- File Size: 1676 KB
- Print Length: 166 pages
- Publisher: Sean Ellis and Morgan Brown; 1 edition (June 24, 2014)
- Publication Date: June 24, 2014
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00LA95B68
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #97,763 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Startup Growth Engines: Case Studies of How Today’s Most Successful Startups Unlock Extraordinary Growth Kindle Edition
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Based on thorough research of successful companies like Uber, Upworthy, and Hubspot, Sean and Morgan (both experienced growth hackers themselves) provide keen insights and practical takeaways.
My two favorite case studies are Evernote and Upworthy. Rather than focusing on growth, Evernote spent the first few months after release in closed beta focusing on improving the product and working out scaling issues. Then, once the platform had proven successful with their 125k beta users, they opened to the public as one of the first apps in the new iPhone App Store.
To the occasional detriment of our collective Facebook feeds, Upworthy has decoded many of the secrets of content virality. How did they do it? The case study in this book explains many of the factors, but one of the most interesting to me is the way that they continually test their headlines.
You'll have so much fun reading this book that you won't even realize how much you've learned.
Absolutely everybody who spends a bit of time on FB knows Upworthy and what kind of content they feature. Uber has been in the news so often that even people who do not follow start-ups per se know something about the company.
Even though more than one reviewer stated that they knew all presented facts, I didn’t. This book is informative.
E.g. I did not know that originally Upworthy was really focusing on political content and how they made the switch to positive emotionally charged content that made them so successful. That even their ads feature only products which they deem “upworthy”. The book elaborates how Upworthy uses facebook to spread its content and find new fans. After detailing Upworthy’s ways of achieving their immense success the book asks the right questions, e.g. Will Upworthy last? It’s an excellent question. Though one of Upworthy’s success secrets is that they asked visitors to subscribe via pop-up window which popped up after emotionally charged videos, and I did do that, after about a year of looking at that pop-up window “Do you want more stories like this one?” I became so annoyed that I unsubscribed. The authors, Sean Ellis and Morgan Brown mention Upworthy’s many copycats… Yeah, they add to this feeling.
I also liked that the book tells readers about Uber’s beginnings and the logic behind their thinking.
“… Uber knew that launching in San Francisco meant they would be interacting regularly with the tech community who are continually looking for new tools and services that improve their quality of life. Uber took aim at those people by sponsoring tech events, providing free rides, and in general driving awareness among its audience….”
I had been wondering about Uber’s beginnings; now I can see how the company could spread their wings so quickly. Tech people’s words of mouth is faster than any other group’s.
In short this book is not an accumulation of technical data, stats and fact, but also very user-friendly for people, who are interested in concept thinking.
The book is excellently designed with pictures, graphics, as well as lots of links to websites, articles, footnotes; in fact rarely ever have a seen such an fabulously designed book. Readers who are not familiar with the one or other featured company can access every bit of information with the provided links.
While not all quoted examples will be equally interesting to everybody I recommend this book to everybody who is interested to read about growth strategies. 5 stars
Gisela Hausmann, author & blogger
Disclosure: I'm one of the founders of HubSpot (mentioned in the book), but I'd be recommending the book even if I weren't included.
As they examine the key growth levers of companies like Yelp, Evernote, SnapChat, Uber, and LinkedIn, you'll find a plethora of tried-and-true tactics for building your own growth machine.
I'll leave you with this note from the book:
"What to make of all of this? If you're a marketer, the imperative is clear. Your job is to move beyond traditional promotion and get deeply integrated with your product and engineering teams to find the best growth levers for your business.
If you're an entrepreneur or business executive, the charge is equally clear: you must remove the walls between your sales and marketing organization and product development. You must move quickly to an integrated growth organization and foster a culture the prioritizes growth across the company."