RevGenius & The Collab: HockeyStack Labs Growth Playbook

Dive into the latest interview with Canberk Beker, the Head of Growth at HockeyStack to uncover HockeyStack Labs’ growth playbook, how content became their golden goose, the process behind building HockeyStack Labs, and the power of listening to audience feedback. 

Jared: Let’s jump right into it. HockeyStack is one of the coolest companies today for many reasons. You all have done a great job building the brand, but you also have highly relevant, highly engaging, highly important content. What is your most successful growth strategy right now? 

Canberk: Yeah, I think, as you said, it has been the content; HockeyStack Labs in particular. Every company has a golden goose, or they need to find a golden goose to grow. And I’m so lucky that we found that golden goose in my first month. It seems like the golden goose ends up being the lab support.

HockeyStack Growth Strategy

Jared: What’s your process for finding the golden goose and experimenting? 

Canberk: I had been a B2B marketer for years. I had been working with all of the CMOs for years, and all of them had one problem: we have these numbers, but we have no idea what average numbers look like. What are the benchmarks? And I was, okay, we need to create some kind of similar web.  But Emir had a different idea. His idea was about creating a content hub.

Once I started working at HockeyStack, we really worked on building that engine. And now the process is actually really simple:

  1. Chris (my right hand) basically scrolls all of our database to understand what data points we can be using. 
  2. We analyze the data.
  3. I write the content on the data, and the designer creates the creatives. 

But I think I’m lucky because I am my own ICP. Like, I know what I would like and I’m basically writing the stuff that I need to know. Therefore, like, if I was selling to a CSP person or if I was selling to a legal person, I wouldn’t probably be able to write this good content, but now I’m lucky

HockeyStack Labs in One Sentence

Jared: What is HockeyStack Labs in a sentence?

Canberk: A benchmark library for B2B companies. So now we have about 100 customers which have been using the code stack for over a year now. So, we had been collecting data. Obviously, we anonymize all of the data, and basically we have access to everything. 

Jared: What’s your playbook for building out HockeyStack labs and creating the right reports that your audience wants? 

Canberk: So actually, again, I got lucky a bit with that before we started. Obviously, we need to make sure that it is going to be scalable. We just didn’t want to create three reports and then complete it. And for like, for the first five reports, we listed down what we were going to be writing about. Okay, the first one was going to be the recap for 2023. The second one was about touch points. And, we actually knew that after five reports, if we were on the right track, that we would have readers, and our readers would be coming to us and asking for additional data. And it happened, like, literally right after the first report, we started to get questions from the readers, and they were like, can you please analyze that? Can you please analyze that? Now it is all about getting the customer feedback, getting the user feedback, getting the reader feedback. And we look at the question, we’re like, okay, this makes sense. And this is actually something that I also am curious about. 

So now the thought process is basically like, okay, what do the readers want and is it exciting?

And in the beginning of the month, we set up, like, four different topics. So, now we know what we are going to be writing about for the entire month. And at the end of the month, we are going to be writing about. We are going to be listing down what we are going to be writing about in June.

We have, like, maybe 1011 different topics that we are literally picking and choosing. And once we choose the topic, it is more like, I go to Chris and I tell him, look, I’m going to be writing on this report. Therefore, I will need these data points. So he goes back to the database, and he finds out all of those data points. Then he sends me the file. I analyze the file, and voila.

Jared: So the collaborative part here is really listening to your audience and making them active participants, instead of just saying, this is my point of view. 

Canberk: We need to be listening to our audience. It just doesn’t need to be my POV. It needs to come from you. It needs to come from other people. For example, we released a report about interactive demos, like how interactive demos impact conversions. It wasn’t in our list and I would have never thought about it. Then there were like five people asking about that. And after we launched this report, it actually ended up becoming one of our basic reports, because not only when people ask about the report, not only they read that report once we launched, but they share it with their audiences.

Actually, it increases our exposure even more.

HockeyStack Labs Growth Loop

  1. HockeyStack Labs came out with a data report they thought was interesting and people liked it. 
  2. They told HockeyStack what else they wanted to hear, because they were getting a lot of value from it (and they weren’t getting it from anywhere else). They needed more to help them make smart business decisions.
  3. HockeyStack encouraged them to start requesting topics they wanted data on and that they thought they could get even more value from.
  4. HockeyStack listened to them and created reports based on a combo of most requested + what they thought would be most interesting internally.
  5. Their audience got even more value and shared it on social media with their followers and gave feedback for the next reports.  

The loop just keeps going. 

It’s about giving people what they actually need vs just sharing your POV and making your content one-sided.

Jared: What are some of the results that you could share from this? What  KPIs are most important to you?

Canberk: When we started we didn’t have KPIs, we were just like, okay, let’s start releasing these reports and see what will happen. 

But I had one KPI that I didn’t tell Emir or anyone:

We will come to this point where we won’t be asking people to share reports, we won’t give to influencers to share the reports, but they will do it organically. 

And after the fourth, maybe fifth report, it started happening. 

And now as soon as we launch a report, we don’t need to tell anyone. Like, I keep seeing it online. My LinkedIn homepage is full of the report I just published. I’m like — people are actually sharing it without us even asking for it.

This was my personal KPI and we did achieve it. 

But in terms of the company side, we are generating like 50% of our pipeline from left supports organically.

We are actually talking about millions. And the interesting thing is that the pipeline comes from organic traffic. The website traffic increased by a lot. And we don’t have any technical SEO strategy (yet). Like literally just before this call, I had a call with a technical SEO consultant. We are going to be focusing on SEO literally this week. And so it all became organic.

Everything is organic.

Jared: What are some of the brands that you get inspiration from? 

Canberk:  When we say ‘labs’, Gong was the first company who came up with that idea, and they were the first company to use their own data. So Gong gave me that first inspiration.