Product-led growth (PLG) means you grow your business by getting users, making them happy with your product, and turning them into paying customers. The important part is that the product itself is doing the work, not salespeople or marketing.
It might sound a little obvious, but this is not usually the case for businesses selling to other businesses (B2B). In that world, the norm has been for marketing and sales teams to target executives and management (the people with the power to write checks), not the people actually using the product. That’s a top-down approach.
Product-led growth focuses on providing a great product to users first, and then getting them to pay later. This is a bottom-up approach.
Instead of spending lots of resources on marketing, product-led growth companies get exposure when happy users of the product spread the word and gain referrals.
Instead of first involving salespeople and meetings and demos, product-led growth companies let users experience the value of their product early on. This usually happens with a free plan or a free trial.
Companies with a PLG strategy—think Slack, Calendly, and Dropbox—are able to grow faster and more efficiently by leveraging their products to create a pipeline of active users who are then converted into paying customers.