Grow Like Crazy-The Flywheel Effect - Part 2

Amazon, Netflix, Broadcom, Domino's Pizza, Apple, Google--all breakout companies that have seen massive growth for years and decades. Many times we are tempted to look for the X-factor which has led to their phenomenal growth, but the truth is far less exciting. 

 Just ask Steve Jobs. Go on, I'll wait. 

The story of Apple, as well as the other A-list companies, is not of overnight success. Crazy success, yes, but it has been sustained and increased every year. What's their secret sauce? The answer is, everything.

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The Flywheel Analogy

Think of a large, heavy flywheel, weighing about 5,000 pounds. It is mounted horizontally on an axle and measures about 30ft in diameter and is 2ft thick. Your task is to rotate this wheel.

With great effort, you could perhaps get it to turn once in a few hours. Sustained effort may get it to turn twice, then thrice, and so on. Because of its massive weight, it needs a lot of energy and time to get it started. 

Once the flywheel has gained a certain critical speed, it suddenly becomes much easier to sustain the rotation. You still need to put in a lot of effort to keep it turning, but its weight helps it to gather momentum and increase in speed. The same weight that was initially a challenge now works in your favour.

In his book Good to Great, Jim Collins advanced this visualisation to show how top companies grow as the result of sustained efforts rather than one big break. This conclusion came after Collins and his team researched elite companies such as Fannie Mae, Gillette, Walgreens, and Circuit City Stores.

 

Do You Want a Business That Literally Propels Itself Forward?

Do you want your business to reach the same stratospheric heights of success? If so, you need to adopt some modern thinking. Amazon is already using the flywheel model to power its success.

What makes the flywheel visualisation so great is that it covers a lot of what a sustained growth strategy should be. Instead of looking for the one big break, it enables a long-term vision of investment efforts to a point where the whole enterprise, like a heavy flywheel, supplies much of its own momentum.

 

How the Flywheel Powers Growth

The three things that affect the motion of a flywheel are how fast you spin it, its friction forces, and size.  

1. How Fast You Spin It

During the first stages of the flywheel, the speed of turning is very low. The energy you put in is stored inside and output in the subsequent turn. Past the critical speed, more effort leads to greater acceleration. 

Speed is increased by the forces of investment and strategies you put into the enterprise. A paid advertising campaign, referral program or customer experience strategy all work together to turn the wheel.

The great thing about the flywheel is that, unlike the sales funnel which is linear, a well-aligned wheel gives back almost all the energy you put into it. Every investment you make gives you returns, now or in the future. 

2. Friction

The forces opposing the motion of the flywheel are friction forces. Any misalignment in your goals, communication breakdown, or poor business processes can significantly slow down the wheel. Identify these points of friction and reduce or eliminate them. 

One thing that can kill your momentum is frequent stopping to realign and restrategize. Small changes may be okay, but big frequent changes lead to what Collins refers to as the doom circle. This is where failure leads to more changes, changes lead to failure, and the circle repeats itself toward destruction.

Massive growth demands consistency and success. Discipline yourself and the troops to remain focused on the goal no matter the small successes or problems. 

3. Size 

Larger wheels have higher momentum. They take more force to spin, and will be harder to stop once started. A small enterprise is easy to push ahead because it has a smaller team, has smaller goals, and fewer things to worry about. However, it also maxes out its momentum more quickly. 

An organisation built for massive growth from the ground up will be able to support its own growth trajectory once it's past the initial stages. If you want to achieve massive growth, you've got to build the foundations for it.

 

How to Grow Like Crazy: 4 Actionable Tips

 

1. Automate Sales and Marketing

The day is past where one-on-one interactions with sales representatives made the deal possible. Even in B2B purchases, 57% of purchase decisions are made before the customers reach out to the vendor. 

That is why inbound marketing works so well. It takes into account this shift in buyer dynamics and both brings in and serves the customer. Using tools like HubSpot's Sales, Marketing, or CRM Hubs makes it much easier to engage with leads and powers your growth. 

2. Attract and Engage Customers With Information Selling

Inbound marketing is built upon the value of information to attract customers to your brand. Content marketing through blogging and social media plays a central role in this. Tools such as Hubspot's Content Management (CMS) systems help you to manage every marketing platform from your website to email marketing through one simple system.

3. Delight New Customers

Focus on building customer relationships instead of closing the deal. Nowadays, customers need to trust you before they buy. This approach aims to achieve the delight, loyalty, and love of customers who will then go on to show their delight by their positive reviews, referrals, and future engagement. In turn, these efforts add momentum to the flywheel.

4. Onboarding New Customers

Once you have engaged a client, and they have purchased your product, the journey has just begun. The key to achieving sustained business is effective onboarding, especially where the product is subscription-based. 

Onboarding helps you to introduce new customers to your product, create a lasting relationship, and gives you the chance to effectively "oil" the flywheel by removing friction in both the engagement and customer retention part of the process.

DigiKat is a HubSpot Partner and growth-driven marketing firm dedicated to helping businesses in every niche achieve crazy growth. We are here to help you align and structure your business for massive growth using the most powerful tools in inbound marketing, customer management, and communication. 

Contact us to see how we can power more engagement, more leads and more sales for you today.

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