Pukket Blog

Your Guide to Growing Your Series A Startup Organically

Starting a business is among the boldest steps that people make in their lives. Overcoming the fear of being part of the  20% of small enterprises that fail in their first year or 30% second-year small business failures  is quite a big deal. This rate can be considerably higher among tech startups. Congrats if you have a Series A startup. You are now past those early days and are now concerned how you can best grow your business. For that purpose, the Lean Analytics model offers a solid framework in which virality is one of the key pillars of a healthy growing startup.

Your Series A startup is now in a position to invest money into business development and paid acquisition. One of the most important things you need to do is to focus on the organic growth of the business. This requires you to lay a firm foundation on through lean analytics model.

Lean analytics for Series A startups

Through the lean analytics model, you’ll be able to measure how your product/service performs and learn from the performance results. Here are the lean analytics model stages that you should follow to ensure that you gather as much information as possible regarding your market and the performance of your business. If your startup has raised Series A, you should now be past Empathy and Stickiness, and be focusing on virality, revenue and growth.

1. Empathy

This is where you try to put yourself in the shoes of your target consumers and identify a problem that bothers them so much that they won’t mind paying you to get a solution. There might be other products that seem to address the same but leaving gaps that the consumers would want to see filled. It’s now upon you to establish an ideal product for addressing the need. Once you find this, move to the next stage-stickiness. 

2. Stickiness

At this stage, you develop an MVP product considering the analysis information that you gathered in the first step. Then, release the product to the market while focusing on communicating its benefits rather than the features. The benefits are more meaningful to consumers than features. Once they know about the benefits, they can then try to find out the features behind the benefits. 

After some time (depending on your scheduled timeline), you should be able to establish if you have  provided the desired value for the users or not. You now that your product delivers value that’s consistent with the need of the target users if they use it regularly.

Otherwise, even if you made remarkable sales at the beginning and all of a sudden nobody bothers to buy again, you need to recheck your user analysis and adjust your product to offer the value your target customers expect. 

It’ll be extremely difficult, or rather impossible, for your product to achieve the desired traction if it doesn’t offer the intended users what they need. Unfortunately, unless your product has traction, your business has minimal chances of achieving sustained long-term growth.

3. Virality

You have confirmed that your customers are happy with your product and are willing to buy it regularly. It’s now time to scale up their acquisition in a cost-efficient way. One of the most cost-efficient customer acquisition strategies is word of mouth. And the form of marketing not only pocket-friendly but also effective, with 74% of consumers identifying it as their major purchasing decision influencer.

Despite the efficiency it brings, the internet era has seen many brands struggle to win consumer’s trust. The majority of consumers feel that the information given by most brands is meant to overrate their offerings. That’s why, according to HubSpot show, 75% of people don’t trust business ads and branded-content. On the other hand, 90% of them trust suggestions given by their family and friends while 70% find consumer reviews to be trustworthy. 

Therefore, if you want your product or brand to go viral while maintaining your customer acquisition cost at sustainable levels, word-of-mouth advertising is the way to go. There are various ways of encouraging virality and they include:

  • Creating and sharing unique and share-worthy content

You can use social media to trigger conversations about your brand, product or brands. One way of doing that is developing user-need-tailored, unique and share-worthy content. As long as the content is memorable, relates to their needs and is rare to find elsewhere, your target users will find themselves sharing with the people around them regardless of your request for them to do so.

  • Triggering user-generated content

This strategy involves encouraging consumers to create and share content regarding your brand. You can then incorporate the user-generated content in your website or social media channels to build more trust with your target customers. 

  • Employee advocacy

You can motivate your employees to promote your Series A startup through their personal social media channels, among other word-of-mouth avenues. According to recent research by Edelman Trust Barometer, employees are twice more trusted than a company’s CEO. 

4. Expected revenue versus CAC

This stage is about comparing the revenue you expect from a customer and the customer acquisition cost (CAC). Ideally, the expected revenue should be three times the CAC for a healthy and scalable business. If your margins are healthy and have achieved the ideal ratio, you can then focus on growing your business. Organic word-of-mouth is a great way driving down your CAC. Pukket’s fully automated advocacy management platform provides you with the tool to achieve that.

