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Ned Arick is the VP of Growth at HALOS Systems, a Healthcare Technology start-up. Over his career, he's built 3 marketing, sales, and growth-focused teams across multiple industries and verticals. His expertise lies in mapping out the initial go to market strategy for growth, building a growth-focused team, and creating a growth culture inside of your organization. 

Ask him anything related to:

- Initial Marketing strategy

- Who to hire first

- Creating a culture focused on growth

- Getting executive buy-in

- Building teams.

- Organizational structure.

  • GN

    Gustavo Nunes

    about 1 month ago #

    Hi, Ned. Thanks for being here with us.

    1- For those companies willing to adopt a growth methodology. Would be wiser to start with the marketing or product team or the whole company should be able to take part in this action?

    2- What role do you think growth hacking will play in enterprises over the next five years? And why is it so important these days?

    3- As marketers, how to adapt our marketing strategy when something that we didn't expect happens. To be more clear, the pandemic crisis and the movement #blacklivesmatter?

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      1. Gustavo, I think a growth methodology is something that should be company-wide. The growth mindset is a wholistic one. It focuses on breaking down all silo's in a business to be more customer centric, so it's not just marketing or product, It's marketing, sales, product, dev, customer success, C-level etc. The goal should be to truly create a company wide initiative focused on growth, and sustainable growth at that.

      2. I'm not the biggest fan of the phrase growth hacking simply because I think it makes people think there's a short cut to revenue (which we all know there isn't), but I do think that the growth methodologies and mindset will play THE part in enterprises over the next 5 years. Let's think about how fast our lives move. We can no longer think that a 90 day campaign is going to drive us where we need to go. We need to be constantly testing, and iterating our process to keep up with the speed at which technology moves now a days. We also need to understand that the growth methodology is a customer centric one. You can't succeed as an inward facing organization in 2020. You've got to be focused on your customer, what they want, and how you solve their problems, and you constantly have to be testing and making sure that you're still solving their problems in a streamlined manner.

      3. The word that continues to come to my mind is empathy. You've got to be empathetic to the situation, BUT, you've got to be empathetic to your clients and how the crisis is affecting them. General empathy seems fake. The amount of times I've seen "In these uncertain times..." is insane. No. You've got to be bold and speak to the issues that are overwhelming your clientele. Offer them advice, offer them service, offer them value that helps them overcome the overwhelm. Become a life line in uncertain waters specifically to them. I think when it comes to #BLM, you've got to place your stake in the ground globally, but you also have to come from a place of empathy of how it's affecting John the CMO that is your persona. Adaptation of marketing strategy always comes down to tactical empathy, but specific tactical empathy.

      Hope these answered your questions Gustavo!

      3 Share
  • QA

    Q&A AMA

    about 1 month ago #

    Question from Sean (@seandavis)

    How do you prove that digital marketing and growth hacking are different?

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      @seandavis, I'm not sure you have to. I think growth hacking is digital marketing and digital marketing is growth hacking. I think it's a mindset as opposed to actual techniques. If we think about this, the only real difference is the fact that digital marketing silo's itself away from product and sales and customer success (maybe), and it generally is focused on longer term results. Growth hacking is all about bringing together those silos, and testing and iterating our product, our marketing, our website, sales etc. That being said, I think that all marketing should be growth hacking. It may not be the most popular of opinions, but even when I wasn't in a growth role, I was tracking metrics, testing, and getting strategic in how we grew our revenue. I think that truly if we do it right, our digital marketing should be driven by a growth hacking mindset.

      2 Share
  • QA

    Q&A AMA

    about 1 month ago #

    Question from Kateryna (@kateryna_kachkovska)

    What should startups do in a face of economic decline?

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      @kateryna_kachkovska My most simple answer is re-evaluate your ICP and get really focused on them. I think too often in start up land we think that we can help everyone do everything, so we tend to be a little bit more lax with our cash (especially venture backed), meaning that we'll toss a bunch of tactics out there in hopes that one sticks. My play right now is getting really focused and really niched on who I can help the most and who will benefit the most. Really understand them at the core of their being and where we help and then only focus on them. In my content, in my ads, in my copy on the site, in the buyer journey etc. Right now get super focused on the one industry, the one size of company, the one persona etc that can really benefit from your product or service and dig deep in serving them. When we come out of this decline, you'll have that entire market locked down and you'll get collateral customers from the service you put out.

      2 Share
  • FD

    Fred D

    about 1 month ago #

    In your opinion, what are the 3 fundamental pillars of such a project?

  • QA

    Q&A AMA

    about 1 month ago #

    Question from @alexgomez0318

    In a eHealth / InsureTech kind of Startup where people pay a subscription and have a finite number of medical consultations. What could be the Aha Moment? and the North Start Metric?

    The moment when the client experience the value proposition in it's full is when using the medical consultation but in this case since is health is kind a reverse situation where the less the client use it is better for both the Startup and the client because it means the client is healthy (like and insurance company). I appreciate any suggestion on how to approach this doubt since we want to define our growth formula

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      @alexgomez0318 - such a good question. I honestly think that the Aha moment is still the usage of the app. Let me explain. Although it seems a bit contradictory to want someone to be using the app due to the fact that if they use it they're sick or not feeling well, the Aha moment is still them finding that what you offer is much simpler and streamlined than what they're used to. That ease of use is massive. It's why Telehealth has crushed and will continue to crush post covid. People love that they can call the doc and say they've got a headache, get a diagnosis and prescription all while sitting on their couch. I'd still say that's the Aha moment.

      The north star metric is a bit harder to define without knowing exactly what the end goal is of the product or what the platform looks like. Do you have a community aspect to it? Or do you have information on there? Because in that case I may say something like Time spent engaging on the app With the limited info I have and not knowing a ton, I'd say the north star metric for me has to tie back to the value, and I think the value is the actual consultation itself. So it may be something to the extent of Average monthly consultations. But then you would have to see what the churn is etc. That's definitely a hard one to answer with the limited info, but I'd love to mastermind with you and help out by learning more.

      1 Share
  • QA

    Q&A AMA

    about 1 month ago #

    Question from Sanjay (@sjaykh)

    What are your suggestions and advice to a beginner in the field of growth?

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      I'd say if you don't have a grasp on marketing as a whole, my first suggestion would be to really understand marketing, psychology, influence and persuasion. So give yourself a base. For instance, if you need me to, I'll run your facebook ads, I don't love it, but because I've learned it, I can be dangerous at it. Same with SEO, I don't necessarily enjoy it, but I gave myself enough knowledge that we don't need a director of SEO, I can do it my self. If you have that base of knowledge start to Double down on what you're passionate about. What drew you to the field of growth? Figure out what that is and become an expert. For me I love analytics and I love me some data. Numbers are my driver. I'm a facts over feelings kind of guy and so what drew me over to this side of the spectrum was to get deep in the "Why" behind our growth. The metrics. So I doubled down on analytics, data analysis, project management. I also love copywriting so that's another skill that I've doubled down on to simply become a better marketer. So long story short. Double down on what you're passionate about and give yourself a foundation of knowledge in the field.

      P.S. if you're really going to get into growth, learn excel and basic stats.

      1 Share
  • QA

    Q&A AMA

    about 1 month ago #

    Questions from Maxime (@maxime_manseau)

    1) What're your tips to find Product-Market fit? Do you have any favorite process? Any best practice?

    2) We built Chapters (https://www.getstories.io/chapters), a tool to leverage Segment and let everyone in your team track events to self-serve answers. I’m currently building templates so our customers can get a jump start. For which recurring use cases do you track events?

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      @maxime_manseau My tips to find product market fit are to go talk to the people you think are your ideal client. Go and walk a mile in their shoes, understand their day to day, and see where you fit in, if at all. We can guess all we want but the only way to find product market fit is to go into the market with your product and see if there is a fit by asking questions and offering your solution and seeing if people actually think it'd be a great fit.

