Growth hacking is a process of rapid experimentation across marketing channels and product development to identify the most effective, efficient ways to grow a business. The phrase “growth hacker” was coined by Sean Ellis in 2010.
A growth hacker is not a replacement for a marketer. To use the most succinct definition from Sean Ellis, “A growth hacker is a person whose true north is growth” or as defined by Andrew Chen from Uber “Growth hackers are a hybrid of marketer and coder”.
Every decision that a growth hacker makes is informed by growth.
Here is a famous citation by Sean Ellis, a pioneer in Growth Hacking:
Growth Hacking is not anti-marketing, it is the evolution of marketing, it is pro-growth.
I’ve decided to list the top 30 ideas & best tips for your growth hack strategy available on the net.
1. Ad Display Advertising & Sponsorships
Get banner ads placed on key blogs or niche websites where your users visit. This will be especially helpful if they do not display other competing ads.
2. Amazon Book Reviewing and Commenting
If in your niche there are books published on Amazon and you have read them, start reviewing them. If there aren’t any books… well then, you can write one perhaps!
3. Create Targeted Lists of Twitter Users
One of the lesser-known features of Twitter is the ability to add people to “lists”. Lists are essentially a way to curate targeted groups of Twitter users. Apart from the ability to distill a relevant stream of Twitter conversations, adding people to lists is an effective way to grow your Twitter following.
4. Consider using click map tools
You might think that your landing pages and your websites are perfectly designed, but are you sure? One way to find out whether your users are clicking in the wrong places or being distracted from what you want them to focus on is to implement click map or heat map tools, which track what your visitors click on and where they’re clicking the most. That kind of information can often lead to a redesign that focuses their attention where it should be, maximizing your conversions and minimizing bounce rates.
5. Create a sense of urgency
It’s great that you have an awesome app or product, but potential customers are more likely to buy if they feel that time or quantities are limited. What about offering a promo that expires in a few hours, or limiting quantities of a product you have for sale? Even if the deadline or limited quantity is artificial, customers are more likely to act if they feel they’re competing to get a limited offer.
6. Discounts to Influencers
Find influencers in your niche and offer them heavy discounts (or even a free account) in exchange for some promotion.
7. Data-informed is better than data-driven
Data is good. But there’s a catch. Data should inform our decisions. It shouldn’t be our master, dictating our every move. The greatest asset of any start-up is the profound ability of the humans who are involved. When people are willing to be “informed” by data, they can create something special. When people are “driven” by data, they begin thinking like machines and making decisions that do not appeal to carbon-based organisms.
8. Deep growth can’t be hacked
You can do things to drive traffic. You can do things to retain users. You can do things to hack growth at a surface level, but deep growth cannot be manipulated. Great products – the ones that are woven into the fabric of our lives and become habits and addictions – tap into something buried within the human psyche. Twitter-esque, Facebook-esque, and LinkedIn-esque growth cannot be hacked. There is something deeper at play.
9. Destroy cognitive overhead
Product complexity is a killer. Users crave things that take less time and have fewer steps and features. However, we overlook cognitive overhead as a primary source of friction. David Demaree defines cognitive overhead as “how many logical connections or jumps your brain has to make in order to understand or contextualize the thing you’re looking at.” Growth hackers make products that are easily understood beyond a niche tech crowd.
10. Email subscription with 10-second trick
The University of Alberta increased email subscribers by 500% using a pop up survey by Qualaroo that asked anyone who spent more than 10 seconds on the site: “You seem interested in UAlberta news. Would you like to sign up for the Daily News email?
11. Focus more on generating leads than generating fans
There is more return from people who regularly read your content and are actively looking to be educated about your area of topics than there is from simple social media Following.
12. Fiverr Promotion
For $5 you can get someone with thousands of followers to tweet your content or do other forms of promotion. Just make sure their audience is who you are trying to appeal to. There are lots of fake and crap accounts on here so choose wisely.
13. Follow Your Competitors’ Followers
While this technique almost seems too simple to mention, sometimes it is the simple techniques that prove most successful.
Businesses from nearly every product and service category are successful using Twitter to build communities of like-minded people. Chances are your competitors and even tangential product and service providers are active on Twitter. If you have properly defined your buyer personas you should be able to identify the Twitter accounts that your buyer personas follow.
14. Guest Blog
Find blogs that your target customer visits and ask them if you can submit a blog post. Make sure it’s your best and don’t self-promote. You’ll get a link to your app in your byline at the end of the post.
For every one blog you post on your own blog, try and write another one as a guest a blog. Some sites like Business2Community and Social Media Today also syndicate content from other bloggers. Submit your blog’s RSS feed to apply.
