2016/05/02

What is Growth Hacking and how does it work?

Bart Rice

Freelancer Marketer

For the last couple of years the marketing world has drastically shifted and gone from traditional marketing, such as newspaper prints, fliers, etc., to online marketing. Truth is, if you don’t update your marketing strategies you will fall behind and see a decrease in your business activity.
How often do you look past the first few links that pop up on Google when you search for something?
Those links are not there because of luck; they are the result of solid work by a company or an individual who recognizes the importance of taking advantage of the Internet to promote products or services.

This shift in marketing strategies has also given rise to another, previously unknown concept, growth hacking. If you are not yet familiar with the concept but intrigued by the idea, this article is for you.


WHAT IS GROWTH HACKING?


Growth hacking has only one objective, growth. Growth hackers often use alternative methods and innovative ideas to capture the attention of a target audience. Since growth hackers contribute to marketing they are often confused with marketers.
While it is a similar concept, growth hackers focus on one single goal: the growth of the company.
Marketers on the other hand focus on promoting a product or an idea that will then also contribute to the improvement and growth of a company. Marketers work with a much broader concept. 

Rather than focusing on the customers itself, growth hackers use a testable and scalable methodology to pull in users. They often leverage several disciplines to extract insight and find the right message or formula to retain clients.

HOW DOES IT WORK?


Growth hacking can best be explained through an example, AirBnB. They were a start-up with a unique idea, a good business model, but no users. To solve this problem they decided to hack into the Craigslist database and allow AirBnB users to link their posts to craigslist and that way get more clients.
This was not consented by craigslist and a lot of coding was necessary to pull off this innovative and very effective growth strategy.
Traditional marketers are great at promoting traditional products, such as computers, cameras, tables and chairs, anything substantial. But in today’s world it is crucial to understand that the definition of product has shifted, and is no longer restricted to a touchable object.
It can be software products that come in individual bits and pieces, websites, or even an idea.
That is why the strength of growth hackers is their focus on one single objective, growth.
In conclusion, growth hacking can be a very effective business strategy for start-up companies. However, it doesn’t work for every company. For growth hacking to be successful tests have to be completed and data has to be analyzed.
However, through the right combination of coding and data analysis a skilled growth hacker can make innovative changes that result in explosive growth.



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