Business is evolving.
With new innovations in technology, we are witnessing things that couldn’t be imagined 50 years ago. The market, audiences, and channels used to reach them has changed significantly.
TV commercials that cost businesses fortunes are no longer as efficient as reviews on social media.
This change has led to the birth of a new approach to growth marketing.
What is Product-led Growth?
Especially with SaaS business models becoming more popular, new and improved ways to acquire and retain customers have been introduced, just like the Product-led Growth strategies.
Product-led Growth means having your entire business from development to marketing, sales to customer service, and revolve it around your product.
It is accepting your product as your main source of revenue, growth, customer acquisition, and retention. The customer who has gone through a great experience with your product is your main source of acquisition, while the experience you provide them is how you retain them.
How is PLG Different from Traditional Growth Strategies?
Perhaps the best thing we could say that separates PLG from traditional growth strategies is its focus.
Traditional Growth focuses on the perceived value of the product, devouring big budgets and trying to display the product in the best way possible.
PLG approach doesn’t care at all about the perception of the product. It solely focuses on the experience of the users, investing in the product itself.
With Product-led Growth, the product is in the center of the whole business.
Why is Product-led Growth so popular?
As we have mentioned before, the ways to attract and acquire customers changed significantly.
To keep up with these changes, innovative businesses started adopting new strategies. PLG was born as a result of the growth struggle that many businesses experienced.
Major companies like Slack, Dropbox, SurveyMonkey have instantly adopted PLG as their go-to-market strategy. The reason PLG has gained this popularity is simply that it actually works.
So, how can you get your business in the game?
How can you become product-led?
It is really simple when you put it into words: make sure everyone in the company has the product in their focus. That’s it.
It is way harder to apply, though. After all, you will be demolishing all the marketing strategies they are used to and applying something new.
In order to start becoming product-led today, here is a checklist to follow:
Offer a smooth experience, no pain points allowed
No pain points are allowed!
Apart from having a great product that just meets the user’s needs, the smoothness of the process is of utmost importance.
You have to have each and every one of your users go through with your product until their problem is solved. If you offer a smooth experience that your users enjoy while eliminating any pain points they might get stuck in, your journey to become a product-led start.
Get straight to the value
Keep it short and simple.
Users are trying or learning about your product for its value, so do not stall them; give them what they want. Make sure your users reach their “Aha!” moments where they understand your product and its value proposition as quickly as possible.
Make sure everyone has their hands dirty, with the product
Perhaps the hardest part of being product-led is aligning every team of your company under the product.
Marketing and sales departments will struggle as this is a brand new approach to growth and customer acquisition. The best and the first thing they should do for PLG is switching market-qualified-leads with product-qualified-leads.
Get the word out there
In PLG, the best way you acquire customers is through word-of-mouth.
You have to have your customers bring in more customers, otherwise, you can’t expect growth. In order to increase your growth as a PLG business, you can encourage referrals where users bring other users or invite your customers to review your product.
Must-Have Product-Led Growth Tools
There are a lot of tools that claim to help you become product-led, and there is not a way to tell if their claims are correct without trying.
Here are 4 tools I can suggest to you that offer solutions to different problems of product-led businesses.
UserGuiding is a code-free user onboarding software designed for web products.
It allows you to create interactive product tours, user guides, feature highlights, in-app messages, and NPS surveys; offering detailed analytics for each of these. Their wide-variety of onboarding elements makes managing and improving UX easier.
If you are to adopt a Product-led Growth approach, you have to increase the efficiency of your product team.
Creating and managing product roadmaps like a boss is a great way to kick off your glorious product development days. ProductPlan, as the name suggests, allows you to easily create Product Roadmaps in minutes and drive collaboration and efficiency through their easy-to-use tool.
Drift is basically a live chat tool but they claim otherwise.
They say that Drift does “Not Just Live Chat”, but it increases conversion, shortens the sale-cycle, and improves sales efficiency. I am going to take their word for it, and will include them in the list, as they offer a great experience to their users, as well as the users of their users!
It would be a shame to finish this tool list without a user behavior tool.
If you can’t understand what your users are going through, what their pain points are, and how they use your product; you can’t improve in a smart way.
User behavior tools like Amplitude allows you to analyze customer data to offer your users a better experience by eliminating pain points and improving UX.
Product-led Growth is increasingly growing, and there is no doubt that it is the future of growth.
You must put your product in the center of everything related to your company, and start improving right now! You don’t want to get left behind, right?