Inside Angel Investing: Teach Me Everything You Know About Virality. Lesson No. 1 -- There is No Such Thing as True Virality
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Rahul Vohra already knew there was a startup CEO + productivity love connection at his first startup, Rapportive. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have built the contact management email extension. What he didn’t know was how much that affinity would create a customer acquisition flywheel for Rapportive, and how, given the right product and target customer, it could be engineered. Here’s how Vohra describes seeing this flywheel in action. “At Rapportive, the product would spread horizontally between companies as founders and CEOs would talk about this amazing tool they had found,” Vohra says. “And then we noticed something remarkable, the product would spread vertically, firstly from the CEO up to their board, which would kickstart even more horizontal growth as board members can sit on as many as 10 boards. And secondly, from the CEO into their executive team and managers, which would kickstart another wave of horizontal growth as folks moved jobs and loved to talk about their own productivity … It was a very happy accident.” Happy accidents happen, but not at Vohra’s latest startup, email service Superhuman. This time that customer acquisition flywheel has been deliberately engineered into the product. The good news? You can do it too. And we’ll say it. You are going to want to take notes on how to be an exceptional startup CEO from Vohra. (Here’s a monstrously popular piece he did on finding product market fit: https://firstround.com/review/how-superhuman-built-an-engine-to-find-product-market-fit/, and for a survey tool to help you do exactly as Vohra recommends check out: viable.fit.) Not to mention how to have the best shot at getting his attention when he has his angel investor hat on.
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