Hey Everyone! As you may know I’m in LA learning so much from the conference here. This is the first of hopefully many live blogging posts to come. I’ll go ahead and apologize for any typos, I’ll correct them later tonight.

Startup Marketing for Metrics (for Pirates)
Dave McClure

You shouldn’t market your product until someone gives a f**k. Startups basic problems is that your product isn’t as known as it needs to be. If you try to market the product to the wrong audience and the product isn’t any good the outcome won’t be good. When starting up try going after a few people to gauge reaction. Don’t focus so much on marketing, focus more on understanding your customers. Don’t worry about first impressions, take a lot of risk. Learn what works, what doesn’t. Dave recommends reading ‘Spent’ by Geoffrey Miller, great book on understanding consumerism.

Love or Hate is good, if no one cares then its bad. How do you discover meaning? It can be done with text and images. The goal is to get a reaction. Use landing pages, test pages, paid advertising. Discover your keyword vocabulary, lean the language you need to be speaking. Use a combination of images and text, what is the end result? Positive? Negative? Neutral (death)? Utilize A/B testing to compare and iterate.

The first step is to talk to customers and learn the problems associated with your product. The benefit of marketing online is the ability to see the reaction closest in real time. The more time spent learning to understand the customer now, the less time you’ll spend tweaking issues later. If you use something like KISSmetrics or Google Analytics keep the stats simple.

Most startups are trying to figure out the customer. Companies that are up and running are focusing on how to grow their business. Ask the question, “If I took this away would you scream?” what would happen if your product was taken away from customers? Most people think of customers as one unique registration per month and dollars. Its more about how many return, how many links are clicked and time spent on pages and how many registered with an email address.

If you cannot get users to act or react to your product or coming back your marketing will be a waste of time! Get users, then drive usage, THEN make money. You have to, you HAVE to understand customer reaction before driving any marketing exploits.

Startups have problems in three areas, management, product and marketing. The most important decision for a CEO of a startup is what do you measure? Why? Focus on critical actionable metrics, how often do they come back? How long are they spending on the site? What links are they clicking on?

What features do you build and why? When are you done? Easy to find, fun/useful and unique features. You’ll never be done building/improving features until you are better than the competition. If the competition is a 6 and you are a 4 you aren’t done. If the competition is a 6 and you are a 8 then you are done with product development (for the time being). THEN focus on marketing. Measure, A/B Test, Iterate FAST (daily/weekly). How do you discover how the features are behaving? TALK TO CUSTOMERS!

What channels? Which users? Why? High volume, low cost, high conversion rate.

  1. Make a good product
  2. market the product
  3. make money

“You can’t save your ass and your face at the same time so choose carefully”

Track People Not Numbers
Neil Patel

Neil, “I have 7 points”

  • How unique is a visitor?

Having multiple computers is common. So a unique visitor is not important. Computer in the office, home, mobile device, friend’s house, etc. Why not track unique people? One way to track unique people is to tie IP addresses to log in credentials.

  • Metrics are deceiving.

You have to dig deeper. Even when the numbers aren’t favorable doesn’t mean you should ignore them. Crazy Egg has only one conversion from a mobile phone. However, there is a ton of traffic from visitor because they like the mobile version and ability to track orders.

  • Some people need time before they buy.

People can visit your site a few times before they purchase. So you have to analyze all entry sources. Make sure you are analyzing the first entry source and not the last.

  • Get targeted feedback

Survey’s provide better feedback than a comment box will. Ask them specific questions. Never stop asking question. People can change their minds, so sometimes it is wise to ask them the same or similar questions over and over again.

  • Who is engaging?

Not all people will engage with the website the same. Why are they engaging? What terms are they using to get to the site might provide insight as to why they are on your site to begin with.

  • Event tracking

This can tell you how loyal they are. Don’t track people who come to your site, but track what they are doing on your site. Install event tracking via Google Analytics, easy a pie. Events get you visibility. A good way to find out if users like a specfic feature on your site is how long/ what happens when they use it.

  • Real conversion rate.

Conversion tracking doesn’t end when someone signs up. Free users can convert into paid users so you need to track where free users came from originally.

Neil measures three things. (You should too):

  • Where people first came from?
  • What they did before they converted into a paid customer?
  • How long before they started paying.