15. Integrate Twitter into your Landing Pages
If you are already focused on driving website traffic to landing pages you may want to test adding Twitter Users Name as a field on your landing page forms. Following and engaging with the leads that have converted on your landing pages is a great way to bring a more sales focused approach to your social media efforts.
16. Integrate Pay with a Tweet
Another way to integrate Twitter into your conversion process is to allow visitors to access your exclusive content by “paying with a tweet”. Sometimes people just don’t feel comfortable giving you their contact information or they would simply rather Tweet a link to access your content than give up their email address or phone number.
17. Increase in Total Lead inquiries
There is a hard way and an easy way of making people feel the need.
The hard way is to convince and push.
The easy way is to ask and help.
There was an interesting experiment related to this concept.
A study wanted to figure out what email tone would result in more lead inquiries.
- “Selling tone”, which sounds like: “You are one step away from getting free access to something, here is our award winning product, you can quickly get something, try it now.”
- “Helping tone”, which sounds like: “We`re just here to provide you with whatever assistance you need in reaching your goal.”
Results: #2 saw a 349% increase in total lead inquiries.
18. Keep your landing page on message
It sounds like a basic point, but it’s surprising how many landing pages try to do too much, confusing the user and diluting the results. Your landing page should be clean and clear, with an unmistakable goal — sign up, download or some other action. Likewise, the call-to-action button should be easy to identify and clearly state what you’re asking the user to click and why.
19. Language is Everything
Start-ups usually are concerned with design, and rightly so, but it is hard to overstate the effects of our language on consumer adoption. Play with words. Rearrange them. Change them. Make them sell, make them express, make them do the work they must do. Language is humanity’s oldest, and possibly best, growth hack. The right words, in the right order, at the right time, can do wonders.
20. Launch on a Tuesday
Almost ALL websites see a dip in traffic on the weekend. Friday’s get lost in the weekend excitement as well. Monday’s are catch-up days for most. Tuesdays allow you to capture most of the week. This is why most music artists release their work on Tuesdays as well.
21. LinkedIn Groups Promotion
Join any group on LinkedIn (you can join up to 50) relevant to your niche. When you write blog posts on your website, be sure to use a social sharing plugin to promote your content to your LinkedIn groups.
You can also send exclusive offers to LinkedIn Group owners (active/engaged ones only).
22. Leverage Your Existing Providers
If you use tools and they also service your target market, try getting a guest blog on their website. Since you are a paying customer, this will help increase your chances.
23. Reach Out to Other Guest Bloggers
Find people who contribute guest blogs and ask them to contribute a piece to your blog. You may have to pay them if you are starting out as there isn’t anything in it for them if you have a small audience.
Start by finding people who already contribute to other websites in your niche.
24. Reference Points
The psychology behind human thought is designed in a way that it needs a reference point. Either you will provide it, or a human will choose one himself.
The Economist.com had 2 subscriptions options:
- Web only version for $59
- “Print + Web” versions for $125
Only 32% bought the print and web version.
They changed their pricing and added a new reference point: “Print only” for the same price as “Print + Web”.
- Web only: $59
- Print only: $125
- “Print + Web”: $125
Now the “Print + Web” price seems much more tasty. And here are the results: the “print + web” sales increased by a significant 262%!
No matter how much you optimize your landing page, at the end of the day some people just won’t be ready to convert.
You can capitalize on these missed opportunities by adding a retargeting pixel to your landing page. Retargeting will allow you to show targeted ads specifically to users who visited your page but didn’t convert.
Retargeted content can include discounts, blog content related to your landing page, or social promotions.
Studies have shown that retargeted users convert 70% better than non-retargeted users.
26. Send out old articles as newsletters on the weekend
Capitalize on your mailing list by sending out relevant (but older) content on the weekends. This is a great way to drive more traffic to your blog with minimal effort.
27. Submit to Social Bookmarking Type Sites
Submit your blogs to StumbleUpon, Reddit, Growthhackers, HackerNews,, BizSugar, etc.
Just make sure your content is relevant to whatever community you submit your content to.
28. Two headlines, 40% difference
- “The simple test that increased our referrals”.
- “The simple test that increased our referrals by 30%”.
The second looks more promising. But by how much? +40%!
Data makes your headlines stronger.
29. Upload Training Videos to Lynda
Upload your training videos to Lynda. Lynda is an online education company offering thousands of video courses in software, creative, and business skills.
30. Use the Thank You Page
When someone does sign up to your blog, take them to a killer “Thank You” page that references the app with screenshots to highlight the benefits.