The global startup economy remains extensive, adding nearly $3 trillion in the estimation, a figure on par with a G7 economy’s GDP.
If you are building a startup, you are already contributing immensely to build a sustainable future for your nation.
But, starting a company is like “jumping off a cliff and assembling an airplane on the way down.”
Reid Hoffman, founder, Linkedin.
And the life of a founder is indeed tricky.
There is tons of work to be done, but very little help. No matter how many working hours you put in a week, there is always something on the pending list.
From business development to product development, marketing & sales strategy, pricing strategy, and the list go on.
But there’s a smarter way of working for an ambitious founder like you.
Today, with the global startup ecosystem experiencing a rise each year, you have your peers’ products help in actualizing your vision faster than ever. If you have to succeed in the startup market, you have to adapt to a working approach that is agile and laser-focused on customers.
To achieve this goal, you have tons of tools at your bay.
Following are a few primary tools that can help streamline your startup’s growth hacking process exponentially.
Pro Tip: You can start off using most of them for free until your startup garners enough business.
1. Business Development
Staying on top of your business planning and strategy is critical for any business to move smoothly towards its vision and goals.
However, you are highly susceptible to experience hiccups in this process if not aware all the time. A lot of mismanagement and under-optimized organization happens here.
With saas-based workflow management & automation tools, you can make sure each of your processes gets transferred to the next stage smoothly.
Workflow automation gives you the following real-time benefits:
Zapier is one of the best performing workflow automation software that can improve your business growth within a couple of weeks.
Another unique tool that can save you a lot of burnout in the long run is keeping an internal wiki system handy right from the beginning of your startup.
It is not at all fun if you have to dig up a database excel sheet 5 years down
the line, drilling 50-60 people deep. The best of the knowledge base tools
has the following features:
- Hassle-free text editor
- Categories, folders & sections
- Analytics & reports
- Multilingual content
- Search feature
- Customization feature
- SEO settings
2. Marketing & Sales Automation
One of the primary focuses of a startup is finding out low-budget marketing tactics and strategies.
Gaining the first few customers is crucial for the long-term success of your product. You can gain deeper insights on the product-market fit and gain initial traction to keep your company floating.
But stopping at these means sabotaging your growth. You have to ensure that you are always in front of your customers.
In doing so, marketing campaigns & sales campaigns are inevitable.
Managing these ongoing campaigns and the experiments can be daunting at times. But with the advanced automation saas products, you can now focus on what truly matters; your campaign strategy and quality, while you leave the to-do tasks on the machines.
Having marketing automation software and a CRM tool can prove to be the earmarking tool for breaking into level 2 of your growth hacking.
While marketing automation will make sure to interact with your potential leads at the top of the funnel, the CRM focuses on ensuring the best customer experience to drive sales.
3. Product Development
This stage is indeed the make or break point of your startup.
Great marketing cannot fix a lousy product. That’s why keeping a very close eye on your product development is critical for long term success.
A few of the biggest challenges that your startup may face are as follows:
- Cutting down the total time to market
- Ideation drove by innovation.
- Driving customers to the product
- Finding product viability
- Devising pricing strategy
- Executing post-launch reiterations & improvements
If you take a closer look at the dominant challenges above, you would realize the core of all of them is driven by customers.
If every action you take in this stage drives their decisions based on your target audience, chances are you will stay in the right direction of improvements.
One of the best ways to achieve so is with the help of user testing.
By staying inside the feedback loop every time you launch your product, you can gain rich insights about your product.
It is always a good practice to test your ideal users in real-time while interacting with your product. You can use a usability testing questionnaire to ensure that you get the highest quality of insights from the testing.
Also, keeping your whole project management system agile at all times is super important. To keep things moving and gain momentum, a project management solution like JIRA can prove to be invaluable.
Pro Tip: If you are not building anything complex like a saas based software, a card-based solution like Trello can help you in your projects. This software focuses on agile project management for small collaborating teams of vendors and key agencies.
A high-performance team is critical for the growth hacking ambitions of your startup.
You cannot scale up if your teamwork is not great.
But, often enough, keeping a team cohesive enough in a startup becomes challenging.
Owing to the present times, when most of your team members are probably working virtually, it has become even more critical for startups to focus on building company culture.
So, how do you optimize on this super strength?
Probably taking the central stage that makes or breaks great team work, an efficient communication system can make sure there is a smooth flow of knowledge transfer between your teammates.
Here are a few tips on how to ace it.
- Use a standardized, systematic, and documented strategy for communicating within teams.
- Keep the core messages crisp, simple, and precise.
- Use standardized communication channels and tools for every category of messages. For instance: it is challenging to keep up via email when you need to ask someone about seal-time updates like a document location. Again, it is choosing an instant messaging app like WhatsApp isn’t viable for heavy file transfer.
- Using mobile communication apps like Slack can make sure this becomes hassle-free.
5. Data Protection
Getting legally squared and updated at all times is one of the most significant burnouts that you may experience while running your startup. And if you are a SaaS company, keeping up with the changing data privacy laws is a prerequisite.
It is essential that you always keep your subscribers informed and take their consent about how you use their data. Keeping up with the GDPR requirements is essential in this case. Entrepreneurship is a profession of patience and perseverance. You might find yourself under many critical business challenges while you are on the journey.
The above tools and tips can support you in your venture no matter the kind of situation you land in. But what you need to keep with you at all times is your awareness. Never forget to empathize with your customers, the people whom you are building the product for.
And to make most of the growth hacking tools, stay on a habit of researching newer saas products every day. These will make your entrepreneurial journey less daunting.