What’s up, everybody? Dan Martell here, a serial
entrepreneur, investor, and creator of SAAS Academy. In this video, I’m
going to share you how to throw a laptop. Oh, here, man. Just take it. Anyways, I’m going
to share with you how to growth hack your startup
to your first 100,000 users. And be sure to stay
till the end, where I talk to you about how to get
access to my high tempo testing training taught to me by the
man, the legend, Sean Ellis, specifically around
the North Star Metric. So I’ll share that
with you at the end. [MUSIC PLAYING] So if you’re new here, I built
a company called Clarity, and it was a marketplace
for entrepreneurs to get advice over the phone
by other entrepreneurs. And when I built it,
I thought, man, this is the ultimate tool
for micro celebrities and Twitter personalities
and bloggers to monetize their advice. And I literally was like,
this is going to be incredible because it’s going to allow
people that have knowledge to give access to the
people that want it and create an economic
system to reward that. And I even had a charity
component built into it. And then I launched,
and there were crickets. I literally brought 300
people together in a theater, gave them access to it. I had Dragon’s Den, Shark
Tank experts, entrepreneurs like Mike from FreshBooks
and Ryan at Hootsuite and all these incredible
people available for this room, and a bunch of people
did not do any calls. And what I realized– and I’m going to
walk you through the different strategies
to growth hack because that company eventually
grew to hundreds of thousands of users doing calls
over the phone. But for the first
nine months, it was nothing, nothing,
traction, traction, and then eventually growth curve
up and to the right. We eventually
exited the business. So the big lesson there
was to nail a niche. What I’ve discovered– and I’m
going to walk you through how to do that– is you need to find somebody
that, for us, for clarity, was an entrepreneur that
invests in themselves. If that’s not true– you can be an entrepreneur–
a lot of people, I just want to let you
know, there’s probably out of 100 entrepreneurs, 90%
of them are not growth-minded. They don’t read business books. They’re just accidental
business people, entrepreneurs. It was the 10% of the
people that actually went to conferences,
bought books, hired a coach that ended up
being our best customers. And once we understood
that, everything else from a marketing
point of view changed. And I’m going to tell you how
to take that and implement it in this video. One, nail a problem niche. Now a lot of people tell
you like, oh, the riches are in the niches. Here’s the way I
think about it is you can focus on a
small group of people because you do want to
cast a wide net, right? So the whole idea is you can try
to be everything to everybody. It’s too wide. And then if the holes
in the net are too big, the fish swim through it. Or you can kind of focus on
less of the overall ocean and close the
squares on your net so that you can actually start
catching the right fish, OK? So that’s the concept. But here’s the reality
is the problem niche. So one, they need to
know they have a problem. So too many people are
building technologies for people that don’t
know they have a problem. Two, they need to be actively
looking to solve the problem. If they’re not, it’s going to
be really hard because then you got to convince
they have a problem, and then hopefully they
start looking for a solution. And number three,
they have the means to invest either time or money
to make the economic engine work for you. So that’s number one. I can teach you all the
marketing hacks and growth hacks that you’d
ever want to learn. But if those things
aren’t true, you have a problem niche
that wants your solution, everything else is
going to fall flat. Number two, map the universe. There are so many
great examples of this of companies that said, OK,
once I understood who our core customer was, how do I
find a way to discover them in a programmatic way? All right, so for me, one
of my favorite examples is one of my
investment portfolios, Steve at PayrollHero. They were working on trying
to deploy a payment or payroll solution out in Asia, and
they were having a hard time finding early adopters. So what I always
ask is, what’s true? What are the characteristics
about that customer, that early adopter? And long story short,
after evaluating a bunch of different
options, we realized that, for them, their best
customers, the customers that we’re using and
loving the product today, were all using Google
apps for domains. Now this might seem
obvious because anybody watching this uses
Google apps or Gmail for their corporate email. But there’s still a lot of
people in the world that don’t. They use Lotus Notes, if
you remember that one. They use Outlook, et cetera. But once we realized that,
then we could programmatically take all of the potential
customers that they had, run them through a filter,
check what’s called the DNS– the Domain Name Service– of the email
record, and find out if they were using
Google apps for domain as their email
client or their tool, and filter out all
of the, let’s say, 100,000 potential customers
down to the 25,000 that would be incredibly perfect for them. So I think of this all
the time, both in what’s true about the customer,
how can I programmatically discover there’s so many
great companies out there, like FullContact for social
media or social contact data, BuiltWith for
techno graphic data. I mean, there’s so
many different ways for you to figure out from an
URL or an email or a database the specifics that’s true
about your best customers and then filter out
and ask yourself, now that I’ve got that, how
do I get in front of them? Number three, value in advance. Now here’s what
I’ve always loved and what’s true for
me is I love using education-based marketing. I think it is the
most powerful way– this video is an example– for me to add value
in the market, teach my customers something
extremely powerful that will get them a
result. And if they want to find a way to do that
faster or quicker or easier, they can kind of move
forward down that path through that discovery. And that’s true for all
the software companies that I work with
for the most part. We want to figure out a
education-based strategy that’s going to allow your best
customers to discover you because they’re searching
for a solution they have a problem on. The other thing is
so you have two ways. You have content,
and you have product. The product is splintering
off typically as a splinter strategy, some feature
of your core solution that maybe people are paying for
and making it as a free widget, either as a Chrome
extension, et cetera. And a great example is Vidyard. So Michael Litt,
one of my best buds, he actually took one of
