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Hacking Growth.

Folks! Yes, we apologize. Evidently it has been silent here for a little while, but a good amount of progress has been made. At Fray, we help people discover the unique talents and skills of local people and merchants around you through a mobile-based platform. And this vision is starting to distill in a great product.

We’ve always believed in the following statement: product should be where users are. Cuz’ in the end, user acquisition is a prerequisite to startup success. “How do the users get to where the product is?” and “How does the product get to where the users are?”. Destination vs. distribution. At first, it appears to be a rather simple distinction. But its eloquent complexity brings about rather greater difficulties.

Hacking growth

Hacking growth serves a better purpose than traditional marketing. We’ve talked about destination and distribution before. This part embeds those thoughts into tangible actions we ourselves utilize in order to find our growth mechanics. Let us try to educate you a little here (as far as we can):

Common forms of distribution include widgets (Yelp), code embeds (Youtube), API provisioning, browser extensions as well as apps or dedicated landing pages (Path moments). All of these distribution aspects deliver feeds from a product. And so do we, through our app; where users discover and share services in consumption mode and request services in production mode. We’ve designed landing pages that illustrate the used case of a particular Fray. Apart from offering potential new users with information of what Fray entails, these pages serve only one purpose: get new users to download and discover our product.

(Find more on this stuff at: www.platformed.info run by a Sangeet Paul Choudary, a great growth hacker!).

Throughout our site - which is based around a number of mini-stories - we try to shed light on the purpose of Fray from both demand- and supply side. Check out a little preview here (photos from iPhone 5). And don’t forget to share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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The website, amongst other tools, is obviously part of our ‘destination’ strategy. But we don’t want to put ourselves out there all ‘vulnerable’ (yet), so we’re not giving away too much. Oh, and we’re also not claiming that we grasp everything of this stuff. It’s just darn difficult…But this is a start. 

Anyways, typical distribution tools are email newsletters. Which – hopefully – increase your repeat visits. There’s a big part on distribution from Peter Thiel here: http://blakemasters.tumblr.com/post/22405055017/peter-thiels-cs183-startup-class-9-notes-essay

Thiel claims the distribution part amongst startups is underestimated in its importance. We agree. 

Prototyping

We’ve been prototyping our mobile app using Keynote and testing its usability through a tool called Usabilla (www.usabilla.com). Keynote is a great tool for prototyping and is actually used by Apple to mockup apps, besides being used for presentations. The trick is a simple cut-and-paste technique combined with the ‘action’ animation.

Keynote 

1.     Copy the top and bottom part of an iPhone 5 (or any other device) as illustrated below:

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2.     Insert your image and fit it to the iPhone screen’s width (don’t worry about the length for now).

3.     Go to Inspector > yellow diamond > move

4.     This is the tricky part, which you’ll have to understand. You can now select in what direction you want your image to move (and at what speed).

5.     And BAM. You’ve just made your app come to live, and your developers will love you for it.

See image below:

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When prototyping, Usabilla is another great tool for UX testing. Unfortunately we’ve lost the results of our test (due to our own wrong-doing) but it’s a quick and dirty way to deploy tests. You can allow users to scroll through static images. With the right survey setup, you discover where users click and why they click on specific area’s of an image, button or link. Here’s an example of a heatmap:

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Do you have anything you’d like to share or do you feel we’ve accidently left out something important here, then please use the contact form to reply.

We’ll appreciate your feedback!

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