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Great stuff here! Thanks for sharing.
Hi, author here! I was pleasantly surprised to see this shared here. Happy to answer any questions about the numbers and details in this article.
Very true - so important to understand your users if you're going to apply any type of growth strategies
I felt that the lede was a bit buried here.
While the "How" is important - it's even more important to understand the "Why" and how inextricably linked they are.
Without understanding your users' motivations, no clever invitation/referral tactics are going to work (as well).
This is the same reason why the Dropbox-style two-sided referrals don't work for everybody.
So before implementing any similar strategy, it is critical to understand why people might even bother doing what you want them to do.
These motivations normally fall into 4 categories:
a) You save/make them significantly more money than the alternatives.
b) You save them significantly more time than the alternatives.
c) You are more entertaining than the alternatives
d) You make people look great to their audience.
Robinhood is an app that saved people money (and a lot of money if you're an active trader) - that's the powerful hook that led to users taking the actions that followed.
Related: @sean did a quick analysis of Robinhood a few years back before it launched. Was fun to revisit this in hindsight and see how its held up: https://growthhackers.com/slides/robinhood-300k-signups/
Their invitation process to get people on the waiting list ahead of others was brilliant
Not sure about 1. at all. Generally, you get to strong PM fit and NPS scores first. Then, when users cannot live without your experience, you can start monetization. I see a lot of testing going on for that and monetization is just a consequence of strong engagement metrics first.
It takes much more than that to create a successful app. I'd mention timing and the team among others not captured in the points mentioned.
Pretty much what Sean said.
Your #2 (viral loop) has product-market fit as a prerequisite. You wouldn't share an app you don't like, would you? The user has to experience value before they are willing to share your product.
Regarding #1, I'm not sure I understand what you are trying to get at, but I agree that there should be a model with real numbers of market size, estimates on how much of that market can be captured, etc. Otherwise, there's a chance the ceiling is too low and unit economics don't work out.
I don't think it is necessary to monetize from day 1 though if that's what you were trying to say.
It might be the same thing as #3, but I think product/market fit has a lot to do with a successful app launch. Product/market fit defines your potential and everything else is about tapping into that potential. Tactics may be able to help you get a lot of downloads, but with solid PM fit you'll retain a lot of those downloads as active users.
Clearbit's pulled their Google Sheets extension, but this is the best way to get the Twitter handle to associate followers etc.
You'd have to use their API now: https://clearbit.com/docs#enrichment-api
In my last role, finding influencers was a significant part of promoting online and offline events. We'd have oAuth with twitter to make sure we got their ID. I'd pull the list from our SQL database and match up with Followerwonk data. A little slow and manual but worth it.
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