Marketing Examined Logo

Noah Kagan's Step-by-Step Playbook To Acquire Your First 1000 Customers

Don’t chase the stadium, chase the auditorium.

Meaning, when starting, your goal shouldn’t be to build the largest audience but to find fans who’d drop everything to consume your content, who’d be first in line for your product, and pay attention to your every move.

But finding your first 1000 fans needs a playbook.

And this is Noah Kagan’s playbook for acquiring his first 1000 fans for any business he launches:

1. Hand to Hand marketing | 0-50

Meet your customers where they are and sell them one by one.

Example: When Tinder first started, the team went to different sororities and fraternities to acquire their first 15,000 users.

2. Buffet Marketing | 50 - 100

Test, test, test, and collect.

Test everything. Collect the data. Determine what works best.

Example: When I first started Marketing Examined, I set a timeframe of two months to test 10 different tactics to find the five that worked best.

This is why it’s called “Buffet Marketing.” Because you walk up with an empty plate and stack it so high, you can barely walk back to your table without dropping something.

3. Refine / Block & Tackle | 100 - 500

But as you eat, some things are better than others, so you leave those for the waiter to pick up, and you walk back up to the buffet to get seconds of what you really liked.

Finding customers 100-500 is no different.

Find the 1-2 things that have the potential to 10x.

Example: For Marketing Examined, that was two things: Twitter Threads and Paid Media.

4. Scale (500 - 1000)

Take what’s proven to work and 10x. This means trimming the fat aka anything that takes time away from what’s driving significant growth.

Example: For Sumo this meant doubling down on email marketing and running daily giveaways. This took them from 500 customers to 1000 in a week's time.

5. Flywheel Marketing (1000+)

You’ve generated demand.

Now, it’s using the initial demand to build more demand through flywheels.

Your flywheel is dependent on your business model.

But test how you can build acquisition loops, referral loops, affiliate loops into your product resulting in a system that feeds itself.

page break image

Want these growth guides to hit your inbox every Thursday?

Join 30,000 founders, marketers, and creators.

You can share this with friends too