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Gaining Early Traction by Doing Things that Don't Scale (Hustling)

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My talk from Sean Ellis' Growth Hacking Conference in London, October 2014.

It starts with a story of how I hustled my way into affording a drum set at age 14 by painting curbs in my neighborhood.

It then covers a lot of the tactics that we have done at Creative Market to grow rapidly, as well as mentions of other company's successful non-scalable growth strategy.

Published in: Internet
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Gaining Early Traction by Doing Things that Don't Scale (Hustling)

  1. 1. Zack Onisko Chief Growth Officer, Creative Market zack@creativemarket.com @zack415
  2. 2. MUST HAVE DRUMS
  3. 3. $7/hr
  4. 4. $75/hr
  5. 5. HUSTLED UP SOME DRUMS!
  6. 6. 3 stageTsh eorfe sartea 3r tSutapg egsr oof wGrtohwth Source: http://www.startup-marketing.com/the-startup-pyramid/
  7. 7. 3 stages of startup growth There are 3 Stages of Growth 1) Product Market Fit
  8. 8. Photo by @willsh
  9. 9. 3 stages of startup growth There are 3 Stages of Growth 1) Product Market Fit 3) Scalable growth stage
  10. 10. 3 stages of startup growth There are 3 Stages of Growth 1) Product Market Fit 2) The Hustle Stage 3) Scalable growth stage
  11. 11. “Startups take off because the founders make them take off. A good metaphor would be the cranks that car engines had before they got electric starters. Once the engine was going, it would keep going, but there was a separate and laborious process to get it going.” — Paul Graham
  12. 12. 20 There are 3 Stages of Growth non-scalable ways to HUSTLE your way to scalable growth
  13. 13. There are 3 Stages of Growth 1) Manually invite your first customers. Start in a niche.
  14. 14. There are 3 Stages of Growth 2) Invite friends and family (and other connections)
  15. 15. There are 3 Stages of Growth 3) Join the conversations at target niche communities and forums.
  16. 16. There are 3 Stages of Growth 4) Ask your competitor’s customers to try your new service & give feedback.
  17. 17. There are 3 Stages of Growth 5) Go directly to your users. Ask them to sign up in person.
  18. 18. There are 3 Stages of Growth 6) Speak directly with users to understand how your product can better meet their needs.
  19. 19. There are 3 Stages of Growth 7) Community engagement. Reply to every comment.
  20. 20. There are 3 Stages of Growth 8) Aim for 100% customer satisfaction. Everyone leaves happy!
  21. 21. There are 3 Stages of Growth 9) Go above and beyond to delight customers.
  22. 22. There are 3 Stages of Growth 10) Give away free stuff for signing up.
  23. 23. There are 3 Stages of Growth 11) Allow users to give their friends free stuff.
  24. 24. There are 3 Stages of Growth 12) Give away new free stuff weekly (retention)
  25. 25. There are 3 Stages of Growth 13) Content is king. Distribution is queen. Always be writing and sharing.
  26. 26. There are 3 Stages of Growth 14) Write guest posts on other people’s blogs.
  27. 27. There are 3 Stages of Growth 15) Forge Partnerships.
  28. 28. There are 3 Stages of Growth
  29. 29. There are 3 Stages of Growth
  30. 30. There are 3 Stages of Growth 16) Trade co-promotions
  31. 31. There are 3 Stages of Growth 17) Throw Parties
  32. 32. There are 3 Stages of Growth 18) Run a roadblock campaign across a network of sites in your industry.
  33. 33. There are 3 Stages of Growth 19) Seed content on your site yourself to get it going.
  34. 34. There are 3 Stages of Growth 20) Private Beta. Sorry, invite only.
  35. 35. There are 3 Stages of Growth
  36. 36. There are 3 Stages of Growth Study the tactics of your competitors. Become inspired, but don’t copy. Be more clever!
  37. 37. HAPPY GROWING!
  38. 38. THANKS! Zack Onisko Chief Growth Officer, Creative Market zack@creativemarket.com @zack415

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