Entrepreneurship14 September 20206 min

Partner Insight of the Day: 7 Strategies to Get Your First 100 Customers by GrowForce

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We’re back with some more valuable insights from our fantastic partners. This one’s by GrowForce, our partner for growth marketing advice, implementation and education. Once you use their tried-and-true formula for getting your first customer, all you have to do is repeat it another 99 times! Check out these seven highly actionable strategies for startups:

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#1 Piggyback off an existing platform or brand

Did you know Airbnb stole its audience from Craigslist? They told Craigslist’s users that they could get more demand for their adverts and earn more money if they posted their housing ads on Airbnb. Netflix did something similar by infiltrating DVD fanatic and movie buff forums before its initial launch.

To piggyback off an existing platform or brand, start by doing your homework. Do some market research, see if there is a forum, platform or application that your audience actively participates in. Once you’ve found the right channel, you could hit an acquisition goldmine.

#2 Launch your product on Product Hunt

Product Hunt is the preferred platform of investors, techies and app-savvy marketers. Every day, thousands of people submit their product and people (product hunters) upvote the top of the page's best new products.

If you score in top spots, you get worldwide exposure from an audience eager to test new things. You could nab your first 100 customers in a day!

How to vie for the top spots? Here are some guides that could help you:

How I launched the #1 most upvoted product of all time on Product Hunt

The Ultimate Playbook to blowing your Product Hunt Launch out of the water

Top 7 Product Hunt Best Practices For A Successful Campaign

#3 Use Betalist as an alternative to PH

Betalist is a perfect platform to get feedback and some exposure in the early stages. Unlike Product Hunt, you can pay to be featured before a tech audience. Many startups have used it to get early bird signups and users. So check it out!

#4 Send a message to your LinkedIn connections

Asking never hurts. So go ahead and ask your current LinkedIn connections if you think they or their friends would be interested in your product. You might come across multiple potential customers within your own network! Of course, you can automate and personalise this process with tools like Phantombuster. But don't send a link in the first message: ask for consent first.

Your message could be something like:

Hey Name,

I launched my new product earlier this week. It's about X and could help you or your friends do Y. If this is interesting to you, I can send you a free trial.


First engage, then offer. This the golden rule of LinkedIn.

#5 Answer questions on Quora

People use Quora to ask precise questions about their pain points. We're certain that if you spend an hour on Quora, you will reveal dozens of questions that you can answer with your expertise.

Here is the strategy:

· Find the specific question

· Give a detailed and unique answer

· Leave a link to your website or product.

It has worked for many, and by answering the right questions, it can help you acquire customers as well. If you don't get customers, you'll at least get tons of insights: a win either way. You can also use the same approach on Reddit (by finding related subreddits), related forums, or Facebook groups.

#6 Ask your friends, then ask them to ask their friends

While you probably don't have proof of work, people around you trust you simply because they know you. So if you spread the word to your friends and tell them to spread it to their circle, you'll see some interesting connections pop up.

Getting feedback from your extended circle will help you a ton for your next steps. Ask them about challenges, listen, and iterate your approach based on your findings. Got some paying customers? Nice. But even if you don't, this process is still valuable because you'll learn a lot about your potential customers.

Founders often think up crazy marketing ideas, but you could start a chain reaction of referrals just with this simple idea.

#7 Create and offer value with lead magnets.

Marketing is, in essence, a give and take. And to get something from your audience, you need to give something. Materials like eBooks, whitepapers, free trials, cheat sheets, or checklists are great examples of lead magnets.

By creating and providing these lead magnets to your potential customers on the right channels, you prove your expertise and show that you understand them. As a result, they'll be more likely to buy from you. To distribute your lead magnet, create landing pages and disseminate them on channels such as:

● LinkedIn (Here is a guide: LinkedIn lead magnet strategy)

● Related forums

● Paid ads (Facebook, Reddit, Google etc)

● Public Slack Channels (such as Slofile)

● Send it to your email list.

● Your LinkedIn connections

● Facebook groups.

● Twitter

● And so on

99 more to go!

We hope you found some of these ideas valuable. To get started, check your team, your skills and toolbox. Prioritise three of these strategies and start taking action this week. Remember, if you can get the first customer you can get 100! And don’t forget that social proof (reviews) are the new currency. So whenever you get new customers, do them a favor and then ask for a review. Good luck!