their video solutions inside of Vidyard and front-loaded
that for free as a browser extension– now called GoVideo– that is arguably one of
the fastest growth channels that they have to attract
top of funnel awareness for their core Vidyard products. So much so that Hubspot
actually integrated GoVideo into their sales CRM solution. So that’s on the product side. On the content side–
again, value in advance, two strategies,
content or product– on the content side,
Unbounce, a company that I invested in, that team
there, Rick and the team, they crushed it on building
education-based content that really serves their
customer and their market until they’re ready to buy
a solution like Unbounce. And it is their
number one channel, and it’s helped them
grow exponentially. So that, to me, is just from a
growth hacking point of view, those are two really
powerful strategies. Number four, drafting strategy. So one of the strategies
I think is powerful is find somebody else
that’s further along that has access to your core
customer and figure out a way to draft behind them. Recently, I got into road biking
because my good buddy Jarrett said, hey, don’t worry, you
will not look funny in spandex. I still don’t think
that that’s the truth. But anyways, we got a road
bike, and I went out with them. And what’s cool is, if
you’ve never done it, if you tuck in behind the
lead person or somebody that’s a lot stronger in
front of you, they make the whole biking
process so much easier. They cut the wind for you. They create a draft to pull
you forward so that you can keep that same
level of momentum without exerting any–
probably half the energy required to keep that pace. And I just think
about that in regards to partnerships and
growth in our business. There’s a strategy
I teach called OPN. And the real estate
people, they call it OPM– Other People’s Money. In the growth market
strategy, it’s OPN– Other People’s Network. So if you think about it,
Airbnb did this beautifully by essentially using
Craigslist’s network to get distribution, right? Instagram did this beautifully
using two networks, the IOS network
and their growth– if you look at Instagram,
when it launched, and the growth of that market– and Twitter. People posting on social,
specifically Twitter photos. Before that, Twitter
didn’t really have a great photo
solution in the feed. Using that drafting
strategy and OPN, try to find a network that has
access to your perfect customer and build some kind of
publishing solution. And the easiest way to do
this at an enterprise level– if you’re watching
this and you’re like, that won’t work for me because
I’m mid-market or enterprise SAAS– is, what’s a report that
you could share publicly, something that your tool could
generate for the customer that they would feel
comfortable sharing publicly? That would be one. So a widget. We did this with Clarity, where
we created a profile widget for our experts on our
platform, and we allowed them to add that to their website. So we got exposure through
their personal networks. But with the report,
you can either do it publicly, or even just
sharing it amongst their team to get other people
aware of your solution and using and collaborating
around the tool to help it make it more sticky. I, mean, think about Slack
and the communication channel that they created and inviting
other people to collaborate around channels made
the product stick, and it created a kind
of viral exposure inside the company network. So drafting strategy,
to me, is a powerful way to think about it for your SAAS,
your product, your business, to find somebody that’s
already moving forward, that it talks to
your core customer, and draft behind them. Number five, rinse and repeat. Now this might be simple to
say, but hard to execute. What I’ve seen companies do
is they have something that’s working, and they’re
starting to see a little bit of traction and
light around a growth strategy. And instead of doubling
down and investing in it, they keep moving
to other things. So what I want to say
is rinse and repeat around the things
that are working to kind of build more velocity. But at the same time, if you
feel like you’ve tapped out, if you’re three iterations in– so if you do a
two-week dev cycle, like a scrum or
an agile process– if you’re three two-week
cycles, a month and a half in, and you haven’t
been able to move the needle on that
specific channel, then go back and reintroduce
another growth strategy or idea that your team came up
with to make that happen. But rinse and repeat
around all of these. But if you’ve got
traction, reinvest and try to make it grow. And if you don’t, add a new one. And having that discipline
of focus and measurement will be the unlock for you in
building a growth strategy. Gets you 100,000 users. So quick recap. Number one, nail
the problem niche. Make sure that they feel it,
and they want a solution for it. Two, map the universe,
ideally in a programmatic way. Number three, add value
in advance through content or splintering off
a product feature. Number four, drafting strategy
behind other people’s momentum in, what I call, OPN,
Other People’s Networks. And five, rinse and repeat using
a high-tempo testing framework that I’m going to
share with you next. So as I mentioned
at the beginning, I want to share with you
a training I did called high-tempo testing
taught to me– full credit goes to Sean
Ellis, the creator of this. He’s also essentially the
originator of the term “growth hacking.” He was an advisor in my
last company Clarity. He’s been a friend for almost a
decade and one of the smartest marketing minds out there. And I taught it at my recent
SAAS Academy intensive. I want to give you access. Below, if you click
the link, you’ll get access to that
specific training. Specifically, you want to
figure out what your North Star Metric is, your NSM. That alone will make all of
these strategies I just shared with you work like lock step. So click the link below,
get access to that. If you like this video, be
sure to smash the Like button, subscribe to my channel. And if there’s anybody you think
this video could serve directly that you care about, feel
free to share it with them. As per usual, I want to
challenge you to live a bigger life and a bigger business. And I’ll see you next Monday. So you’re going to throw
that computer, right? I’m going to throw it. Throwing the laptop. Catch.

Tagged : # # # # # # # # # # # # # # # # # #

7 thoughts on “Growth Hacking: How to Acquire 100K Users”

  1. I initially launched clarity.fm to a room full of crickets. Here’s what I did next to growth hack our way to 100K+ users (and an exit).

  2. Dan I'm new to your channel and LOVING it. My priority right now is choosing a niche that finds the most value from our B2B software.

    Keep it up!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *