What is Growth Hacking and How it Helps Your Business

June 23rd, 2021

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Growth hacking is kind of sexy tbh.

What? We all have our kinks…

Anyway, let me explain what I mean. Growth hacking is a vibe–it’s out-of-the-box thinking, taking risks, dancing with the devil, hacking the status quo.

All things I look for in a Bumble match.

Modern problems require modern solutions. Beyond the above description, growth hacking is defined as a new field focused solely on growth based on a data-driven, experimental process.

When you are participating in growth hacking, you are using unique marketing strategies that require minimum spend with maximum rewards.

Growth hacking gained popularity in the startup space. The term was coined in 2010 by Sean Ellis, as newer companies were stuck with tight budgets and big marketing goals.

This style of marketing has infiltrated larger, more traditional companies. Uber, Shopify, and TikTok all have formed departments focussed on “growth marketing.”

Growth hacking vs. traditional marketing 

It’s hard to draw a clear line when it comes to growth hacking and marketing. You could make an argument that growth hacking is just “modern marketing.” However, some differences between the two should help make it a little more defined in your mind.

Growth hackers:

  • Use the entire funnel, including Referral and Retention, vs. marketers mainly focus on Awareness and Acquisition.

  • Run experiments; they are not wary of testing out multiple versions of a technique, looking for whichever has the most potential to drive growth. The methods can alter and change almost day-to-day. On the other hand, marketers tend to work on more long-term projects.

  • Have more technical skills than marketers, using tooling, programming, and automation to streamline their programs and make them cost-efficient.

  • Are involved with the actual product, as their main goal is to pay attention to active customers and retain them.

  • Focus on upcoming growth opportunities vs. focussing on day-to-day marketing and branding.

Growth hacking requires a team that can work as quickly and as independently as possible. The team needs to be creative problem solvers and have the skills to bring their solutions to reality for your brand.

Effective techniques 

Many of these techniques are helpful in both traditional marketing and growth hacking. In fact, you may recognize a few of them. However, all these techniques are based on the concept and goals of growth marketing.

Automation: The key to being a cost-effective growth hacker is automation and repetition. Using software and tools to help do the job faster, growth hacking is always about streamlining methods.

Not your average content: Interesting, creative, and surprising content can do wonders for getting people interested in your products. Free tools count as content, too, not to mention, they are a fabulous way to get people interested in the paid offer!

Be a weirdo: Be weird. Seriously, be as weird as you want. Unusual and outrageous campaigns will attract eyes from everywhere, even news outlets! If you really want to make a splash, make sure your campaigns are something worth talking about.

Pay-per-click marketing (PPC): Everyone loves to be validated, and marketers are just the same (even more so, honestly). PPC is an excellent method to test your wording, learn what language style your customers are attracted to. It provides ideal, fast data, as well as being an excellent technique to drive conversions. Even with a tight budget, consider sparing a few hundred dollars to test and validate different concepts with PPC.

UGC content contests: Wet t-shirt contest, anyone?!? Just kidding. But everyone loves an excellent visual competition! Ask your customers to take photos or videos with your products or use your services! Competitions always attract a lot of attention, particularly when you choose an appealing award (like one of your top products sent to the winner). Plus, you get a ton of valuable content to share and reshare across your platforms. Just a bunch of people in love with your product, what could be better?

Bloggers enter free: Influencers and bloggers are an excellent resource for product reviews and backlinks to your site. You can make it easy for bloggers to try out your stuff by making sure to include a “free for bloggers” section on your pricing page or any other call to action for bloggers. Ensure that the blog is appropriate and a good fit for your brand before sending them your products!

Benefits: Growth, duh 

I think it goes without saying that the benefit of growth hacking is, well…growth. I did just say it anyway, just so no one gets lost. Growth hacking can benefit your business no matter what kind you are, eCommerce, corporation, startup, B2C, or B2B.

Company vibes 

Using growth hacking as your primary strategy for your brand is an excellent mentality for the whole company. By design, the strategies implemented in growth hacking are flexible for any situation, making them available for any goal. Embracing this hacking mentality can drastically increase your chances against the competition because you are not tied to traditional business development and marketing strategies.

Company culture is top-down; if you want to encourage creative solutions and a growth mindset, make it a policy, not an option.

Improved ROI and cost-effective 

This style of marketing was born from a desperate need to grow without spending too much money. Once you have identified your target market’s wants and needs, you can fulfill and nurture these needs using low-cost strategies. Remember, nothing works forever, and you can not get complacent. While these strategies focus on growth, they may not work forever. The critical quality of a strong growth hacking mentality is the willingness to change your methods constantly and analyze how you can maneuver to encourage growth.

New eyes, new leads

Based on the experimental nature of growth hacking, it is inevitable that your unique techniques put your brand in front of a brand new set of people. Broadening your reach increases your chances of bringing in new leads who bring new perspectives to your brand. Growth marketing uses data from the new customers to identify what exactly is attracting them into your sales funnel. Once you know what is bringing the leads in, you can effectively update your marketing strategies to cater to your new expanded target market.

Innovation, no money, and lots of data. Those are the three components of a growth hacking strategy. Making your money work for you, not against you. That’s a benefit we can all use.

Growth Hacking is a mindset – do as you must 

Are you ready to bring growth hacking strategies into your business model? Be prepared to act as a rebel without a cause. The primary intent is growth, so no matter what goal you have in mind, be ready to use every strategy available to you, whether obvious or obscure.

If that makes you nervous, or you are not sure where to begin, look no further. Nowadays is here to hack the hell out of your growth (I pitched that as a catchphrase once and got shut down).

We are experts at the art of viral marketing. We can modernize your message and inject it directly into social media. Getting the right content on the right page at the right time is our specialty, and that saves you money and expands your reach.

Ready to start this marketing hackathon? Let us know.



5 Things You Can Learn About ‘Growth Hacking’ From The Man Who Coined The Term | Forbes

What is User-Generated Content (UGC)? | Techopedia

B2B vs. B2C Marketing: Understanding the Differences | Marketo