How to Use Growth Hacking for Your Company
Growth hacking is a term coined by Sean Ellis in 2010 to describe a process of finding and applying new, simple, fast and low-cost ways to achieve significant business growth. Growth hacking is not just a collection of random tactics, but a systematic approach that involves data analysis, experimentation and optimization. In this article, you will learn what growth hacking is, how to implement a growth hacking strategy, and some examples of growth hacking techniques that you can use for your company.
What is Growth Hacking?
Growth hacking is a mindset and a methodology that focuses on finding the most effective ways to grow a business. A growth hacker is someone who is obsessed with growth and uses creative and unconventional methods to achieve it. Growth hacking is different from traditional marketing, which relies on big budgets, long-term plans and mass media. Growth hacking is more agile, lean and data-driven, and it targets specific segments of customers and channels of acquisition.
Some of the characteristics of growth hacking are:
- It is goal-oriented: Growth hacking is not about doing random things, but about having a clear and measurable goal, such as increasing revenue, user base, retention or referrals.
- It is data-driven: Growth hacking is based on collecting and analyzing data to understand customer behavior, preferences and needs, and to test and validate hypotheses and ideas.
- It is experimental: Growth hacking is about trying new things, learning from failures and successes, and iterating and improving based on feedback and results.
- It is scalable: Growth hacking is about finding the best practices and techniques that can be replicated and scaled to achieve exponential growth.
Some of the benefits of growth hacking are:
- It is cost-effective: Growth hacking does not require a large budget, but rather a smart use of resources and tools. Growth hacking can help you achieve more with less.
- It is fast: Growth hacking can help you achieve rapid growth in a short period of time, by leveraging existing platforms, networks and opportunities.
- It is innovative: Growth hacking can help you stand out from the competition, by creating unique value propositions, products and experiences for your customers.
How to Implement a Growth Hacking Strategy
To implement a growth hacking strategy, you need to follow a four-step process, as proposed by Sean Ellis in his book Hacking Growth:
- Gather the data: The first step is to collect and analyze data about your market, your customers, your product and your competitors. You need to understand the problem you are solving, the value you are providing, and the metrics you are tracking. You also need to identify your growth levers, which are the key factors that influence your growth, such as customer acquisition, activation, retention, revenue and referral.
- Generate the ideas: The second step is to brainstorm and generate ideas for growth experiments, based on your data and your growth levers. You need to prioritize your ideas based on their potential impact, feasibility and cost. You also need to formulate hypotheses and assumptions for each idea, and define how you will measure their success.
- Run the experiments: The third step is to run the experiments, by implementing your ideas and testing them with real customers. You need to use tools and methods such as A/B testing, landing pages, surveys, email campaigns, social media, etc. You also need to collect and monitor the data and the feedback from your experiments.
- Optimize the results: The fourth step is to optimize the results, by analyzing the data and the feedback from your experiments. You need to evaluate the performance of your ideas, and compare them with your hypotheses and assumptions. You also need to learn from your failures and successes, and iterate and improve your ideas based on your findings.
Growth Hacking Techniques for Your Company
There are many growth hacking techniques that you can use for your company, depending on your industry, product, market and goal. Here are some examples of growth hacking techniques that have been used by successful companies:
- Leverage word of mouth: Word of mouth is one of the most powerful and cost-effective ways to grow your business, by getting your existing customers to spread the word about your product to their friends, family and network. You can leverage word of mouth by creating a referral program, offering incentives, rewards or discounts for referrals, making your product easy to share, and encouraging social proof and testimonials.
- Educate customers into existence: Educating customers into existence is a technique of creating and distributing valuable and relevant content that educates your potential customers about the problem you are solving, the solution you are offering, and the benefits you are providing. You can educate customers into existence by creating a blog, a podcast, a webinar, a newsletter, an ebook, a course, etc., and using SEO, social media, email marketing, etc., to promote your content and generate leads.
- Commandeer an already-popular platform: Commandeering an already-popular platform is a technique of using an existing platform that has a large and engaged audience, and leveraging it to grow your own audience and customer base. You can commandeer an already-popular platform by creating a profile, a page, a group, a community, a channel, etc., on the platform, and providing value, engaging with the users, and directing them to your own platform or product.
- Turn users into brand evangelists: Turning users into brand evangelists is a technique of empowering and motivating your existing users to become advocates and promoters of your brand, product and company. You can turn users into brand evangelists by providing an exceptional customer experience, exceeding their expectations, solving their problems, listening to their feedback, rewarding their loyalty, recognizing their achievements, and making them feel part of your mission and vision.
- Make a viral video: Making a viral video is a technique of creating and distributing a video that captures the attention, emotion and interest of your target audience, and encourages them to share it with others. You can make a viral video by telling a story, showing a demonstration, making a joke, creating a challenge, etc., and using humor, curiosity, surprise, controversy, etc., to trigger an emotional response. You can also use platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, etc., to promote your video and reach a wider audience.
These are just some of the growth hacking techniques that you can use for your company. There are many more techniques that you can explore and experiment with, depending on your creativity, resources and goals. The key is to always test, measure and optimize your techniques, and keep learning and improving your growth hacking strategy.