We teamed up with Google for Entrepreneurs to give startups an opportunity to come to Galvanize’s San Francisco campus for a week to learn, network, and build the relationships that will help launch their companies to the next level of growth. Once the idea for your startup is in place and the foundation is solid, it’s time to grow and expand, or scale-up. We were excited to have Zack Onisko with Autodesk speak to these founders on how to market a scale-up. Here are the three stages of startup growth and 20 non-scalable ways to grow your startup.
3 Stages of Startup Growth
1. Product Market Fit
- Knowing there is a market large enough to build a business around your idea
- Are people coming back? Do they want what you are selling?
- You are making things that people want not making people want things
2. The Hustle Stage
- Non-scalable stage
- Spending time talking to your customers
- Diversifying marketing portfolios
3. Scalable Growth Stage
- There are 5 scalable growth changes
- Companies typically find one to double down on and find that scalable traction
20 Non-scalable ways to hustle your way to scalable growth
- Manually invite your first customers. Start in a niche.
- Invite friends and family (and other connections, such as linkedin)
- Join the conversations at target niche communities and forums.
- Ask your competitor’s customers to try your new service and give feedback.
- Go directly to your users. Ask them to sign up in person.
- Speak directly with users to understand how your product can better meet their needs.
- Community engagement. Reply to every comment.
- Aim for 100% customer satisfaction. Everyone leaves happy!
- Go above and beyond to delight customers.
- Give away free stuff for signing up.
- Allow users to give their friends free stuff.
- Give away new free stuff weekly (retention).
- Content is king. Distribution is queen. Always be writing and sharing.
- Write guests posts on other people’s blogs.
- Forge partnerships.
- Trade co-promotions.
- Throw Parties
- Run a roadblock campaign across a network of sites in your industry.
- Seed content on your site yourself to get it going.
- Private Beta. Sorry, invite only.
Remember these simple tips for success – study the tactics of your competitors, become inspired but don’t copy, and be more clever!
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