Atlassian fmr Head of Growth on Growth Products (Part 3)

In a perfect world, growth products sell themselves at a very low price. This is the optimal result that “land and expand” can produce. You may be asking, how can this possibly work? It’s all about word of mouth. Through the years, it’s proven to be the most effective sales tool in driving adoption to reach more customers.

At its best, word of mouth does not come from referral programs or incentives. Authentic word of mouth is the most scalable (and most cost-effective) method to reach more customers. For example, there’s no better recommendation than having someone who loves your product tell your friends to use it. Simply put, you can’t buy those endorsements.

As a result, you create this virtuous cycle of awareness for your product that doesn’t require extra investment. For example, a paid search campaign with Google AdWords can buy awareness. However, once the spend is complete, everyone stops paying attention.

Remarkably, 80 percent of Atlassian’s sales are linked to word of mouth.

When you factor in the company’s $1 billion run rate, the value of generating sales through un-paid acquisition is significant. Again, this is very difficult to achieve. So the question becomes, how do you acquire “supercharged” word of mouth?

First, you have to think “outside-in” instead of “inside-out.” Said differently, you have to look at what makes a user recommend a product to someone else. It all starts with having a great product. Most importantly, the ability to try out a product must be simple and frictionless. The trial period needs to be affordable and scalable. For example, you can’t jump from a $10 trial to a $10,000 subscription.

Most importantly, you need to identify a network in which growth products can reach more users. Seeding a successful product within one business unit can expand into other departments through word of mouth. Luckily, this can happen very easily with collaboration software. In the end, you have a community of interest that is eager to adopt new ways of working to drive success.


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Looking for Part 2? Click here to view.

About the speaker
Shaun Clowes Metromile, Chief Product Officer Member

Shaun Clowes is the Chief Product Officer at Metromile, a $200 post Series-D startup that is transforming the car insurance market through user-centered design and data science. Prior to Metromile, Shaun spent 6 years at Atlassian, initially leading product for JIRA Agile (now Jira Software). In addition, Shaun built the growth team to include designers, developers, data scientists and product managers. Shaun's team was one of the first to scale Growth techniques to the B2B and Enterprise software space, bringing a data-driven and rapid iteration approach to optimizing acquisition and retention of users.