Payman Taei
On Growing Our Design Tool To 5.5M Users
from Washington D.C., Washington, D.C., USA
started May 2013
alexa rank
market size
starting costs
gross margin
time to build
7 months
growth channels
Word of mouth
business model
best tools
Twitter, Asana, Slack
time investment
Full time
pros & cons
39 Pros & Cons
1 Tips
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Start An Infographic Designing Business

My name is Payman Taei and I’m the founder of Visme, one of the leading all-in-one visual design tools online. I founded Visme to solve two fundamental problems I see in content and design:

  1. Most people are non-designers or don’t have time to create professional content.
  2. In today’s digital environment, you need to create content for different mediums. Such as infographics, presentations, sometimes just charts or graphs, and other times graphics for your social media or website/blog.

At its heart, Visme solves both of these obstacles for people and businesses alike. It provides one medium to create, store, and share beautiful and engaging content in a fraction of time; the content you can be proud of.

And it’s also versatile; Empowering you to create virtually all forms of content within one intuitive environment.

Visme started with a mere 700 beta users in mid-2013; Today Visme has been used by over 5.5 million users from all parts of the world from small and fortune 500 companies.

We have remained bootstrapped and have not raised any outside funding to date, profitable, and investing heavily in improving our product and giving our customers what they need as the core focus of our brand.


Take us through your entrepreneurial journey. How did you go from day 1 to today?

The best way I can explain my entrepreneurial journey is to look at the last 7 years of the S&P500 index; at first glance, it looks like a straight line; but then zoom in and you can see the almost daily up/down; this continuous fight for balance and a somewhat slow yet consistent rate of progress and growth which overtime it grows upwards.

That’s how I would explain my journey. It’s been no cakewalk. Lots of trials and errors, full of mistakes and falling down but always getting back-up and driving ahead. To some, it may seem like I have it all figured out, and it’s amazing what we have accomplished; To hear our users day in and out tell us how much they like Visme over other similar tools that are larger and heavily funded is flattering,

I started paying my way through college in the early 2000s by creating websites as a self-taught web designer. It started with exactly $170 in my bank account and slowly over course of the next decade I grew it from a freelancer to a team of about 10 and overtime I realized; I didn’t want to keep creating individual projects for each client but to create a more scalable system that a cohort of people can depend on to achieve a happy ending. This would allow a low cost and a community to benefit from one product that is continually being improved and refined.

My first dabble into this area was an HTML Editor I created to allow website owners to edit their websites without coding experience right in their browser.

It was a success (of small proportions) but over time I learned a lot and when I had the aha moment (To use my deep passion for design to create an all-in-one design and presentation tool; which is what Visme has become today.

In transparency I really had no idea what the heck I was doing in terms of business for the first decade of my entrepreneurship; I simply had a crazy desired to design graphics all day and night and when I could get paid for it; it was very fulfilling. The best Jobs I think are the ones that don’t feel like a job but instead living your life by working on something you are passionate about; that is a recipe for success in small or large magnitudes.

How are you doing today and what does the future look like?

Although Visme is a private company and we don’t disclose our metrics; I can say that Visme has bee profitable since the second year we launched our paid plan. Our revenue growth is attributed to an increase in our overall userbase (Everyone starts free or via a short trial period). We have also focused more on conversions vs. focusing mostly on top of the funnel (traffic); Today hand in hand they are attributing to a healthy growth rate.

If you want to be successful; you want to be open to change, know that is the only one constant in line; Adapt quickly but also remain stagnant.

No hockey stick here; but a consistent annual YoY growth while keeping our team lean and efficient as it possibly can be.


What platform/tools do you use for your business?

Ahref: Great for tracking your organic behavior and SEO related research

Google Analytics: Track organic metrics, and content marketing traction.

Visme: Our design and marketing team uses Visme for internal reports, marketing, and design promotion. I use it to Present, our customer success team uses it to sell.

Slack: It’s where we communicate and collaborate.

Asana: For task management and goals.

What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?

I don’t read a ton of books; I read a lot of articles and resources online. I actually love to listen to Joe Rogan’s podcast (not a big fan of him but a great show and at times can be quiet educational on anything from Medicine to Astronomy). Business-specific: I like to listen to Warren Buffet interviews going back 20-30 years; I follow twitter on trending designers and influencers.

Advice for other entrepreneurs who want to get started or are just starting out?

My advice is simple and straightforward.

Find your passion (or let it find you; be patient, and you’ll find what that is).

If you want to be successful; you want to be open to change, know that is the only one constant in line; Adapt quickly but also remain stagnant (there is too much noise out there; everyone has great ideas and a plan until they get punched in the face (Mike Tyson quote).

Additionally, if you want to learn how to grow your start-up organically; open to hard work and consistency this free eBook from Visme will show you how Visme grew to 4+ million users with practical marketing growth tips (Tips we used at Visme and have proven which can and can’t work); You can download it here.

Where can we go to learn more?

You can learn more about Visme on our website or visit us on Linkedin or on Facebook and Twitter.

If you want to connect with me, you can do so via my Linkedin Channel.

Payman Taei   Founder of Visme
Pat Walls,  Founder of Starter Story

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