Uber. Facebook. Twitter. Airbnb. Netflix. Dropbox. These companies have all benefited from growth hacking. Your single most important job as a founder or employee is to build or create insanely great product or service. If you focus on delivering just that, you will spend less resources trying to convince prospective users about how great your product is. If you are shouting too much about your product, something is wrong.
“Build something 100 people love, not something 1 million people kind of like.” Paul Graham.
—Stop chasing numbers you can’t sustain!
“Growth hacking” is an incredibly hot buzzword. Every startup is chasing numbers (sky rocketing growth). The truth is: you could get what you want right now, but the BIG question is: can you sustain that growth? Can you feed a hungry nation?
“Growth hacking doesn’t turn a bad product into a unicorn. Neither does it helps get to product/market fit. Your early stage startup should stay far, far away from growth hacking until the point when you’re drawing in steady number of users.” Rahul Varshneya, Co-founder, Arkenea
You could spend all your resources trying to get people to a supposed great party, what happens if you succeed at convincing hundreds of thousands of people to the party, but they turn up only to find out that everything else is wrong in the party house, except the people. They will begin to leave and will talk about it (all that went wrong).
—If advertisers spent the same amount of money on improving their products as they do on advertising then they wouldn’t have to advertise them.-Will Rogers
—Build products that can stand the test of time!
The point is, there is nothing wrong with chasing growth but what importance will that growth be to your business, if in the end it turns out your value proposition is even worth it. The problem is that right now, too many entrepreneurs are focused more on growth than on creating an amazing timeless product that can stand the test of time.
Think about how your users are using your product? Think retention rate! Do your users love your product right now? Do they come back and use it again? What are their biggest concerns and feedback right now? Concentrate on delivering an awesome product right now and overtime your users will stay and new ones will even love to be a part of it.
-Focus on creating something truly amazing
Just create. Make useful, creative, imaginative things. It doesn’t have to cure cancer but great enough to solve a real problem people have. If you create something meaningful, people will notice. Mailbox, scaled to one million users in six weeks after launch. Now, that’s awesome. Dropbox acquired it for a reported $100 million just a month after launch. If you are currently having trouble with your business growth, focus on making your product even better. A good product won’t always market itself, but it sure does make it easier.
“Be undeniably good. No marketing effort or social media buzzword can be a substitute for that.” —Anthony Volodkin, Hype Machine founder
—Growth doesn’t fix all! Make retention a priority
If you go ahead to spend all that money hiring a growth hacker, you sure could get significant growth in a short while, you will even attract investors who will believe you have something going on. But remember when those customers or users don’t engage, or — worse — have bad experiences, they will leave and tell their friends about it, and guess what, that growth curve crashes ( and you will going down fast). Fix that crappy product or better still focus on building a better product you will be proud of even in the future.
The real challenge of a business is not getting started but staying in business.
The 80/20 rule holds true for every business. 80 percent of your revenue typically comes from repeat customers. Once you acquire customers, focus on delivering amazing customer service to keep them using your product for as long as possible.
If you charge them, it’s even more crucial that you don’t suck at customer service. Your most valuable assets are your customers. Listen to them. They will tell you everything you need to know to make your product better or retain their business.
You don’t just want a business that turns a profit in the first few years; you want a business that will continue profitability and growth for years to come.
—Growth hacking done right!
If you are ready to engage the services of a growth hacker for your startups, focus finding someone with a background in making products awesome and who really knows user experience and understands user value, not just someone who knows all the tricks to attract millions of users who may end up leaving after a few weeks or months. You want to focus attracting the right audience to a great product. Don’t let your next growth hacking effort go to waste. Measure and stick to what works. It pays to analyse.