Most growth communities, forums, and email lists will inevitably have that thread that goes:
“Hey, what are the benchmarks everyone’s seeing for X?”
I constantly find people seeking out benchmarks or pointing to benchmarks, and we’ve all been there -- who doesn’t want some normalizing data to understand whether we’re on track or not?
The desire is further fueled by many companies releasing “benchmark reports.” I understand why. It makes for sexy content marketing.
But there’s one small issue:
Growth benchmarks are mostly useless. There is a better way, which I'll outline below.
Andy Carvell joined SoundCloud in 2012, when the company was just over 80 employees and 10 million monthly active users. The service now boasts over 150 million registered users, and monthly actives in the high tens of millions. I recently spoke with Andy as part of a 1 hour interview covering:
How he brought a web-first product to mobile
Activity notifications, rich push, and other techniques for driving mobile growth and retention
Andy’s “Mobile Growth Stack” for 2017
In the early days of building the growth team at HubSpot, we spent a few months optimizing onboarding in our product and produced some meaningful improvements. As the team expanded, I wanted to dedicate a full-time team to onboarding, but I got a few versions of the following questions from other executives:
“Why do you want to put a full-time team on that? I thought you guys were done optimizing onboarding?”
The mentality of “done” is the exact opposite of the mentality of high performance growth teams. Change is constant. Change is difficult. Not adapting to change is fatal.
I recently wrote about the most common mistakes with CAC (customer acquisition cost) that can derail growth efforts before you even get started because CAC is a metric that's foundational to growth strategy.
In this post, we'll look at the faulty myth of "Average CAC," and the most meaningful CAC segmentations that you should be paying attention to instead.
We are nearing the year end and that probably means many teams are finalizing their growth goals for next year. Just the thought of the planning process is probably jacking up your stress levels. After all, setting yearly growth goals in fast changing environments feels like shooting darts blindfolded. While there a lot of goal-setting frameworks out there, no matter which one you use, I have a few recommendations to make the process better.
Measuring the success of the growth team is a tougher question. Every team from product, to marketing, to operations indirectly influences growth. This leads to some questions and challenges: “Why have a growth team? Doesn’t everyone own growth?”
We have a big addiction problem in our industry. Hacktics, the tips, tricks, hacks, tools, and secrets that promise to solve our growth problems. As a result, marketers now get the majority of their “learning” through this hack-tic based content. As addictive as they are, prescription-based tactics and tools won’t solve your problem, and most importantly, help you become an elite marketer.
An easy way to predict your weekly or monthly usage metrics so that you can respond to changes in patterns more quickly.
If you have a weekly one hour team meeting, it better have high ROI. The dollar cost of that meeting for a team of five is about $13K per year. A team of ten is $26K per year. (w/ conservative assumption of $100K average salary+benefits+office+etc per team member) That isn't including the opportunity cost and cost of disrupting someone. So reality is likely much higher. How do you run a meeting that gets results?
There are two attachments that are corrosive for growth teams. Learn what they are, how to avoid them, what behaviors you should be attached to, and how to encourage them.