Consumer Growth

with Jim Scheinman

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Hyper Growth

Only good products can be growth hacked

Jim Scheinman

Founder, CEO, Managing Partner & Resident Growth Hacker

Lessons Learned

Products can’t be growth hacked: you have to have a great product that can sell itself.

Reduce friction when people register for your site. Usually name and email is enough.

Ask users to share with their friends at the right time. Wait until they’ve had a great experience.


Lesson: Consumer Growth with Jim Scheinman

Step #3 Hyper Growth: Only good products can be growth hacked

I was fortunate to be involved very early on with the first social network, Friendster. Some people may remember that first social network, and we knew that there was this hyper growth going on. No one called it growth or organic growth or viral marketing but what was happening was again we had members that were coming to Friendster, they loved the product so much, they would just tell their friends back in 2002, 2003. It was mostly word of mouth.

Then there were a few clever people created the email scraper. That had been around but we took it to a next level on Friendster and so made it really easy for you, instead of having to go to tell your friends at school or at work about the product, we just made it easy to do it on the web, using email. Now we do that using texting on the mobile phone.

A lot of it frankly is common sense and intuitive, but now what's great is that there's actually terminology around it. There's a science around growth and growth hacking. There are great resources around the web and really talented people who have now done this for years. Back then we were sort of making it up as we were going along, knowing that the right thing to do was just to build a great product, number one because this is actually a very important point. Products can't be growth hacked. I mean it has to be a great product that can sell itself, and then what you need to do is make that process easier. We do that in a couple of ways.

One way is to make it easier for you to invite your friends and track that and see how it's working and have a data scientist or growth hacker on your team that's focused on that. That's what they do day in, day out.

Then the other piece is to reduce friction. Classic story could be if you have 15 fields, you are asking for on a registration process, maybe really you only need two or three. If you only ask for the name and email address for example, your conversion to a new customer will likely be a lot higher and then if you have a good process of how to invite their friends where it make sense. It's not just hey, welcome to company ABC, invite your friends. But maybe it's after they had a really great experience with you where it makes sense for them to invite their friends and then you insert that product and you do it in a way that's beautifully designed and easy to use. You will now see some viral growth.

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