It is no other than Shay Howe, the VP of Marketing & Design of ActiveCampaign.
So, what can the VP of Marketing & Design of a company like ActiveCampaign can tell us about Product-Led Growth?
Read this interview and you will find out.
Who is Shay Howe?
As a designer and front-end developer, Shay has a passion for solving problems while building creative and intuitive products.
He specializes in product design, interface development, and organizational leadership, areas in which he regularly writes and speaks about.
Currently, he is the VP of Marketing and Design at ActiveCampaign, helping companies grow with intelligent marketing and customer experience automation.
Why such a big discussion about Product-Led Growth?
For many, this isn’t necessarily a new discussion but a name to the strategy they’ve been executing for years.
For example, ActiveCampaign grew to more than 50,000 customers before investing heavily in a sales and marketing function.
We got there by focusing on our product—letting customers try it, making it easy to use, creating in loops for growth and adoption, and building a platform to turn leads into loyal customers.
We maximize the results from this strategy by keeping the complete customer experience top of mind.
This spring we even announced our focus on Customer Experience Automation because we want to introduce that mindset, and a platform to deliver on it, to the world.
Free trial, Freemium model or Demo request? How would you choose the most appropriate and how?
In my experience, getting people into the product as soon as possible is the best way to run a Product Led Growth strategy.
More commonly than not, that’s from a free trial or a freemium model.
Freemium is interesting, although tends to be pretty noisy.
Unpaying customers will have support questions, product development requests, and the alike.
That could all be good feedback, although even better if coming from paying customers.
When you offer a free trial, you need to develop your product in a way that creates immediate value for your customers, and free trials help you focus on time-to-value.
Then, once customers are in the door you need to retain them by focusing on the total value.
Going this route forces you to focus, all the while earning revenue from paying customers.
What are the principles one needs to follow when building a user onboarding process for a SaaS business? Which mistakes to avoid?
Focus your onboarding on use-cases, not just feature functionality.
People don’t want training or app cues that simply showing them where buttons are located within your product (hopefully it’s easy enough to use already).
People want to know how to use your product to accomplish their goals.
At ActiveCampaign, we offer automation recipes for this exact reason.
You can login and within a single click, create an automation that will take work off your plate and create a customer experience that will drive sales or improve retention.
What should be the relationship between Product, Marketing, Sales and Customer Success in a Product-Led company?
First up, we should all be talking to our customers, intimately knowing their goals and use cases for our product.
Then, as hard as it may be, Product, Marketing, Sales, and Customer Success should be aligned without any separation between these functions. (For good measure, I’d add Engineering and Design to this conversation too.)
The closer these groups are with one another and the closer they are to the customer, the faster you can innovate and create real tangible value for your customers.
How the future of Product-Led Growth looks like?
The future of Product Led Growth will be about improving the entire customer experience.
It will expand the idea of being focused on the sales and conversion funnel or from features and functionality to thinking about the product you’re building in terms of the way you interact with a customer across the entire customer lifecycle.
Doing so will require creating personalized experiences at all ends.
Treating everyone as the same and providing them the same customer experience isn’t going to work long term.
We need to be more intelligent in how we work with leads and customers, providing personal value to them (and knowing that will likely be different for everyone).
Good news, the future is exciting and we’re building the tools to help you provide personal customer experiences at ActiveCampaign.