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27 learnings from running a marketplace business

27 learnings from running a marketplace business

Here are 27 learnings and lessons from running a peer to peer crowdfunding marketplace business. Including people first, community over competitors, people need people, 3 different and important types of online identities, focus your people and your product, products have to be (1) easy to learn (2) easy to use (3) easy to share, concentrate on people who are in action state not test state and find your dunbar number

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dannydenhard

July 08, 2020
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  1. 27 Learnings From Leading A Marketplace Business July 2020 Danny

    Denhard www.focus.business
  2. Here are 27 learnings from 4 years & £220m +

    in transactions from 7 million great & supportive people
  3. User Tells Their Story % of users would create a

    story and go on to raise money for their friends, family or community Unlock More Stories The more pick up and sharing that happened the more stories created Shares Story For Support Shares story to their audience and becomes the marketing for their story and the service Press Pick Up If story is shared enough or sold into press the story and service is pushed. Stories Get Stories Loop Marketplace Overview
  4. People First

  5. Always put community & customer first. Always over the competition

    but… Always respect your enemy. aka users #1 Learning
  6. Always put community & customer first. Always over competition but…

    Always respect your enemy. Competitors will often have small wins and make you feel like you need to worry about them more than you actually do. Ensure you have a very strong and confident strategic plan and roadmap. Be ruthless in knowing your own direction and drive change in your market. Be the brand to own the market #1 Learning
  7. People always need people People give to people #2 Learning

  8. People always need people People give to people In the

    5 years working in the peer to peer Crowdfunding space, people turn to people for help, (dunbar’s kin or ‘super family’ first) friends, family, community and strangers to help them or those people closest to them. Not pages or products It is baked into our DNA, we crave being part of a tribe, it is how we survive. We need love & support #2 Learning
  9. +There Are 3 Important Internet Identities 1 3 2 PUBLIC

    PRIVATE SEMI PRIVATE #3 Learning
  10. +There Are 3 Important Internet Identities 1 3 2 PUBLIC

    The mass sharers, those who understand the power of social media & sharing information with as many people as possible. These public people will help spread your product far and wide. But if they have an issue you will know about extremely quickly. PRIVATE There is a portion of internet users who want to stay private, share their information privately and only to their nearest and dearest. These are savvy users but does not naturally increase the reach of your product. SEMI PRIVATE The typical internet user, will offer as much information they are comfortable with however they have private social media accounts, they want to share to their friends and family and don’t have huge following. If they have a good experience - they will recommend you to an extended circle.
  11. +Know What To Focus Your People On IMPORTANT Educating all

    users is essential. Understand what the updates (over notifications) are and what the next actions are. Educate & Inspire! If you are not showing users what they should be doing, now ➡ next & ➡ in the future you confuse people & they will need help from customer support & Product updates become an effort vs reward vote and growth slows. #4 Learning
  12. Product

  13. Your Product has to be easy to learn Easy to

    use Easy to share #5 Learning
  14. Your Product has to be easy to learn Easy to

    use Easy to share You have to learn how to use the product or you won’t Can’t use it, won’t use it, won’t hit the objective Share with friends, family, strangers Why? #5 Learning
  15. Social networks & emails are filtered far more than people

    realise #6 Learning
  16. Social networks & emails are filtered far more than people

    realise Social networks hate external links, to gain visits you need to share a URL, private messengers and groups best way to leverage or remove the algorithmic filtering. Sending Emails to friends doesn’t feel very normal, we panic or we question if it might be spam. If you send to a mass list Outlook and Gmail are very strict on this. Sending the same copy and paste text seems easiest but rarely helps and often results in filtering #6 Learning Hint: use instant messengers, SMS & group chat to win
  17. Product decay rate will kill you by a thousand cuts

    Product enhancements are vital No innovation = silent market share loss #7 Learning
  18. Target people at need state and action state Need to

    do something Essential to take action ASAP Product Use 0% 25% 50% 75% 100% Test State Need State Action State #8 Learning
  19. Target people at need state and action state Need to

    do something Essential to take action ASAP Product Use 0% 25% 50% 75% 100% Test State Need State Action State Focus your efforts here ⤵ #8 Learning
  20. Build for the early adopters, Not The everyday user #9

    Learning
  21. Build for the early adopters, Not The everyday user Early

    adopters show everyday users the way and the tools to use Everyday users need the right swarm of users to show them the way forward, otherwise you have a lot of test users and onboarding & hand holding has to be incredible. #9 Learning Why?
  22. +Bonus Just remember with marketplace business your users / community

    are your “free” marketing channels. Leverage this with them.
  23. Strangers Fundraiser Family and close friends Colleagues Friends of friends

    People with same interests Help Find Your Customers “Dunbar Number” Strangers #10 Learning
  24. Strangers Fundraiser Family and close friends Colleagues Friends of friends

