As companies look for ways to grow their user base quickly and at scale, they've turned to the growth strategies made popular by companies like AirBnB, Quora, Facebook and others. Growth Hacking at its core is the discipline of marrying product features with distribution tactics to get massive user growth with very little paid marketing spend. This presentation reviews popular growth hacking case studies, how you can evaluate your product for growth hack opportunities, and how to get your team and product focused on growth for 2013. Get our designing for viral growth infographic here: http://bit.ly/12badgO Learn more about digital telepathy here: http://www.dtelepathy.com/
Text of Growth Hacking Basics
GROWTH HACKING Morgan Brown
ABOUT ME 12+ years of user acquisition, social and product marketing for startups. Grown companies from 0 100k+ users in months 3 times. Get geeked out about viral growth and product-oriented hacks. 2nd time here at OCPM hoping to earn a 3rd.
WHAT IS GROWTH HACKING? A methodology that leverages strategies aimed at unlocking growth at scale. Growth by being smarter, not spending more, than the other guy. The practice of finding exponential upside to marketing investment.
WHAT IS A GROWTH HACKER? Hybrid skill set of marketing, product & engineering. Ability to optimize for user acquisition at scale. Ability to drive exponential growth from efforts.
WHY GROWTH HACKING? Traditional marketing and growth channels are expensive and hyper-competitive. Companies that are resource constrained cant compete effectively in crowded spaces. Its about creating an unfair advantage by leveraging asymmetries in the market.
TENENTS OF GROWTH HACKING OBSESS OVER DATA Know your customer exceptionally well. Measure everything. CREATIVITY Think different. Push the limits. CURIOSITY Learn early, learn often. Poke around. DIRTY HANDS Get in at the code & product level. Make, launch and break stuff.
CATEGORIES OF GROWTH HACKS Platform integrations Viral Growth Analytics Grab bag
PLATFORMINTEGRATION Leveraging Super Networks
AIRBNB & CRAIGSLIST Insight: Craigslist is where people were looking for rooms to rent, short & long term. They could cross-post to Craigslist and tap a huge traffic source. Hack: Even without an API the AirBnB team figured out a way to hack the Craigslist submission process. Result: AirBnB drove more bookings (making customers happy) & created new users at the same time.
BRANCH OUT & FACEBOOK Insight: People maintained a professional network on Facebook that was often more engaged than on LinkedIn. They could leverage the size of Facebook and its Open Graph permissions to drive growth. Hack: One click invite send and account creation with Facebook Connect. Which friend would you rather work with mechanic. Result: Doubled size in a month. Went from 1MM to 10MM users in 3 months. Raised $24MM. BranchOut mostly irrelevant now. Why?
BRANCH OUT DOUBLES IN 1 MONTH http://www.quora.com/How-did-BranchOut-double-within-a-month
YOUTUBE & MYSPACE Insight: MySpace was where fans connected with musicians, but bands couldnt post video. If YouTube could make it easy to share video on MySpace theyd instantly scale. Hack: One click, Flash-based embeddable widget for video. Bands and fans could finally watch and share music videos. Which friend would you rather work with mechanic. Result: By 2006 YouTubes reach grew past MySpace. The rest is history.
TAKEAWAYS Integrations should make both products better Study (and ask about) user behavior to determine promising integrations Test and discover valuable use cases Measure conversions and revenue
VIRAL GROWTH Leveraging Friend Networks
DROPBOX Insight: Traditional marketing wasnt working. Were spending $300+ to acquire customers for a $99 service. Activating customers was the key to paying accounts. Their asset had a very low marginal cost to give away. Hack: Giving away free space in exchange for word of mouth referrals. Giving away free space in exchange for activation. Result: Users sent 2.8 million direct referral invites in April 2010. In Sept. 2008 the service had 100,000 registered users. In Jan 2010 (15 mos.) the service had 4,000,000. No traditional ad spend. http://www.quora.com/What-are-the-dos-donts-of-referral-invite-programs
DROPBOX MAKES INVITES FUNhttp://www.quora.com/What-are-the-dos-donts-of-referral-invite-programs
LIVINGSOCIAL Insight: Building an audience can be outside of the core product experience. The cost of giving away a deal is shared by the merchant, giving away deals cheaper than giving away cash. Hack: Building a purely viral Facebook app called Pick Your 5, and growing virally until pivoting to daily deals. A new twist on refer-a-friend with the 3-and-free dynamic. Result: 10s of millions of Facebook app installs 70MM users as of 11/12
LIVINGSOCIALs PICK YOUR 5
TAKEAWAYS Viral growth doesnt exist for every product. Viral growth comes from value being created for the existing and new user. Viral growth doesnt have to come from your core product. So many people use refer-a-friend. A twist is required to stand out.
