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10 launch stunts that put startups on the map including: Tinder, Uber and more.

  • SE

    Sean Ellis

    over 5 years ago #

    Multipage articles bug me, but there are some good ones on this list.

    • BL

      Brian Lang

      over 5 years ago #

      Gotta get those extra pageviews in so they can display more adverts!

    • SE

      Sean Ellis

      over 5 years ago #

      Found a link to view it as a single page. Main reason it matters to me is that I send all article to my Kindle.

    • RC

      Ross Cranwell

      over 5 years ago #

      Definitely agree with the multipage articles, but this one at least loads fast.
      I don't know if inviting celebrities to your event is really 'brilliant marketing', but there are some other good lessons to learn from the likes of Yo and Dollar Shave Club.

  • HA

    Hana Abaza

    over 5 years ago #

    Some of these are good.. I've always liked the stunt Puma pulled at the 1996 olympics.

    They spent a fraction of the price that the main sponsor (I think it was Nike?) and got attention.

    Old but good :)


  • GH

    Greg Horowitz

    over 5 years ago #

    Ugh. It's not so much that these are all bad ideas -- some of them are fairly clever, especially Tinder -- but I hate the mindset it encourages. Think of it this way -- if a startup entrepreneur came to you and asked where she should focus her efforts, would you advise her to brainstorm "stunts" or tell her to concentrate on the less glamorous aspects of building a strong infrastructure for growth (P/M fit, CRO, etc)?

    I also notice that most of the companies they cite haven't been particularly successful (Uber and Rovio don't count, since they were already established by the time they did the stunts profiled here).

    As someone who's spent a lot of time in the career space, I'm reminded of articles that encourage job seekers to "stand out" by gimmicks like infographic resumes or sending the hiring manager a shoe and saying "Now I've got one foot in the door." I think we're all tempted by the idea of a quick fix to often intractable problems (growing a startup, getting a job). But as boring as it sounds, the best long-term solution is to ignore the flashy stuff and build from the ground up.

    • TD

      Tahiana D'Egmont

      over 5 years ago #

      Agree with you that specially if it's an early stage startup you'll want the team focused on iterating and optimizing instead of pulling PR stunts.

      I enjoyed reading the article and think some of the ideas are great but it doesn't sound to me like:
      a. most startups would have the money required to accomplish many of those stunts;
      b. they're the best ways to get a startup noticed / get it to grow.

      To me those are great to have, but shouldn't be the focus...

  • ET

    Everette Taylor

    over 5 years ago #

    Absolutely loved reading these, thanks for sharing @morgan

  • DG

    David Gregory

    over 5 years ago #

    Ent mag has a single page here: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/236061

  • JD

    Jason Dea

    over 5 years ago #

    Anyone know where I can get a deal on a chartered airplane? :)

  • KP

    Katherine Parker

    over 5 years ago #

    Brilliant indeed.

  • GB

    George Bullock

    over 5 years ago #

    The first that came to mind when I read through these examples was Paul Graham's essay advocating doing things that don't scale.

    @gdhorowitz I don't believe what you're prescribing (ground up building, no flash) and marketing stunts are mutually exclusive. In my view, stage of development would is the key factor in determining whether or not to pull a marketing stunt. In the early (pre product-market fit) days, keeping your head down and iterating on your product makes sense. However, you can only iterate and optimize so much before you have to actually start getting the word out i.e. start selling. Once you have a business model and are presumably in that mezzanine period where you've yet to hit a critical mass of users, you still need to keep iterating on your product; I believe these types of one-off publicity stunts and growth hacks are a great way to increase your user base by 2x or more in a short period, if you can execute them well. The Tinder example is illustrates this well; they went from 5k to 15k (200% growth)users using the Traveling Executive Salesperson hack.

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