September 15, 2022

Find your Next Customer Acquisition Channel

Last month I had phone calls with three different product leaders all in the same vein.

Hey Julian. We can’t seem to generate the growth we were expecting. After eleventy meetings, we haven’t made any progress whatsoever. There’s nothing you can do. What can I do? Tell what I can do!

You might have to alter the number of meetings and emotional subtext, but the message was clear. Their teams were having trouble generating traction and had too many conversions trying to fix the problem.

I have to admit, it’s not like a know which channel will work for them. No one actually knows which traction channel will be the best one for the product right now!

Traction is the evidence of customer demand.

  • Download rate (Mobile app)
  • Number of searches (Search engine)
  • Monthly revenue (SaaS)
  • Daily active users (Consumer app)

What we can do, however: explore different routes and test growth channels.

So, how did we achieve clarity and alignment within the product team and their stakeholders on what to experiment on?

A Framework for validating Customer Acquisition Channel

The Bullseye framework was introduced in the book „Traction“ by Gabriel Weinberg and Justin Mares. It helps us discuss, prioritize and validate 19 different customer acquisition channels.

The framework consists of a five-step process:

  1. Ideating actions within the 19 channels
  2. Evaluating possible success for the channels
  3. Choosing the first channel to validate
  4. Testing channels one after another
  5. Exploit the one channel that works

Steps 1 to 3 are well suited for a workshop scenario. Bring the product team and relevant stakeholders together, have discussions and ultimately make a decision on what channels to test. While Steps 4 and 5 are not part of the workshop they are well suited to be tested in a Design Sprint for example.

Avoid two pitfalls when discussion customer acquisition channels

In these workshops I observe two common patterns that we need avoid: wanting to go “full push” for one channel or wanting to explore multiple opportunities simultaneously.

Four important principles to keep in mind while fleshing out the channels with your team:

  1. Test customer acquisition channels that you are not familiar with and that your competition is ignoring.
  2. You have to test a channel before you know if it works.
  3. Only when there is evidence of sucess will we continue to invest.
  4. Move on to the next distribution channel, when you have gotten all growth out of it.

Help your team make a decision

Want to efficiently navigate your team to find the next customer acquisition channel? Try my Miro template to take your next steps towards traction.

Open Template in Miroverse

👋 Hej, I am Julian Peters. But most people call me Jupe.

I work as a consultant in Strategy, Product and UX from Dinslaken, Germany. If you liked what you read, please share the link, toot me or subscribe to my RSS feed.