      My favorite process is actually doing job shadowing. I spend the first 90 days at a new company with our ICP and just shadow them. You'd be surprised how inviting people are. I want to intimately understand where my product fits in. The best part about this, is if you find out that it doesn't fit, you've saved yourself a ton of time and money.

      That's also a best practice. Don't try to sell, just go in interested in them and then say "Hey, I see you do things this way. Would it help if you had something that did XYZ?"

      2. I'm not sure what you're asking specifically on the second question, mind elaborating?

      1 Share
  • QA

    Q&A AMA

    about 1 month ago #

    Question from Shamoom (@shamoons)

    What do you recommend for a strategy to promote a SaaS for developers?

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      @shamoons I think you're asking what would be a strategy to promote a SaaS tool that helps developers?

      If so here's my answer. Go to where your ICP spends most of their time and offer insight. So if they spend time on a certain social platform, or on a certain site, or maybe they listen to certain podcasts, get on that medium and offer a ton of insight. Let's understand something when it comes to people. They simply want to get better at something in their life. If you offer that, it's your obligation to get your service or product to them. So since I don't necessarily know where developers live I'll give you a scenario that I know.

      Healthcare Executives.

      They are very Google heavy and very credibility and word of mouth heavy when it comes to searching and evaluating products.

      We have an industry platform called HIMSS that showcases all of the tech platforms in healthcare. I got us on HIMSS immediately.

      We also started SEO so that we popped up during searches on certain keywords. We started a blog, and a podcast.

      The podcast was simply because our ICP spends time listening to podcasts, but also it gives us credibility talking to industry leaders in healthcare.

      We also spent money doing job specific facebook ad targeting on research reviews. And have since doubled down on this because it's worked so well.

      So short answer is find where your ICP lives and spend your time there offering insight.

      Don't pitch right away or even talk about your product, offer valuable insight that helps them become better at what they do. Double down on that and people will start reaching out!

      1 Share
  • QA

    Q&A AMA

    about 1 month ago #

    Question from Kamal (@kamal_pyramidion)

    What would be the best marketing technique during Covid-19 for App development Business?

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      @kamal_pyramidion I don't think this is industry or product specific, it's specific tactical empathy. Offer support to your clientele that helps them get through the situation. Become the person they go to when this is all done because you helped them get through it. As an app developer, it might be cool to actually give away some light app dev work to people in your pipeline. I know that a good number of apps in healthcare have been offering free covid trackers in our industry. There's a play to this for sure. You get the people on your platform doing something that is going to really benefit them. They become loyal to you and also see that your product is awesome. I think my play if I was developing apps is go to your customers and see what has been affecting them most in the covid 19 pandemic and build out a free lite app that helps them get through it specifically to them. I can almost guarantee that you'll have them coming back for their full app when it's all said and done.

      1 Share
  • QA

    Q&A AMA

    about 1 month ago #

    Question from Aaron (@aronpacey)

    What Steps Should be Taken To Maximize Website Performance and Build Brand Reputation During Quarantine Time?

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      @aronpacey My short and quick answer is this. Every page on your website should have a clear and concise goal, whether it's quarantine or not. What's the goal of your homepage? to go to the product page? To book a demo? What's the goal of your pricing page? To click buy? Right now more than ever people are searching the internet for stuff. So you've got to be clear, you've got to be concise and you've got to show them the benefits right off the bat on your website. So What's in it for me to work with you vs. anyone else. That's website performance. If you were talking speeds and feeds, and more technical performance, I'll deflect that because that's way beyond the scope of what I do. I don't do our CRO here.

      As for building brand recognition, I'll answer you exactly the same way I answered Kamal above. You need to find what the biggest pain point of your ICP during this pandemic is and fix it. Like how has covid really affected them and over insight to overcoming it. It can be in the terms of a product or a service, and you can sell it or offer it for free. But you need to really dig into how you can be the one they come to when all of this is said and done. Offering service in a time of need creates mass amounts of credibility that will only come back to help you in the long run.

      1 Share
  • QA

    Q&A AMA

    about 1 month ago #

    Question from Paul (@dr-_paul)

    Do you have any SEO tips that are specific to the medical/healthcare industry?

