Why do so many startups fail? According to entrepreneurs Gabriel Weinberg and Justin Mares, most failed startups make the fatal mistake of putting all their effort into perfecting their product at the cost of reaching out to potential users.
Instead, they should be putting half their resources into getting traction. Traction is the essential guide for any startup looking to stay ahead of the curve and start building a user base early in the game. The book offers no one-size-fits-all solution: every startup is unique, so no single method is guaranteed to generate traction. Instead, the authors identify nineteen different traction channels, from viral marketing to trade shows. They offer insights on how to exploit each one to its fullest potential, and provide a framework to test various channels and identify the best one for any startup.
Since 2008, I've been the CEO & Founder of DuckDuckGo, the Internet privacy company that empowers you to seamlessly take control of your personal information online, without any tradeoffs. Our private search engine is #4 in the U.S., Germany, Australia and dozens of other countries, answering over 9 billion queries in 2018.
I also co-authored Super Thinking: The Big Book of Mental Models (Penguin Portfolio, 2019). Previously I co-authored Traction: How Any Startup Can Achieve Explosive Customer Growth (Penguin Portfolio, 2015).
Before DuckDuckGo, I founded other Internet-related companies. My formal education is from MIT (B.S. Physics, '97-01; M.S. from the Technology and Policy Program '03-05). I live in Valley Forge, PA with my wife and two kids.