James: So when you were studying these unicorns, what sort of patterns did you see emerge that you were not seeing in the smaller businesses?
Kory: Yeah, there’s a couple of really clear ones. One of the first things you realize is that they’re very data-driven. And we’ve talked about data. But they insist they need accurate data, because they’ve got millions of dollars of investor money on the line. So they’re not going to settle for a hunch, or we think this is working. So you’re going to find them really data-driven.
They have a culture of testing, they’ve always got an experiment. They’re iterating. So they get something out to market quickly, they get the feedback from it, and then they swing again with another version. So they’re constantly iterating. They’re not worried about getting it perfect before they go live.
Then they realize that growth in a business requires more than one person. You can’t just say, okay, you’re the marketer, and you’re going to solve all the marketing problems in the business. They saw that you have to get the product development team involved in marketing, and the customer service team and the data team.
So they create growth teams, which is basically, let’s take the intelligence of a group of people and focus them on growth. And the combination of all those factors, it’s just been successful over and over and over again, and now you wouldn’t think of starting a business, a tech startup without having a growth team. It’s normal for them. Whereas outside that world, it’s not as familiar to us. But those are some of the core things they do differently.
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