What It Is. Where to Get It. Why You Need It.
Growth marketing — the marketing it-word of the last decade. And to many, a complete and utter mystery. So, what is growth marketing? Well, to start with, we can tell you what it’s not. Growth marketing is not traditional marketing. It’s not growth hacking, demand generation, product marketing, or performance marketing. It’s not a quick fix. What it is is a long-term, holistic methodology designed to bring your brand measurable, sustainable growth.
It works by developing a cohesive approach to marketing that combines strategies across multiple channels with the singular goal of achieving extraordinary results — i.e., GROWTH. From killer content to highly effective SEO and well beyond, growth marketing isn’t pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking. It is realistic and attainable...with the right help. We’re here to tell you how to put it to work for your brand.
The Growth Marketing Funnel
Growth marketing utilizes an expanded marketing funnel, appealing to buyers at every stage. Often called the “pirate funnel,” it extends from awareness to referral and every step in between. The pirate funnel is not your mama’s marketing funnel. It’s an entirely different — and more effective — way to guide your customers through their journey. But the end goal here isn’t simply conversion — it’s creating loyal customers who will tell others about your amazing brand, turning your funnel into a never-ending growth engine.
What Does a Growth Marketer Do?
SEO is critical to achieving growth. Technical, on-page, and off-page SEO all play a role in getting buyers to your site, moving them through the funnel, and driving them to convert (and tell their friends).
Killer content drives growth, but it needs to be guided by your other strategies to deliver results. Content, as part of a big-picture growth marketing strategy, builds brand awareness and positions you as an authority.
Without conversion, there is no growth. We leverage tactics like marketing automation, A/B testing and careful positioning of CTAs to drive your audience to take action. Email nurture campaigns keep customers’ eyes on the prize, and paid social ads capture and convert leads in the places they frequent.
Lead generation is about a lot more than getting people into your funnel. It’s about making them want what you have to offer. Lead gen builds awareness, raises interest, and gets your leads ready for activation.
Getting the right message to the right people at the right time isn’t possible without email marketing. We leverage your amazing content, package it up, and nurture your audience through the funnel from awareness to consideration to decision with the messaging they need to convert.
We rely on the numbers to identify opportunities for growth, track progress and develop new experiments to test our strategies. We’ve developed a tech stack with the best analytics tools on the market so we always know what's working, and what can be improved to deliver you the best results.
Paid advertising works, but only when it’s used in conjunction with a rock solid organic/inbound strategy. We focus on growth marketing for the organic search side, so we don’t do PPC. However, we have a robust Paid Social Advertising service to deliver high-converting messaging to your audience, where they are.
Text-only content doesn’t cut it anymore. To achieve growth, you need to leverage engaging and valuable multimedia assets, like infographics, video content, gated downloads, and more.
Chances are, your buyers are on social media. And if you aren’t (or don’t have the right presence), you aren’t going to reach them with the same ease or impact.
See our growth strategy in action
Clearing Up Growth Marketing Misconceptions
We’ve told you that growth marketing is not the same as the approaches listed below. Now we’re going to tell you why. While there are some similarities, especially between growth marketing and growth hacking (like being data-driven and experimental), these are some of the ways growth marketing stands apart.
Growth Marketing vs…
Only focuses on part of the funnel
Is not holistic or comprehensive
Numerous, disconnected goals instead of one overarching, data-driven drive
Focused only on organic growth
Should be leveraged in combination with paid media as part of an effective growth marketing strategy
Driven by data analytics to achieve sustainable, measurable results
Focused only on revenue rather than overall growth
Concerned more with acquisition than the rest of the funnel
One-off tactics as opposed to long-term strategy
Aims for quick results rather than ongoing growth
Looks for the lowest cost, fastest implementation
Primary focus on awareness stage
Aims to fill pipeline rather than nurture buyers
Uses more PPC and paid channels to achieve goals
There is nothing “wrong” with any of these strategies, and elements of each should be incorporated into a robust growth marketing plan for any ambitious brand. On their own, they won’t likely deliver the results you want to see. Together, they can work as part of your overall growth marketing strategy to deliver long-term, sustainable growth.
Growth Marketing Strategies That Deliver:
The scientific method is key to growth marketing. Form a hypothesis, test it out, and if it doesn’t work, try again. A/B testing is critical to help you learn what works and what doesn’t.
Set it and forget it? Not exactly, but the goal of growth marketing is to discover tactics (through experimentation), find what works, and repeat through automation to achieve long-lasting growth.
Find a niche where your competitors aren’t answering buyer pain points, then own it. What do you offer that no one else can? Look for your brand differentiators and make those the focus.
Hockey Stick Growth
The “blade years” are for building your strategy and experimenting with new tactics. The inflection point is when growth begins to curve upward, and the rest is all stick (sustained upward momentum).
You can’t give away your best stuff for free? Or can you? You can, and you should. Freemiums, free trials, and ungated content get buyers in the door. Your amazing product keeps them there.
Buyers won’t stick around if adopting your product is a pain. Customer service and user experience should all come into play when creating a smooth, frictionless onboarding process.
You don’t just want loyal customers. You want brand evangelists. Reciprocal referral programs and incentives can build a near-viral campaign to get your brand in front of new eyes and compound growth.
Influencers and Collabs
Analyze trending topics in your industry and go after the voices your buyers are listening to. Form partnerships and collaborations to leverage their audience and build trust and authority.
Growth marketing fails without data. Continuous monitoring of KPIs and key business metrics will help you make informed decisions and adapt quickly when a particular tactic isn’t working.
Tracking the Success of Your Growth Marketing Strategy
“Growth” is a big word with many interpretations. You must understand what it means to you and how you’ll measure it to be sure your growth marketing strategy is on the right track. Here are some of the most important metrics to monitor:
Conversion rate is the number of visits or views, divided by the number of total conversions. Conversions can be email click-thrus, landing page form fills, or upgrades from freemium to paid plans. Walk through all your conversions and find the ones that are most important to you to begin measuring growth.
CAC is calculated by dividing your total expenses to acquire, nurture, and convert customers (both sales and marketing), divided by the number of new customers acquired. To achieve growth, be sure the CAC is always less than the Customer Lifetime Value.
Keep a close eye on traffic to your most valuable and high-converting pages. Also monitor bounce rate, pageviews, time spent on page, and new sessions for a big-picture perspective on page performance.
Take a look at customer acquisition, new contacts via landing pages, and leads generated per unique offer to find what works to hook potential buyers and what doesn’t.
CLV is the total potential profitability throughout the entire customer lifecycle. To calculate, multiply the average amount of purchase and number of purchases per year, then multiply by the average length of customer relationship (in years).
A/B testing should be conducted for every experiment or tactic you try. This metric will change frequently, but it’s critical to understanding which growth marketing variants can be automated for sustainable growth and which need to go.