7 inspiring examples and 4 valuable tips on Side Project Marketing

Earlier this week, we’ve launched our Side Project Directory where we gathered 100+ (feasible) side project ideas for you.


Did you already take a look at it?


Side project marketing is not rocket science. People don’t really care about your business unless you give them a reason to. They start to care once you start doing the legwork that helps them or creates value.


Instead of setting a selfish goals like: “we want 1,000 unique visitors in 1 month”, we could ask ourselves: “how can we create value for 1,000 people? What can we create that is related to our core business?”


Chances are, if they like what you put out there, some of them might want to know more about your core business.


In this article we’ve gathered 7 inspiring side project examples and 4 valuable tips on side project marketing.


Hubspot is a king in side project marketing. They have launched tons of free tools and launched their newest one: The Blog post Idea Generator, at Inbound 2018 last week. Another tool that you’ll probably know is Hubspot’s Website Grader. The tool takes a look at your website and its performance. You get tips and tricks on how to improve the performance and of course, they market their product to help you build a better website.


2. Unsplash, a well-known side project that you’re probably frequently using. Unsplash is a side project by Crew and actually saved their startup back in 2013. After hiring a professional photographer, they ended up with a bunch of photos they didn’t use. At a time-range of 3 hours, they installed a $19 Tumblr theme and offered the extra photos for free as a useful resource for their design community. At first, they were building up Unsplash as a lead generation tool. But it ended as a million-user platform.


3.Pablo, a side project by Buffer is a nice tool to design engaging images for your social media posts in under 30 seconds. Buffer is a social media management tool. With this side project tool, Pablo, attract people who are looking to maximize their ROI from social media marketing efforts.


4. GitHub. Started as a support tool for the Git version control system, GitHub was designed to provide simple social code sharing. As every other side project, it was created to fix a certain problem – in this case, the need for an easy way to share code with others. Now, 10 years after its launch GitHub is proudly calling itself  “the Library of Alexandria for code examples”


5.Khan Academy. Long distance tutoring for family members is how Sal Khan was sharing his knowledge back in 2004. When he saw the interest in his lessons, Khan decided to make them public. Together with the popularity of his videos the need for more and more content arose. And this is how the Khan Academy was born. Today this nonprofit organization gathers more than 10 million website visits every month.



6.Cartamundi. They noticed that they’ve got a lot of quote requests to make board games but writing out personal quotes took a lot of time. So we helped them to turn over the whole process. Now, people who are interested, just have to answer a    couple of questions on howmuchtomakeaboardgame.com and they get the personal quotation right away.

7.Scrapely  is our own side project. Well, was. Sometimes, very rarely, growth marketers need to scrape something. To position ourselves as thought leaders in the growth hacking communities and to make the hiring process more inbound, we created our own scraping tool. Scrapely was used by over +2000 growth marketers and reached 20k+ marketers. We have discontinued the service due to GDPR, but is was an amazing ride.


Convinced? Want to start your own side project?

Let us help you with these 4 tips:


  1. Solve a real problem your customers have. Make sure it matches your core business audience and that it creates an actual need for your business.
  2. Keep an eye on your customer acquisition cost. It should be lower than your customer lifetime value. 😉
  3. Keep it simple. The whole set-up of side projects is to make sure it can generate leads overnight. So focus on low budget ideas that don’t consume much time to create.  
  4. Generate awareness around your core business by linking to your website and promoting your products and services. When you’ve made a good side project, your leads should have an actual need for your product.


Need help?

We believe your team can come up with the best ideas for side projects. But sometimes, you just need a little help.


Therefore we’ve launched the Lead Generation Team day. It’s a 1-day off-side workshop for your marketing and sales team that’s focused on coming up with the best side project ideas which gives the team spirit a huge boost.


Interested? Learn more over here 🔽

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