Lean analytics virality

Lean Analytics Model: How to Encourage Virality

When running a business startup, there’s no better way of measuring your progress and getting clear answers to your important marketing questions than using lead analytics model. By knowing what, how and why to measure in your marketing strategies, you’ll be able to establish where you are in terms of virality and how to improve it. The Lean Analytics model was introduced to help build a better startup faster. The model consists of 6 sequential stages starting with Empathy all the way to Scaling by achieving stickiness, virality and revenue. With accurate lean analytics measurements, you can make smarter decisions and encourage virality of your product by:

1. Identifying the sharing triggers

Even if you’ve been in business for a short time, it’s important to identify what so far makes users to share your content. Remember that the content is intended to benefit the target users. In as much as you’d want to think that what you are delivering is the best for the consumers, unless you confirm that from their end, you’ll just be lying to yourself. The virality of content determines the value of the piece of the information being shared in the eyes of the intended users. The higher the sharing frequency, the higher the perceived value.

Once you identify the content that’s widely shared, seek to establish why the users like it that much. The answer to the question ought to inform you how to create the next piece of content for the improved virality of your business. This can be the key to unlocking virality within your lean analytics measurements.

2. Proper audience-content matching

The suitability of content isn’t one-size-fits all. Not every content will resonate with your entire market segment. As such, you need to study your target audience keenly and identify the kind of promotional content that each of the sub-segments is likely to share most. You can get such insights from the content you’ve shared so far. You can supplement that with relevant market research. Once you establish that, you can go ahead to create content that factors its suitability to the intended user segment. 

Alawys remember that you can’t gain much with hit-and-run approaches. Gimmicks, tricks and sleight-of-hand might work for a short time. However, in the long-run, such clickbait will do more harm than good as far as your reputation is concerned. Just get off on the right foot by knowing what your target users need and create content that offers them a solution. 

3. Identifying and working with the right influencers

You’ll miss lots of opportunities if you restrict yourself to your own social media channels. One of the best ways to want to reach a larger audience is by using influential people. But not any influencer can be as effective as you’d expect. You need to be a bit choosy. Perform brief research to identify people with loyal following within your target audience and request them to help you in the promotion of your business.

If possible, ask the influence to share their audience data such as gender, location and interest to see if the audience aligns with your target audience. The right influencer will spur word-of-mouth conversations regarding your brand/business/product/service among their audience, resulting in lots of quality leads. Their strong validation about your business will go a long way to growing your user base and making you go viral. Otherwise, engaging just a random influencer won’t yield satisfactory results.   

4. Motivating users to share

Virality is all about getting the information shared as many times as possible in the online world. Unfortunately, unless you give your influencers, customer advocates and brand ambassadors a reason to share, the chances of you going viral remain minimal. Therefore, first, you need to develop content that’s engaging, captivating and addresses the user’s needs.

Then, motivate your brand ambassadors to share and encourage their fans to share with the people around them. You can offer them perks as a way of encouraging them to share the content. Nonetheless, since rewarding a perk for every sharing may not make economic sense, you can set the number of people an influencer/ ambassador is supposed to recruit to qualify for an incentive. Don’t forget to communicate such information to your ambassadors or influencers from the very word go for transparency and trust’s sake.  

5. Keeping your video content short

According to various scientific studies, the attention span of an average person ranges from 8 seconds to 1 minute. Therefore, if you want your intended users to get your entire video message right on the spot, you need to keep it short. The length of the majority of viral videos ranges from 30 seconds to one minute. If yours is longer than that, it might not go as viral as expected. 

6. Long  and scannable blogs

For many years, there has been a rampant misconception about the ideal length of a viral blog post. Some people believe that only a few people will read long content. But this is not always the truth. If you make good use of bullets, subheadings and images, and the message is unique and corresponds to the needs of the audience, rest assured that your content has high chances of going viral.

 Research by OrkDork suggests that a 3,000 to 10,000-word blog article generates the highest number of shares. Therefore, even if you can’t make to hit the word count, make your blog article at least 200-word long for improved virality. 

7. Offering the right tools 

Virality needs not only great content and motivated promoters but also effective sharing tools and platforms. On that note, you can’t go wrong with Pukket. We know where your target customers are and what your existing customers need to reach and direct them to you. We’ll provide your promoters and users with ultra-effective tools to make you go viral and get to the growth stage within the lean analytics model. 

