Saif is an app marketing strategist who for the last decade has scaled businesses and built out key growth processes. His deep understanding of the app ecosystem has seen him propel start-ups into further funding rounds. He now supports app founders on specific projects that span the full user lifecycle.

In your own words, what’s your role in the app business right now?

As an x3 former Head of Growth, I’ve found great pleasure in becoming fractional, where I now support founders on specific projects that span the full user lifecycle. As it stands, I currently support fintech apps helping them maximize their organic growth potential as a Growth Consultant (ASO/CRM) at Cleo and Wollit. I’m also a Fractional Head of Growth at By Rotation, supporting the founder across the funnel, driving revenue and retention via Braze.

How did you end up working in apps? / get started?

My first exposure to apps was funnily by being part of a gimmicky marketing campaign by Asahi Beer x Fullers that gained immense viral success.

I quickly looked to apply my prior traditional product/social marketing knowledge to understand the behavioural dynamics of a newly launched app. I cut my learning curve even faster in the next role where I worked at an app marketing agency (Yodel Mobile), as a senior growth manager.

Having already built my own tech stack from the ground up coupled with the knowledge of core biz KPIs, it all came together when I gained immense experience consulting bootstrapped startups or well-funded scale-ups ($50mm+) on their data views and tech stacks. As a consultant, I formulated key growth levers and channelled my own creativity with bespoke strategies for various app verticals and GEOs.

What are you most excited about in apps right now?

The buzz around AI and its capabilities may make me sound like a broken record player, but I leverage it in most of my daily workflows and I’m very curious to see how much better it gets. I automate so many of my processes thanks to Open AI and MidJourney.

I’m also a part of beta programs at CRM companies like Braze, which allow me to test new AI features in real time with my user base. I think anything that saves me time, like auto-suggesting high-value segments to target and reducing the very laborious manual campaign building is what I’m most interested in. It’s all very exciting, purely from a time-saving perspective.

Is there anyone you’d like to shout out to who has influenced your journey in the app industry?

Big shout out to my team at By Rotation, and the founder Eshita! The rate of MoM revenue growth we are seeing is fantastic. Also, our install volume, from an organic acquisition point of view, is insane given we haven’t run a single ad in 2024! The work ethic and growth-hacker mentality the whole team embodies is really what is driving the successes we are seeing, which is very inspiring.

What’s in your app tech stack? (tools, software, services)

I’m a data guy, so I love building views in Mixpanel or Tableau. CRM-wise, I use Braze but do like what Klaviyo are doing. In general, to inform myself I use scraper tools I’ve built myself, or some social listening tools, like Awario. For ASO/SEO, I use quite a few but and AppTweak I use daily to track competitors and research granular keyword/app trends.

What do you like most about working in apps?

I do have to admit I really enjoy stretching my brain and problem-solving with the data teams. But the most enjoyable part is actually the coaching aspect. I have an extensive network that I regularly tap into, to help connect dots and provide further experience to those I coach, who feel stuck in singular disciplines (data, product, or marketing) and want to pivot to more holistic/senior growth roles.

What one thing would you change about the app industry / market? Where do you think there’s an opportunity for apps / or unmet needs?

To change: More emphasis on apps that are actually tech-for-good, with real utility (less of these emerging Gaming/Gambling apps please!)

Opportunity: African app market, incredible potential.

If you weren’t working in apps what would you be doing?

Building different products and testing business concepts for sure, my younger years were just that, always working to fund something or the other!

iOS or Android?

iOS, all day.

What app(s) have been most useful to you over the last year?

Reminders app & Audible.

What’s on your Spotify / Music party playlist?

A bit of Reggaeton and Dancehall: Tego Calderon & Rajahwild get the most plays.

Any Netflix/ TV show recommendations?

An Indian movie: Rockstar.

Is there anything else we should know about you?

Writing is definitely a passion of mine. I actually had a book published a few years ago – it’s available on Amazon!

The Universe and I: The illusion of life and death by Saif Rasheed

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