There are no hacks for fast growth, and we all know it. Even if you find people talking about achieving big jumps all of a sudden, there are chances that they don’t understand the dynamics. If you are trying to achieve long term growth, you first need a solid launchpad. To follow it up, new-age marketers have developed several strategies to help you attain rapid expansion. One of them is growth marketing.
Everyone is raving about this new bloke in the market. There are hundreds of blogs being written about it daily, and the hype is at an all-time high. We know that you may have several questions regarding it. We are discussing it all today in this article.
What is growth marketing?
Traditional Marketing had its fair share of flaws. There are various challenges that organisations face when marketing their products or services.
The strategists looked for solutions to curb these issues, and that is how Growth marketing came into life. It adds some extras on to the traditional structure to ensure robust and sustainable growth.
So, what are the extras that we are talking about and how do they matter?
We are talking about SEO website optimization, A/B testing, creative promotional strategies, data-driven email techniques, and much more.
A 2018 report from Hubspot says that 61% of marketers say improving SEO and growing their organic presence is their top inbound marketing priority.(Source: https://www.hubspot.com/marketing-statistics)
In broader terms, growth marketing is a culmination of the following –
- A house of strategies – Gone are the days when marketing performances were tracked once in a year. The new approach follows a cyclical sprint model where your performance is monitored continuously and optimized.
- Serving the right customers the right way – Marketing no longer looks to generate value from the customers. Its primary focus has now shifted to providing optimum benefit to the customers.
- Marketing budgets now look to serve profitable customers so that they extract the utmost value from the brand.
- Revenue growth is secondary; the primary goal is to generate, retain and monetize customers – Today, companies like Xiaomi and so many more are looking to build a broader customer base instead of making high profits from each sale. They firmly believe that if the products are excellent, customers will stick to them and buy more and more, thereby helping the brand to earn more.
- A mixture of strategic marketing with tactical performance marketing – Growth marketing concentrates less on immediate sales. It is instead, more concerned about securing long terms sales by creating awareness, loyalty, and sufficient demand.
What does a growth marketer do?
The job of a growth marketer is similar to any other person in the marketing world. Just that it produces better results than the competition. Here is what you may find a growth marketer busy with when you walk up to them –
- Brand Marketing – for new products or products with low demand. You may find them busy with influencer marketing, sponsoring promotional events, guest blogging to increase awareness, or in any other similar activity.
- Customer Research – you may find growth marketers busy talking with end-users to understand their preferences and viewpoint. It helps them in placing their strategies in a better manner.
- Designing automated promotional tools – like chatbots, drip campaigns, automated email sequences for onboarding, and many others.
- Using paid techniques for promotion – for a new campaign or new websites to understand their viability.
- Marketing content – to improve awareness, bring in more traffic, and converting more leads.
- Social media marketing– With reports that say that over 3.2 billion people use social media channels globally, the need to understand how to market your products and services on social media is important.
What is growth content?
Content that helps you to achieve landslide growth is called growth content. It can be anything, promotional material, your website content, blog or your chatbot content.
A hubspot marketing report from 2018 says that “55% of marketers say blog content creation is their top inbound marketing priority”.
You cannot precisely pinpoint any particular content to be growth content. It all depends on your organization and how it operates. A simple change in an advertisement can lead to massive growth. It is that simple yet that crooked.
Growth marketing vs traditional marketing:The new vs the old
Traditional marketing is vastly different from modern growth marketing. With the conventional approach, the strategies were mostly company-centric and hardly gave any impetus to the customer’s satisfaction. Contemporary marketing has finally understood that customer is the primary focus and has shifted its focus to where it should have been in the first place.
Another issue with the traditional method is that it solely focuses on customer acquisition. There is no strategy for follow-up. The modern one is wider. It starts where the former one ends, i.e. after-sales is its primary focus. It looks to acquire, retain and upsell instead of only acquiring and then forgetting.
Growth marketing is different from brand marketing as well as digital marketing too.
In brand marketing, only a brand is in focus, and all the promotional activities revolve around it. In digital marketing, the marketing of the products is via the internet and its services. There is no thought for offline marketing. Growth marketing takes it all in and cares about the entire business and promotes it via any ethical means possible.
As you may have already sensed, growth marketing strategies revolve around the thought of achieving sustainable growth. Here are some important ones that you can try to implement –
Understanding the audience
Trying to read customer behaviour will enable you to market your product better. If you create a rough idea of what the customer is thinking and why is he buying a product, you can advantageously place your product. It is not always that a person buys just because he wants to; making sure that he purchases even when he doesn’t need to is the real deal.
According to the Oracle report, 80 per cent of organizations will need chatbots for their business. Not only that, another report states that chatbots will power 85 per cent of customer service. We are already seeing several companies employing chatbots regularly. You must realize that going digital is the future, and you must adhere to it to be in the race.
Measure quantitative results
If you ignore quantitative results in terms of Return on Investment (ROI), there is no other way to measure the performance of the strategy.
Without measuring the results, you won’t understand what works and what doesn’t. You can also employ several analytical tools to give you insight. Try and measure one at a time; do not rush to do it all together.
Consider the following stats:
- “39% of marketers say proving the ROI of their marketing activities is their top marketing challenge”. (HubSpot, 2018)
- “72% of organizations that calculate ROI say their marketing strategy is effective”. (HubSpot, 2016)
- “Marketers that calculate ROI are 1.6 times more likely to receive higher budgets”. (HubSpot, 2016)
The figures point to the need of quantitatively calculating your results in terms of ROI.
