Edition 6

The one about retention

Jonathan Korn

Hey everyone 😊

Thank you for taking care of yourself. We'll get through this, stronger than before.💪

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Ads seem cheaper than ever

With customer acquisition costs at an all time low, there's a lot of talk about where to focus throughout the funnel.
Depending on where you are in the journey, I think now is an interesting(read: cheap) time to try out different ad channels (ex: TikTok) and keep doubling down on retention.

Here's why:

How to do retention better than anyone else

This is how we do retention at Ânimo, we feel this is the best approach since it gives actionable, cohorted data to iterate on. I've simplified it down to 4 steps:

  1. Identifying the key metric

    This is sometimes called the Aha! moment. Think of where in your product's experience does the user make the key interaction which derives value. Examples: Doing a workout on Ânimo, ordering an Uber, booking an apartment on AirBnb. Mindless scrolling doesn't count.

  2. Figure out your usage interval.
    Different products have different usage intervals. You can book an Uber every week, same can't be said about booking a room on AirBnb

  3. The usage interval will be the line we draw when grouping our customers. Let's pretend that we are a weekly usage app, so our usage time is 7 days. Open up Excel or your favorite analytics tool to start grouping your users into one of the 4 buckets:

    • New users: Users who have never been seen before using your service. Active this week.

    • Current Users: Active at this moment, already existed before. We saw this user last week, and this week.

    • Dormant Users: We saw them last week, but we haven't seen them this week.

    • Resurrected Users: We didn't see them last week, but we saw them this week.


      Make note of your distribution!

  1. Identify the %s that represent the arrows in the diagram above. What does Activation look like? How's our resurrection strategy going? Remember that it's usually easier to keep your users as Current Users instead of moving them from Dormant to Resurrected. Don't be afraid to tweak the usage interval every now and then.

Interesting links:

At this moment we probably have more people using Instagram filters instead of makeup

“This filter and others like it have become a way we choose to present ourselves in a time of crisis. Without in-person contact, for many, makeup routines aren’t as much of a necessity. That’s where Snapchat and Instagram filters are stepping in.”

Interesting times! I wish Facebook's Spark AR (the system IG filters run on), the best of luck in policing and preventing digital body dysmorphia. They've already done a great job in censoring plastic surgery related filters.


Julio Vasconcellos(Peixe Urbano, Atlantico) and Scott Belsky(Behance, Adobe) talked Product. (54 mins)

My favourite bits (loosely paraphrasing):

  • On the importance of design: “This product won't win because of technology but of the user's experience of the technology”.

  • Problems you want to have: “Users are requesting feature X".
    Problem you don't want: “I can't get past the onboarding”

  • On the importance of Product Roadmaps, a delicate situation when you're early stage and Covid19 shows up: “Product Roadmaps are for two things: Flag planting and road building. Flag planting helps the team understand where they are going to land, it gives them a north star metric to focus on. Road building is sprints and milestones. It let's the team debate the how and when”

  • His three power tips:

    1. Prototype frequently. Show, don't tell.

    2. Culture of accountability. At the end of every meeting: “Who is responsible for what and when? Who owns what?”

    3. Surfacing elephants. Leaders should acknowledge what everyone is thinking but are afraid to say.

Lenny Rachitsky, former growth PM at Airbnb has made a great list of tips and views on leading your company though the pandemic.

Great collection of insights from product leaders. We're all learning and going through this together.

Shopify has decided to move up the funnel

Shopify has become the largest company in the Canadian stockmarket, and yet most people have never heard of them. One of the largest players in the ecommerce space with over 1 million merchants, Shopify was a personal benchmark during my time at VTEX. Their newly released app, Shop, aims to be a new storefront helping users discover new products, place orders and etc. Great news for all the SMBs dipping their toes on ecommerce.

Joe Rogan interviewed Elon Musk (again)

Favorite quote of the week:

Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.

— Ira Glass


Thank you for making this far :)
Please hit ‘Reply’ and tell me what you liked, didn't like or would like to see more. I read every response.

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Shabbat shalom, and stay safe!