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50 Actionable Tips for Growth Marketers

I created this blog to share some growth marketing tips you can utilize today to help with their operations. I’ve learned these tips through research on the web, experimentation, and lots of trial and error. I’ve seen success with a lot of these strategies and hope that they will help with your marketing goals as well.  I divided this blog into three sections by difficulty. You can click on the links below to navigate directly to the section that interests you the most.

Easy
Medium
Hard

If you’d like more growth marketing tips, we regularly share our thoughts and strategies on the Growth Media blog and we have a newsletter you can subscribe to.

We also turned this blog into an ebook that you can download here. The e-book was designed by Rally Stanoeva from Ebook Simply. If you’re thinking of creating an Ebook for your marketing needs, I highly recommend you chat with her. I always welcome feedback, therefore feel free to add your comments at the end and I’ll respond to each one!


 

Easy

1. Add Spacing on Social Posts

Use extra spacing when writing posts on social. This makes your content much easier to consume. More than three sentences is best and that has worked for me as well. Josh Fecher is a great example of someone who excels at writing on social.

josh-rector2. Growth Hacker Project Flow

I use the growth hacker project flow to rank experiments and determine which campaigns are worth running based on their score. I rate each experiment on a scale of 1-10 for these categories.

  • Thesis: How compelling is the hypothesis?
  • Impact: What kind of results can we expect?
  • Confidence: How confident are we in completing the task?
  • Ease: How easy or difficult will it be?
  • Delivery: How confident are we in delivering on time?

These categories make sense for me, but feel free to personalize this flow to better suit your decision-making process.

3. Search Operators Queries

Search operators are useful for focusing in on a search. If used properly, you can get data that would have been difficult to find in a simple search. The graphic below is an example of using a search operator to find websites related to “foodie” that accepts blog posts. I’ve created this list of 58 search operators that you can begin with.

search-operator-submit

4. Redirect Unsubscribes

Create a redirecting page to a converting landing page after someone unsubscribes. There have been companies that have used this tactic effectively to regain users that have unsubscribes. The key to this is using the right messaging on the landing page and offering them content upgrades. You have a hidden chance of winning them back – use it wisely!

5. Trade Show Keywords

Trade shows are still an important acquisition channel for some companies, but the cost associated with it puts some startups at a disadvantage. Even if your company can’t go to a trade show, you can still have a presence by targeting the keyword associated with the show. If your landing page is relevant, you’ll potentially get some traction without having to physically be there.

6. Content Notifications

Add notifications at the top of your website or in-app for freemium accounts to drive people to content pieces. Be strategic with the order. For example, the order could be content pieces that go through the buying process of your product. Ahrefs is an example of a company who does this well.

ahrefs

7. LinkedIn Ad Campaigns

In most cases, I suggest not using CPC on LinkedIn or your budget might run out before you reach the majority of your audience. Impressions are the best choice for my campaigns as my budget will never run out before my ad is shown to my whole audience. Also, for those companies that sell a niche product, do not select the expanded audience option as it will target a large percentage of unqualified individuals.

8. Premium Free Trials

If your application offers a free trial, have those users try the upgraded version of your application rather than the freemium version. Depending on how addictive your application is, users may be more inclined to bypass the freemium version if they had a great experience with the upgraded version. Get the trialists hooked with great UI and UX.

9. Suggested Pages

To find out which influencer/company/community Facebook pages are liked by your Facebook followers, click on the profile photo of a business Facebook page and copy the ID number onto a URL. It will usually be after the second period. From there, add it to the URL after the “=” in https://www.facebook.com/pages/?frompageid= and you’ll see the suggested pages. Credit to Alex Rangevik for this tip.

10. Social Proof

People are more likely to engage with a post if it has amassed likes and comments. Use the lowest CPC countries to get social proof with ads, before opening up the targeting to a larger audience.

By spending a few dollars, your ad copy can get the initial traction needed before you change the targeted locations again. Remember that targeting the United States can be up to 5 times more expensive, therefore use low CPC countries for all your experiments. Here are the countries listed on Jerry Banfield’s website.

