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About Customer Acquistion And Growth

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The 2015 Posts I Wish I Had Written

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Jeremy Crane (VP Product @ HubSpot) sent me the Bloomberg Business Jealously List 2015.  It is the list of pieces that Bloomberg’s staff wish they had written. I loved the idea so much I decided to do my own version around growth.  Here are the four pieces of content in 2015 that I liked so much I wish I had written them myself.

Growth Is Never Done

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At any given time our growth team is focused in on the highest impact area we can work on given limited resources.  We determine that by going through our growth process (link) using growth models to guide us.  That means we might focus on virality for a period, then first seven day retention, then activation rate.  At some point our team will be big enough to have full time people on each one of those areas.  But even at that point there is one thing we always keep in mind...Growth Is Never Done.

How We Apply Focus To Grow Faster

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Warren Buffet gives the advice "If it isn’t the most important thing, avoid it at all costs.”   Peter Thiel use to famously walk around the Paypal offices and refuse to talk to you unless it was about your currently assigned number one initiative.  It’s no secret that I’m a big believer that focus wins professionally and personally...

Growth Is Optional: 10 Reasons Why Companies Fail At Growth

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The wrong mantras have been pushed.  Product is everything.  You growth hack your way to success.  The way to find growth is to try every channel possible.  Paid acquisition is for companies with bad products.  They are all simply wrong.  The concepts behind growth are much simpler than most people think.  As with most things, it is executing that is the tough part.  Here are 10 things I’ve seen companies fail at executing that prevent them from growing.

How To Drive Insights For Growth

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Is growth an art or science?  Some praise the creativeness of new growth hacks.  Others praise the quantitative maneuvering of analytical growth geniuses.  That question has been debated.  But are we asking the right question?    

The creative juice brings new ideas around story telling, great copywriting, unique ad creative, and never tried before growth tactics.  But the quantitative science helps us measure the largest friction points, validate areas of opportunity, and understand how users behave at scale.    

It seems the better question is how do we balance both?  Truly brilliant growth teams are ones that figure out how to combine the nature of art and science to accelerate growth.

Avoiding The Wheel Of Meaningless Growth

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There is a cycle that plagues a lot of companies.  

It typically works like this:

1.  XYZ startup wants some press, so they look for some bloated number to give the writer (downloads, registrations, visits, etc)
2.  XYZ startup then celebrates that press article internally supporting the message that the bloated metric is worth pursuing
3.  In order to get additional press hits, XYZ startup needs to increase that bloated number, so they focus on increasing it (back to Step 1)

Growth Principle One: Be The Best At Getting Better

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If there could only be one principle among our growth team, it would be this one.  This one principle runs through everything that we do day in and day out.  It guides our day, our ideas, our strategy, our hiring, our team.  

The First Step To Building A Growth Machine

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When I meet new companies to advise them on growth, the number one question I get is “what tactic should I use to grow my business?”  At first I would try to give an answer.  But it never felt right.  After all, I just met this person and knew next to nothing about their business.  Even more important though I started to realize that the question typically stemmed from the search for a secret, hack, or tip about a growth tactic that was going to unlock all of their growth problems. 

Strategize, Test, Measure: The Bullseye Framework

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The following is a guest post by Justin Mares, Co-Author of Traction:  A Startup Guide To Getting Customers.  Choosing how to get traction can be an overwhelming process.  The Bullseye framework helps organize all the options and drive toward a decision.