Growth hacking is a term commonly associated with startup growth, but what exactly does it mean? In Mason Pelt’s blog post, What the Heck is Growth Hacking, he describes it as using “everything from industry trends to internal analytics, to find areas in a company’s marketing that will yield the greatest impact.” Essentially, growth hacking is the process of rapid experimentation across marketing channels and product development to identify the most effective and efficient ways to grow a business.
So, how is it different from classic marketing techniques?
Growth hacking’s strength lies in its ability to jumpstart growth (although it’s important to note that it’s not a tactic for sustained growth and improvement). Justin Scott states in his blog post, The Role of Growth Hacking And How It Can Help Your Startup:
“Growth hackers come in and effectively ‘re-wire’ the business’s marketing strategies and implement testing to see what the issues may be. From here, they are able to fix whatever issues are stunting growth.”
Scott also says that startup owners are often unaware of their own potential and what will generate a response from their customers. Growth hacking uses a mixture of acquisition tactics, optimization stages, and testing to evaluate technical details. This process leads to rapid growth which can launch a startup into success very early.
So with all of this in mind, how can you ensure that your growth hacking is as effective as possible? Here are some tips from expert growth hackers.
1. Have a Control Group
According to Neil Patel and Bronson Taylor in their ebook the Definitive Guide to Growth Hacking, having a control group can optimize your growth hacking experiment by allowing you to evaluate forces outside of your company and measure progress. Without looking at outside forces to see the whole picture the results of your growth hack testing can easily the skewed, making them pretty much useless to you.
To read more marketing advice from Neil Patel, check out our post What Good Content Means According to Top Marketers.
2. Use Scalable Tactics
Alexander Kesler’s blog post 10 Growth Hacking Concepts and Best Practices emphasizes the use of defining “growth” in terms of smaller reachable goals. Tactics that lead to success will naturally gather momentum and lead you to higher conversion rates. Kesler also warns that it’s important to ensure your marketing model has is set up to support growth. This will ensure backend difficulties don’t slow you down.
3. The Distribution Hack
The blog post 25 Growth Hacks Using Gleam.io elaborates on their notion of the distribution hack and its benefits.
For startups, it can be extremely helpful to partner with companies that already have an established audience on marketing campaigns. These can include sharing your product or service with them or teaming up on a webinar, event, contest, or piece of content. This tactic taps into an already established audience on a different platform to get your name out there.
4. Customer Survey And Feedback
In the blog 21 Free Growth Hacking Tools For Startup Marketers, Shivankit Arora recommends using qualitative and quantitative research to evaluate the success of your campaigns. While you’re building your brand voice, using feedback can guide you in the right direction to fit your target audience. Tools like SurveyMonkey are a simple way to test the effectiveness of any new idea.
There are hundreds of other tactics to use when utilizing growth hacking, including your own ideas that have never been tried before! Growth hacking allows your startup to propel into success strategically. So get out there and start testing!
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