Having implemented these tips, your business stands to gain more online visibility, increased sales leads and a significantly higher lead conversion rate. 

employee advocacy

Your Guide To Employee Advocacy

With the current internet era, there are tons of opportunities that businesses can exploit online. However, any marketer will tell you that beating the online competition isn’t always a walk in the park for organizations. To stay ahead of the competition and maintain reasonable customer acquisition costs, marketers have adopted new trends, including employee advocacy. Consumers have minimal trust with brands. However, when companies use their employees to promote their messages, their chances of winning customers’ hearts increases.

Benefits of Employee Advocacy

 

Wider Reach

Employees have roughly 10 times more connections  compared to brand communication channels and their reach. Besides, your brand messages are likely to be shared 24 times more when they are distributed by your employees.

 

Reduced cost of customer acquisition

The total cost of an employee advocacy program is roughly 10% of paid advertising. Therefore, a robust employee engagement program can see your advertisement costs reduce significantly.

 

Improved trust

Edelman Trust Barometer’s research shows that employees are twice more trusted than CEOs of companies. Because of this, their promotional messages are likely to create more customer trust.

 

Increased sales revenue

Employee social marketing leads are likely to convert seven times more  compared leads generated through direct branded messages.

 

Improved overall company growth

PostBeyond and Golfdale Consulting carried out a survey which emphasized the importance of employee advocacy. According to the survey, companies that embrace employee advocacy perform 202% better  compared to those with unengaged workers. This is due to the improved brand recognition, increased referral traffic, enhanced customer trust and increased new lead generation as a result of the trusted employee voice. 

 

How to Get the Best from Your Employee Advocacy Program

 

There are several things you need to do to see your business benefit greatly from employee advocacy. They include:

 

1. Trusting and motivating your employees

Trust and motivation are the key pillars of a successful employee advocacy program. Your employees have to feel trusted to deliver the right message to the right people. This makes them feel confident and proud to the ambassadors of their employer. Trusted employees are ready to open up for genuine conversations that could accelerate the effectiveness of a company’s marketing approaches.

Although trust triggers internal motivation in employees, a company can do more to encourage them to spread the work on its behalf. It can choose to offer them perks in the form of virtual badges, bonuses, reward points, internal recognition or an exclusive getaway, among other options. However, you need to take your time to understand the best motivational perk for your workforce.

 

2. Give them the freedom to decide

One thing that you need to appreciate about this form of marketing is that your employees might be doing you a favor by going the extra mile to use their online networks to promote your business. Their social media accounts are part of their private life, and you have no influence over them.

As such, when approaching the workers to be your ambassadors, it shouldn’t look like you are coercing them to do so. Just treat them well and make them develop a sense of ownership of your business. Let them see how their extra efforts could bring positive changes at individual and corporate levels. Once you do that, they won’t have any problem sharing your promotional messages out of their own will.

 

3. Set clear guidelines

You need to set clear guideline and best practices regarding the information your employees can share regarding your business. The guideline and best practices should aim at protecting the image of your enterprise. They should also help to prevent legal litigations that might arise from irresponsible content sharing. 

With the guidelines in place, the workers will know the company-related information to or not to share. This helps them more confident to share the right information in a manner that matches their personality and without fear that it might backfire on them. 

 

4. Training

Nowadays nearly everyone is a social media user. However, you should not assume that each of your employees is savvy with social media platforms. From different departmental backgrounds to varying age groups, your employees are diverse. Therefore, their social media skill levels differ and you need to try to harmonize that through relevant training.

In the training, it is important to educate your workers on the best social media platforms for specific content. By posting the right content on the right platform, your messages will reach more of the intended consumers.

 

5. Provide the best tools

You need to support your employees with the right tools to see that they bring the best from their private channels to your business. Among the primary tools you should provide them with is high-quality content. 

Remember the employees are occupied with other major activities and so, they may not have sufficient time to create fresh promotional content for your enterprise. Make their work easier by creating top-notch content that promotes your brand or product for them to share. Or simply let them share their day to day experiences working at your company. The content could be a promotional case study, blog post or a video. Most importantly, ensure that the content is easy to digest and share on social media. 

Also, it’s important to direct your staff to the right social media management tools, such as Pukket, for promotional content sharing. 

If your business has not joined the employee advocacy bandwagon, know that you are missing out on great opportunities. It is high time for you to act and tap into the unexplored marketing potential of your workers. In case you need help in this, feel free to contact Pukket for exceptional professional guidance and ultra-effective services.