Growth Hacker’s Digest – Edition 24
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For this week's newsletter, I have these lined up for you:
- How to use mega projects to drive insane traffic to your site
- How a brand new site got with 0 Domain Authority got 3500+ visitors fast
- Drift's huge email marketing mistake and what they did to fix it
- Extole's ultimate guide to referral marketing
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Blog Posts of Note:
by Benji Hyam
Growth hacking is not limited to just realizing that product-related metrics like Activation, Retention, and Referral are now factors for growth. You should also realize that to get more conversions; you need to keep in mind the economic principle of diminishing returns. Applied in the context of growth, this means that the more a distribution channel & technique is used, the less effective it is. In a classic blog post, Andrew Chen shared that the first banner ad had 78% CTR. Today, it's difficult to get 1/100th of that.
However, this doesn't mean that you should jump on every new distribution channel. Existing channels will work if you use differentiated and difficult-to-replicate techniques. This is what Benji proposes by creating "mega projects" to drive traffic. The harder it is, the better. Up to today, mega projects like Evan Miller's free statistical significance calculator, Brian Dean's immensely helpful guides, and Brian Balfour's 40-essay monolith continue to generate a wealth of traffic for their subscribers.
This doesn't mean that you need to do it all at once, however. At a minimum, you should approach it like how Brian Balfour does and do it in stages. That way, you don't need to have a content team running the entire thing for you.
By Sayed Shahnur
Content won’t promote itself. In this article, Sayed shares how you can grow your visitors through influencer marketing. If you execute this right, this will grow your visitors and subscribers much more than community-based marketing and social ads.
The fundamental principle that Sayed teaches here which you need to keep in mind is that you should treat the influencer as a partner in your article. In other words, you’ll need to give them an incentive for sharing your article. And it’s not just about adding their name to a list. Rather, you’ll need to get them invested in your article too, which means you need to co-create the content: share a draft version to them, gather their feedback, then request if you can promote it together.
By Dave Gerhardt
Once you do reach out to influencers as I’ve mentioned above, you shouldn’t over-inform nor should you over-ask. Instead, as what Dave suggests here, you need to craft a simple text-based email with a single, easy-to-do CTA.
If you look deeper into Sayed’s article (the article before this one), he used this specific line in his DM:
- “If you want me to add or quote anything in your section, please let me know.”
Note the style of the CTA. It’s asking for permission. This style helps especially if you’re contacting someone who is well-known and respected in your industry.
Influencers tend to be busy and already gets a lot of requests like this. Showing some respect for the person's time will help increase your chances of success.
By Jen Gray
If you’re in the mobile B2C space, you know that to survive, you need to scale your user base fast. Otherwise, you risk growing your startup prematurely. That said, you also can’t spend too much in the early days given that most mobile B2C startups require scale in order to start making real money from advertising or micro-subscriptions. Taking all these constraints together, this means that it’s essential to encourage user referrals by baking virality into your application.
The most effective way is through discounts and user value. In Jen’s article, she mentioned that to encourage referral, Uber offered free rides for each subscribed friend. In Dropbox’s case, they offered extra storage space for each friend who has subscribed.
It doesn’t have to be free stuff all the time. Another way is through personalization. Allthecooks enabled users to share recipes through a personalized landing page. And as for The League, they offered a “jump the waiting list” system.
The League's flow*:
In summary, by using psychological principles like the value equation, the familiarity principle via personalization, and the scarcity principle via the “waiting list system”, you can bake virality into your app.