Tribe Expert Interview Series #1 | Bob Jansen

September 5th marked the official kick-off of the 3rd Growth Tribe Academy! We are beyond excited for the new batch of young professionals, new exciting startups and the absolutely amazing guest lectures that we’re about to witness. Growth Tribe is proud of bringing in truly inspiring people in the past: masters of their craft, natural educators and simply awesome people to learn from. This time is definitely not an exception…

On the very first day, we had the pleasure to listen to Bob Jansen, founder of FirmHouse and Skill Nation. Bob gave an amazing talk on the Lean Startup and Experiment Design. He also shared the story of how he and his team scored big (400,000+ leads kind of big) during the PokémonGo hype with their Engineered Marketing hack “IsPoké” You can read about this here.

We managed to steal him for a short interview after his session ended. Find out which metrics Bob finds crucial, what his favorite tools are and what is the next big thing in Marketing.


So Bob, what is the most important metric at Skill Nation?

Currently, it’s “Weekly active users” and basically the “Sign-ups to join the beta”. At the moment, we’re running on a beta sign-up and after our Pokemon Go hack, we now still have 4 to 5 people coming in daily, so it’s kind of a long tail…

We also know that paid advertisement on Facebook is really working well and we have the budget to do more of that. What we will test in the coming weeks is inviting sign-ups faster into the app .

So, “sign ups” and “conversion into weekly active users” – those are the metrics we are focusing on.


And how do you measure them and with what tools?

Basically, we use Mixpanel the most, even for traffic. We do have Google Analytics, yet I feel like a toddler with it… too many bells and whistles there. So, Mixpanel is the easier way for me to do it. Also, we have better funnel tracking in there. We use Geckoboard for visualization.


What will be the next big thing in Growth Marketing, in your opinion?

It will be… doing this, but in a privacy-respective manner. There’s a lot of grey area in Growth Marketing, there’s a lot of black hat growth marketing. If you look at it from an investor’s perspective and therefore chase growth from the financial perspective, growth marketing is forced to follow that and deliver the results, and I think you’re gonna see way more black hat growth marketing. I feel that the company that cracks to build a tool that does it in a more anonymous way, but still provides data and results, will have more value.

Honestly, though, if you start a blog that promotes the white hat way of doing growth marketing, in an honest way, I think you will do very well in the upcoming years.


Which skills in the marketing realm do you consider to be important?

Probably Analytics. Analysing data – is definitely something I should have paid more attention to in school. I mean, I’m teaching experiment design and I’m not scientific in my background. I’m an entrepreneur, so that’s the angle that I’m deliberately taking when I teach. But if you give me a data set to crunch, I would be lost… SPSS, what is that even? So I really rely on tools like Mixpanel to give me predefined answers. And I need to trust their analysis of my data.


What are the 3 tools you can’t live without?

Google Mail, Mixpanel and GitHub


Bob Jansen Growth Tribe Academy

Lean Startup and Experiment Design with Bob Jansen


Mila Zambrano
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Mila Zambrano

Storyteller at Growth Tribe
Has a one-sided relationship with words, Snapchat addict (are you following me yet?) and annoyingly into all things healthy. Changes diapers in her spare time and loves to bake and cook but never has time.
Mila Zambrano
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