Growth hacking has a largely negative connotation towards it – but its actually one of the best ways to grow your business successfully in a short amount of time. What started as a marketing technique for startups has transformed into a system that has helped businesses achieve leading success.
Phases of Growth Hacking
There are said to be five phases of growth hacking. The first phase is Product Market Fit – hackers try and create a product that fits into a specific need for an established population. Next, the hackers need to grow the business and grow their users/customers any and all ways. The third phase is called The Viral Lift. This relates to the hacker engineering specifics so consumers do the work of sharing for the company. Fourth phase – Retaining and Optimizing. Gaining new customers if great, but if you can’t keep them they don’t mean much. You need to keep your customers and then effectively spend time on them. The fifth step? Repeat steps 1-4.
Growth hacking is all about innovation – using what is already out there but tweaking it and making it your own. Throw in some dedication and hard work and you’ve got yourself a pretty good plan. Although hacking can be looked at in negative light due to its definition of “gaining unauthorized access to xyz”, in the marketing world it can be seen as adjusting the system to benefit what you need and want.
Marketer vs. Growth Hacker
Although growth hacking is a facet of marketing, you may want to consider hiring someone to your team whose sole purpose is growth. Each decision this person makes is related to how he or she can grow the business in any and all ways. Marketers have many different aspects to focus on, whereas growth hackers have one focus. They have a streamlined set of ideas and values related to what you need and work to employ them 100% of the time. Think about taking this innovative approach to growth.
Companies that have Employed Hacking
It may be news to you that most of the successful SaaS products you use have employed growth hacking. Airbnb is a great example of a company that innovated what was already being used by Craigslist and directing traffic towards their business and product. Airbnb was able to use their product to drive traffic and fill in gaps in the existing product market. They were also able to realize they needed to hack an existing company’s distribution mechanism and used their own employees to code and do this. The result: one of the most successful home and apartment rental companies in the world.
Growth hacking is now a necessary step to growing a business and gaining a large customer base – without which products won’t thrive. When starting a new company, look to see what others before you have done, take ideas and innovate them – produce something that isn’t already being offered or offer something on the market in a better way.