My background. I run growth group meetup in SF, marketers from Pinterest, Lyft, Hubspot, Hotel tonight share what’s working to grow
1500+ startups launch each year from accelerators and incubators. Seed funding is plentiful. Building a product is now the easier part. The hard part is traction.
If traction is as important as product, and the reason most startups fail, it stands to reason that you should focus on traction as much as product. This is what we call the 50% rule.
You need a strategy to approach traction – don’t just throw things at a wall
How most startups and marketers approach this process – randomly! They throw things against the wall hoping something sticks.
Including founders of Wikipedia, Kayak, Mint, Reddit, Twitch.tv and more. Collectively, the founders of the companies we interviewed are worth more than $5b
Found that startups get traction through 19 different channels
Each channel could make sense for different kinds of businesses, depending on the stage you’re in.
Generally, the channels that worked to go from 0-10,000 will be different than the channels you’ll use to go from 10,000 – 100,000 customers
Worth thinking about channels your competitors won’t consider using
Dropbox – went into massively competitive file hosting and sharing space, and were the only company (at the time) using referral system to acquire customers
How do you go about figuring out what channels make sense for your business? Bullseye!
Bullseye is a 5 step system that will help you find your traction channel. It’s to traction what the lean startup is to product development.
This is the framework companies like Uber, Lyft, Pinterest are using to achieve massive scale. We include these steps to counteract natural biases of founders and marketers: Only going with what’s worked in the past Not experimenting with channels the competition isn’t using. Following the herd This is especially dangerous given how quickly channels mature. If you want to build the next Zynga, you need to find a new channel. Won’t be able to leverage FB the way Zynga did
Going to take you through some examples of how you can test a channel
Case study: Facebook
This channel works really well for companies who have low/no marginal costs for new customers, and those that naturally engage others in an individual’s social circle
Dropbox did B2B virality well, but still wasn’t truly “viral”
Test to run: A 2-sided rewards program via email Get your current users to share with friends, see how often they do it. Is it meaningful?
Case Study: Virgin Airlines
Test to run: Follow this article to get the names of 40+ reporters who cover your industry - http://customerdevlabs.com/2013/09/24/google-news-api-mturk-press/ Email them using scripts from our book, or the ones here - http://fourhourworkweek.com/2012/07/18/ryan-holiday/
Case Study: OkCupid Hockey stick graph Also helped control and normalize online dating
How to test: Create best piece of content you could imagine creating. Market it in the best way you could imagine marketing it. Then, measure Repurpose your content
Thank Prabhakar for bringing me out
Finding Your Distribution Channel talk at Product Austin
Finding Your Channel: