What Is Product Led Growth? [Examples and Strategy]
Success in the product market comes with determination and persistent efforts. Amid all the huzzle and buzzle of the perpetually evolving customer needs, the one with spectacular acclimating skills only thrives.
Marketing trends tend to change rapidly. If you want to get an edge over the competitors, you must be aware of traditional and modern product markets.
Traditionally, online applications and websites were more or less just collateral to the primary-store-based marketing channel.
However, customers have become reticent to sphere loads of time in stores with the online transition. They usually judge a product through the website.
Instead, these days, many apps and websites you see are many companies’ products.
This transition is where the ‘product-led approach of marketing kicks in.
Let’s tell you what you will learn in this blog without frittering away.
What Is Product Led Growth?
Let’s introduce you to this approach first, shall we?
Product-led growth has a value proposition that satisfies the needs of your target audience.
Product-led growth increases your user base with new features. It is common for startups to grow their user base rapidly through product-led growth tactics. Still, it’s also possible for mature businesses to do the same.
Product-led growth is becoming an increasingly popular way to grow and develop a customer base. The underlying idea of product-led growth is that most businesses are centered on customer needs. It means that customers should be a company’s focus instead of marketing.
The value proposition of that product should be something that people can relate to, identify with, and are willing to spend money on. The pursuit of product-led growth emphasizes understanding and catering to your customers before moving forward with marketing or development efforts.
It’s one thing to have a product. Yet, if you can’t get at least some people to fall in love with your product, it will be tough for you to grow your business as quickly and effectively as possible.
According to Hubspot, Brian Halligan, to grow your startup or business, you need to move from a service-led business model to a product-led business model. Brian says that traditional companies have relied on selling their time and expertise for years.
Their primary focus is on doing everything they can to get more work. The goal is to create as much work as possible and make money by working for others.
Product-led growth is not just about revenue but also about retention and referral. In other words, it’s about your product becoming a “product that people love to use, and then refer to their friends.”
The product-led growth goal is to create products that delight customers and encourage them to spread the word by telling their friends or through social media. Making these kinds of products isn’t easy, but it is possible.
Here are a few things for you:
- Understand your customers
- Understand your product
- Learn from the current competition that’s out there
- Solve a real problem
- Make something easy to talk about
Product Led Growth Examples
One of the most useful product-led growth strategies is “word of mouth.” You can use the word-of-mouth strategy if a product is high quality and widely known by consumers.
Word of mouth may come in various ways: positive reviews on blogs or social media, recommendations from friends, etc. These positive reviews result in more sales/conversions in the long term.
An example of how businesses use word of mouth as a growth strategy is MailChimp. It is one of the most effective marketing tools right now.
MailChimp has developed some outstanding email marketing products. The tool is an excellent example of word-of-mouth marketing (product-led strategy). MailChimp wants to get the word out about their products, and they know that people trust those who use their products.
They have built a system for getting users to spread their products to others. This system includes awards, testimonials, and sharing their own stories. The system is one of the great examples of the product-led strategy.
If you keenly observe companies of recent times, you will indeed find that they use product-led strategies more often than not. The process somehow pulls more and more customers and builds trust across the market.
Product Led Growth Strategy
The product-led growth strategy offers your users a natural flow of new features that they will undoubtedly find valuable. As you continue to provide more helpful features to your users, they will become dependent on your service. They will have a difficult time switching over to another option.
Product-led growth is a new trend in the world of digital marketing. It boils down to using useful, simple, and valuable products to create a following. If a brand can get enough people using their product, they will want to hear more from them and be more likely to purchase more of their products.
Companies that have used this method have seen their user base grow exponentially and their profits increase. When a company delivers what its users need, those users will come back for more. And when they do, the company has a chance to convert them into customers.
Product-led growth is a strategy that focuses on the product itself rather than the marketing. This way, tech companies like Airbnb and Uber have managed to reach their success.
People sometimes use these concepts interchangeably. But they should be understood and applied distinctly.
We are talking about product growth strategy and product development.
Understanding the difference between a product-led growth strategy and just product development is crucial.
Product development refers to creating new products. On the contrary, a product-led growth strategy focuses on using the product to generate new business.
The focus of this strategy is more about adding value to the customers than monetization or marketing, and it’s about providing high-quality products. Adding value is a strategy that has been implemented chiefly by B2C companies. Still, there’s no reason not to use it in B2B companies.
It’s essential to give your customers more than what they paid for. The easiest way to do this is by providing content in addition to the product or service you offer.
How Can You Use the Strategy?
Now to elaborate further, we will explain through an example.
For instance, if you offer website hosting services, provide tutorials and resources for people who want to learn how to build a website – even if it’s not hosted on your servers.
This strategy is not new, as the airline industry has used it for decades. The idea is to provide high-quality service at a reasonable price. Southwest Airlines is the most prominent example of this strategy. It’s like a restaurant having delicious food at low prices.
This simple product-led strategy works well in many industries, especially with other techniques like value delivery or viral marketing. This strategy focuses on providing high-quality services and products, then letting the customers tell your story for you. It will help you gain trust and loyalty from your target market.
Suppose you’re an entrepreneur or an early-stage investor.
In that case, you’re probably aware of the importance of having a fantastic product. Your business focus might be on creating a good product. But have you ever considered the ways to make it viral? Viral products are excellent.
They spread like wildfire, and they can bring in tons of traffic for a fraction of the cost. But that doesn’t mean that every product will go viral. If you intend for your product to become viral, you need to create something that people want to share with others.
We hope now you got the whole idea behind the product-led growth strategy.
Benefits of Product Led Growth
- The product-led growth is progressive and consistent. Product-led development will help you accelerate your business growth by more than ten times.
