Don’t ask people what they want. Ask where they’re spending their money.

I love this quote by Jason Fried:

You can’t ask people who haven’t paid how much they’re willing to pay. The only answers that matter are dollars spent. People answer when they pay for something. That’s the only answer that really matters.So put a price on it and put it up for sale. If people buy that’s a yes. Change the price. If people buy, that’s a yes. If people stop buying, that’s a no.

You can use this approach to find new business opportunities. Ask yourself:

“Where are people already spending their money?”

For example, Eric White noticed this:

If they were already spending money on Mailchimp, they’ve got a problem they’re willing to pay to fix. Seems like a good sign?

Almost every business is spending money on email marketing. It’s one of the non-negotiables. You’d think that the space would be too crowded, but Nathan Barry’s ConvertKit has recently become wildly profitable.

Slack research hack

Slack marketing research trick

Note: shortly after publishing this blog post, Slack did an update. This hack no longer works.

If you’re selling a B2B product or service, you should be using this research trick:

  1. Log into Google Analytics
  2. Select Acquisition > Referrals from the side menu
  3. Search for “slack”
  4. See which companies are talking about your product

Decisions are being made in Slack. Teams are discussing which products and services they should buy, what blog posts to read, what training to take… and also where they should go for lunch. 😉 If you’re getting an inbound link from a xxx.slack.com sub-domain, that company is talking about you.

What can you learn?

If you click on the referring subdomain, you can also see what channels, messages and searches the inbound link came from:

Spy on other people's Slack chats

If the referral came from a room called /messages/what-products-should-we-buy you have a pretty strong signal. 😉

Interestingly, you can even see usernames that linked to you in messages:

See the Slack usernames!

Get more tips like this: