Bond Tips: 10 Alternative Growth Tools

July 20, 2022
Posted by
Romain Baron

Summer 2022! The perfect time to get creative and do things I normally don't have the time for. The last few weeks I have been trying some new Growth tools and in this article I am sharing my experience. I scored each one and took the effort to describe each and every one of them, so make sure you keep reading!

Growth Tool table including scores

1. DM INTROS - Score: 4.33 out of 5

What is it?
Meeting Decision makers directly to optimise their time (and yours). Decision makers are often busy, but this does not mean they are not open for new solutions or inspiration. You just got to let them know you take them seriously and don't waste their time. So, for this method, I paid to meet decision makers via a third-party introduction tool.
Why does it work?
I started with a list of 85 super targeted accounts with high potential MRR and managed to meet about half of them using andclose.com. I met exactly the type of decision maker I was looking for and I closed much faster and more! We closed 50% of the people we meet... and pretty sure another 25% are coming soon.

2. PARTNER DIRECTORY - Score: 3.67 out of 5

What is it? Indirect lead generation through partners like consultants, agencies, VAR, MSP, IS, OEM, ISV and distributors have been around for ages, but with an ever growing tech stack per client, your clients need additional services to implement and adopt all that tech. The answer is a public directory of curated partners who your customers can turn to when they need additional services.
Why does it work? Traditionally, Tech companies use their partners as lead generators, but there is extra power in having a strong partner program & public directory. Most partners don’t really care about your commission, they much more prefer business in return and extra revenue through your network of clients. 2-way partnerships increase their loyalty towards you over other solutions. If you need help, Bond Agency is specialised at finding the right partners for you.

3. ADVISORY BOARD - Score: 3.5 out of 5

What is it? Working with experienced business consultants and external advisory boards are very popular in tech and rightly so. However, the vast majority I have watched over the years are hidden within startups, when projects are done for founders and c-level only. Why not involve staff who is responsible for executing these findings? Open it up and your whole company will benefit. 
Why does it work?
The results from advisory boards are much more valuable if the input comes from the whole company. Also sharing the findings and implementation of these results by the whole team sees much higher adoption! And as everyone can see the willingness to adopt and grow, it brings much more engagement from both the advisors as the team. And what about staff retention in these times, just by providing them the opportunity to learn new things and grow professionally. 

4. PLUS or ENTERPRISE PLAN- Score: 3.33 out of 5

What is it? Exclusivity sells! The time of the 3 pricing plans on SaaS websites, to me, is over. Make your big accounts feel special from other clients by creating a distinct page on a premium plan.  
Why does it work?
It is a tool for your team to convince clients they are special and it reduces the sentiment of being too cheap for them. I have seen a great adoption at the clients where I introduced this. And let's be honest, if big companies like Shopify PLUS, Typeform Enterprise do it, it must be working right? 

5. PREMIUM GIFTING - Score: 3.33 out of 5

What is it? We all love gifts! I have started sending gifts from amazing cool brands. No, not the cheap gifts that destroy our planet, but sustainable and useful gifts.
Why does it work?
Cold calling, email sequences, ads, we are all fight for the attention of the same clients. Sending the right gifts will make you stand out, as it shows that you understand your prospect (the stuff you find on https://thingtesting.com/ is amazing!) and originality. On a side note, I tried the gifting process myself and even if the ROI is amazing, it’s so time consuming. So I used andopen.co that automates the whole process for me and I can directly sync everything to my CRM to track results and costs. 

6. PARTNER INTERVIEWS - Score: 3.17 out of 5

What is it? We all know the client testimonials, and although they can be powerful, there is some doubt on how transparent they are and most often not everyone can relate to the specific situation or that one client. That is why I found that it is actually much better to ask your partners, with their knowledge of the market and experience, to share something about your product. 
Why does it work?
Your trusted partners are great ambassadors with a big impact. Find your most interesting partners, who look good on camera, and go for it! They could be a refreshing voice in your network, but also have their own network! It gives a lot credibility to your content strategy and your partners love a bit of promotion or backlinks. Wetransfer with WePresent is a real inspiration.

