Growing Tiny Businesses

These are a collection of different posts I’ve written over the last few years, pulled together from various unfinished blogs throughout my twenties and early thirties.

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Customers sign up and don’t use the product

Justin Jackson posted a great thread around the idea that people’s motivation to use something is outside of our control. His point is that there isn’t much you can do within a product to get people to use it on a regular basis. He’s not saying that you shouldn’t focus on great UX or improving […]

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Product Messaging

Let’s start with our landing page. Instead of judging a page on opinion and preference let’s based the teardown on proven persuasion principles. I’m going to use these principles like a gap analysis tool. These are critical components to building a persuasive argument. All I have to do is go over the copy and ask […]

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How to run a good survey and get valuable insights about how people use your product

Surveys are a powerful tool for building up a clear picture of your audience but they are often used in the wrong way. I want to show you how to avoid the common mistakes of running an in-product survey. Have a clear idea of what you want to know going in# I often come across […]

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Avoid wasting time testing inconsequential stuff when growing a product

Traditionally, marketing focuses on acquisition as the main growth lever. The problem is if you don’t activate new customers, they’re unlikely to retain long-term. In SaaS businesses especially, if you don’t retain customers then you’re really just replacing a customer each month. You might be able to do it effectively for a few months. But […]

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Email marketing laws

Good email practice boils down to setting clear expectations. If someone is on your list they should know exactly what they’re going to receive and why, who it’s coming from, and how often to expect it. If you send someone an email, and they don’t know why they got it, they can hit the spam […]

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Landing page optimization

When I begin working on improving conversion for a landing page the starting point is always the value proposition. A company called Marketing Experiments put together a heuristic for calculating the probability of conversion: Conversion = 4 motivation + 3 value prop + 2 (incentive – friction) – 2 anxiety The single biggest factor here […]

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Getting Press

For smaller companies that don’t always have the budget for advertising or building their own content team, focusing on public relations offers the biggest bang for your buck. Even when teams do have the resources to produce original content, PR provides a type of third-party validation that no other form of marketing can. Advertising is […]

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The Product Growth Mindset

The reality is, a lot of the time, most of us haven’t got a clue what we’re doing. A growth mindset lets you collectively acknowledge this elephant in the room and it lets you deal with it in a systematic way that improves your odds with the resources available. The biggest difference between brand marketing […]

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Everything is a loop

You have four types of loops: Viral loops, content loops, paid loops and sales loops. Viral loops are based on people sharing your product. Content loops are either content marketing or involve packaging user generated content for search engines. Paid loops and sales loops involve buying ads or hiring sales reps and then reinvesting a […]

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