- When a company’s product is performing well, it can be a driver for growth. If the product is a hit, multiple channels will succeed. Product-led growth strategy facilitates the same.
- The whole essence of the strategy is that the product itself can help with sales and marketing. The quality of the product can lead to a referral and repeat business.
- It can also lead to positive reviews and blog posts that help with SEO, increasing traffic and ultimately leading to more sales
- Product-led growth provides a scalable business model. The business can grow without damaging existing operations or requiring new employees, equipment, or other resources. This way, the process will increase the ability of a business or technology platform to handle increased demand and maintain performance.
- Product-led growth is an approach to scaling a business. It means that you can acquire customers at a lower cost than doing marketing or sales. It’s because your product can satisfy customers and they won’t have to pay a lot for that service
- Customer development aids product-led growth. Doing customer development will help you understand what your customer wants and how they use your product. This data will help you make sure that you are building the right thing for the right person.
- It provides a higher retention rate, leading to higher revenues because you’re not spending money on acquiring new customers. As retaining customers is a lot cheaper than getting new ones.
Your existing customers are already familiar with your brand and have unquestionable loyalty to it.
How To Achieve Product Led Growth
The best methods tend to turn nugatory if implemented haphazardly. To avail of the benefits of product-led growth, you should know the correct way to go about it.
One of the most sought-after ways to grow a business is adopting a product-led growth strategy. The product-led growth method relies on solid products and a process that increases awareness about those products.
If you want to attain success with product-led growth, you must have the proper knowledge about it. It would be excellent if you had a clear understanding of the steps involved in it.
Following are the steps which you should follow:
Step 1: Understand customer profile.
The first step in the product-led growth method is understanding your customer’s profile and the product they desire.
For this, you will have to study your market. Do pensive research, scrutinize, and observe thoroughly. The information will help you find your target customer.
Remember, customer satisfaction is fundamental to product-led strategy. Once you know your target audience, it will automatically become easier to design a product to suit their interest.
Step 2: Identify customer needs.
Now you know your customers but is that enough? NO!
You will have to dig in further to analyze their current needs and demands.
Customer needs are never stagnant, and they are variable according to circumstances, market conditions, and many other factors.
You will have to identify the needs and requirements of the customers so that the products you offer will meet those needs.
The way to do it is by conducting a survey or doing in-depth research to help you know what your customers want.
Step 3: Develop the product.
Once you are clear about their needs, you need to develop a product to fulfill those needs and requirements.
You need to create a website that offers more than just information on the products. It should also include a blog feature where customers talk about their product experiences. These tweaks will help you connect with them and offer them any assistance they require.
Product-led growth is a straightforward process. Once you get it right from the beginning, there are high chances of success.
Product Led vs. Market Led
A product-led approach is where organizations start with product development and then look at the market needs later.
Whereas in the market-led approach, organizations analyze all potential customers. Once they examine the potential buyers, they develop a hypothesis about products that can satisfy them.
Product-led companies are focused on improving their products by adding more features and making them better. The team at the company has a clear vision of how they want the product to be, and they keep improving it over time.
On the other hand, market-led companies try to find out what customers want by interacting with them. They do surveys, research data, understand customer needs, and find their customers.
The product-led approach is when a company decides to develop a new product or service based on the requirements of existing and future customers. The product-led system is when a company starts by creating a product then finds out who will buy it and why.
For example, this could be an app that simplifies how people book travel or helps people save money on holiday travels.
The market-led approach is when a company conducts market research first and then creates a product best suited for the market.
Under the Product Led approach, companies are more focused on developing their products. They are working on building high-quality products and optimizing the product development process. They bring the new product to market through pre-release trials, low-cost versions, limited launches, etc.
Whereas, under a Market-led approach, companies are more focused on knowing what the customers want and how they react to the product. The company provides a product for which there is demand in the market. They design their product to satisfy the customers’ needs and wants.
When you have a product-led approach, you start with a specific product and then go out to find market fit. This approach is mainly adopted by SMEs who want to enter the market or by companies unsure of what kind of products they will sell in the future.
The product-led growth approach is popular among startups as they don’t have any visibility on the market. It is adopted to enter an existing market with a new product.
On the other hand, market-led strategy has always been about getting more customer attention. It involves marketing and is pushed by that.
Product Led vs. Sales Led
Let’s look at the product-led and Sales led growth differences.
Product-led growth is when you build a product that people need and grow.
Sales-led development is when you sell your product to one company, grow, and then make a new product for another company.
Product Led companies to focus on building a solid product that solves a problem and will help the customer succeed. They focus on customers first and then their sales team.
It’s usually more challenging to attract product-led startups than sales-led ones. The reason is that Sales Led companies can be scaled up very quickly, so it is easy to show growth and progress for investors.
The main challenge for product-led companies is that they have to wait longer to see a return on investment since they are investing heavily.
A product-led company is a company that puts the customer first. The customer comes to the company and says, I want this. The company produces what the customer wants and then sells it to them.
A sales-led company is a company that puts the salesperson first. The salesperson goes out and finds customers who need what the product does and then sells it to them.
Product-led growth is where you focus on solving a problem or creating something valuable to your customers. Talk to your customers, ask them what they want, and create a product based on their feedback. You can get ideas from forums, blogs, and social media.
Sales-led growth focuses on the numbers, making more sales, and setting up a call center either in-house or outsourcing to make cold calls and drive new sales.
You are trying to get as many customers as possible.
Product-led growth is the new, most effective way of product development. This blog provides you with profound aspects of the same.
In our journey so far, we have observed that when it comes to product-led growth, more often than not, companies miss out or get confused between specific terms. It may seem to be a tiny slip-up, but it can potentially have damaging implications in the long run.
It’s crucial to understand the concept of product-led growth from top to bottom so that there are no qualms left. This way, you will efficiently use the idea to your advantage.