This question is about myself but very much related to startup stories. It is about 2.5 yrs since I quit my job to work on a product idea. Infact this was for a partnership (which I joined about 1 year before I quit my job) where I invested heavily and the partners squandered the entire money even before a product was launched (or even built) before I came quitting my job. Anyway this is not my main question.
After this, I worked hard on a product which did not have great demand in the market, so it did not succeed(though did not fail). I made some losses. It was targeted towards one segment of retail users. Most of users who used our product liked us (especially for our service). This product also opened another opportunity for some custom built solutions. Again this was not in great demand.
My problem is I am technically competent to build products but even though I have good communication skills, I am not a great marketing expert. In my case though I have a product/solution now, I am finding it hard to market it except for the existing set of customers.
I am able to manage the flow with a few trainee resources as a very lean company, some times breaking even and sometimes not. I am personally working hands on very very hard, sometimes even burning myself out. So with this small set of projects & some income, I am trying to build a new product which is different from the above mentioned. I have some savings which can take me for a good number of months and may be a few years.
But am just wondering, if there is any reason to put up through this. I am very confident of landing on a good job because I was hands-on and never strayed from my main profession throughout this phase. Is it worthwhile giving it a shot again in the business or just give up and go to a job after finishing the existing assignments?
Read Steve Blank's article about "The Pivot."
Set a date for yourself - a week or a month - by which time either you'll identify and start your pivot, or get out. Include your team - they can see the wear and tear on you. If you're honest with them and engage them in the pivot process, they'll be with you all the way. If you decide you can't come up with a pivot, then everyone will be moving on anyway.
Then spend time getting everyone who is working for you now a place to land and get yourself settled. Sounds like you can use a restoration of balance.
If you have a product already out there, perhaps bring on a marketing/business/design co-founder and try a little longer. I know you have done a lot of work already and it wouldn't feel right to give up half of that to someone that gets onboard now, but having 50% of something big is a lot better than 100% of nothing.