Business, organizations, or mainly Startups, these words from the dictionary of entrepreneurship now have gotten a new addition, Growth hacking. Growth hacking has been the new famous word around the block, being used as a synonym to quick growth for new startups, but what does growth hacking really do and mean? How it works is still a question of credibility to a lot of marketers with some great experience and ability. The question most of them ask is why take a shortcut for success rather than choosing the manual growth for a business which just started? To understand and answer the question we first have to get into the roots of growth hacking.
What is Growth Hacking?
Despite the use of word hacking, growth hacking doesn’t require one to be a tech-geek, but someone who knows the market good and bad, strategies, and tactics. Growth hacking in simpler terms is that business methodology, which results in large amounts of growth over a short period of time, against a relatively low amount of investment.
Growth hacking is basically marketing, sometimes. Sometimes? Yes, as said, “Necessity is the mother of invention”, growth hacking and growth hackers are in the majority of the cases required to an extent. When startups are new, they can’t just go on head to head with the mega-heads of the market, it requires a base and customers. Growth hackers provide the startups with that sort of structure to grow on the customers rapidly and widely using the growth hacking techniques, but once a startup starts standing tall and strong, there are no needs left for a quick profiting shortcut. So in accordance with this fact, growth hacking can be called temporary marketing.
How does Growth hacking work?
Growth hacking, just like any other marketing methodology, falls mainly into 3 categories.
- Product marketing
- Content marketing
But what magic spell does growth hackers work on for the fast increase of growth? Growth hacking is basically figuring out why the company grows,
what brings growth, through continuous experimentations across all the marketing aspects and product development. Talking about experimenting, growth hacking isn’t a field of sloppy old-age market strategies, it is said to require more creativity than normal, growth-hackers are people with no acceptance for the word no. They have to keep on coming with new ways, to penetrate the product even in the least expected customer territories. All such experimenting results in growth hackers finding out the most efficient, effective and growth-seeking ways and then keep on repeating the same, time and time again.
Growth hacking is a game of seriously analytical minds, as it requires digging, a lot of it. Growth hackers aren’t the people providing a structure only on the basis of the demographic target market but they dig deep into their supposed customer base to get information on what they want, their buying triggers, and all their further requirements, through all this the best growth hacking strategies are made.
The Question! Is Growth hacking really that useful?
Coming back to the context, as mentioned earlier, there has been a lot of questions raised over the credibility of growth hacking, not from the start but since the term got a whole new meaning in the market, it started giving out an uneasy feeling to the marketers. The debate now is that, is growth hacking really offering what it says with the same amount of reliable profit or has it also turned into a market folk-tale which once was actually effective but now is just a money-making misconception?
The growth hackers, who are in some sort regarded as the marketers as well, stand by the statement and sentiment of growth hacking still being the most effective and working way to take forward a new business venture with credible growth as well as customer base. While at the other hand, most of the top-level marketers have an opinion against the current time methods of growth hacking and see it as fraudulent and misleading. In their eyes, the current world industries and organizations who are on record are working on the methods of growth hacking aren’t really doing it rather they are just naming the normal marketing strategies as growth hacking, which is actually a fact. Growth hacking is one of many marketing strategies, but it has lost its real meaning with time, and it’s not us saying that but the man who actually came up with the term growth hacking Sean Ellis. Ellis came forward with telling that he himself is well aware that his created system isn’t really being used the same way it was supposed to be in the current world. It was AirBnB, Hotmail, Dropbox using the actual growth hacks resulting in quick growth, but the current time version where every teenager holding a smartphone working on marketing someone’s startups by connecting to public on particular social networking sites is not the sort of growth hacking one needs, it gives it the spam touch which it doesn’t deserve.
While whether it’s used in its proper meaning or not today is a different debate, a lot of people have problems with the real form of growth hacking as well. The talk being, growth hacking will result in no benefit if a product is not useful or attractive to the customers. If a product isn’t incredible, has no demand and is of no use, no amount of growth hacking can result in any good. Growth hacking will fail you more and more, that’s why the big brains of the market aren’t really in favor of it. Coming up with a product which will be used, holds more importance than any sort of marketing hack or quick-earning scheme rather than a product which has no market. Growth hack has become one of the most overused buzzwords of the market today, but why? The reason is that the word is being used for every other basic online marketing work as well, losing all its real meaning. As mentioned earlier growth hacking requires a lot of digging, getting into un-entered territories to penetrate the product and create a market but all this isn’t said to be required initially. These are things you do when you reach a particular growth level manually, that’s the time when you start getting into the research because another very crucial fact about growth hacking is that it is more effective when you’re already experiencing growth.
Growth hacking, the correct way or not?
In the end, it all comes down to personal opinions that whether growth hacking is an effective way of marketing or not, but one thing a large number of market pundits will agree on is that growth hacking with time, has lost the significance it once held due to several newer versions made by people with less marketing brains. Whether growth hacking benefits or not, one thing which will always benefit is product value, instead of using fast techniques to grow, one should work on the product in a way it naturally grows a value and a market of its own.