What is a growth hack?

By december 16, 2017 Growth hacking

A growth hack is a better way to get yourself to the party.

The what?

Yes, the party, let me explain.

You remember that moment when you were young and your parents wouldn’t allow you to go to a party?

At that time, You could have tried climbing out of the window, you could have said you were going to a private birthday party (which you weren’t) or would have said you were sleeping over at a friend’s place (which was true up to a certain degree).

The point is, your goal (metric) was to go to the party, but the methods of achieving that goal were different.

Some more successful than others.

This is what growth hacking is.

You set a goal (going to the party) of something bigger and better, even almost impossible and you try to get there in the fastest way, with the least amount of resources.

Some tests will fail (like climbing out of the window) but if you test enough you’ll find a better approach (staying at a friends place) to reach your goal.

In order to better understand Growth hacking, there is 3 things that you need to remember:

First of all, Growth Hacking is not about hacks or tools.

Just like in any sports, Growth Hacking is about processes & experimentation.

If you don’t train yourself to work out every single week, you won’t see results.

If you don’t try anything new, you’ll always fall behind.

Secondly, Growth Hacking is not a process that was made only for Marketers, it can be applied to new product innovation and to the continuous improvement of products as well as to growing and existing customer base.

The reason is simple. Most of the time you need 3 different skill sets to pull of a growth hack.

  1. A Designer (to make everything beautiful)
  2. A Coder (to make everything work)
  3. A Marketeer (to make sure people get to see whatever you want to test)

Thirdly, in order to understand a growth hack, you’ll need to understand the AARRR funnel & The North Star Metric:

AARRR funnel

This funnel is a wonderful framework to help you better understand your consumers and where they are in their journey.

It’ll help you measure your funnel and enable you to optimize it for the better.

The funnel is divided into 5 steps.

  1. Acquisition
  2. Activation
  3. Retention
  4. Referral
  5. Revenue

North Star Metric

The North Star Metric is the single metric that best captures the core value that your product delivers to customers.

Optimizing your efforts to grow this metric on every stage of the AARRR funnel is key to driving sustainable growth across your full customer base.

In case of the famous Dropbox referral campaign, their North Star metric was the amounts of shares & signs up they got from existing users in the Referral Stage.

In case of the famous Craigslist Platform Integration hack of Airbnb, this was the number of bookings people received from people looking for a place to stay on Airbnb (acquisition stage).

If you are looking to find your growth metric, make sure to check this blog out: Your growth metric is key: this is how to find it!

How it’s implemented:

  1. Create a cross-functional team.
  2. Use qualitative research and quantitative data analysis to gain deep insights into your user behavior and preferences.
  3. Generate and test ideas rapidly, and use the North Star Metric to guide the results.
ricardo ghekiere

Author ricardo ghekiere

A self taught marketeer with a limitless amount of humor.

More posts by ricardo ghekiere

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