A short summary from my presentation about Traction, based on the book:
Traction Book – A Startup Guide to Getting Customers
presented at the Hive61 Meetup on the 17th of December in Poznan

Slide 1: Introduction
The book gives a structure for “Getting Traction”. On side there is a framework to execute, which is called Bullseye Framework and on the other side there the 19 channels to get Traction.

Slide 2: What is Traction?
The definition for a startup:

A startup is a company designed to grow fast…The only essential thing is growth.
Everything else we associate with startups follows from growth.

– Paul Graham (Founder of Ycombinator)

Traction is growth. The pursuit of traction is what defines a startup.

Slide 3: Most StartUps fail
That most StartUps fail is often mentioned in previous Hive61 meetups BUT keep in mind:
Almost every failed startup has a product.
What failed startups don’t have are enough customers.

Slide 4: 50% rule
If you are involved in a startup, the advice is:
Spend 50% of your time on product and 50% on traction.

Slide 5: Traction and getting funded

The #1 reason that we pass on entrepreneurs we’d otherwise like to back, is their focusing on product to the exclusion of everything else.

– Marc Andreessen (leeding Investor)

Slide 6: 19 channels to get traction
Startups Get Traction Through 19 Different Channels

19 channels of traction
(source: Facebook: Mateusz Amĸðcz Belaŧŧaf)

In the next slides a selection of channels:

Slide 7: Viral Marketing
If you can make your product or service viral, you found a very good channel for Traction. Viral means that your buyer is getting seller OR your user invites other users. Most famous case that used this channel is probably Facebook.

Slide 8: Public Relations
Public Relations is often used by investors as “standard” channel. Every funded startup get media attention this way but not always to the right audience (of potential clients or users). Fun in Design presented their product on TVN but traction went down within a month. Later they used niche media to tell their story. The story was catched up by bigger media and the Public Relations channel started creating traction.

Slide 9: Content Marketing
An “traditional” example of Content Marketing is Lego. The value of Lego as bricks for children is low as it is quiet easy to copy. Lego created content around their product in the form of movies and games. This way the clients (mainly children) like to buy the Lego Creatures they see in the games and movies.

The startup Unbouce created an online marketing course, called the Noob guide. Their product which is a user friendly tool to create landingpages is the center of Online Marketing. Actually they could easy start by creating online marketing course and develop and introduce their product after they gained a serious number of potential clients for who the needs/problems were clear.

Slide 10: Speaking Engagements
Give speeches to groups of potential customers or to an audience that may contain some potential customers. Giving a presentation on Hive61 is a nice example. Here it works the same as with Public Relations. Start with small events, get known so you will be asked for bigger events.

Slide 11: Existing Platforms
Developing on existing platforms like iStore, Google Play but also Facebook, you can “easy” approach the users of this platform.

A nice example of using a platform is YouTube in the early days. YouTube found a way to gain traction by focusing on embedding video on MySpace (similar platform as Facebook). YouTube got a lot of traction and MySpace users started using YouTube as online video platform and spread the word. Myspace on the other didnt manage to compete’with Facebook and become one of the startups that failed.

Slide 12: Sales
Most or at least some people still think that selling is showing the features of a product in a very nice way. But a modern seller is listening to the client and tries to understand his problems. Knowing the problems you can offer a solution.

Guidewire used this “sales principle” to gain early traction. The approached 20 potential clients (insurance companies) with the request to research their challenges as base for a new software product. As a gift they would present the benchmark of the research. The potential clients agreed and it worked. Guidewire got traction before developing their product.

Slide 13: Engineering as Marketing
Not discussed during presentation.

Slide 14: Learn more about Traction
Buy the book, follow me on Twitter (@YwanVanLoon) and read this blog.

And off course, you can signup for the Bullseye Meetup (or contact me). The idea is to have a monthly meetup in the center of Poznan and discuss and learn for real cases. Everybody is free to propose a case.

If you have questions or remarks just drop a comment below and I will try react fast.

Some impression about the MeetUp:

hive61-presentation1 hive61-presentation4 hive61-presentation5 hive61-presentation3 hive61-presentation2

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