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Operationalizing Growth: From Hustle to Hires

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This presentation was originally given at PODIM. Get more growth updates and join my list: www.distrodom.com

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Operationalizing Growth: From Hustle to Hires

  1. OPERATIONALIZING GROWTH HUSTLING => SCALING @DistroDom
  2. ABOUT 500 STARTUPS AS OF 5-2015: • Over 1000 Companies Invested In • $175M Under Management • $105M Deployed • 300+ companies started outside US • 300+ companies with Women Founders • Our Team of 50 people spans 12 countries and speak 20+ different languages @DistroDom Always #500strong
  3. WHO IS THIS GUY DOMINIC? ● Co-Founded GarmentValet ● Co-Founded Curebit / Talkable Now I’m @DistroDom @500 Startups investing time and $ in promising startups #500STRONG @DistroDom
  4. @DistroDom WHAT DO WE ALL WANT PHASE 1: EARLY TRACTION PHASE 3: OPERATIONALIZING MOAR TRACTION
  5. @DistroDom WHAT LEADS TO EXPONENTIAL GROWTH ASYMMETRICAL PATTERNS NOT FOLLOWING OTHERS UNFAIR ADVANTAGES BEING SCRAPPY
  6. GROWTH => PRODUCT @DistroDom
  7. GROWTH IS A TEAM SPORT @DistroDom
  8. GROWTH IS AN ALL SUM GAME @DistroDom
  9. @DistroDom PHASES OF “GROWTH” PHASE 1: EARLY TRACTION PHASE 3: OPERATIONALIZING PHASE 2: DOUBLING DOWN
  10. GROWTH DOESN’T JUST MEAN NEW USERS @DistroDom
  11. GROWTH FOR PIRATES… AARRR @DistroDom Acquisition • Attracting the right people Activation • People signup and start using your product Retention • People keep using your product. Referral • People get their friends to start using your product Revenue • Buying more Credit: Dave McClure (@davemcclure)
  12. FIRST, WHAT ARE EARLY GROWTH GOALS @DistroDom  Finding Product Market Fit  Finding Early Adopters  Getting The First Paying Customers  Learning Your Conversion Funnel  Basic Unit Economics: CAC / LTV  Audience Building Email Lists Cookie Pool Social Followers
  13. PHASE 1: EARLY TRACTION…. @DistroDom !! Be Scrappy + Keep Hustling !! ?Many Many questions and uncertainties => [xox] => Comparing inputs to outputs √ Traditional Channels usually won’t work
  14. IF TRADITIONAL CHANNELS DON’T WORK THEN WHAT? @DistroDom
  15. SOME HACKY SH*T TO TRY @DistroDom  Scraping Lists Online  Community Hijacking  Social Community Building  Outreach Email  Power Networking  Email Partners
  16. When Something Sticks… DOUBLE DOWN @DistroDom
  17. DO NOT DOUBLE DOWN WITH A LEAKY FUNNEL @DistroDom
  18. WHAT DOES “WORKING” MEAN? @DistroDom 60% Sales are coming from 2-3 channels GUT You Need The Right Tools To Measure
  19. PHASE 2: DOUBLING DOWN… WE EXPERIMENT LIKE CRAZY @DistroDom
  20. PROBLEMS FROM EXPERIMENTATION @DistroDom  Test Shit That Doesn’t Matter  Tests Take Too Long  Winners don’t create meaningful results to the bottom line  Every test is a loser  Testing is Disorganized  WORST: Testing Slows Growth
  21. PROCESS is SEXY @DistroDom PHASE 3: OPERATIONALIZING GROWTH …
  22. @DistroDom Credit to Brian Balfour (@bbalfour) - www.CoElevate.com
  23. @DistroDom IDEA IMPACT CONFIDENCE EASE “I.C.E.” SCORE YOUR IDEAS Credit to Sean Ellis (@seanellis) - GrowthHackers.com
  24. @DistroDom 1 2 3 THE ROLE OF THE GROWTH MASTER
  25. @DistroDom TRELLO IS A GREAT TOOL Checkout Rob Somers Template: http://robsobers.com/growth-hacking-trello-template/
  26. @DistroDom @DistroDom