11. Retarget With Videos

I prefer using video to retarget web visitors rather than content. The cost per view is only a few cents per view, whereas retargeting content can cost you up to a few dollars per click. Videos have more potential for traction and it grows your audience quicker. Take advantage of this.

video-retargeting

12. Facebook Messenger

Use Facebook Messenger for campaigns before it becomes one of the “normal” ad selections on Facebook’s platform. Marketers utilizing this channel have seen much success, but as it becomes more popular, its effectiveness will go down. Andrew Chen has a great article on the science of clickthroughs. For those looking for a specific tool, this is a good tool for your Facebook Messenger campaigns.

13. Customer Testimonial Ads

Create a Facebook ad of a customer testimonial with a photo of their face. Start by uploading your customer list on Facebook and selecting them as one of the custom audiences for your campaign. This will help increase the ad’s engagement. Influitive is really good at using this approach and has even incentivized customers to participate. They wrote about it in this blog post.

influitive testimonials14. Flatten Link Architecture

Flatten your link architecture. Too often, marketers are interlinking the most recent content pieces and leaving the old content untouched. Keeping a balanced linking approach will help your old content with its ranking.

15. Dictionary Integration

Integrate your content with a dictionary extension such as Google Dictionary. It will add a small question mark on words you believe people may have a hard time defining. Once a web visitor clicks on the word, a definition will pop up. This can prevent web visitors from leaving your site when searching for a definition.

16. Comparison Ad Campaign

Use your competitor’s company name in a comparison ad. Target your competitor’s brand name and also the keyword their customers use to login to the platform. From there, build a landing page detailing why you’re the preferred vendor. Heap Analytics uses this tactic to compete with Mixpanel.

heap-analytics17. Customized Short Links

Instead of creating a simple shortened link, use a tool like Sniply to add an additional CTA on the linked page. The CTA can appear on any page or news article that you share, and with that, you’ll be capitalizing on potential traffic that would have gone untouched.

18. Draw Attention To Your CTA

Draw attention to your Call-to-Action when a visitor is on your website. A cool tactic you can use is simply changing the colour of the CTA once a visitor hits the halfway point of your website. This will grab the web visitor’s attention again. To test its effectiveness, use a tool like Mixpanel for event tracking.

19. Trade Show Outbound Emails

Be strategic about the time in which you send outbound emails during a trade show. Once you have the attendee list, send them an email about visiting your booth during the longest speech or panel discussion of the event.

The reason for this is that they’ll likely be browsing on their phone at some point during the talk. If your message resonates, you’ll get foot traction to your booth once the keynote speech is completed. We’ve had a lot of success with this tactic. Once you have the show’s lineup, write your email copy and schedule its delivery.


 

medium

20. Use Video Keywords

Find video keywords opportunities to rank on Google if your competitors are ranking for the same keyword with content. Many how-to-guide searches will have Youtube videos as the rich snippet, therefore it’s a good starting point for your keyword research.

growth marketing tips

21. Email, In-App Message or Push Notification?

Before sending customers your message, think deeply about the person’s environment, state of mind, and potential reaction to your message based on the medium you use.

For example, if you want users to download your mobile app, the best medium to use is an in-app message to those on desktop. If you send it as a push notification, you can potentially interrupt them during a meeting, conversation with a friend, or while focusing on other work. A good message delivered with the wrong medium won’t be as effective.

22. Conversational Content

According to the 2017 Internet Trends Report, 20% of mobile queries were made using Google Voice and that will undoubtedly rise. Therefore, optimizing your content for voice search will be critical for the future of SEO. This article by Sherry Bonelli on Search Engine Land explains how to do it.

23. Complete Onboarding With Retargeting

Use retargeting campaigns on social for the users who have started, but not completed the onboarding process. Some marketers make the mistake of not reminding users what your product does. This assumes that the person remembers why they signed up in the first place. But people quickly forget trials they’ve signed up for. Remind them of the value proposition of your product.

