#5 Getting 7000+ Signups in 7 Days with $0 in marketing...

We launched EntryLevel and our sign ups went off the charts. Here's how.

Hey folks!

We launched EntryLevel on Friday (January 29th)!  Our hypothesis was that students needed work experience to break out of the no experience - no job cycle. So, created a mentor-driven learning program that gives students real work experience and a portfolio to leave with.  In all honesty, we launched without much confidence in our early growth prospects. We set a goal of 600 signups by Friday and didn’t really know what to expect. This is how it happened…

  • We built a landing page and used some quick usability hub experiments to see what resonated with users. Our sample size was 17 users - not bad given our launch deadline, but if we re-did this I would begin the testing process earlier to get more user feedback.  

  • We designed a referral campaign to incentivise users to invite 10 friends each and join our PRO tier.  We created a PRO tier upsell which gave users time with the mentor, live sessions, premium support, and other perks benefits.

  • I had a hunch that many people (especially university students) would try to game their way out of paying for things. So, we thought, why don’t we value the PRO tier at $199 to boost up the perceived value, then give users an easy option to avoid paying? 

  • After creating the website and offer, we planned our growth strategy around Facebook group sharing. When sharing to groups as a new group member,  you have to make sure you establish trust and provide value if you don’t have an existing name. Sometimes, even when providing value, group moderators won’t approve your posts. 

  • For half of the groups, I created a content piece called “How to get an internship or graduate position in 2021” as a long format piece with a quick meme I made about the chicken and the egg problem of experience vs your first job. My offering of EntryLevel was buried as one of the tips for securing a job (one of four tips). Overall, this post was packed full of value for my audience, hence why it did so well.  It’s easy to see through fake articles, so writing something valuable is really key to good marketing.

  • For the other half of the groups, I tried to create a personable post about how I and a few friends of mine had created a free offering to help people. This ended up doing just as well and generally had a better conversion rate as it didn’t require people to read as much content.

  • We posted across 4 university discussion boards and 20 different product, data, and business-related Facebook groups across the week

  • By Monday, we had 385 sign-ups, well on our way to our original goal of 600 sign-ups.

  • From Tuesday to Thursday, our referral campaigns started exploding. Our list grew to 1k overnight, then 2k, 3k, and continued until we finally slowed down at the 7k mark. Our LinkedIn had dozens of tags.

  • By Wednesday we stopped promoting EntryLevel and put 1000-person caps on each course. We wanted to make sure we could deliver the best course before continuing rapid growth.

  • We had 89 users who had invited over 10 people, with some of them inviting 50,  100, and 150+ people.

  • When we reached out to our ‘super referrers’ we learned what Facebook groups they shared  EntryLevel to which demographics were responding best to our programs.

Interesting outcomes

As you can see, a lot of our assumptions were mistaken. However, this data has given us great insight into the problem we are working on, and what our customer’s motivations are. Now to start building the product! 

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Until next time,

Ajay