When Drake said, "we go zero to 100 real quick," he might as well have been foreseeing the future of Feedcoyote.
In the summer of 2022, Feedcoyote's founder, Dr. Stevens Bonhomme, set out to create a CRM for small businesses. Within months, his vision evolved into a network/productivity tool platform. Fast-forward to today, they are a full blown collaboration network platform. At Feedcoyote, users can build teams, collaborate on projects, and earn money while managing everything in one place, complemented by their integrated productivity tools.
Once Feedcoyote decided to pivot, they started growing quickly - and when I say 'quickly,' I mean it - (currently, they are growing 200% month over month, averaging 1000 users a week).
"In February 2023, we really struggled to get users," Dr. Bonhomme shared. "We were around 220ish users. Now we are past 10,000. We’ve grown 42x in the last nine months, and have users in over 120 countries."
So how did Feedcoyote grow so fast?
Unlike many early-stage startups, spending a lot of money on social media ads wasn't part of their growth strategy. Instead, Feedcoyote's growth strategy can be summed up in six points.
At Feedcoyote, they...
- Primarily focused on one target market
- Conducted massive outreach and engaged directly with users
- Created a platform that people love and find value in
- Built a viral loop
- Adopted a product-led growth approach
- Took customer feedback serious
Let's delve a little deeper into how Feedcoyote executed each strategy.
Feedcoyote primarily focused on one target market
"When we first started the platform, we were trying to serve everybody, and we were all over the place," Dr. Bonhomme shared. "We really needed to refine our product so that we could find that one category to do really well in."
Initially, Dr. Bonhomme built a CRM for small businesses but also envisioned entrepreneurs and freelancers utilizing it to manage their gigs. However, growth remained slow until they pivoted based on user feedback. The decision to focus on freelancers and nurture a community around them fueled substantial growth.
Feedcoyote conducted massive outreach and engaged with users
"In the beginning, I would search for people on LinkedIn, and narrow the search to freelancers, entrepreneurs and small business owners," Dr. Bonhomme shared. "I sent over 1200 messages to those folks. The message was something like, ‘I notice your title is this and I’m trying to build a platform to help people in your space be more productive.’ A lot of people didn't reply, but some did."
Dr. Bonhomme didn't take those replies for granted either.
To seize this opportunity, he responded to everyone and asked them to get on a call. During these discovery calls, he learned something that took Feedcoyote to the next level. In these conversations, they talked about their experiences as a freelancer, their painpoints, and the loneliness that often accompanies freelancing.
"As a seasoned freelancer myself, I understood their painpoint of finding a community and support system. So I decided, ‘How about we just focus on just helping freelancers be more productive and also collaborate with each other so that they can grow their business?’ So from there, we started primarily targeting freelancers and focused on creating a community for them, on top of our productivity tools," Dr. Bonhomme shared.
Feedcoyote created a platform that people love
At the end of the day, you can create what you believe is the best product, but if no one else loves it too, do you really have a business?
At Feedcoyote, they built something that people truly love and find value in. While there is a paid version of Feedcoyote, their freemium version is incredibly useful too. Pricing comes into play when a user decides they want to upgrade to unlock more features. "If you use all of Feedcoyote’s features at the freemium level, and you want more, you can invite three more people to unlock another feature," Dr. Bonhomme said.
Beyond that, people love Feedcoyote because it has everything they need in one place. "Some of our key benefits are freelancers can create projects, manage their calendar, integrate their Zoom or Calendly accounts, and manage their end to end deal flow with customers - all in one place," Dr. Bonhomme shared.
Feedcoyote built a viral loop
Feedcoyote is a product-led growth company (don't worry; we'll talk more about this later).
One advantage of being a product-led growth company is the viral loop benefit.
Some of our favorite platforms that also do this well are Calendly, Slack, and Zoom.
Each of these platforms, including Feedcoyote, enable users to share the product with their network at a massive scale.
Next, although Feedcoyote hasn't really engaged in a formal referral program, people are learning about them through word-of-mouth.
"At Feedcoyote, you can invite external people to join your project. We’ve seen a lot of growth from this," Dr. Bonhomme said. "Also, because people are making money on the platform, they talk about it. Some of the posts I've seen lately are ‘Hey, I've made $1,000 a week collaborating on this project,’ and they share this on social media. This is where we've also seen a lot of growth because people are actually making money and are telling people about it."
Feedcoyote adopted a product-led growth approach
Some of your favorite tools are product-led growth companies.
From Slack, to Loom, to Zoom, Calendly, and Canva - they all adopted a product-led growth strategy.
In case you're unfamiliar, product-led growth is a business strategy that relies on your product as the main driver of customer acquisition, retention, and expansion. Product-led companies make this possible by providing customers a way to experience the product for free, either through a freemium product or a free trial. From there, if the customer loves their experience, upgrading to a paid plan is an easy sale.
Because Feedcoyote has adopted a product-led growth strategy, they've been reaping the same benefits. "It's our mission to make the product very appealing so that our customers can basically be our marketing department and talk about Feedcoyote for us," Dr. Bonhomme shared.
This concept is similar to what Beyoncé did with the Renaissance tour. As she shared on stage, ‘You are the visuals.’ Her fanbase excitedly and involuntarily posted billions of content promoting the Renaissance tour.
Feedcoyote takes customer feedback serious
A common mistake that startups make is not engaging enough with their customers. Regardless of your company's stage, you should actively seek feedback and communicate directly with your customers.
"To get feedback, we send out surveys, and talk to customers one on one. Also some of our users willingly email us to say, ‘Hey, I like this feature, or I want this new feature.’ From there, we compile all of the feedback, and it influences which feature we launch next," Dr. Bonhomme shared. "Our feedback loop is continuous. We have team meetings every week to review our roadmap. We discuss what makes sense for the platform, and decide as a team whether to improve our existing features or build new ones based on feedback received."
Dr. Bonhomme and his team also actively search online to discover customer feedback.
"I search ‘Feedcoyote’ every day over the internet, and across social media sites like LinkedIn and Twitter. Sometimes I can find posts because people have tagged us, and other times I still come across their posts because they included our name. If you check LinkedIn now, you're gonna find a bunch of posts from customers talking about how much they love Feedcoyote, and inviting others to join," Dr. Bonhomme said.
From there, Dr. Bonhomme or someone from his team will comment, repost, and reach out to thank them. They also use that opportunity to gather more feedback on how they can improve the customer's experience. No matter what, "I use every opportunity as a learning opportunity for the business," Dr. Bonhomme shared.