A common message is: “Hey, sign back in to (App Name) to finish setting up your account.” A better message: “Need help with (Value Prop)? Sign back in to (App Name) to finish setting up your account and create your first (feature).” Use a social ad to target those users who have dropped off.

24. Referral Program Rewards

For referral programs, make all the rewards (and the actions for earning them) directly associated with increasing usage of your product instead of cash rewards or random items like iPads. Here are a couple examples.

Wealthsimple is a robo-investment app, To get more of your money invested without fees, they have a tiered awards program that encourages you to invite a friend, download the mobile app, or transfer an existing investment account. Similarly, Dropbox’s incentive is giving you extra storage when you invite a friend.

Reward them by unlocking paid or premium features for a period of time. This encourages your users to upgrade. Also, make referral rewards double sided, this makes people feel like they are helping their friend and not just themselves.

25. Webinar Timer

Add a timer to your website or blog sidebar that always counts down from 5 or 10 minutes announcing when the next demo/webinar will begin. If you have an IS team, set it up so when they click the link, your team is notified and can present the demo right away or have a pre-recorded webinar that they can watch.

26. Add Urgency To Email Campaigns

Use urgency in your campaigns. For example, I’ve used MotionMail to create timers within the emails for specific campaigns. This works well if you’re in e-commerce. If you code your emails in HTML, simply customize the timer and then add the small snippet of code wherever you want the timer placed. Sendtric is another product you can use for your HTML emails.

27. Diversify Acquisition Channels

Diversify your acquisition channels. Dictionary websites lost a tremendous amount of organic traffic Google’s rich snippets came into place. Be ahead of the curve with your acquisition channels. This will better prepare you for unforeseen circumstances.

dictionary-snippets

28. Create Integration Landing Pages

Create a blog post or landing page that talks about your integration with another software partner. If the page is optimized for SEO, eventually you’ll begin getting organic traffic. When someone searches for that specific integration, your page will show up. Slack does a good job with this and it was one of the tactics brought up in this article by Chris Von Wilpert.

29. Tag Happy Customers

Get your customer support team to tag users in the CRM who’ve just had a particularly positive experience (such as a demonstration for a feature they were requesting). Target those people with requests for reviews or testimonials as they will be more inclined to show their support. To do this effectively, set up a review automation in your email marketing platform and have your customer support team add users in that automation after a good experience.

30. Integrate Tools With APIs

Get comfortable with using APIs. Without including APIs in your marketing technology stack, you won’t be leveraging all the data at your disposal. Use APIs to automate some marketing tasks and also to integrate multiple platforms. It becomes very valuable when I’m seeking data for a certain lead. This is a good guide from the Klipfolio blog for any marketer that isn’t comfortable with APIs yet.

31. Growth Experiments for Small Wins

Run growth experiments for small wins in multiple channels. In the long-term, these small wins will end up having a larger impact. This also creates a creative and data-focused environment, where your team will have the freedom to conduct unique experiments. In this article, I detail the experiment I ran in order to increase engagement on a homepage for a company I worked for. By running that experiment, we gained valuable insight we could use across all channels.

32. Automate Your Adwords Campaigns

If you’re handling multiple Google Adwords account, use scripts to automate many of the day-to-day tasks. These scripts will save you a ton of time, which is why I have a document full of scripts saved in my stack. Sophie Howell wrote this blog post where she shares 100 Adwords scripts to automate your Adwords account. Look at the graphic below for one of the scripts.

adwords-script

33. Use Chatbots To Deliver Content

Create a chatbot that automates a workflow dependent on someone’s title. For example, have the chatbot ask web visitors what their title and from there, offer the web visitor unique content that someone with their title would enjoy. Test the tailored workflow and then compare it to your current chat approach. This works well if you have a defined user persona in your stack. You should see an increase in chat engagement using this profile.

