6 tips to boost a startup’s growth: Our own story

Earlier this month, a friend reached out and pointed us towards an interesting article. The writer wrote a roundup of Amsterdam startups based on the data intelligence firm Mattermark, heavily used by Venture Capitalists and quite expensive.


We are at #6. Holy moly.

As any new business, we started the run as the last one behind. Every day we run. Every day we try to improve our service. Every day we try to make someone’s life better. Our eyes are fixated on the goal in the far distance. Then one day, someone taps us on the back and says: “Hey, you know what? You rank sixth now!”

We stop for a moment there. We look back and see the journey that has led us to where we are.

There are a couple of things contributing to our growth so far.

Six simple, straightforward things that you can easily apply to your business too.

1 — Build partner networks.

By serving a business partner’s network, we accelerate the reach of our service. Together with Rockstart, we created a talent pool to streamline the hiring process of 68+ startups. We also did the same with Startup Juncture.

2 — Outbound marketing.

In the earlier stage, we’ve identified over 50k of leads that hire actively but do not have a system yet. We reach out to them one by one, and follow up via emails or calls. This isn’t a hack and sounds like lots of work, but it gets things done. Honest, hard work always gets things done.

3 — Inbound content marketing.

One thing we learn from the guys at Crew (now part of Dribble):

“To make a substantial impact in how your company is growing, you must create extreme value.”

Our customers are small and medium-sized business that is hiring and recruiters, so we create a resource filled with 200+ job description templates covering all professions, 12 top email templates for hiring, and a handpicked selection of best-selling recruitment ebooks called Recruitee Hiring Resources.

On our blog, we write about super practical hiring tips and hacks, especially the hiring practices of successful folks. We make each page into an SEO-optimized landing page to convert web visitors to signups. Although the blog and Recruitee Hiring Resources are new, the value we give here already gets us the inbound traffic we need.

4 — Advertise on niche channels.

We want to tell our story where people want to listen. With our recruiting platform, we contact sites that have a big audience who is into technology and recruitment. GetAppRecruitingToolsCapterra are some of the great channels that deliver our service to the right customers.

5 — White label and resell agreements.

Several job boards in the UK and Germany approached us for white label deals of our recruiting platform. This opportunity gives us access to 500+ companies, most of which are job ad resellers, in their networks. We have been developing propositions with a few of them.

6 — Word of mouth.

This channel becomes more and more important than we expected. We keep users happy by providing the best support and create extra value as they use our platform. They love us and refer us to their networks. One of our early users, Mark Studholme from Crowdy House, finds our platform so useful that he recommends it to many others. Four of them are now in our list of happy customers.

As Stewart Butterfield put it:

“If you go above and beyond on the customer service side, people are much more likely to recommend you.”

The same goes for influencers: We’ve reached out to 100+ influential bloggers and industry thought leaders to share our interest in HR technology. The ones who replied are always excited and give us lots of suggestions. We combine the feedback into our product development roadmap. After we ship the features, we come back and thank them. People like helping others, and seeing others act on their advice. So when we come back with good results, they’re likelier to become an ambassador for our platform.

Those are six things. Yet, you may have noticed that we haven’t mentioned the most important thing. The underlying principle behind all this growth? Making a good product.

If you make a mediocre product, no marketing stunts, ad placements, or growth hacks can save the day.

In order to make a good product, you have to constantly work on it. Day in, day out.

And that is our run.

* * *

We’d like to thank Aik Deveneijns for breaking the news and review this post, Tim Schumacher (@TimSchu) and Roger Rosweide (@RogerRosweide) for doing the search for the Top 50 New Companies in Amsterdam.

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