The term growth hacking is often associated with start-up businesses. From Dropbox to Uber, these huge companies got to where they are today by hacking their growth.
Breaking it down, ‘growth’ refers to bringing in new leads and sales. ‘Hacking’ refers to ditching conventional practices and testing out new ideas and products in a series of iterations.
Growth hacking is for the brave and committed marketer, and it can be applied to any business — from multinational corporations to your fledgling startup. Here are seven more things you might not know about growth hacking.
Ignoring the marketing fundamentals won’t wash
Growth hacking may help you pull in the big numbers, but if you don’t have the content or messaging to back it up, you’ll lose them.
Creating well-written, useful and engaging content such as blogs, videos or infographics will ensure that your customers will stay locked into your website and brand.
It’s all about proving to your audience that you can back your service and product claims up. If your campaign sends potential customers to an empty or low-quality site, they won’t stick around. Get to grips with the latest trends, but don’t forget to cover the fundamentals as well.
Thought leaders make better growth hackers
In 2018, businesses need to rise above the generic promotional messages that customers are bombarded with everyday. Consumers today pay attention to niche influencers who provide authority and value. These brands have an authentic voice and offer followers in-depth insight with actionable takeaways, a great way to growth hack your personal and commercial influence.
The polished and shiny PR front doesn’t wash with savvy consumers anymore. For growth hackers who want to make the most of social media, you will need to display authenticity, showing your customers who you really are.
This famous advert from the Dollar Shave Club is a great example of this. Rather than a stuffy, uninspiring advert, the founder himself delivers a tongue-in-cheek and highly engaging message to their customers. It breaks away from the usual advertising format, and it succeeds with style.
Small things make big waves
Rather than trying to get one up on the competition, try to offer something unique if you’re hoping draw fans away from the big names. Rather than copying other business models, you need to identify and work with your own strengths.
For instance, if you’re a brand that sells bicycles, offer free one-day maintenance workshops. This is something that lots of people would find useful, and raises awareness of your brand directly. These visitors can spread the word to their friends, first locally, building a solid consumer base for you to build on. It’s all about finding small-scale ways to have a big impact.
You need a growth mindset before anything
The development of a growth mindset, knowing that you can get better through hard work and effort, is just as important as the hacking itself when it comes to growing your enterprise.
The nature of growth hacking is exploitative, so there is no time to get stuck in a rut if one technique stops working. Keep moving, keep innovating, and always challenge yourself.
By developing your entrepreneurial skills through facing new challenges and making mistakes, you’ll develop problem-solving capabilities that will help you grow your enterprise. Upskill wherever you can and use your newly developed skills to expand your reach.
Slow growth turns into universal adoption
Many marketers get into the habit of avoiding platforms that don’t seem relevant or beneficial to them. New kids on the block are often sidelined…until someone figures out how to make a tonne of money out of them.
- A classic example of this is Snapchat. So many companies were missing out on a wealth of great opportunities, simply because their marketing teams weren’t able to pivot fast enough. Due to increased demand, Snapchat launched its Snap MMM Partner Program to benefit advertisers — and now everyone is on there.
- Instagram was also relatively slow to monetise its visual galleries upon its inception, but today it’s one of the most successful platforms for businesses. The photo-sharing app is great for growth hacking, and social sellers can now create shoppable galleries — providing direct sales without customers ever leaving the app.
Get involved with the new platforms early on and experiment — be amongst the first to benefit from the first wave of commercialisation.
Your landing page plays a crucial role in your growth strategy, especially in lead acquisition and retention. A professional-looking lander with some form of inbound capture (think email signup forms) keeps potential customers engaged with your brand.
This is all about getting out there with a Minimum Viable Product (MVP), and then going all-out later. Never delay a launch — get out there fast and start building and collecting customer feedback.
Even if you’re yet to launch your final product or service, an effective landing page will help you grow your enterprise by building your customer base and email lists.
These days it’s relatively easy to put a professional page together. Use an builder with an easy and simple interface and update it with the latest news, events, and HQ happenings.
For service pages, a tool such as Instapage is perfect for crafting an effective lander. If you’re going the ecommerce route, use a simple webstore builder to create a landing page that is dynamic and sells your products from the get-go.
Mistakes are a good thing
Everyone fears making mistakes, but for growth hackers, you can use this to your advantage. Don’t just hide your mistakes — face them and learn from them. Trying a technique and failing is infinitely preferable to never trying it at all. Learning from your mistakes teaches you valuable lesson for the next step in growing your startup.
By sharing these failures with your community, you can pass on the knowledge you’ve gained from them. As a result, you will build a reputation as knowledgeable and collaborative, and will help others on their growth hack journey.
You should regularly post to all of your networks asking for feedback on your presentation, logos, posts, techniques, and so on. Be willing to hear criticism on a regular basis. Fail now so you can do better next time.
Growth hacking can help startups and small enterprises launch their sales figures into the stratosphere. Much of the hard work goes into streamlining your processes. Upskill, make mistakes, and be transparent in everything you do. The rewards of creating your own foolproof growth hack formula will mean that you can apply it to multiple products and channels. So get in the growth mindset today!