Series - part 5 of 5

Here are the 8 new GrowthMentors of November


Let’s give a big round of applause to these awesome people for agreeing to join GrowthMentor and help people on their growth journeys.

november mentor batchnovember mentor batch
This post is part of the Mentor Batches series

1. Alicia Burke

Describe yourself

I’m an all-rounder(ish) marketing manager who makes the most out of limited resources. I am passionate about comms & strategy, marketing automation & CRM systems, content & social, branding, and website development.

I am very (maybe too) process-driven and seek the best toolsets for operational effectiveness, all things considered (i.e. don’t forget the human element!)!

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Aligned mission & cross-functional team, deliberate and hypothesis-driven efforts via a strong growth engine.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Marketing strategy: timeline, tools, and prioritisation of comms, channels, and measurement.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

I integrated our CRM/Slack/AngelList/Events to boost our portfolio support (100+ founders) and mentor programme (50+). Not particularly out of the box re tools used but a comprehensive, personalised solution nonetheless given a very small team and the man hours required to effectively scale the offerings and accommodate programme tracks.

View Growthmentor Profile

2. Brian O’Sullivan

Describe yourself

I’m Brian, I lead the Growth Marketing team at Leadfeeder. Previously I was a manager on the Dropbox growth team and worked on the Google Analytics team at Google. I have a lot of experience in Analytics and A/B testing and love applying a data-driven approach to growth.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

On a personal level, being open to the idea that my skills can always be improved. In a company, it’s about orienting teams to focus on the one, or few metrics that matter.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Growth strategy and taking a data-driven approach to growth. Whether that’s running ‘good’ experiments or taking a data-driven approach to content marketing.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

When I came to Leadfeeder it became clear that search (both paid and organic) would be a key lever for us. But it was also clear that at our current CACs scaling would be an issue.

So for the first 6 months, I just did conversion rate optimization. By increasing our conversion to trial sign-up we could afford to significantly invest in search and scale in a way that wouldn’t have been possible if we started there.

View Growthmentor Profile

3. Chetana Deorah

Describe yourself

I am Chetana (pron. chay-th-naa) originally from rich and diverse India and been living in the San Francisco Bay area for over 15 years. Most recently, I was Design Director at Netflix, leading global acquisition & growth with a focus on emerging markets. My passion and expertise lie in bringing forth a human-centered approach to solving growth problems. Making sure our metrics and customer motivations are aligned for better business, engaged customers, and a happier planet.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Deliver VALUE to your customer. Give them reasons to believe in your product or service. While the tools, frameworks for measuring business impact is essential to Growth (quantitative data), the significant momentum lies in creating products that meet or exceed customer motivation.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

My passion lies in finding that balance between metrics driven by customer motivation and what it takes to create product teams that can thrive at this intersection. Evangelize the potential of a human-centered design approach to solving growth problems.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

When I led design for the digital reading subscription app Scribd, a significant realization for me with my product teams was that building a product is different from growing the product. Investing in Growth is valid once we establish a product-market fit. Via UX design frameworks, including qualitative user-research, market segmentation, we focused on re-identifying the right customer first.

Using rapid design sprints, I led my team to create concepts and validate the hypothesis for the MVP. As a cross-functional team, we were able to first align on the problems to be solved, asking the right questions. We then tackled the churn issue, by providing motivation “to read” and value for the traffic we got from SEO; customers interested in the free access to uploaded documents.

View Growthmentor Profile

4. David Kelly

Describe yourself

Hola! I’m David, the General Manager of KingSumo & SendFox. Our most recent tool, SendFox, we built from $0 to $1 million in revenue in 18 months… with a $0 marketing budget. Previously, I was the first marketer for Student Loan Hero (sold to LendingTree for $60 million).

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Complete focus on what’s IMPORTANT with a. growth mindset. There’s so much noise in growth — so many guides, articles, “experts”. One of the critical qualities growth-minded startups have is a clear focus on the most important metric or goal. Unfortunately, it’s less common than it might sound.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

I LOVE helping small businesses grow — especially bootstrapped online companies with a small team, and limited budgets. I’ve grown a few companies in similar situations, so it resonates with me a lot.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

When we started growing SendFox, we had a 3-person team… and a $0 budget. We had a developer, designer, and then me as the General Manager. How does a new startup grow with $0 to spend? This is a question a lot of startups run into.

