Growth Hacker Marketing


A growth hacker is someone who has thrown out the playbook of traditional marketing and replaced it with only what is testable, trackable, and scalable. Their tools are emails, data targeting, blogs, and platform APIs instead of commercials, publicity, and money. While their marketing brethren chase vague notions like “branding” and “mind share,” growth hackers relentlessly pursue users and growth—and when they do it right, those users become evangelists for products, bringing more users with them. Growth hackers are the inventors, operators, and mechanics of a self-sustaining and self-propagating growth machine that can take a company not just from zero to one, but from one to a hundred or a hundred million.

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Key Takeaways

  1. The old way—where product development and marketing were two distinct and separate processes—is being replaced…Growth hacking at its core means putting aside the notion that marketing is some separate activity that begins toward the end of a company’s or a product’s development life cycle. It is, instead, a way of thinking and looking at your business.
  2. The end goal is the same, however, and it’s to have the product and its customers in perfect sync with each other.
  3. Marketing as we know it is a waste of time without PMF.
  4. To be successful and grow your business and revenues, you must match the way you market your products with the way your prospects learn about and shop for your products.
  5. With growth hacking, we begin by testing until we are confident we have a product worth marketing. Confident based on the evidence, not our ego or our fantasies. Only after securing this do we chase the big bang that kick-starts our growth engine. Because even the best-designed products and greatest ideas go nowhere without a jump.
  6. A product doesn’t need to hit the front page of the New York Times to attract users. We need only to hit the New York Times of our scene.
  7. A few years later, the email app Mailbox launched with a similar strategy. An incredibly compelling—albeit a tad more professional—demo video racked up one hundred thousand views in less than four hours. This one-minute video, combined with a very cool interface that showed users how many other users were in front of them on the app’s waiting list, created a spectacle that drove an enormous amount of social chatter and blog attention
  8. You don’t go out with your marketing to everyone. You go to where there is a captive or potential audience that might be interested in what you do. You don’t need all the people – just the right people
  9. You can use your own internal data to create captivating infographics and visualizations, like OkCupid did with its massive data set, launching OkTrends, which has been a marketing gold mine attracting visitors with its fascinating insights about dating.
  10. Each one of the previously mentioned growth strategies was, in its own way, a bit like a Trojan horse. By doing one thing, something that often didn’t feel like marketing, a company was able to get access to users that it was then able to convert into customers, clients, or sign-ups. So, what’s your Trojan horse going to be?
  11. The best way to get people give you this gift? Make it seem like it isn’t a favor. Make it the kind of thing that is worth spreading and, of course, conducive to spreading.
  12. the product must be inherently worth sharing—and then on top of that, you must facilitate and encourage the spreading you’d like to see by adding tools and campaigns that enable virality.
  13. To make that clear: you should not just encourage sharing but create powerful incentives to do so. If your product isn’t doing that right now, why would anyone share it? But if you do it right, people will advertise your product and feel like they are the ones getting something out of it!
  14. They rolled out a feature that gave the product away to users for free if they referred five friends who signed up.
  15. Jonah Berger, a social scientist well known for his studies of virality, explains that “publicness” is one of the most crucial factors in driving something’s spread. As he writes in his book Contagious, “Making things more observable makes them easier to imitate, which makes them more likely to become popular. . . . We need to design products and initiatives that advertise themselves and create behavioral residue that sticks around even after people have bought the product or espoused the idea.”
  16. Dropbox built one of the most effective and most viral referral programs of the start-up world. It was as simple as placing a little “Get free space” button on the front page of the service.
  17. All of which is to say a simple fact: if you want to go viral, it must be baked into your product and the experience.
  18. That’s where a growth hacker named Josh Elman came in. Poring over the stats, he and his team of twenty-five growth hackers (crazy, right?) noticed that when a user manually selected five to ten accounts to “follow” or “friend” on the first day, the user was significantly more likely to stick around.
  19. When I first joined the company, the suggested user list had 20 random people who were default selected to follow. Given this data insight, we reset the new user flow to encourage people to follow their first ~10 people and offer them a lot of choices, but no default selection. Then we later built a feature that continually suggested new users to follow on the sidebar of the website. These two changes helped people get started following, and more importantly understand that following was important to get the most out of Twitter. So over time more people did just this and became more and more likely to be retained.
  20. I love the idea of Dropbox rewarding users with 250 megabytes of extra storage if they take a tour of the basics of Dropbox. The idea is to teach members how to use the service and motivate them to get past potential hurdles.
  21. According to Bain & Company, a 10 percent increase in customer retention can mean a 30 percent increase in profitability for the company. And according to Market Metrics, the probability of selling to an existing customer is 60 to 70 percent, while to a new prospect it’s just 5 to 20 percent.
  22. the core, marketing is lead generation. Ads drive awareness . . . to drive sales. PR and publicity drive attention . . . to drive sales. Social media drives communication . . . to drive sales. Marketing, too many people forget, is not an end unto itself. It is simply getting customers. And by the transitive property, anything that gets customers is marketing. That is what growth hackers have
  23. Seek unusual ways to find customer. For Airbnb, it was craigslist infiltration, which allowed Airbnb hosts to use the site as a sales platform
  24. For example, let’s say your friend gets an email from his favorite product asking him to join a contest. He joins and shares it on Twitter because the product offers him another entry if he does. You see your friend’s tweet and click on it, entering the contest as well and sharing it with even more people. This is how viral loops become self-contained, self-fueling mechanisms of growth.

What I got out of it

  1. A super practical book on how to think about marketing in the modern age. Anything that helps bring awareness and sell your product or service is marketing (including the product itself!)

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