It’s time to continue our Panda Q&A with Growth Tribe founder David Arnoux, but before we do, let’s have a quick recap of what happened in part 1…
Last time we caught up with David, we chatted with him about his background in growth marketing – how did his work experience lead to the creation of the world’s very first growth marketing academy? And what juicy tips did he have to share with budding entrepreneurs? In today’s Q&A, we’re going to go deeper into the world of growth. What is it? Is it just for startups? What are common obstacles to growth? We’ll also touch on what happens at a Growth Tribe 2 day course.
Let’s get back into those questions…
Amanda Panda (AP): Is growth marketing just for startups or can all businesses benefit from it?
David Arnoux (DA): All businesses can benefit from growth marketing. We’ve trained around 1,500 people – 700 from startups and 700 from corporate businesses. Of the 700 from corporates, 400 were from ING, one of the world’s largest banks, operating in a highly-regulated industry.
Many people think that growth marketing is just for startups, but the results from brands like ING proves otherwise. The results for this business have been astounding. Initially, we were approached by the Head of Innovation to help fuel growth internally. Today, we’re discussing plans to set up a growth marketing academy within the company itself. It’s important to note that there’s nothing black hat about what we do; it’s all about human centred design, web analytics, persuasion and marketing.
Growth marketing is a mindset, process and tactics. Growth techniques can be implemented within any company. It’s about following the user through the whole funnel – from great user experience through to retention and influencing word of mouth. We refer to this as the pirate funnel.
When you look at growth teams at brands like Facebook and Uber, they’re metric-driven teams, consisting of data scientists, marketers, behavioural psychologists and developers. They’re not all in separate teams; they run on the same sprint and share the same scrum board. They care about deep funnel conversions and one metric that matters (OMTM).
AP: In more established businesses and startups, what are the main obstacles to growth marketing success?
DA: Organisational structures with silos are a huge obstacle to growth marketing success – structures where the user journey is cut into different departments. Companies need to work in an agile manner; teams need to be free to make their own decisions based on specific metrics. These teams need to be agile with weekly or bi-weekly sprints. Continual experimentation is key.
Another major obstacle occurs when there’s tension between product and marketing. For example, where the VP of Product is obsessed with user experience and the Head of Growth is obsessed with conversions, sometimes to the detriment of user experience. Situations like this can cause negative feelings between the two.
AP: Can the obstacles you mentioned in your previous answer be overcome or is growth marketing just not possible for some businesses?
DA: It’s more a question of agile vs. waterfall. Growth processes and structure can be applied to any company, but not to every department. Products with specific cut-off dates – events or releases, for example – work best with waterfall. Any department that is more metrics driven should adopt an agile way of working, much like brands at Uber and LinkedIn – some of the fastest growing startups – do.
Overcoming obstacles isn’t impossible. Miscommunications between product and marketing can be solved by reviewing team structure and KPIs. Experience is another great way to overcome many of the common barriers I mentioned. At ING, for example, one of the company’s Executive Directors interned at Spotify. During his time there, he discovered the benefits of working agile and so ING followed suit.
AP: Growth Tribe regularly holds “2 day intensive, no bullshit, all skills courses” in London and Amsterdam. How do these differ from other performance courses?
DA: We offer a two day extremely hands-on course on how to optimise the whole funnel of a product / service – from acquisition and activation to retention and persuasive techniques. We also add in a layer of technical marketing. In this course, we share 60 tools that you can use with 32 exercises. When you leave the Growth Tribe intensive course, you have around 3 – 6 months’ worth of ideas that you can implement.
You’re also taught skills to help you implement these tools. What also sets us apart from other academies is that our trainers are all practitioners – they’ve done this stuff themselves and they have real-world knowledge. We’ve trained over 500 companies and we’ve built the Growth Tribe curriculum on lessons learned from coaching people.
AP: We noticed on the Growth Tribe Eventbrite page that everyone from startup founders to marketing professionals can benefit from the 2-day intensive course. Should someone with little to no growth experience be nervous about joining?
DA: No, not at all. This course is open to all levels. We have many students who have no growth experience. All someone really needs is a passion for product and marketing. We have three facilitators at each course to make sure that everyone is happy and on track; there’s always someone there to help and explain if you have any questions or problems.