How to achieve 10x growth in 2019

How to achieve 10x growth in 2019

You clicked! Did you just become a clickbait victim?

Relax; you didn’t.

Although you stumble upon articles with a similar title more often than Dennis Rodman rebounded throughout his career, I swear that this piece is based on facts.

Don’t get me wrong; I don’t claim that I offer a magic recipe.

Ιn this article, I’ll try to cover as much as possible, about the things that helped us achieve that amount of growth in 1 year.

Here, you’ll find things you can apply to both your mindset and marketing strategy.

Let’s do it.

Branding.

Why do you prefer Adidas over Nike, and vice versa?

Branding.

Why people form lines in Supreme stores to grab whatever they can, regardless if it fits them or not?

Branding.

The Balanced explains The objectives that a good brand will achieve, include:

  • It delivers the message.
  • Confirms your credibility.
  • Emotionally connects your target prospects with your product and or service.
  • It motivates the buyer to buy.
  • Creates user loyalty.

Talking is good, but what happens when it comes to acting? Building a brand identity is a long game.

It will probably take years.

The truth is that you have to start from the basics:

Fix your copywriting.

The line between a comedian and a fascist is often drawn by the way they put words into play. You should lock in a certain way you speak about things.

Imagine a rapper from the hood speaking like a 5-star hotel receptionist; everybody would instantly assume that the rapper is lame (even people that never lived in the hood).

Get your design together.

Whether we like it or not, our products serve a certain aesthetic. Your design should communicate that.

Images are powerful, and first impressions are everlasting. It doesn’t have to be beautiful; it doesn’t have to look expensive.

It has to be what it has to be.

The importance of design in branding and marketing, in general, is enormous:

  • Design communicates the brand.
  • Good design raises visibility.
  • Design drives conversions.
  • Design reinforces messaging.

So, (if you don’t have one) hire a designer already.

Experimentation.

The chances are that you want to grow your business (duh!), and to do so you need 2 things:

  1. Iron will,
  2. and a growth plan.

I’m not going to teach you how to build your growth plan here (I’ve already created a course about that), but I will show you how iron will get you closer to your goals.

Planning experiments and testing in high tempo is not an easy job.

BUT,

The community of GrowthHackers.com is an excellent example of how high tempo testing can skyrocket your results.

As it’s a community, GrowthHackers’ main key metric in the number of monthly active users.

As you can see in the following graph, they managed to nearly double their monthly active users in 11 weeks from the moment the starting testing in high tempo.

Sean Ellis points, it’s important to run as many experiments as possible in a given timeframe, as you will get more insights, more quickly, about what drives growth for your product.

To discover the right experiment, you first have to explore, which translates into running more and more experiments.

Consistency.

How many times did you start something only to stop after a few weeks (or days)?

Most of the platforms you leverage to spread awareness for your business, use some algorithm to serve content to their users.

Engagement is always a strong aspect of these algorithms, but how do you attain engagement when no one knows you?

The answer is repetition. People must see you again and again to connect the dots.

Being new in a niche desperates a lot of folks. It’s the number one reason for giving up.

The bright side is that you have the luxury of making mistakes.

Be consistent in language, design, and the rhythm you put your work out there. Pick a tempo and stick to it.

If the Kardashians made it with no talent at all, considering your skills and work ethic, you could do it too.

Networking.

It doesn’t matter who you are, what you’re doing, or what brought you here. What matters is who you know.

Funny story, a few months ago, I started my fresh Instagram account, and I decided my whole focus would be on video.

I try to work as much as possible for it, but growing an account organically is not so easy nowadays.

Then one day while attaining a photoshoot, I was approached by a lady who asked me:

“Do you want to become an influencer?” (Whatever “influencer” means in 2019).

I explained what my plan is and showed her my Instagram account. She took a picture of it, told me that we will be in touch, and left the set.

Her question triggered my curiosity, so I asked what her deal is. It seems that this lady is the middleman between brands and celebrities in my area.

It’s surprising how one acquaintance is capable of transforming a career.

In Viral Loops, we utilize networking as much as possible. Every connection brings a new one, and every new one might (and had) land you an opportunity to be a speaker at a niche event- where you’ll make even more connections.

More specific Savvas (our CEO), had the opportunity to speak at some groundbreaking conferences:

  • Growth Summit
  • Growth Marketing Conference (US)
  • Growth Marketing Conference (SK)
  • Growth Revolution (A)

All due to networking.

Content Marketing.

I don’t know why I still have to point out the importance of incorporating content into your marketing strategy.

But I will do it. Again.

Instead of bringing statistics (which bore me to death), I will present a recent story (I love a good story) that happened to watch as it unfolded in real-time.

I’m into video and photography, and since I never had a teacher, Youtube was (and still is) the primary source of knowledge on these subjects.

During another “educational” session on the popular platform, I stumbled upon Peter McKinnon. He gained my subscription almost instantly.

3 Reasons:

  1. Great video quality.
  2. Excellent presentation.
  3. Outstanding content.

But how my story connects with growing a company?

Peter was a wedding photographer until he started his Youtube Channel. He left his job to focus on creating content for his channel.

When I discovered him, he was at 20K subscribers (or maybe a bit more than that). A few months later, he got his 1st MILLION subscribers.

Overall, it took 9 months.

A lot of luck came into play, but it was just the cherry on top. There was also top performance, presentation, and talent.
Whatever it was his content draws the attention of influential figures like Casey Neistat & Gary Vaynerchuk, and I don’t think that Peter is going to shoot weddings again anytime soon.

Referral Marketing.

Why referral marketing?

I would say because it’s a marketing channel based entirely on your product and it doesn’t rely specifically on any other channel.