34. Gmail Ads For Competitors

Gmail Ad campaigns can be another acquisition channel at your disposal if your company has success with email marketing. To make this work, target the keywords of your competitors and you can potentially have the ads placed in the inbox of their customers. Generally, Gmail campaigns are low volume and CTR, but with good targeting, the quality of the lead will be high.

35. Target Social Activity

Target people who tweet or write about how they need help with an issue that your software solves or if they are complaining about one of your competitors. There are platforms that allow you to target individuals interactions. Marketo used this tactic to reach to me after I tweeted about evaluating marketing automation platforms. This is the email I received from an account executive at Marketo following my tweet. I thought this was a good example of using a cold approach based off tracking social activity.

36. Boost Retargeting Campaigns

Make a small change to your script in order to boost your success with retargeting campaigns. Add a snippet of code to your script that will only retarget web visitors who’ve been on your website for over a minute. This should help your retargeting campaigns because quick bounces will be removed from your audience and you will only be targeting people who show some interest.

37. Leverage Someone’s Facebook Audience

To leverage this properly, you’ll need to have an influencer as a Facebook friend. For example, a friend of mine is connected with thousands of marketers on Facebook. If I’m selling a product for marketers, I would use his profile to do this. Go to their Facebook profile, click on view page source, and search for “initialchat”. You will see the profile Ids of his friends. From there, run a script to capture all the Ids and then you can add them into a custom audience on Facebook for targeting. Add the Id at the end of this URL for verification – https://www.facebook.com/insertidhere. See the highlighted Id below.

fb-initial-chat

38. Use Chat For Email Captures

Use the chat application on your website to capture an email for an automated workflow. Create an auto message to begin the conversation, have the bot ask for the organization of the web visitor, and once that’s done, use a form within the chat application to secure the email. The bot should state that the email capture is to assist them as a customer support rep is away. If you organize the emails per sector, you can later use them as a segmented audience in a custom audience or email automation. Drift is an awesome tool that allows for customization using chat.

39. Scrolling Script

Use a scrolling script when scraping large LinkedIn groups. Add the script to the console and press enter. Once the page is finished loading, use the scraping script for the LinkedIn group you’re targeting. This small step will help you capture all of the contacts as they need to be loaded before they are part of the scrape. Dominick Malzone goes through the whole tutorial in this article.

scrolling-script

40. Reddit AMA Campaign

Use Reddit to begin a conversation about your product. Create a few accounts, start asking questions about the problem, and later with the other accounts, begin a discussion about the issue that your software solves. Once the thread gets some traction, have one of your loyal customers join the conversation or take part in an AMA. The key is to make these conversations “natural” or else a Redditor will call you out. If this goes well, direct some traffic there and eventually it will organically be used as a referral for people search for your product.


 

Hard

41. Viral Referral Program

If you can gamify your referral process, where users are competing against each other for a chance to win the prizes, your referral program will get traction organically. Hotjar does this very well. They have a leaderboard and it shows how many referrals are needed to reach the top that month, while the monthly prizes are on the referral page as well. It’s a similar tactic that is popular with game designers. My first reaction when seeing the referral landing page on Hotjar was to figure out how many referrals I needed to get on the leaderboard. They tug on the psychology of the user, it’s quite an effective tactic.

hotjar-referral

42. SEO Email Experiment

If you have a subscriber list of over 50k, you can leverage them for an SEO boost. Create an email campaign where the goal is to get your subscribers to find your landing page by searching for the focus keyword on Google. Make google.com your CTA and have the message like “use this keyword to find our new landing page” or work on the message to give it a playful vibe. If you gamify it, you’ll potentially have many subscribers searching for your landing page.