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      @dr-_paul I'm not an SEO guru, BUT, SEO is all about relevance and authority. The basic premise is that pages basically rank for these two reasons.

      There are off-site signals and on-page signals.

      In other words, there are links from other websites that make that page credible, and there are keywords on that website that indicate its relevance for a topic.

      Authority is whether or not other sites are linking to your site making you credible.

      Relevance is whether or not you are using keywords appropriately.

      Linking away from your website doesn't affect your rankings.

      Keywords on other web pages don't affect your rankings.

      What matters is when you indicate relevance for what you do and when you get confidence, and votes, and authority passed to you from other websites through links.

      That's the game.

      Ranking potential and authority flows around the internet through links. From one website to another, through internal links on an individual domain, between links and pages on different domains.

      That's how it works.

      Think about it this way. You can't just walk up and tell people you're credible. The credibility comes from people saying "Hey you can trust this guy."

      This get's a lot deeper, but the play really is writing content that truly helps others solve problems and building relationships so that people link back to your content.

      The more links back to you, the more people that are talking about you, the better ranking you'll be.

      Not specifically medical/healthcare related, but this helped me a ton with our SEO.

      Also go out and build relationships with people writing other blogs and making a splash in the industry, get on their site as a guest blogger and link back to your site or ask for them to link to pages. Get on podcasts or Youtube channels as well.

      1 Share
  • QA

    Q&A AMA

    about 1 month ago #

    Question from Milan (@milanilic013)

    We are on WordPress at the moment and thinking about using Tilda (or some other website builder) for building a few custom landing pages.

    The main reasons for that would be quicker go-live and web dev costs. Did you try something like that, and did you notice any negative impacts on SEO?

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      @milanilic013 I've always been on WordPress with my sites so I've never had to deal with this, I wouldn't be the one to answer this. I'm sorry.

  • PC

    Pedro Clivati

    about 1 month ago #

    Hey @Ned, thank you for doing this.

    Since Halo is a healthcare tech and you've previously worked for other players in different industries, I'd love to hear your take about the difference of growth teams operations in highly regulated industries vs others?

    Aside from that, as a growth team, are you also running experiments inside the product (Activation growth-lever) and, how do you ensure that you move fast but don't break things?

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      @pedro_clivati great question. I'll be honest the only major difference in marketing in a highly regulated industry (like healthcare) vs. SaaS tech is the copy. There are certain things we just can't say. I run the growth for our Health Plan, Sonder. I can't say "Best" "#1" "Great" etc. in our marketing. Our website has to fit a templated model and have certain information on it and all of our external marketing activities have to be accepted by a governing body. So it's definitely a lot more stringent, but when it comes to growth and marketing specifically we're still talking to people who have their key desires. I think if we focus on those in any of our tests, the differences become the exact words we say, not necessarily the context behind those words if that makes sense.

      We personally don't run product experiments because our value comes in the fact that we pull data at a much faster rate than anyone else and it's actionable. Also if something were to break that could mean hindering the care of a patient down stream so no, we don't do any sort of activation lever, in product iterations. That being said, we're always testing new views of data etc. And we do that with our dev team and send out test accounts to a cohort of our customers who have agreed to help us in that department.

      1 Share
  • LT

    looking at toys

    about 1 month ago #

    We are a new start up www.lookingattoys.co.uk what should we be doing to get started with marketing ?

    • NA

      Ned Arick

      about 1 month ago #

      @lookingat-toys that's a super broad question. It looks like you've got quite the following on YT based on your site so you're doing something right. I think the answer that I can give you based on the information I have is find out who your Ideal client is and go to where they spend their most time and become the only person they think about when it comes to toys. If I were you I would hammer down on what to look for when buying collectables, how to spot fakes, what is the ideal price when in auction etc. put some money behind those blogs, and become your ICP's best friend when it comes to their toy buying or collectable buying experience.

  • NA

    Ned Arick

    about 1 month ago #

    Hey y'all if you have further questions, I'll come back and check this out or you can DM here or on LinkedIn

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