Then, I would provide extra support to my argument by saying that word of mouth is the primary factor behind 20% to 50% of all purchasing decisions, and that word of mouth is 10x more effective than traditional advertising, as people are sick and tired of being pushed to buy things.

In the past few mounts I’ve written more than enough articles about referral marketing, so whether you want to grow your e-commerce store or create an Ambassador program for your business using referral marketing, I’ve got your back.

Btw, Viral Loops has its own Ambassador program, and we offer the best swag that your beautiful eyes have ever seen.

Recently we started exploring the possibilities of using referral marketing with Facebook Messenger.

We recreated our giveaway template to work with Facebook Messenger, and our Milestone Template as well.

We also crafted two amazing case studies based on customer experience using the new templates:

Work on Funnel steps individually.

This is pure gold people. You and I both know how it is to try to grow a business.

It gets sloppy, stressful, frustrating, and confusing.

And when your team is small and your resources limited, things may turn dark. Viral Loops wasn’t always a team of 15 people.

We started small. I mean, tiny.

What we did, in the beginning, was to concentrate all of our actions on the step of the funnel that mattered the most at the given time. Although now we have the opportunity to have sub-team working on several funnel steps, in the beginning, we had to focus on one.

Let’s see how the typical AARRR funnel looks like:
10x Growth In 2018? Part 2

As you can see, on the top of the funnel, you have the Acquisition, followed by the Activation, the Retention, the Revenue, and finally, the Referral.

During the first year, our sole focus was on Acquiring our first set of users (btw, we still have a team always working on Acquisition called TOFU team- aka Top Of Funnel team).

Getting initial traction is a huge bet for every business, but we had to move a step further during our 2nd year.

We invested in making the product better, thus made our engineering team bigger, and also tried to optimize our customer support by hiring talent that not only could help customers use our product, but also manage challenging situations.

Having a better product and customer support helped us improve our Activation, Retention, and (the super valuable to the life of the company), Revenue.

Last Q, we decided to make an opening to our Referral step, and that’s why we created our own Ambassador program.

Start from the funnel step that’s the most valuable to your business, optimize it, and then move further.

Retention.

I bet you’ve read a lot about to acquire a ton of users/customers. We are so much force-fed of this concept to the point that a lot of us thought that acquiring customers is a synonym for growing.

Well, it’s not.

Over the past 5 years, I had the opportunity to talk with numerous people of companies that take their growth game seriously. Their answer as to where growth comes is retention.

The Pareto principle (aka the 80/20 rule) comes again into play as, according to Gartner Group, 80% of your company’s future revenue will come from just 20% of your existing customers.

“But how do I know if I have a good retention rate?”

You have to build a retention curve. If the retention curve is parallel to your time axis, you’re good to go.

However, in case your curve crosses the axis, you should start reconsidering your approach or even the product itself.

Here are a few principals that will help you to improve your customer retention rate:

  • Utilize user feedback.
  • Get personal and stay in touch with your customers.
  • Have stellar support (we’ll elaborate on that further into the article).
  • Offer more to customers than you promised.

You need to understand that once you lose a customer, there’s a 90% chance of them never coming back. Be proactive.

 Pro tip:
Build different retention curves for different sets of users. While your overall retention rate might suck, there’s a chance that a particular set of users is performing well.

You can use that information to change your retention strategy accordingly.

Customer Support.

Allow me to ask you a question;

You’re on a call with a company’s customer support line. You’re sitting on your desk, you have some friends or colleagues around, and you are tired and hungry.

While the person on the other side of the line is trying to help you, you turn to your friends and let them know that you’re starving.

A few moments later, the person on the other side of the line informs you that there’s a pizza on its way to you.

“But, how?”, you asked.
“It’s on us”, the customer support says.

Now the question is, is there any chance that you are going to use another similar service ever again?

I guess not.

This is a true story; During a marathon troubleshooting session, a support engineer of Rackspace heard the customer was hungry, so she ordered them a pizza!

The story inspired Rackspace to brand their support as Fanatical, created a ton of buzz online, and surely made a customer very happy.

10x Growth In 2018? Part 2

Be like Rackspace.

Launch, Launch, Launch!

Do you know what the biggest compliment I’ve ever received about my work is?

When we launched one of our latest features on Product Hunt, someone left the following review:

“ViralLoops is a good product with infuriating marketing. Trying to ride the ProductHunt wave over and over again by releasing these little pages and then submitting to ProductHunt.”

10x Growth In 2018? Part 2

That was my moment of glory; the moment I knew I’d done my job in the desired way.

“Infuriating Marketing”.

It’s true; we are riding the Product Hunt wave again, and again, and again. And we will do it one (or ten) more time if needed.

It’s easy to get caught up in modern digital marketing tactics, but good old-fashioned marketing is unbeatable.

Take Forever21 (or any other mainstream brand name), for example. Last week they launched their new collection in collaboration with Kylie and Kendal Jenner.

They created a huge prelaunch hype.

Based on the same principle, we decided to handle each of our new features as an individual launch, and we choose Product Hunt as the central platform to do it.

Here are some of our best launches so far:

10x Growth In 2018? Part 2 10x Growth In 2018? Part 2 10x Growth In 2018? Part 2
 Pro Tip:
If you’re interested, we created a full hands-on guide on how we got 900+ new users and 20,000 uniques in 2 days in Viral Loops.

Each opportunity for launching a new feature or product gives you the ability to establish your company’s brand on your users, plus acquire new ones on the road.

Before you go

I hope this guide will help you enough to decide where you need to focus 1st with your business’ growth.

Although you may not enjoy the same luck as us, I want to believe that your results will be similarly outstanding.

Remember to have a clear view of your entire marketing funnel, keep your experiments and consistency on spot, and use all your marketing channels as a branding asset.

Keep being awesome.

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