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Business Building

Actionable advice on starting and growing business in a data-driven way.

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Never-ending to-do lists, department priorities, and bosses who require you to switch focus to action on their “big new idea” at the drop of a hat. That’s the day-to-day reality for most people in any business.

Then, you turn up to people’s desks like an unwelcome door-to-door salesperson, trying to convince them of the virtues of customer-centricity. You’re not just adding more to their plate but also to think about new ways of working—ways that may conflict with their current priorities. 

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Growth

Sean Ellis coined the term “growth hacking” over a decade ago in 2010. Since then, the term has taken on a life of its own.

“Growth hacking” is the focus of dozens of books, new roles, new departments and teams, new methods of thinking, hundreds of articles, hundreds of guides, hundreds of webinars… you get the idea.

Yet, it still feels very elusive. High-growth companies simply have something most companies don’t, right?

Wrong. The truth is, they simply had a solid growth marketing process.

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Sales and Marketing Misalignment Is Costly—But Avoidable

Sales and marketing misalignment reduces revenue, lowers the quality of customer service, and can even dampen company culture. So how do you get aligned?

This post, based on our experiences, covers: 

  • What misalignment looks like—and what it costs;
  • What alignment looks like—and what you get;
  • Four steps to go from wherever you are now to greater alignment.

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5 Agile Practices That Are Fueling Marketing Teams

Each spring, the annual State of Agile Marketing Report sheds light on how Agile ways of working are being adopted within marketing. This year, for the first time in the report’s three-year history, Agile techniques overtook those maintaining traditional processes. 

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Nailing Product Positioning (w/ Examples)

You’ve spent hundreds of hours perfecting your product and countless meetings defining your brand. You feel great about your team, and it’s obvious to your customers that you care. 

Yet, despite your best efforts, your competition gets all the buzz, and you struggle to stand out. Should you change your prices? Add a new feature? Raise more capital? 

Before you go back to the drawing board, reconsider your product positioning. 

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Differentiation Strategy (and the Sea of Sameness)

Legendary Harvard Business School professor Michael Porter defines competition in business as the struggle to attain a profitable, unique position in the market. Instead of “competing to be the best,” you should “compete to be unique.”

A differentiation strategy is a way to stand out from the noise and give people a reason to choose your business over others. You’d think companies would be all about that.

Curiously, not so much. In fact, it’s the opposite—the world has a massive sameness problem. Sameness is the default for most companies today.

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8 B2B Link-Building Strategies That Never Go Out of Style

There are only a few things I love as much as link building

Owning a new pair of high-end shoes has to be one of those. Damn, I’ll admit—I even have a tradition of treating myself with a beautiful new pair after a successful business trip or client acquisition. 

As a result, my closet is full of shoes that I’ve bought and worn only once. Above, you can see one of my fav pairs of those red-soled shoes (you got the brand, right?) that I took for a walk only once—but they’re so beautiful!

High-fashion, much like link building, is driven by trends. What was fashionable yesterday is old news today.

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How to Create a Demand Funnel (for 44X Revenue)

You know that feeling in the pit of your stomach when you get a calendar invite for an all-hands meeting—with no warning or context? I got one of those in 2018, mere months after I started at data.world as their first growth marketing and demand generation hire.

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What the Best Growth Teams Get Right

Expecting a laundry list of skills or tactics? Don’t.

“Tactics are a dime a dozen,” says GrowthTribe’s David Arnoux, “and what works for me won’t work for you. In the end, it’s all about having a growth engine and running as many (quality) experiments as possible.”

We asked Arnoux and other growth experts what actually works, what matters most, and why so many fall short.

Four things came up over and over again.

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Podcast Strategy: A Roadmap for Businesses

If you’re an active podcast listener, you likely use popular podcast platforms (i.e. “podcatchers”) like iTunes, Soundcloud, and Google Podcasts to download or stream one of more than 1 million podcasts available today.

This article is a podcast roadmap to get you from passive listener to active host. I’m sharing my learnings as a five-year podcast co-host and agency owner who has helped develop podcast strategies for clients. 

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What’s on my mind

Hi, I'm Peep Laja—founder of CXL. I'm a former champion of optimization and experimentation turned business builder.

I do a lot of thinking, reading, and writing around business, strategy, and optimization. I send a weekly newsletter with what's on my mind on this stuff.

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