5 Crucial Weapons for Your Growth Hacking Arsenal

November 21, 2012

1:00 pm

At Speek, we have an inherently viral product. Our conference-calling solution leverages a link (i.e., speek.com/YourName) rather than a phone number or PIN to access conference calls. This in turn leverages the viral invitation model. Registered users invite other non-registered users to phone calls. We then attempt to convert those non-registered users. The viral loop is completed.

We have managed to achieve a very high weekly growth rate with very low marketing spend. The rhythm we’ve used is as follows:

  1. Code something
  2. Push it to production
  3. Measure results
  4. Learn something
  5. Adapt / pivot
  6. Repeat

We never could have done this without the following tools:


Optimizely lets you easily deploy and track A/B tests without bothering your development team. Every single screen within the Speek product – including copy, main graphics, buttons, and form labels – is Optimizely-enabled.

What’s It Good For?

We want to attempt to convert a non-logged in, non-registered user as soon as they have completed their first call on Speek. This usually happens because someone who is already a Speek user invited them to a conference call on their Speek link. We hypothesize that hitting them up as soon as the call is over is one of the most contextually relevant places to do this. But what is the best conversion method? We use Optimizely to A/B test different messages, graphics, and calls to action to see which one works best. This is an ongoing experiment; we are constantly learning from and fine-tuning it.


KISSmetrics is Google Analytics on steroids. It does everything Google Analytics does and then some. We have also found it to be much easier and faster to use. And the kicker: KISS founder Hiten Shah is heavily involved in The Lean Startup, so if your startup follows Lean, you’ll find harmony throughout the KISSmetrics product.

What’s It Good For?

This is the hub for all of our analytics tracking. We may do some very specialized stuff within other tools – mainly around A/B testing or Funnel Analysis – but at the end of the day we spend most of our time in KISS. Most notably we use KISS reports to get up-to-the-minute user registration numbers, user activation numbers, and other key traction analytics.


Unbounce lets you quickly create and deploy landing pages without bothering your development team.

What’s It Good For?

We use Unbounce in conjunction with paid advertising to test various things. For example, we want to see if people would use a business version of Speek. We do some cheap AdWords buys that link to an Unbounce page which has content promoting Speek for business, highlighting features, and announcing that it’s coming soon. We track the click-through rates through the ad campaign to determine if people actually want a business version of Speek before we invest the money to go build one.


Mixpanel provides advanced analytics in terms of segmentation, funnel analysis, and user-retention reporting.

What’s It Good For?

At Speek we primarily use Mixpanel for funnel analysis. Our one-step registration is just a few fields long, but we purposely follow it immediately with a “setup wizard” set of steps to educate our users and onboard them systematically. We want to know exactly if/where users are dropping off during this funnel. We also want to know if this behavior changes depending on whether they register from the home page, through an Unbounce landing page, or through one of our Optimizely experiments during the call.


UserTesting.com lets you find user testers and execute user tests quickly, easily, and cheaply.

What’s It Good For?

We use UserTesting.com for usability testing (so it’s not just a clever name). When we design something new or want to try a new experiment or tactic, we will typically do a quick user test with three to five people. We use UserTesting.com to find testers and execute the test. Then, we just sit down and watch the test videos. Typically, it is obvious from the video whether people will be confused by what we are doing.

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Danny Boice is the CTO of Speek - a 500 Startups-funded startup that lets users do conference calls with a simple link (speek.com/YourName) rather than using phone numbers and PINs. A serial startup/technology entrepreneur and executive, Danny started his career as a software engineer working for startups like Network Solutions and MusicMaker.com in the 90′s. You can find Danny on Twitter @DannyBoice.

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