View Growthmentor Profile

5. Domen Kert

Describe yourself

I have been a startup growth marketer since 2012. My first serious role was as head of growth at Flaviar (YC S14 batch), where I had to set up a growth machine from scratch to achieve lighting-fast growth — from $1k to $500k MR within 15 months.

Later I joined a cosmetics e-commerce for a short sting, where I was chiefly responsible for doubling their revenue in less than 3 months — from $150k to $300k MR. Equipped with the wealth of experience gained from these ventures I moved on to helping grow early-stage startups, through growth workshops, 1 on 1 consultations, mentoring, and also execution, when need-be.

In my career, I’ve been responsible for big-picture stuff, as well as the nitty-gritty, so my advice is always hands-on, executable and immediately useful. Most importantly, I keep teams focused on executing on the right things, and help them connect the dots. Most recently, an Entrepreneur in Residence at 500 Startups.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Solving a problem at scale.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

The right growth mindset. Why? It’s fundamental. Without it, all strategies and tactics will fail.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

I’ll give a recent example… I was able to create a fully-functional, membership travel platform from scratch with nothing but a collection of different tools, strung together, with close to zero coding. Took me 10 days. Felt pretty good. Saved $10k.

View Growthmentor Profile

6. Lukas Hertig

Describe yourself

I’m a 15 years international software geek. Focused on building and scaling sales and growth marketing teams. I’m also an investor and advisor mostly in the eCommerce and Blockchain space. I love helping people and startups.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Never stop learning. Focus on execution and work hard, and harder. Don’t take a no as a no.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Messaging & Positioning, many get this wrong in the early stage – Sales to Enterprise customers and large companies – one of my passions.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

There are no out-of-the-box solutions for all problems. But probably the multi-million $ deals I made in the telecom space or partnerships I’ve successfully built with companies like Amazon, Microsoft, Google or DigitalOcean.

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7. Marcos Bravo C.

Describe yourself

I was 20 years old when I left Chile, my first job was an internship in Disney World when we were exposed to a behemoth of Marketing and Sales, since then I had basically every position in the business, all the way up to a CMO. I worked with a large variety of industries, video games, alcohol, diamonds, education, electronics, etc.

I have experience in how to make your product talk the right language to your customers and make them trust and believe in your brand. I know how to plan ahead for a real growth beyond just good funding.

I have been training people on pitching ideas and improving their communications here in Europe and as a mentor in Startup Chile.

Let’s focus on the basics, and on creating a strong foundation that can make your company succeed and become an everlasting cockroach business that can survive an illusory Unicorn. ;

View Growthmentor Profile

8. Trent Waskey

Describe yourself

I’ve founded, worked for, and been around fast-paced startups since I was a teen in high school. This lit my marketing fire early on in life and I’ve never looked back.

My main areas of expertise are branding, demand generation, and process building.

I currently work full time as a Marketing Director at a high growth SaaS that was recently acquired, and I continue to consult other startups in my free time.

In your words, what does a growth mindset mean to you?

Growth is all about unit economics. By knowing your costs, ROI, LTV/CAC, you can find quick wins and model out what success will look like over time (rather than guessing like most people).

This makes going to bat for budget and resources in front of investors or your CEO a breeze; you’re essentially showing them the gas pedal to the car, all you need is some fuel. Continuing the car analogy, then long term success becomes all about experimenting, incremental improvements, and being more creative than the competition.

If you could mentor a startup on one topic, what would it be?

Demand generation.

Describe an out of the box solution to a complex problem that made you proud of yourself?

We struggled with attribution and proving the value of marketing. The solution ended up being adding session recording software to our site and appending the recording link to every new signup notification our sales team got in Slack. They got to see what content drove the user to our site, what area of the product they found interesting, and ultimately how they interacted with the product during onboarding.

This was a win-win: marketing got credit for the leads it drove, and sales could close deals faster by understanding exactly what the customer was looking for.

View Growthmentor Profile

Apply for the December Batch!

This month we lowered intake from 15 down to 8. There is still a slight misbalance between supply/demand and we’ll be lowering intake to 6 growth mentors in December. 

What we’re looking for in the next batch:

  • Growth product managers working at SaaS companies
  • Heads of growth with +10 years of experience
  • Wildcards: Applicants that may not fit the above criteria but possess an extraordinary ethos fit that “get it.”
Growth Mentors

Want to become a growth mentor?

Apply for the December batch
Learn More