DATADeep insights to drive growth.
AIRBNB Insight: Listings with better photos get more bookings. Hack: Hacked product and customer experience to drive professional photos for listings. Saw that listings with pro photos received 2-3x more bookings. Result: Went from 20 photographers in the field in 2011 to doing 5,000 shoots per month. Traffic takes off. Source: Analytics Lessons Learned
AIRBNB CRACKS THE PHOTO CODE Photographers Source: Analytics Lessons Learned
CIRCLE OF MOMS Insight: Not all users are created equal. Hack: Discovered that moms on Circle of Friends were far more active than other users: Pivoted entire company from Circle of Friends to Circle of Moms. Result: Grew from 2MM monthly active users to 4.5MM Sold to Sugar Inc. Source: Analytics Lessons Learned
HOW MUCH BETTER WERE MOMS? Their messages to one another were on average 50% longer. They were 115% more likely to attach a picture to a post. They were 110% more likely to engage in a threaded (i.e. deep) conversation. They had friends who, once invited, were 50% more likely to become engaged users themselves. They were 75% more likely to click on Facebook notifications. They were 180% more likely to click on Facebook news feed items They were 60% more likely to accept invitations to the app. Source: Analytics Lessons Learned
TWITTER Insight: Its not how many Tweets you send. Its how many people you follow that determines success. When users follow 5-10 people they are far more likely to remain an active user. Hack: Drive product onboarding not around publishing or building an audience, but following the right people. Result: 40% of Twitters users use Twitter without publishing. 4x number of monthly visitors who dont login, just read the stream. http://www.avc.com/a_vc/2011/09/the-logged-out-user-continued.html
TWITTERS TRY FIVE Photographers
TAKEAWAYS Sometimes growth doesnt come from where you expect it. Leverage data to identify unique insights and opportunities. If you think you have a worthwhile idea, test it quickly and with the least effort possible. Have a game plan of what to do if the idea succeeds and how to scale it. Iterate the product to solve for that use case that drives growth. Engagement is the rocket fuel to give you escape velocity and long-term sustainable growth.
HACK GRAB BAG Embeds YouTube, SlideShare, Vimeo Keys are: remove friction, optimize for SEO Powered By Freemium with branding, CTAs & backlinks: MailChimp, UserVoice Keys are: identify what you power, track and test CTAs Free Stuff Viral tools that play to vanity/exclusivity: Klout, Twitter Grader Keys are: Identify value/desire, provide reward or currency Source: Hiten Shahs Growth Presentation (see notes)
WALL STREET JOURNAL Insight: Busy business people are constantly searching for ways to connect to the Web. Hack: Offer free WiFi at popular spots across New York City. Create email capture and activation funnel as part of connecting to the Web. Result: Every user an opportunity to build their email marketing lists. Source: GrowHack.com
DOLLAR SHAVE CLUB Insight: In a massive CPG category traditional advertising will never work, you need to build a cult following. The big players are actually terrible at branding and marketing. Hack: Upend the business model for razors. Use viral video to acquire customers at low cost and create that cult following. Result: DSC video viewed 5MM+ times 30,000 subscribers in first week Raised $10MM to take on mens category
ZAPPOS Insight: With items that are hard to shop for online, superior service, not price, will win. Removing friction from online shopping is more important than price. Hack: Reinvent what customer service means. Bake cost of incredible service into product, position as free. Result: World renowned brand built on service. Charge a premium on every item sold. $800 million exit to Amazon.
TAKEAWAYS Growth Hacking isnt just for consumer companies. B2B and physical product manufacturers can hack growth. Physical product hacks are harder, but not impossible. They just require creativity and insight on how to reach users. Hacks that make use of digital networks eliminate overhead costs and find scale. Same rules apply: creativity, data, curiosity, dirty hands.
BECOME AGROWTH HACKER Or at least a growth beginner.