If you read my last post, Growth Hacking = People + Process, then you know I’m a huge fan of Brian Balfour’s process for creating, running, and analyzing marketing experiments.
There are a few documents that are central to Brian’s system:
- Experiment doc
To make it easy for you to get started with The Balfour Method (I just made that up), I created a public Trello board template and accompanying Google docs which you can copy and use with your team.
Grab the templates:
They should be fairly self-explanatory if you’ve seen Brian’s talk, but keep reading for an in-depth explanation of how I use this system.
How to use it
The Brainstorm list serves as a pinboard for your team’s ideas and links to case studies and articles that you can reference during your brainstorm meetings.
The Backlog list has a single card which links to a Google Spreadsheet with all of the experiments that you actually want to run.
Wait. Why not just make a card for every experiment and put the details (status, category, resources) on the back? As your backlog grows to 20+ experiments, it’s really nice to be able to sort by resources required or filter by category.
The Pipeline list contains experiments that you’ve pulled out of your Backlog spreadsheet and are going to run soon. You can move cards up and down to indicate priority. The cards are color-coded with labels to indicate which category they fall under (AARRR).
I also like to add a size code to the title of the card: (S), (M), or (L) to indicate relative effort. It makes it easier to see how much work is on the table and prioritize.
Cards are moved into the Design list when you’re ready to start working on it. At this point, you’ll start crafting an Experiment doc that describes your hypothesis, metrics, and all the nitty gritty implementation details. I prefer to link the card to a Google doc (which you can clone), but you could also put your experiment information right on the back of the card.
The remaining lists are simply for visualizing the remaining phases. Simply drag your cards into the appropriate list according to where you are in the process. New members of your team should be able to dig through the History and Playbooks lists to quickly get up to speed on past experiments and best practices.