by Kyle Tibbitts
The hard work must begin at the base
Only after a foundational layer of product innovation has been carefully mastered can the upper echelons take you toward the stratospheres of hyper-growth.
Building structures is not for the faint of heart
Particularly companies. There are so many things that could go wrong. Hire the wrong crew, you build the wrong things. Run out of funds, construction screeches to a halt.
These are the hierachy of needs
1. Great Product
Until you have a product, there is 0 marketing to be done. A minimum viable level of product/market fit is so incredibly difficult. It requires all hands on deck
Marketing a sub-par product isn't worth anyone's time
Since the ease of marketing a product is directly proportional to how great it is, incremental improvements at the outset can change the entire trajectory of your business in the long run.
2. Early Advocates
100 die hard fans of your product is better than 10,000 fairweather fans. Recruit an army of face-painted, raucously passionate advocates that will go to battle with you because they love it
In the early days, you have to manually hunt down advocates
The result of a product that converts users into advocates is a word-of-mouth dividend that fuels future growth
3. Portfolio of Tactics
Some will fail, some will have moderate success and a few will be your main drivers of growth.
Bet on and execute 10 knowing only some may work
These tactics might include: partnerships, paid user acquisition, app store optimization, SEO, promotions, branded content, email, PR etc.
Automate as many of the successful tactics as possible and outsource the 'manual labor' to technology. This frees you up to focus like a lazer on the real needle movers that can have a 10X impact
With all layers working together in harmony, you begin earning compounding interest on growth. You are at the cusp of hitting the afterburners and achieving escape-velocity growth
At this stage, your marketing layers become reliable
This means you can invest money and resources in and know what you’ll get out. To keep scaling, more human and financial capital is needed to fully leverage all layers of the marketing stack.
Ensure machinery is in top condition
When you've fully actualized the pyramid, your biggest risk is taking your eye off the ball with respect to your product, halting innovation and arrogantly assuming you won't be disrupted
This is why startups slay goliath companies all the time
If you complete the top of the pyramid, congrats
But know this: if your stack starts crumbling because you let your product go, an insurgent Full Stack Marketer will be standing by to tear the rest of your unicorpse down into the dust.