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The Basics of Product-Led Growth

A product-led approach is becoming an increasingly popular route for creators and developers. Not only do these companies tend to be more successful in the market, but (perhaps relatedly) the products that come out of this process often have unique attributes that set them apart from competitors and make their user experience better. 

What is Product-Led Growth?

Just as the name implies, product-led growth refers to letting the product take focus and centering subsequent positioning, marketing, and other business processes around it. Rather than first finding potential avenues to expand your brand and then creating ways to fit the product into them, this approach lets that growth happen organically. Famous companies that employ this method are numerous, and include Zoom, Hubspot, and Dropbox.

While finding and adopting a new software for your company used to be a process lasting months, tech culture today has made it so employees can find a platform they’re interested in, begin using it for their own team, and quickly get other teams on board as the company converts to a loyal customer. The same can be said for the product we use in our personal lives as well; we can see, use, and adopt new brands into our everyday lives as quickly as we find them. This culture has set the tone for companies that are trying to tap into this new way of growth to maximize their outcome with relatively less internal effort.

How Do I Achieve Product-Led Growth?

Users no longer consider a brand’s marketing and extra frills to be the most important factor in choosing a product. Instead, they’re concerned with finding a service that is intuitive, well-designed, and competitively priced. Recent studies have found that up to 75% of consumers report that they’d prefer to buy online themselves rather than go through a salesperson, and the growing capability for users to research and compare similar offerings means that it’s coming down to the product itself, not how well the brand sells it. 

With this in mind, the best way to grow from a product-led approach is to put your users at the center of your process; their experience, desires, pain points, and opinions are invaluable to your strategy, as they give you a clear view into exactly what will do best when it’s released. User experience is key, and with so many options available today for every possible need, the one that is most intuitive and useful will be the one that customers flock to.

Who’s In Charge of This Process?

Product-led growth does not mean that Product Managers should become the single guiding light through a product’s development. Instead, the opposite should be done, and each team should contribute to the final outcome by strategically crafting their respective efforts to contribute to this overarching goal of an exceptional product experience. Marketing, sales, design, customer service, and every other department each has things they can do to make their piece of the puzzle more user-friendly. By focusing on that, it becomes much easier for everyone to succeed in their own contributions which equals a greater end result. 

Check out Chet’s Product microcourses to learn more about working in the field.

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