You may have heard about growth hacking. But do you know how it works?
More importantly, is it for you?
Before you jumpstart your journey, you need a bite-size, working definition:
“Growth hacking is a process of rapid experimentation, across marketing channels and product development, to identify the most effective and efficient ways to grow.
So growth hacking combines marketing, engineering, and product management skills to build and engage user bases. Maybe you already did something like it. You just didn’t call it growth hacking then.
Let’s check out a few examples to understand this concept better:
First off is project management app Trello. The team behind it wanted to know how to position their product on the homepage. To determine the messaging that would bring the most growth, they tested multiple headline themes. They used internal codes like ‘collabTool,’ ‘visualTool,’ and ‘organizedTool.’ While tracking data, they found that ‘collabTool’ increased sign-ups by 2%.
Read the details here. Or watch this:
HubSpot wins the growth hacking game through blogging. Over time, it has built its image as a content hub for marketers and SEOs. Further, the HubSpot Academy offers certification courses that add value to their audiences.
HubSpot’s success is based on a strategy called ‘inbound marketing,’ which complements product marketing with content marketing.
In 2010, the phrase ‘growth hacking’ was coined by Sean Ellis, who “ignited breakout growth” in Dropbox as its interim head of growth.
Turning two in 2009, Dropbox reached one million registered users in April, doubled that figure in September, and hit three million in November. It owed this sped-up growth to a simple yet scalable referral program. If a user got their friend to sign up, both of them were rewarded with additional storage.
If you want to try referral as a strategy, start with this:
An important takeaway here is that growth hacking is an iterative process. It applies the best practices of the lean startup methodology to the growth of a company.
Here’s how we illustrate it:
We’ve tested growth hacking in Singapore with some lifestyle and tech brands. And below’s our lifecycle. Based on the image, can you tell if you’ve done any form of growth hacking before.
- Brainstorm – user story and backlog
- The hack strategy – what to focus on and what strategies to implement
- Experiment design – what set of experiments can help you know what if you’re on the right track
- Execution – implement the experiment onto the product or service
- Data collection – during the experiment, set metrics and systems to understand performance
- Analyze – what to continue doing and what to pivot
Of course, what pumps life into any strategy is the people behind it. So, you’ll need to form a team of growth hackers whose skills and energy are valuable to your business. You can look for complementary skill sets based on three pillars:
Automation and engineering
- Basics of coding
- Hack tools
- Landing page optimisation
- Process automation
- Web data extraction
Lean experimentation and data
- A/B Testing
- Behavioural economics
- Business intelligence
- Digital analytics
- Funnel marketing
- Lean marketing iterations
- Email marketing
- Guerilla marketing
- Other people’s networks
- The hack ideas
Do you have questions about growth hacking? Don’t hesitate to ask us at firstname.lastname@example.org.