    People with same interests Strangers Help Find Your Customers “Dunbar Number” 1 - 17 1 - 5 1 - 10 Circles # of Supporters 1 - 100 1 - 1m #10 Learning
  25. Identify your core strength and focus on moat building Brand

    was key, as was adding reactance Extending your features, building relationships, enhancing network effects #11 Ensure users take control of their story & distribution Learning
  26. Marketing PPC SEO Brand PR Press Product & Dev Customer

    Support Customer Success Early Comms Lines CRM Data & Insight Growth #12 Learning
  27. Marketing PPC SEO Brand PR Press Product & Dev Customer

    Support Customer Success Maturing Comms Lines Growth Growth Retention Data & Insight #12 Learning
  28. Growth: Enable someone or create a small group to concentrate

    on growth. Get them thinking completely differently. Step back & out to win Think: Optimisations + Features + innovation + + These people can rotate, it’s important you get fresh ideas & outside your market #13 Learning
  29. Culture

  30. Set up a crystal clear Focus metric Set up clear

    action plans to get to your goals Clear goals guide everyone #14 Learning
  31. Set up a crystal clear Focus metric Set up clear

    action plans to get to your goals Clear goals guide everyone North Stars are often difficult for everyone to know they can influence directly Focus metric = One core metric to focus all other metrics #14 Learning
  32. Empowered caring people will empower users #15 Learning

  33. Empowered caring people will empower users A team that cares

    and genuinely wants to help will empower your users and help guide your product team to build for your community of users and their networks. #15 Learning
  34. Watch the market everyday Growth - Hyper Growth - Maturity

    #16 Learning
  35. Watch the market everyday Growth - Hyper Growth - Maturity

    - 2020 0 2.5 5 7.5 10 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 Hyper Growth M aturity 2020 Growth #16 Learning
  36. Or 2020 Growth - Hyper Growth - Maturity - 2020

    0 1.3 2.5 3.8 5 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 Hyper Growth M aturity 2020 Growth #16 Learning Discuss regularly, review, communicate and prioritise product updates & pricing regularly
  37. Just one small issue or disagreement can be HUGE &

    negatively impact you at growth stage #17 Learning
  38. No team(s) silo’s Update as one team against their own

    metric they are targeted to move. Roll up to the Focus metric #18 Focus metric = One core metric to focus all other metrics Learning M M M M M M M M M
  39. Build an environment of sharing data, insights and analysis. Build

    a culture of internal coaching, teaching and collaboration. Build a business to identify and develop talent & trusting your people and strategy #19 Learning
  40. Strategy

  41. Think: 5 Years Plan: 3 Years Action: 1 Year Important

    for internal teams to Focus around & strive for Important for Product & Dev Important for Product, Marketing, Customer teams, & Growth Strategy & Revisit twice a year #20 Learning
  42. A list of tactics is not strategy Short term thinking

    hinders everything you want to achieve Start Tactical & You Won’t Break Out Of That Thinking Cross Functionally Only looking at the short term will blind you #21 Learning
  43. Build agreed principles that work for everyone Stand Up Daily

    Sit Down weekly Principles are essential: Agree on comms, prioritisation, tools usage, updates flow One master dashboard, not death by dashboard. Anyone can create a report, the insights and analysis are the actionable business changing elements. #22 Learning
  44. Build agreed principles that work for everyone Stand Up Daily

    Sit Down weekly Principles are essential: Agree on comms, prioritisation, tools usage, updates flow One master dashboard, not death by dashboard. Anyone can create a report, the insights and analysis are the actionable business changing elements. #22 Learning
  45. You have to plan for the very best And for

    the very worst Raising money that solves a life changing problem Raising money for an action that goes goal When national tragedies hit Bad actors are everywhere, especially when there is potential financial gain #23 Learning
  46. Strangers want to help Strangers just haven’t seen your story

    or hasn’t been able to connect with it yet #24 Learning
  47. There will be milestones and key events that will make

    and break you (teams and performance) #24 Learning
  48. Ripples Ripples = Seem large impact but are just surges

    Waves = Momentum shifts Vs Waves #25 Learning Understand the waves and ride the first and control the second wave
  49. Unpicking what exactly worked and why, is extremely difficult, but

    do everything you can to unpick & optimise! & drive users towards it. Communicate the importance of these finding regularly #26 Learning
  50. Find the winning daily and weekly metric and optimise, optimise

    and optimise Daily = Shows your pulse Weekly = Shows your health Monthly = Too late to make positive changes & again. #27 Learning
  51. +Bonus Think of the upstart team / collective as a

    sports team, one bad player can effective the squad. One great addition can propel you. Know when to coach, mentor & get out of the way!
  52. Always keep in mind There will be one penny drop

    moment that validates everything you are doing
  53. 53 +Thank You From Focus DANNY DENHARD The world of

    work has lost its focus! Focus was created to cut through the noise, cut through confusion and ensure businesses focus on developing their organisations and performance. Get FOUNDER E: DANNY@FOCUS.BUSINESS W: WWW.FOCUS.BUSINESS/MANIFESTO