The Power of Repetition and the Art of Building Successful Startups


Hatched by Glasp

Sep 23, 2023

3 min read


The Power of Repetition and the Art of Building Successful Startups


In the pursuit of knowledge and growth, repetition plays a vital role. It is through repeated encounters and engagements that true learning takes place. The same principle can be applied to the world of startups, where the debate between product and distribution has long been a topic of discussion. This article explores the significance of repetition in learning and how it can be applied to the art of building successful startups.

Repetition in Learning:

The concept of repetition in learning is based on the idea that repeated encounters with ideas or concepts gradually build engagement and understanding. By consciously designing repetitive engagements into courses and teaching methods, the quality of learning can be enhanced. Repetition hastens and deepens the engagement process, ultimately leading to the acquisition of knowledge. The deeper "aha's" in learning often stem from encounters and returns, solidifying the ideas into one's awareness.

The Startup Dilemma: Product vs. Distribution:

The age-old debate between product and distribution has been a point of contention for startups. Some argue that a remarkable product can speak for itself, while others believe that building an audience first is the key to success. Both approaches have their merits, and often a combination of the two is necessary for sustainable growth.

Product First, Audience Second:

The Apple way exemplifies the product-first approach. By creating something exceptional, Apple has built a loyal following of customers who are willing to go to great lengths to acquire their products. The focus is on crafting a beautiful and powerful product that captures the attention and loyalty of customers.

Audience First, Product Second:

On the other end of the spectrum, we have examples like Instagram influencers turning into fashion moguls. They have tapped into an existing audience and embedded distribution into the very fabric of their product. By leveraging their reach, they can introduce shiny products to their followers, creating a symbiotic relationship between the audience and the product.

Symbiotic Growth and Unique Insights:

Symbiotic growth occurs when the value proposition of a product and its distribution channel are intertwined. One cannot thrive without the other. Ecosia, the search engine that plants trees, is an excellent example of this. By championing an environmental cause, they inadvertently gained a loyal user base who spread awareness through advocacy. Aligning product growth with a noble cause can multiply word-of-mouth and create a strong network effect.

Another unique insight is the goal of making users your advertisers. By embedding your signature in user creations, you can create a sense of ownership and pride among users. Organizations like Airtable showcase public bases, pulling in admirers and demonstrating the product's capabilities. Public showcases and demonstrations can effectively attract new users and fuel growth.

Actionable Advice for Building Successful Startups:

  • 1. Distribution by Demonstration: Ensure that your product becomes visible during normal use. Don't overlook the power of showcasing your product's value through real-life scenarios and demonstrations.
  • 2. Decentralized Sales Team: Strive to create such a satisfying user experience that your customers become advocates who willingly convince others to join. A loyal and enthusiastic user base can be one of the most effective distribution channels.
  • 3. Community-Evolved Product: Allow your user base to play a role in shaping the evolution of your product. Seek feedback, encourage open forums, and engage in beta testing. By involving your users in the development process, you create a sense of ownership and foster a strong community that drives growth.


Repetition is not only the first principle of all learning but also a crucial factor in building successful startups. By consciously designing repetitive engagements, startups can deepen customer engagement, foster loyalty, and attract new users. The debate between product and distribution can be resolved by finding a balance that aligns the product's value proposition with its distribution channels. By incorporating the actionable advice mentioned above, startups can set themselves up for growth and success in a competitive market.

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