No items found.

How does Community Drive Growth?

Rishabh Sonker
Published / 
October 10, 2022

Quick question - What do Figma (a visual design tool), Roam (note-taking tool) & Webflow (no-code web designer) have in common?

They have a strong meme game [Insert random Webflow Meme]

They leverage their community to gather feedback, keep users engaged & fuel hypergrowth (like literally 1200% growth in two years). [IMG]

But how did they do it? How can you do it? And most importantly - What the duck is community-driven growth? [insert meme - duck thinking about duck communities]

Now hold up.

Before we talk more about community-led growth, let’s get our basics clear - What do we mean when we say “community”?

Is this a Community? [rhetorical headline, goes best with meme]

Quick question again - how many of the options below can be classified as a community (versus an audience)?

  • Social Media followers
  • Newsletter Subscribers
  • Facebook Group Members
  • Blog Readers
  • Slack Members

If you answered 3 or less, you’re right - maybe.

There’s a very thin line between an audience and a community - but in plain & simple terms, a community is member-to-member interactions happen, rather than a business-to-customer broadcast.

See the thin line? Twitter followers would usually classify as an audience, but if those followers start interacting with each other in the comments/retweets, it’s a community.

Same way, Facebook Groups would classify as a community, but if all the posts are by group admins & no members with each other, it’s an audience.

It’s a never-ending debate, the audience versus community one - but in the end, it all comes down to members interacting with other members, rather than everything revolving around brand marketing.

[IMG IDEA - TWO COLUMNS, one is member interaction, other is brand marketing]

How does Community Drive Growth?

Good question - or alteast a popular question!?

If you’re into SaaS or use SaaS products, you’re probably aware of Product-Led Growth (or PLG - as the cool kids say).

It is a business methodology in which user acquisition, expansion, conversion, and retention are all driven primarily by the product itself (watch this video if you want to dive deeper - ofcourse after reading this post).

In theory, PLG is amazing - low customer acquisition costs AND high lifetime value!? Hard to ignore. However, in reality, PLG doesn’t factor in the process of finding & onboarding your first customers - which, trust me, is HARD.

If Tony (an average-internet user) decides to buy a new mobile phone, they’re likely to search online for best options/ask friends for recommendations - same goes for buying internet software. Humans are inherently advice-seeking beings.

Unless a SaaS founder is directly reaching out to Tony to try their brand new product, they are unlikely to find out about it on their own. And even then - Tony would make a quick google search & would likely trust a random stranger’s review more than they would trust the founder (assuming if there’s any).

There’s a way to solve this problem. Enter, online communities.

Communities enable brands to build their top-of-the-funnel pipeline & lower the entry barrier for new users at little to no cost.

Founders can start building a community right alongside the product - incorporating customer feedback and understanding the market first-hand. When they launch - every community member is a potential customers with zero spend on sales & marketing.

  • Acquisition
    Branded communities are essentially the top-of-the-funnel acquisition channel for your product - enabling customer acquisition at zero cost.

    Brands like Cred &

  • Less reliance on Customer Support
    The community also plays a big role in supporting each other and reducing the reliance on customer support or success functions to onboard, prove value and retain your customers.

    Figma leverages Twitter & Spectrum to resolve user queries & onboard new users without needing the product/customer support to step in.

  • Direct Feedback
    Direct customer feedback enables you to build a customer-driven roadmap. Highly under-rated but crucial to build a product that is loved by all.

    Webflow utilizes this in form of community-driven whishlists - enabling founders & product teams listen to 500,000+ customers & understand what they need.

Here’s what else you should be reading...

Delivered straight to your Inbox

Interesting reads, Deep dives and more delivered straight to your inbox, once a week.
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Delivered straight to your Inbox

Interesting reads, Deep dives and more delivered straight to your inbox, once a week.
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.