Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Growth Hackers: 3 More Growth Hacking Strategies to Boost Business (Based on Insights from Zapier)

As a growth hacker, you’re obsessed with growth. That’s pretty obvious. But beneath all that, you’re also constantly in pursuit of tools that enable you to work fast, efficiently, and effectively. And that’s where automation comes in. As a Communication Studies major with a concentration in Digital Media also studying Integrated Marketing Communications, I’ve been digging through news and research on workflow automation, and I’ve come across 2 articles on Zapier.

How Zapier, an API SaaS pioneer, views the industry today by Annie Musgrove and Ed Shelley at Chart Mogul, features an interview with Zapier’s Co-founder/CEO, Wade Foster. In addition to Foster stating the “unbundling of point-specific apps” is an inevitability of the industry, the interview covers Zapier’s startup growth story. Most notably, Foster shares how team used gut calls to focus on apps that they believed were already popular. As he puts it, they essentially “brute forced” their product development to build traction. Fortunately, this 80/20 approach worked. By focusing on their own personal list of the top 50 web apps, they attracted attention, and soon inbound interest was flowing in with minimal effort on their part. To maintain this growth traction, Zapier then adopted a Freemium model. This allowed its user base, both acquired and potential, to get in and play with the product in a way that was personally relevant to them. The result? Users found high value in Zapier for their workflows, and Zapier officially became a sticky product in their lives. Obviously, Zapier’s early stage strategies were successful. Today, the company manages a library of over 800 web apps which its users can hook up together to create customized and complex workflow automations.



Workflow automation is important to growth hackers

Source: Force Talks

Rather than sharing on the company’s story, the second article, Growth Hacking Automation With Zapier by Apostle Mengoulis at Growth Rocks focuses on the product itself. Mengoulis provides a detailed overview of how to spur growth with automations for Lead Management, Lead Nurturing, and Content Marketing. His guide for each area is comprehensive, and effective. His Zaps allegedly allowed him to grow his lead generation conversions by 38% in a month since he could properly track leads and use that spare time elsewhere. In aggregate, his suggestions are compelling in that they encourage fellow growth hackers to 1) reexamine how they work 2) identify areas that can use improvements 3) break down their processes into small steps 4) string them back together to perform a larger task in a quick and efficient manner.

Based on my review of these two articles and my relevant studies at Northwestern University, here are 3 growth hacking strategies we learn from Zapier that should be implemented for success:
  • Use Brute Force -- You need to cover all your bases and execute relentlessly with what you know works before experimenting with nuanced tactics
  • Let Them Taste -- You need to save yourself some effort and give leads the opportunity to sample your product/service so it has a chance sell itself
  • Stack Your Processes -- You need to outline simple workflows that stack up and piece together into a bigger picture with huge optimization benefits
Growth hacking is inherently a very interdisciplinary practice; there are many ways to approach it. Still, using others’ successes as a model for your own has its benefits. With that said, take some time to review your work performance, and see if there are opportunities to apply these 3 Zapier-inspired growth hack strategies.



Lisa Larbi (@LisaSLarbi) is a digital marketing enthusiast with a passion for nurturing growth. She will be graduating from Northwestern University in June 2017 with a major Communication Studies with a focus in Digital Media, as well as a minor in Business Institutions and a certification in Integrated Marketing Communications.

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