Editor's Notes

  • This presentation is on operationalizing growth. That’s the process of hustling to find product market fit to scaling a growth team.
  • ABOUT 500 STARTUPS AS OF 5-2015:
    Over 1000 Companies Invested In
    $175M Under Management
    $105M Deployed
    300+ companies started outside US
    300+ companies with Women Founders
    Our Team of 50 people spans 12 countries and speak 20+ different languages
  • Let me give you a little bit of a background of myself.
    I’ve started a few different companies, both with friends.
    The first one I started was when I was in college.
    It was a laundry and drycleaning delivery business of all things.
    But we were really “high-tech”. We had pretty solid growth to over $1.5M in sales during the first few years.
    After I left school, I also left thtat company to pursue something that was more software oriented.
    I co-founded Curebit.com (now Talkable.com) with a friend.
    Talkable was a referral software platform used by TOMS, BONOBOS, Shutterfly, etc.
    Curebit was funded by 500 and YC.
  • First of all, what is GROWTH?
    Growth is all things MOAR
    Moar users
    Moar engagement
    Moar sharing
    Moar love for your product
    Moar sales
    MOAR MONEY

    UP AND TO THE RIGHT BABY
    But most importantly, staying up and to the right.
  • Attractive Growth is exponential.
    In order to accomplish exponential growth you have to find asymmetrical patterns.
    This means that all marketing activities result in non-linear results.
    When your team is small you can’t afford to not get every ounce of juice for each squeezing effort.
    Usually the only way to accomplish asymmetrical patterns is by finding and exploiting unfair advantages.
    This doesn’t mean cheating, but this means finding those unique competitive advantages that make you stand out in the market.
    This could be technological, or it could be institutional.
    In my first business my unfair advantage was that I helped build an incubator at my university.
    As a result I got all sorts of goodwill and special privileges to market my business and protect my turf from competition.
    This made us a reputable company that could go sell to other schools and condos.
    In my second business, our unfair advantage was technological. My co-founder was an absolute totalitarian about never losing a single shred of data and making sure all data across any client was relational, in an anonymized way. This allowed us to find patterns and learnings to optimize viral funnels that the competition could just never keep up with.
    Basically in summary, you can’t follow others. You can learn from them, but you can’t follow them.
    If you follow others, you just end up right behind them.
    All this comes down to with being comfortable not being comfortable, aka being scrappy.
  • Growth is not just about users and sales.
    Good growth comes from great products. You can’t grow a shitty product, You can sell a shitty product, but you can’t grow it.
    But, It’s very important you let growth indicators naturally drive your product roadmap.
    It’s all to easy to think growth follows product development and when that happens, product hijacks growth.
  • Growth is not just about hiring a person who can magically come in a grow your business.
    It’s a team effort. Everyone should be a contributor.
  • People are always looking for silver bullets. Sometimes you find some really cool hacky shit that seems like a silver bullet.
    But, usually, it can’t be exploited for long and therefore isn’t scalable.
    So the focus on “hacking” growth or finding “growth secrets” is a false representation of what us growth people actually do.
  • I see growth in three different phases:
    Stage 1: You find early traction, this is usually when you have no idea what is going on but you know something is going right because people are using your product. You uusally are able to find some sort of product market fit here, or at least are very close to it.
    Phase 2: Is when you’re able to identify the few things that are working and you put all your energy into that (i.e., double down). Lots of times it’s just one activity that is driving 80% of the action.
    Phase 3: Once you’ve got a groove of exploiting these channels, you start to operationalize. This means you build processes that helps you continue to grow existing channels, improve other ones and most importantly innovate and identify emerging channels.
  • A lot of people think that growth is just about growing the top line.
    Growing the topline doesn’t matter if people are just walking out the backdoor without transferring value.
  • This is Dave McClure’s “Marketing for Pirates” framework:
    Acquisition
    Activation
    Retention
    Referral
    Revenue
  • Scraping Lists Online
    Community Hijacking
    Social Community Building
    Outreach Email
    Power Networking
    Email Partners
  • Test Shit That Doesn’t Matter
    Tests Take Too Long
    Winners don’t create meaningful results to the bottom line
    Every test is a loser
    Testing is Disorganized
    WORST: Testing Slows Growth
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