Growth Hacking, Retention, Acquisition, Conversion: Growthmint

Day 4: Metrics

Metrics are the specific data points or combinations of data points that give insight into the health of your business. This is why getting your metrics right is so essential to your work on growth.

Action

List out what product metrics you are tracking right now. Keep this for further actions.

Vanity Metrics

It’s easy to focus on metrics that have little value to your business, especially when they seem impressive. These are called vanity metrics and they are numbers that look good on the surface, but don't have much bearing on the the key parts of your business.

Any time spent with a vanity metric is a waste, but it becomes a lot more dangerous when important decisions are being made off that metric.

Companies often focus on vanity metrics because they can much better than metrics more closely related to their health.

Pro Tip

One business model’s vanity metrics may not be another’s. For example, while page views is a vanity metric for SaaS companies, it can be an important metric for companies that rely on advertising revenue.

Action

Go over the list of metrics you made earlier and look for vanity metrics. For SaaS, these will typically be weak acquisition metrics.

Breaking Down Your Metrics

Metrics can and should be split into smaller groups to learn more about those groups. Breaking your metrics down opens up insights that were unavailable before.

For example, you might be measuring how much each new customer costs to bring in. Your customers will come in all types of channels - one sees a retweet of a blog post, another clicks on your google search ad.

You want to know the most profitable channel to pour more resources into and the least profitable so you can stop using it.

There are many ways to split up your metrics. It depends on which area of stage of your relationship with customers you're working on.

Example

Common ways to break down metrics include: the week a customer signed up for your product, the way the customer found your product (whether through a blog post, social media site or ad) or by acquisition campaign.

Pro Tip

Just like it’s easy to get overwhelmed with too many metrics, it’s also easy to over segment your metrics. Keep it simple in the beginning.

Action

Look at your list of metrics - what metrics should you break down?

Focus

There are hundreds if not thousands of metrics you could track with your product. How often a customer returns to your product, how many people visit a certain page on your site, what marketing tactic brings in the most customers, and more.

To keep from being overwhelmed you have to prioritize a small number of metrics. For example, after reviewing your product for growth opportunities, you may determine that while you’re bringing in customers, you’re not keeping them.

With a goal of keeping more customers, you can then narrow down the list of metrics to those that directly affect that goal.

Keeping highly focused on your metrics translates to better focus across the rest of your business.

Pro Tip

Your resources determine how many metrics you can track. You’ll want to focus on a small subset of what’s available.

Action

Take a look at your list of metrics and determine the top three.