Beyond being featured
I recently posted much of this as a response to “How do I get the most out of Product Hunt as a founder?” on Quora. Since then I’ve been asked to republish as a Medium post enough times that I’ve decided to cave. :)
The tagline was “Trello for Hiring” and it seemed to resonate. That day and many thousands of click-thru’s later, Breezy was featured and landed at #2.
Much like the first time you’re written about in TechCrunch or some other popular publication, the experience is thrilling. Seeing your product idea validated and moving the charts gave me my first glimpse our potential. Yes, acquisition offers should be on the table momentarily. :)
Nothing lasts forever and over the coming weeks we watched our referral traffic decline. The burn was nice and slow; certainly much slower than any traditional press I’ve ever done. It was a success.
Over the next couple months I didn’t pay much attention to Product Hunt. We had been featured successfully and I was heads down building product and doing my best to gain some early traction to help with fundraising.
It wasn’t until late Jan after we had completed some early funding, which BTW sourced from Product Hunt, that I had an opportunity to dig back in to our acquisition behavior.
Almost immediately, there staring back at me after 3 months was my old friend Product Hunt, sitting on the top of the stack in the #1 spot for referrals.
Initially I was a little confused. We weren’t listed on the home page anymore. Why we were still seeing all this traffic? Time to find out.
It didn’t take long for me to realize what was happening and in hindsight it was fairly obvious. Yes, Product Hunt was a excellent launch vehicle for some early awareness, but it’s also a directory of great, searchable products.
Where historically companies like GetApp or TrustRadius dominated this use-case for a fee, Product Hunt now came along and crowdsourced it for free. Basically what Digg did to Slashdot, ProductHunt is doing to them.
Unlike an article on TechCrunch which has a lifespan a few days, a well executed Product Hunt strategy would bear fruit indefinitely. Common search terms like “HR” and “Hiring” both returned Breezy HR as the #1 result. Why? Because all product lists on PH, whether on the homepage, search results or a Collection, are ordered not by relevance or name but by a combination of “activity” and vote count. By managing this properly you’re able to stay near the top of relevant search terms as well as Collections.
This was the inflection point in how we thought of and used Product Hunt moving forward.
To feed, support and sustain this marketing channel we made Product Hunt voting part of our ongoing drip marketing efforts where we actively market this call-to-action to new users.
We also actively seek out PH Collections targeting our space, customers or that we feel we’d make a good compliment to (e.g. official Slack integrations) and make an effort to be included. William Hsu’s collection is a great example of this. A simple, well composed tweet has resulted in Breezy being included in numerous downstream Collections and very consistent # of referrals from William’s collection itself.
Now 8 months after being featured, Product Hunt continues to generate a significant and growing number of high quality leads. We’re still #1 in some highly strategic search results, not to mention highly ranked on a number of popular HR / SaaS related collections by founders and “thought leaders”.
So great, you’ve been featured. Now what? Don’t miss the massive opportunity in front of you. Without question, a successful Product Hunt launch can give you a much welcome unfair advantage. Seize it!
Best of luck and happy hunting. Oh, and be sure to vote us up!