Product Growth

with Gustaf Alströmer

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Why & how do people find your product?

Gustaf Alströmer

Growth & Product Expert, Airbnb, Community

Lessons Learned

How does this product make my life better?

Where do users tell your story?

Great product + growth execution = big outcome


Lesson: Product Growth with Gustaf Alströmer

Step #10 Expansion: Why & how do people find your product?

Atomic units of growth is, to me, it’s about understanding psychology, deep psychology around why people are using your product. Specifically, how does it make my life better, how is this product solving something in my life? When you understand the psychology, you can make some assumptions on is this something that would benefit friends? Is it something that people tell their friends or just something people use and find out about in isolation?

From that, I would say, instrumenting as much as possibly your products so you really understand how people are using it. First you know why and then how people are using it. If you know why and how, then it’s pretty easy to think about, okay, this is not easy to get these things right, but if you know exactly why people are using your product, what problem it solves and exactly how they’re using it, to go from there and try to improve some of these things is probably fairly easy.

Then if you understand how people describe your product, you can probably build some hypothesis around how do you describe your product to people that don’t yet use your product and how is it going to change their lives. You just have to find out the places where you tell that story. Say their MP story might be around you can book anyone’s apartment or house as easy as you can book a hotel room. That’s something that’s fairly easily understood. You just have to figure out where do you tell that story.

There are a lot of good products out there. Why is this and this product big? Because it's not only because it was a great product, it's sometimes because it was a great product combined with great growth execution. They executed how that product grew really well.

It's so important today that you think about why and how people find your product; that is just something you can't ignore. There are some exceptions to that. There are some companies that never thought about growth and became a really, really big product. But those I think are exceptions.

People that have built something that people want, and then become good at a couple of different channels, let's say SEO, or pay-marketing, or word-of-mouth around growth, something like that, if they nail the product and one or two of those channels, it has the chance of becoming something really big, I think.

In some way, I think it was Andy Johns, who phrased this, every company might have a back-end team, an iOS team. They have a finance team. They should have a growth team in the same way, because it's something just as important as any of those things I first mentioned. I think fundamentally it starts with the question of understanding why things grow. The only answer is not that the product is good. It's usually a combination of that, and figuring out how you reach the people with that product.

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