AMA: Deepak Abbot on Product, Growth and Analytics

We kick off the community AMA sessions with Deepak Abbot (@dabbot) , Sr VP @Paytm.

Deepak Abbot has played key growth roles at several companies - including Paytm, Times Internet etc and at the upcoming AMA, he will answer all your queries on:

Product, Growth and Analytics

When? August 21, 2019 (Wed)
Where? NextBigWhat community, WE (
Timing? 9 PM - 10 PM (IST)

Go ahead and ask your questions right away - Deepak will answer them on Wednesday, 9 PM onwards.


  1. Please only use 1 post per question. Helps stay clean and focused.
  2. Ask questions which are more learning focused (and not just sensational) :slight_smile:

The NextBigWhat AMA is supported by the awesome team @GOJEK. GOJEK is hiring great engineers and product leaders for its India offices (checkout the openings here).

Starting off the questions (let’s use 1 thread / question to keep it focused).

Qn 1: What’s your growth tools these days? What are you using for tracking / improving the metrics?

Does it even make sense to launch a new app anymore? Given that people aren’t really downloading new apps (unless Bharat focus)?

How do you see the rural vs urban spaces evolving? What’s the future of PWAs? Will it ever go big ?

Are there any interesting behavioural insights you can share vis-Ă -vis Indian users with regards to optimizing for onboarding, activation or user journey design?

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Hi Deepak!

It’s an absolute pleasure to be able to interact with you and share our concerns and doubts.

My question to you is, with evolving times focused more on AI & robots, lot of our jobs are in the process or will become redundant over time. Can you suggest what are the aspects or skills that a sales & marketing professional can develop to stay ahead with time and also to stay in demand in the future?


What books would you recommend for a growth marketer in 2019 to learn analytics?

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Please share some insights into smartapp and it’s growth. (The domain has expired btw)

  • Why did you decide to build it?
  • What were some early growth hacks that worked for smartapp?
  • Did you run paid acquisition campaigns? What worked?

In your experience, what were some growth strategies/hacks that failed? Please share learnings.


I know it’s difficult to benchmark but what range have these metrics been in consumer mobile products that you worked on helped build?
What is the baseline you recommend to growth managers?

  • App Install Retention
  • DAU/MAU Ratio
  • D1 Retention

What are your recommendations on ASO? Do Universal App Campaigns help boost rankings and organic installs?

For an ideal app, what do you think is the right retention on

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Some of the tools I personally use and recommend Mixpanel & Google Analytics for data analysis, appsee for heatmaps, appsflyer for attribution & marketing effectiveness, clevertap & mixpanel for customer segmentation & CLM, sensortower or appannie for ASO, similarweb for competitive analysis, google forms for surveys, Google optimize for A/B
Most important point is that what tools are being used is not critical, what you do with the analysis and apply back to your product is the key


Thanks Deepak for the AMA (have been a fan since your presentation at unpluggd conf).

Qn for you (we are an early stage startup in learning space).
Our initial CAC is very high and it is too early to predict the LTV (as the biz model is evolving). Struggling with retention as well :slight_smile:

What should we really focus on?

It can differ for each App. Some Apps may not even have a daily/weekly usage. I prefer M1, M2 metric - as a thumb rule, 60% M2 retention is considered good, anything less than 40% requires work. M3 of less than 20% is worrisome. Anything above 30% in M3 is acceptable

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Retention is the king as we all know, Since you are in the learning space, ONLY thing you need to focus is to how to get user to remember your app daily even if means getting a “personalized” push or making them open app for few minutes with thrust to make them use app once a week. You would know your product hooks better so won’t be able to give specific ideas. But I would suggest stop spending on paid campaigns till your retention is in acceptable limits else you are carrying a leaky bucket. I won’t worry about LTV as well. Just get user to remember your app in any way possible. Retention is also directly linked to your product offering - benchmark is against the best.
So in nutshell, stop spending on paid campaigns :slight_smile:

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:100: on stopping paid campaigns.
Now, the next question: how do I reach out to my end users? Emails land in promotional folder, FB / Twitter are very limiting.

Any tips on this?

What methods/channels do you suggest for acquiring the first 10k users for an app?

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ASO is no magic bullet but a very important tool. You can’t extract benefits beyond a point. It helps tremendously in early stage, once you get to 1mn+ installs, then it won’t deliver as fast.
Universal App campaign alone can never boost ranking, you will have to spend millions to see the rank effect. If you are not in top 10 apps of your category then it doesn’t really matter. Universal App campaign should be timed along with your best growth hacks, referral campaigns, influenfer marketing, social media campaign to get the maximum impact - that can bring your app in top trending which can then further boost rank. Basically don’t spread your efforts - make a big impact. If your app is good then growth will follow

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Only organic methods like blogging, social media, friends & family, referrals, unpaid influencer marketing, barters, encashing current trends, time it on product hunt & so on

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