Poor distribution—not product—is the number one cause of business failure. If you can get even a single distribution channel to work, you have great business.
Before we get started, let’s define what traction is. Traction is a sign that your company is taking off. It’s obvious in your core metrics: if you have a mobile app, your download rate is growing rapidly. If you’re a search engine, your number of searches is skyrocketing. If a SaaS tool, your monthly revenue is blowing up. If a consumer app, your daily active users are increasing quickly. You get the point.
“A startup is a company designed to grow fast. Being newly founded does not in itself make a company a startup. Nor is it necessary for a startup to work on technology, or take venture funding, or have some sort of ‘exit.’ The only essential thing is growth. Everything else we associate with startups follows from growth.” In other words, traction is growth. The pursuit of traction is what defines a startup.
Startups get traction through nineteen different channels;
We discovered two broad themes through our research: Most founders only consider using traction channels they’re already familiar with or think they should be using because of their type of product or company. This means that far too many startups focus on the same channels (search engine marketing, public relations) and ignore other promising ways to get traction. It’s hard to predict the channel that will work best. You can make educated guesses, but until you start running tests, it’s difficult to tell which channel is the best one for you right now.
Each traction channel has worked for startups of all kinds and in all different stages.
Poor distribution—not product—is the number one cause of failure. If you can get even a single distribution channel to work, you have great business. If you try for several but don’t nail one, you’re finished.
Traction: A Startup Guide to Getting Customers
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