Change is the only constant
If you continue to do what you were doing yesterday, it would be foolish to expect growth all of a sudden. The basic idea of growth marketing is change. You keep on changing your tactics to stay ahead of the competition, bringing in more leads, and for several other benefits. Fearing experimentation will take you nowhere. Instead, be dynamic and employ the latest tech to bring about great results.
Utilize the medium which your audience uses
We think that if we are all over the internet, there is a higher chance of getting more leads. It is partially true as well as somewhat false.
Being on every social media platform can make it messier for you as well. Instead, understand your business and judge which which social signals are required for your growth. It will help you narrow down your options and give you a relatively higher chance to interact with the relevant audience.
Read and know the trends
It is good to use the tried and tested strategies. There is a problem with it as well; technology is changing rapidly, and it has led to several new policies and weapons cropping up. If you still believe that the old methods are the most useful one and ignore the trends, be prepared to face the brunt. Instead, acquaint yourself with the latest once in a while and change, if the situation demands.
Qualities of a growth marketer
Certain qualities are common to all the growth marketers out there. Here is a list of those –
- An excellent communicator – A superb communicator speaks less and delivers more. Without excellent communication skills, he won’t be able to describe what he expects from his team and how can they achieve them. They possess the ability to inspire people through their speeches and actions.
- Good with analytics – If you want to be a good marketer, you must be good with analytics. You need to ask the right questions and can read between the lines.
- A fearless warrior – he is not afraid to take smart risks that are in line with the company’s goals.
- A visionary – He must have the ability to think deeply and visualize the outcomes of his present strategies.
- Ability to persuade – A growth marketer must be an example for his team. He must be confident and ensure that his team too sets the bar high.
Why do we need growth marketing?
The old marketers’ didn’t have anything to do with the customers once the sale is complete. There was no attention towards after-sale services. Even the way the sales process started was awkward. The manager would typically cold call a customer or conducted a face-to-face meeting to propose a sale. The advent of digital sales made a mess of it all.
The marketers got a lot more data at their disposal than they had ever utilized. The word ‘customer’ became leads, MQLs, and SQLs instead. It meant that there was a significant change in conducting of business processes. It instigated a need for a new marketer who could handle all the new operations well.
The old marketers had no idea of after-sale services. The new age expected more than that from the organizations. It led to companies fast realizing the need to focus on its services after the sale is complete. The old-age marketers became redundant, and the new age ones replaced them.
How is it different from growth hacking?
Growth hacking is a short-term approach, whereas growth marketing is a long term one. The primary focus of growth hacking lies is rapid market growth, whereas growth marketing is more about sustainability. There is a difference in the team which performs these strategies as well. The hacking team consists mainly of full-stack developers and marketers, whereas the growth marketing team consists of business strategists, marketers, and customer success managers.
Pre-Conditions to be fulfilled for a successful growth marketing campaign implementation
Before you begin implementing your first step to achieve growth marketing, you must meet the following pre-conditions –
1. Availability of agility in abundance
If you want to make rapid inroads, you must have a great team and a supportive environment. The chain of command should be transparent, and there should be no unnecessary hindrances in between. Further, decision making must be decentralized so that you get the ability to take prompt actions at various stages. To sum it up, there must be a smooth workflow that keeps things moving.
2. Marketing team gets access to the requisite data
Marketing metrics are not the only required criteria for the marketing team; it also needs access to business metrics too. Availability of both of them together ensures that you know the reasons which are holding back the business and what is essential to ensure smooth implementation.
3. You have a clear vision, and a strategy is in place
What will be the use of implementing growth marketing if the basic structure is incomplete? An essential precondition is setting up a sound strategy which is crystal clear and well documented.
Documentation should clearly state what you are, what you are trying to achieve, who is your target customer, identified bottlenecks that can be a hindrance to growth, and critical areas which can yield better results if adequately utilized. In addition to the documentation, your vision must stand tall, and everyone in the organization agrees to it.
Hiring a growth marketing agency
There are several reasons why you should hire a growth marketing agency. A good agency finds out the issues with your existing marketing techniques and ensures that you have the prerequisites for implementing growth marketing.
In addition to that, it helps in increasing your revenues organically.
Another essential criteria for choosing the right company is to look for their ability to decipher data. Everyone can read data and understand what is visible. An expert growth marketing organisation will help you read between the lines and mould data in a way that it points out your strengths and weaknesses alike. A good growth marketer is a doer and not just thinker alone.
Growth marketing may be a simple implementation or can get as complicated as possible. It all depends on how sound your organization was before you discovered it.
It is a fact that most organizations think that growth marketing is for one and all. Well, it is not. You must pass the pre-requisites test before to be able to achieve any success with growth marketing. Deep down, you must realize that good marketing is synonymous with growth marketing, and it is the one to be practised first.
Once you have decided to implement it, you must research about the toolkit that comes with it and employ people who are expert in A/B testing, landing page tools, analytics tools, user testing tools, and engagement tools. It is best if you develop it as a pilot version initially and after that implement it organization-wide.
Sustainable growth, along with profits, is all that matters and hiring the right growth marketing agency, will ensure that you give yourself a chance to achieve it.