growth hacking

What is growth hacking?

If you don’t know what growth hacking is, it’s time to find out! It is THE buzzword for technology startups. Are growth hackers taking over the world? They have been called the new “VP of Marketing”, so you need to know what the buzz is about because they are producing incredible growth for their companies.

Growth hacking was named in 2010 by Sean Ellis (the original growth hacker) and he describes it as “a person whose true north is growth. Everything they do is scrutinized by its potential impact on scalable growth.” Basically, growth hackers start with the question of how to obtain customers for a product. They are typically hybrids of marketing, product managers and coders with a very creative mindset.Typically, growth hackers marry traditional and unconventional marketing techniques and love to use low cost channels such as social media to advertise.

Is growth hacking for us?

Growth hacking is not for every company. It is a good match for startups, technology companies and those who are nimble. While growth hacking may sound like a concept for short-term gain, it is truly a focus on long-term sustainability.

While almost every company is using marketing techniques such as search engine optimization and email marketing, growth hacking is much more than that. Growth hackers rapidly test different versions of persuasive content with A/B testing and different social media channels. Growth hacking is agile at its essence, testing various concepts and validating the idea at every stage of the development cycle. Many growth hackers build customer acquisition into the product itself. Think Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and Google as examples of well known companies that used growth hacking (and still do) to build their brands. The viral loop is built in to the customer acquisition and they can do this because modern software products are completely different than traditional products and enable this capability.

Analytics is a big part of growth hacking. Being data-driven is at the heart of a growth hacking strategy. Growth hackers will evaluate: event based analytics; current demographics of buyers; customer acquisition cost; customer worth; and virality (customers bringing in other customers).

You’ll likely find growth hackers working at your corner coffee shop, not in a stuffy corporate office. They move fast and love to experiment. They live and breathe marketing and social media and are extremely curious. And if employing a team of growth hackers might not be for you, it could work to use a marketing agency that provides growth hacking services. The synergy for both of you is to drive revenues.