Having worked at a number of different startups, and now as the founder of a marketing company that helps startups go to market and grow, I have seen many new companies experience growth. Those that have stood out have accelerated at an impressive pace, embracing certain commonsense principles.
Ever wonder why some companies can try incredibly hard and throw large amounts of resources toward growth yet still struggle, whereas others can seemingly expand exponentially with much leaner teams and budgets? Here are five concepts that I usually recommend startups explore and adopt to help them accelerate their growth with limited resources:
1. Create A Growth Culture
Aligning your people to proven organizational techniques for growth is one of the most important aspects of scaling. Harvard Business Review defines (subscription required) this as “an environment that feels safe,” “a focus on continuous learning through inquiry,” “time-limited, manageable experiments with new behaviors,” and “continuous feedback — up, down and across the organization.”
These techniques are implemented in company philosophies like, “test and learn,” and “fail fast,” which allow employees to experiment to find the best data-based option, as well as iterate fast and, therefore, progress fast.
2. Think Big
With modest goals, you will only reach humble heights, so play to win. Gun for that market leader position, and set realistic but stretch targets that can set you up to exceed even your own expectations.
Thinking big also extends to innovation, which can help companies develop quickly by thinking beyond current use cases and investing in the future. You also need to consider how you’ll be able to execute when you’re bigger, so building scalable processes from the start can help you transition into various stages of growth.
3. Leverage The Idea Of ‘One To Many’
Exponential growth can be achieved by employing many practices that involve leveraging networks. For example, partnership marketing allows companies to work on one relationship and leverage that to expand their reach or customer base.
Similarly, referral programs can tap into your employees’ and customers’ friends and families to spread awareness and bring even more potential business. In fact, one survey found that “83% of Americans say that a word-of-mouth recommendation from a friend or family member makes them more likely to purchase that product or service.”
Even from the perspective of content sharing, encouraging your stakeholders (everyone from employees to shareholders to customers and even partners) to share your social posts can greatly extend their reach.
To start, it is important to focus on serving one specific target customer segment. This allows you to concentrate limited resources on delivering an exceptional experience for one customer, and to cater your messaging to a market that’s more likely to purchase.
Picking one customer segment to start also helps you focus your message. Instead of a generic message, narrow in on your target customers’ pain points and mindset to have the best chance of converting them.
From your customer segments to your sales team to your marketing budget, alignment allows you to be more efficient overall, which helps growth.
5. Be Customer-Obsessed
Every customer counts toward your growth goals, so each customer must be valued and treated with the best customer service you can provide. Happy customers can spread the word, as mentioned earlier, but unhappy customers can stop momentum dead in its tracks.
Being customer-obsessed also means listening to your customers and continually gaining their feedback on things like what their pain points are or how their lives are changing. This is so important that number six on the Rockerfeller Habits checklist, a set of habits that have helped many companies scale up, recommends that “reporting and analysis of customer feedback data is as frequent and accurate as financial data.”
Overall, measured and deliberate growth is important so that you’re able to plan, be efficient, keep up with demand and evolve to support your progression. However, measured growth doesn’t have to mean it’s slow. Rapid growth is achievable through employing some (or all) of these growth hacks, and it is accessible not only for those with large budgets. By cleverly planning out your strategy, you can leapfrog your competitors and achieve the growth rates of many of the companies we all look up to.
Story From : Forbes