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Oren Barzilai co-founder of Tapingo and startafire.com.

Oren is currently is dedicated full time to startafire.com as the company’s CEO. Oren is passionate about technology, and is a self taught developer who got his first paid programming job when he was 12! Before founding his first company, he worked as a software developer at several companies, served as developer in the intelligence corps @ IDF and also got his BSc in mathematics from Tel Aviv University.
startafire.com is a Tel Aviv based startup, founded by Oren Barzilai and Oded Golan. startafire.com enables its users to get attribution and discovery for their content over the content they share on social media.

In your opinion what is a Growth Hacker?

A Growth Hacker is someone who develops and implements new effective, preferably cheap, growth techniques to gain exposure and reach new audiences.

Why is Growth Hacking important?

For every company, big or small growth is critical. If a company isn’t growing, it’s actually dying. Finding new effective growing techniques “Growth Hacking” is important for any company.  But for small companies who don’t have full scale marketing division, top tier PR firm, a blogging team and a major media buying budget it’s actually the difference between life and death. Small companies need to find their way to their customer with near zero budget for them so growth hacking is critical.

Are you currently Growth Hacking a company, project, app, or startup? If so give us a description and provide a link if you can.

Actually, our product (startafire.com) is kind of a growth hack. Content marketers are sharing curated content on social media, newsletters, etc. are generating a lot of high quality traffic to 3rd party content. startafire.com enables them to seamlessly promote their brand and content over any link they share. I’m biased, but in my humble opinion that’s an awesome growth hack 🙂

Describe your typical day, what it looks like and how do you make it productive?

Not sure how “productive״ I am.  I do my best to measure and optimize constantly. I do know that at any given moment I can achieve X, and if one of my team members needs something from me and are waiting, then he or she can’t achieve their X. So I do my best to make myself always available and approachable, while hiring those who can manage themselves so that I don’t need to waste my time on micro managing them.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive?

Hiring great people who can do stuff better and faster than me and don’t waste my time on micro managing them. In my humble opinion, that’s the best productive optimization “hack”.

What recent trend, marketing strategy, technique excites you the most right now?

Content marketing finally evolved to an important marketing channel, and expands outside the tech industry. On top of that, social shares became the main traffic source for most publishers. I’m thrilled to see those trends colliding and that’s why we have created startafire.com (can’t get more exciting than that).

As an individual, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?(This could be lifestyle habit, productivity, or some secret ninja tea made from a flower found only at the top of a mountain.)

As an entrepreneur who is constantly focused on his company’s growth it’s too easy to focus on the short term and forget to look up from time to time and re-evaluate your assumptions, or as I call it “find some time for dreams”. For me it’s running, reading or learning something new which is completely not related to what I do.

What Growth Hacking strategy helped you grow your most important metrics? Please explain how.

I have a few, but it’s still too early to share 🙂

What is one pain point you have in the digital space that you wish someone could fix or idea someone should come up with?

I find myself searching for personal “data” all the time. The deck someone shared with me, the video I saw yesterday, the name of the Asian restaurant I visited last month in SF etc. I just wish I had a personal search engine that could resolve that.

Have you ever failed with an idea, campaign or growth hack? How did you overcome it?

Of course! Success is about learning from your failures. As long as you learn and understand why you failed, you try again and know how to avoid those mistakes again then it’s just fine.

What are 3 of your favorite marketing software, technology, or tools?

Buffer – they built a simple product that anyone can start using within minutes.

Rapportive – critical product that enables you to learn more about your users and the people you are in touch with.

Intercom + Mixpanel – those two products enables you to measure your actions and know what’s working and what’s not.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

Trust Me I’m Lying” by Ryan Holiday. That’s the ultimate press growth hacking book. It gave me a different perspective on the economics of press, bloggers etc.

What inspires and motivates you on a personal level to be successful?

I’m really passionate about building new products. Seeing someone really enjoying something that started as an idea in their head, evolved over time and actually made an impact on his/her life is the greatest feeling in my “professional” world.

What people or companies should up and coming Growth Hackers seek out and learn from? (include websites, blogs or Twitter profiles)

The problem with growth hacks is once they become known usually they don’t work anymore. The trick here is to constantly track companies with rapid grow and when you notice something interesting you should actively investigate to learn how they did it. The two most interesting companies from the past year are Meerkat and Playbuzz.

How can people connect with you? (Website Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, ext.)

You can reach me via twitter, facebook or linkedin. I’m doing my best to be very responsive, but if you don’t get a reply within a day you should try again.

Where are you located? City + state (if in U.S.) or city + country (if not in the U.S.)

startafire.com HQ is based in Tel Aviv, Israel.

What is your spirit animal?

Not sure what is a spirit animal, but I really like elephants 🙂

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