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What A 30 Day Marketing Sprint Did For My Startup – User Growth Rockets

A little over 30 days ago I set myself a “30 in 30” day challenge.

With the release of the new version of Task Pigeon the goal was to go through a sales and marketing sprint.

The aim was twofold:

  1. To test and trial new marketing tactics
  2. To increase user numbers and engagement

As one comment on the original post pointed out:

“You’ve got 8 goals which is massive to achieve all in 30 days. its massive to achieve them in 6 months.”

I knew it would be tough, but I wanted (and needed) to give it my best shot.

So what went right?

User Numbers Grew An >30% Week on Week

As my users waited, and waited for the release of the new and improved version of Task Pigeon active weekly users dropped to less than 20 in the last week of July. The number of actions performed followed suit.

As a result I set the goal to grow user numbers (and actions) by 30% compounding week on week.

This would mean that:

  • User numbers would have to go from 18 to 52 during this time.
  • User actions would also have to increase from 22 to 63 over the same period of time.

Admittedly the result was coming off a very low base but we exceeded that goal!

User numbers hit 66, an average growth rate that exceeded the 30% week on week target. Yes, its still a low number but when I combine that with the feedback I have received from our users (both new and old) its clear that the new version has significantly improved the usability for our users (and therefore the potential of what I am trying to deliver).

User Engagement Grew on >55% Week on Week

More importantly however User Actions grew more than 57% Week on Week and hit 136 actions.

This has also seen average actions per user go from roughly 1 per week (i.e. low average engagement) to more than 2 (getting better, but a long way to go).

Writing 30 Blog Posts Grew Traffic 183.77%

Task Pigeon 30 Day Challenge Blog Traffic Growth

One of my original goals during the 30 day period was to write 30 blog posts. This was all about testing a marketing theory to see if more content had a direct correlation to traffic, and more importantly what type of content drives the most engagement.

During the course of the 30 days I achieved this goal and wrote over 30 blog posts. 27 were published on the Task Pigeon blog directly with a number of others finding their way onto the internet as guest posts for other sites.

While not all articles got the traffic I hoped for (or think they deserved) page views increased by 183.57%, a fantastic result.

This test also gave me better insight into the content that works well and the content that falls flat. I did however seem to get it more right than wrong as the average time on page jump to 3:24, an increase of 27.29%.

Cracking Facebook Advertising and Hitting 2 Cents Per Engagement

 

How I Finally Cracked Facebook Ads And Got My Cost Per Engagement Down To 2 Cents! - Elon Musk Ad

This was not an individual goal going into the 30 day period, but rather a side effect of the work I did in writing so many posts. As part of that process I wanted to test some marketing content distribution channels and gave Facebook another crack. In the past I have always struggled with Facebook as an advertising medium. I couldn’t get the cost down to a level where it made sense.

That all changed with my post about “What’s on Elon Musk’s to do list”. By using the AND statement to segment my audience I managed to get the cost per engagement down to only 2 cents, and a Cost Per Click of 11 cents on a follow up campaign.

Adding 800+ Subscribers Per Week To My Email List

I set a goal to grow my email marketing list by 30 people a week over ~5 weeks. That would have added up to 150 over the course of the period. I know that simply waiting for these people to stumble across my content and then subscribe to my newsletter wasn’t going to cut it.

As a result I took a manual approach to reaching out to new contacts via Linkedin (I used a VA to manage this as it was time consuming) and managed to add over 800 contacts to my marketing list.

They have opted into marketing content around management, leadership, productivity, etc so my follow up challenge is to see what percent of these contacts convert to eventual users. The contacts are all legitimate and round first world countries such as Australia, US, Canada, UK, etc. This wasn’t just a random list I bought or something else like that.

So that’s the good news, but not everything went right.

Here’s where I hit middle ground

Trying to Get 30 Backlinks

Getting 30 high quality backlinks is a time consuming process. Originally I wanted these all to come from guest posts and articles written on Task Pigeon.

From this perspective I did fall short.

That said however I did get some great coverage across a number of high quality websites. In fact my post on finally cracking Facebook advertising got over 4,000 views on Growth Hackers and was also featured in their newsletter.

4000 Views on Growth Hackers For Task Pigeon Blog

On top of that I had guest posts published on:

And got another link here.

Only Building 5 Landing Pages

Creating 10 landing pages was something that was completely under my control. This was all part of my efforts to continue to improve my SEO strategy.

Reviewing the website and landing page for Task Pigeon did however throw up some other areas of improvement that were needed. As a result I needed to balance this with creating the new landing pages and in the end only hit 5.

Unfortunately the tool I use for measuring my SEO results only updates the number of pages that rank in the top 50 at the end of each month. Given the 30 days only went to 21st of September most of my recent SEO efforts are missing from this chart. You can however see that between July and August I went from 146 ranked keywords to 220.

30 Day Challenge - SEO result for Keywords

And finally I fell short in a number of areas

30k Unique Visitors Was A Few Steps Too Far

This was a massive long shot. To get 30,000 unique visitors, let alone just 30,000 visitors was (in hindsight) way too optimisitic. I guess I had got caught up in the number 30 and was trying to choose a number that went with that theme, rather than something that was a stretch but still achievable.

I got nowhere close.

Even though traffic to the blog and my home page were up significantly I only managed a touch over 3,500 users and 5,000 individual page views.

Still No Recurring Customers

The most important goal was of course getting recurring paying customers. I had set the goal of 30. A big stretch given I went into the 30 day period with only 75 or so active monthly users from the period prior.

I didn’t hit this goal but I still bought on board another 19 paying customers via a campaign running through Stack Social. This was actually a jump from the month prior and seeing as users who find that deal often sign up from a trial first before buying it, is at least a positive sign.

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