Growth hacking is all about numbers. There is one metric that will affect all other metrics: the North Star Metric. Following is a deep dive into this complex but fascinating topic.

An important concept for growth hackers is the North Star Metric. Growth hacking guru Sean Ellis defined this concept as “the single metric that best captures the core value that your product delivers to customers and is the key to driving sustainable growth across your full customer base.”

Examples of the North Star Metric

Some examples of this key metric are:

  • total reading time (Medium);
  • daily active users (Facebook);
  • booked nights (Airbnb).

How do you discover your organization’s North Star Metric? First of all, you have to know the value that the most loyal customers derive from the use of your product. To find this out, there are some methods to consider:

  • First, the simplest method: ask the customer himself! You can accomplish this through client interviews, questionnaires, and even social media.
  • Ask yourself the question: “Does your proposition solve a problem that other market parties do not?” Answering this question is just what many disruptive organizations did.
  • Use data to see how the product is actually used. How this plays out can be seen in a classic case study. Burbn was a location-based, social network. By looking into the user data, the developers found out Burbn was mostly used for sharing photography. So, the app was stripped of most of its extraneous features and was renamed “Instagram.” The rest is history…

Now that you better understand the core value of your product, you have to quantify this in one value. In many businesses, this could be rather straightforward, for example, the number of products sold. A digital platform can define its North Star Metric as total downloads or new users.

In the non-profit world, defining a North Star Metric will be even more complex. For an NGO, it could be the number of people who are aware of a specific problem.

Next Step: KPIs

When you know your North Star Metric, other numbers will help you make this metric grow. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) then come into play. These actionable metrics are numbers that help you to answer the questions about the future of your business. They have some requirements: KPIs should be specific, measurable, realistic, relevant, and time-bound.

Some examples of KPIs are:

  • the traffic on the website;
  • the click-through rate on your social posts;
  • the engagement rate of your Twitter messages;
  • the number of qualified leads;
  • the number of customers at your exhibition stand.

These metrics are stepping stones to your ultimate goal: the North Star Metric.

To Be Continued…

Now that you fully understand one of the key concepts of growth hacking, it is time to delve deeper into this subject. Watch this space because there is a lot I want to tell you about this fascinating topic in the coming months.

Learn From The Best! Download

The 25 Best Growth Hacks!