Growth is oxygen - early on its everything....you need customers to keep learning.
If you don't have users, you can't try out ideas.
Growth is a substitute for solvency... people will lend you money based on demonstrated customer engagement or growth of engaged customers.
What are you really growing?
There are really these three currencies
- Reputation (page rank, twitter followers etc)
- Attention - awareness about a thing
As startup, if you don't pay attention to these you are making bad decisions.
Startup success is often about the exchange rate between these three currencies.
If you are really good at spending at small amount of money and driving attention, that's great..that's your key success factor.