43. Leverage A Website’s Network

Leverage a website’s network for your marketing campaigns. This tactic isn’t used enough by marketers. I’ve been able to find valuable information like contact lists or common threads by digging deep into the network of a website. For niche markets that have a small targeting audience on social, I prefer using custom audiences as they’ve been performing the best. Therefore, finding this data is crucial. For one campaign, I was able to find the contact information of all the leads we were looking for and then, I used a script to export the data into a spreadsheet. I wrote about how I used this tactic to kick-start a marketing campaign here!

aw-common-thread

44. Understand The Local Culture

Create content and message tailored to your local audience by having a deep understanding of their culture. I’ll quote Gustaf Alstromer from a YC interview as he laid it out perfectly: “Facebook saw low growth in Japan, and went and talked to people in the local market and found that people felt it was rude to “invite” friends to Facebook. They found through a growth experiment that changing the wording to “announce to your friends you’re on Facebook” (instead of “invite”), they immediately began to see growth there.”

45. Customer Master Profile

Use a service like Hull to segment your customers out of your automated outbound campaigns. This tool syncs all your data together from all your platforms and creates a “master profile” for you customer. Customers do not like getting targeted in any marketing campaigns and tools like Hull help prevent that. See the graphic below for an example of a customer reacting to an ad.

slack-retargeting

46. Use Hidden Fields On Forms

Use hidden fields to capture more information about your subscribers or leads from demo requests. By adding a script on your form, your IS team will have more valuable data that they can act upon when contacting the lead. You can do a lot more with this added data. This extra information will improve your segmentation and also, your sales team won’t need to scour the web for the profile of a lead. For this to work properly, you can query multiple APIs or integrate tools like Clearbit and Madkudu.  Here’s an example of the data that Clearbit obtains with their hidden field after someone fills out a basic form.

clearbit-role-api

47. Email Validation API

If you’re web scraping and automating the cold email outreach with the emails that are collected, use an email validation API to minimize the damage to your domain. This will weed out “bad emails” and spam traps. There are also many stand alone tools available. Data Validation is one that I’ve used in the past. Once the emails are validated, you can export the list and find the scores for each email. I recommend only using the emails with the best scores (I do not condone email spam).

data validation tool

48. Personalize Chat Messages with Data

Personalize your chat messages for web visitors. We use Intercom and when I went on Drift’s website, I got this interesting chat popup (see graphic). It was clear that they were using our IP address, while integrating tools like Clearbit, for tailored messages to specific companies. I started chatting with them right away out of curiosity and they confirmed it. This is a unique way of increasing your chat engagement, as it catches the attention of the web visitor.

drift-chat

49. Leverage Partners With Retargeting

Create landing pages for your partners with the goal of retargeting their audience. This works well if you have the same target market as your partner, and channel marketing is an important acquisition channel for your company. Encourage their marketing team to direct some traffic to the landing pages you’ve built and have the sales team to use that link in the footer of their emails. By adding the retargeting pixel on the landing page, you’ll have a new audience that you can market to.

50. Become A T-Shaped Marketer

The “T-Shaped Marketer” has been a trending theme in the last few years. Companies are seeing the value in employing marketers with these skill sets. For anyone looking to go this route, I would first recommend having a deep understanding in a few of those skills before teaching yourself the remaining skills of that profile. This is to ensure that you do not become a generalist, which won’t be as valuable in the long term. Brian Balfour wrote this article on the steps needed to become a “T-Shaped Marketer” a few years ago, but the overall message is still relevant today.

T-Shaped-marketer

 

Growth Marketing Tips Conclusion

I consider experimenting and testing two of the most important components of marketing. It’s up to you to determine which acquisition channels to pursue for your company. I say this because some of these growth marketing tips may not apply to your business. This is where your creativity will stand out. Be open to learning new methods and create an experimental environment to maximize the potential of your team.

I also wanted to give thanks to Rally Stanoeva for editing and for designing these growth marketing tips into an ebook and Martin Staykov for his help with editing. Tomas, my co-founder at Growth Media, and I started blogging about growth marketing a few months ago and since then our subscriber list has grown to 7500. If growth marketing tips are something that interests you, feel free to subscribe for more and to join our growing community!

Comments (2)

Your writing style is awesome. Thanks, quite a great article.

How effective are these tactics for e-commerce marketing?

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