7. HUBSPOT TA - Score: 3 out of 5

What is it? Hubspot Target Account. Just check your sales team metrics using this feature and nothing else for at least 2 months. 
Why does it work?
It’s a game changer. Sales peeps are focused on finding decision makers, booking meetings and completing a set of prospecting tasks. The default reporting is just perfect as there is no need to customise anything.

8. EMAIL REFERRAL - Score: 2.83 out of 5

What is it? Ok, I admit, this is a bit of an old school one. But if you find the right way to compensate your partners and/or clients, and keep them engaged, it does bring good results. 
Why does it work?
I tried all the fancy referral softwares that could help me automate the sign up process, create cool referrer leaderboards, help me with commission trackers and create unique referrer URLs. But the one that really works for me is still the personal relationship, where your partner introduces someone in the company by email without any forms. That being said, some products have managed to make it perform really well so don’t take my words for granted.

9. SLACK COMMUNITY - Score: 2.5 out of 5

What is it? Community has to be the work of 2022! And for a reason, it is actually quite quick to grow to more than 100+ members. However, the challenge is to have people regularly posting on channels. So engagement is key!
Why does it work?
Once you have managed to get decent engagement, I found that discussions with prospects were much more friendly and less salesly. We did quite well with the Bond Community (Tech partner) and Tony Order (F&B). We followed the advice of Bailey Richardson, Kai Elmer Sotto, and Kevin Huynh using their book “get together”.  You can also find some good examples of communities helping the growth of the main product such as Memberstack and Memorasily

10. INTEGRATION LAUNCH - Score: 2.5 out of 5

What is it? Proper integration communication both internally & externally is quite a big deal. If each department has done their homework before throwing the baby to the next department, it becomes a huge sales channel (Google sheet: Integration Release Plan). 
Why does it work?
First of all, I don't think it works when marketing come up with some basic product info & FAQ bullet points. To make a successful integration release, you need ownership from someone who feels involved and can transfer the excitement of this integration to the other teams. And it’s not only Sales, think about the upsell opportunities via your Customer Success or Support team! The journey differs per department, but it all starts with internal engagement and educating everyone throughout the process.

So, this is my top 10 of Growth Tools that caught my eye. I will be playing around with them and keep tweaking them to improve the results even more. In addition, I just started trying out these 3 as well, which I could not score yet but which are interesting anyway!

1. GATED CASE STUDY or WHITE PAPER - Score: TBA

What is it? You all probably know this one too, but this is also a great way of generating MQLs using specific, quality content. The topics in Case studies or Whitepapers can be used to reach specific people in organizations, and makes them feel attracted to your brand. Plus it’s fairly easy to do it with Hubspot and combined with a custom chatbot, it’s really powerful. I think I got inspired by Klarna, but it seems that they have stopped it…Shame! If you have the traffic and/or network, this is something that you can easily include in your Marketing Content Calendar.

2. COMMISSION ONLY SALES REPS - Score: TBA

What is it? We are currently building a high-impact, remote sales team that is 100% commission-based and remote. They are trained in the office but work from home. Unlike previous projects, they won’t act as a separated team from the people that are full time. They won’t be some sort of call-centers that are here to support, qualify or cold call or book demos for the full time reps. Nope. They are all sharks in charge of finding their food. There will be 5 teams and each will be a mix of existing sales people as well as commission-based only. Each team will compete against each other to get an amazing monthly bonus based on contract signed. Stay tuned.

3. B2B CREATORS - Score: TBA

What is it? Working with B2B creators means you let people create a post, video or instruction about your product without interfering. I particularly like the instruction videos, where professionals tell other people how they use your product. giving them the freedom to use their creativity in a native way. I just started and this is an area I need to improve. It feels a bit scary to have no control, however it is a great way to show you trust your product (and if there is feedback, you can work on that!). I keep seeing great examples and see myself really influenced by them. Creators sharing content around Hubspot and Webflow are doing such insane jobs for instance. 

Other than this, I am also planning to start using the following 2 softwares, as I heard and seen promising feedback:

- https://clearbit.com/
- https://reveal.co/

This is my 2 cents, hope you found that useful. Feel free to let me know you have any feedback!

Romain

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