricing change affect existing customers?
Simply put, if you are paying your Nucleus subscription on a monthly basis, your price change will take place automatically (woo hoo!).
On the other hand, if you are paying your Nucleus subscription on an annual basis, we’ll be reaching out through email to handle your switchover to the new pricing (feel free to send us an email directly to email@example.com also).
Why We Lowered Nucleus Prices By 50%
Here’s the great news about running a bootstrapped private company:
- I don’t answer to a board of investors.
- I don’t answer to shareholders.
- I answer to you – our churches!
Here’s the deal, Nucleus has been very successful. We’re operating with a healthy profit margin. And I’m under no obligation to post profit increases every quarter to appease shareholders.
So instead of hoarding all of the profit for myself, I want to return a chunk of it to the churches that use Nucleus every week.
I can’t put into words how grateful I am to every church that uses Nucleus. Without you, Nucleus literally would not be possible. And this is just one small way that I can say thank you.
Of course, if you have any questions, make sure to give us a shout. You can send us an email directly to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here’s to more next steps and more life change at your church!
– Brady Shearer, Creator of Nucleus