Growth Hacking Methods, Fails & Learnings

Sarah Jordi
5 replies
With our upcoming product launch, I am looking into some growth hacking methods. But the biggest realisation so far, is that growth hacking is super individual and specific to the product/service/industry. Most famous growth hacks from now big companies wouldn't work anymore today. So I was wondering, what kind of maybe unexpected growth hacks have you all discovered in your product launch journeys? Or what are your biggest growth hacking learnings? Sharing one of my learnings: In the early days of Uber in Switzerland, we invested in advertising for driver acquisition on the back of McDonalds receipts. We had identified that many drivers take breaks at McDonalds (prime locations, cheap food & a place to hang out during breaks). We experimented with fun ad copies and this was quite the game changer and helped us acquire a lot of drivers.


Fabian Maume
I think you are asking the wrong question. "Growth hacking is super individual and specific to the product/service/industry" that is the hard true about growth hacking. If you ask about unexpected hacks you have high chance to get lost in tactics. I strongly recommend you to start by the the strategy and then go down to tactics. Make some growth audit Step 1: Analytics audit : Check if google analytics (GA) is properly setup. Check your overall on-boarding funnels (based on GA). Goals: - Check if you need to focus on awareness, activation or retention. - Identify current acquisition channel. Step 2: Analysis of customers / prospect: Interviews with your sales & customer success team to see what is their views on ideal customer profile. Review current users breakdown per price plan vs industry and company size. Read users reviews on G2 & capterra. Goals : - Understand customers' use-cases. - Define ideal customers profile. - Compute addressable market and check the alignment with the pricing strategy (model/market fit). Step 3: Competitors' review: Check competitors traffic sources from similar web (and other tools if you have access to ahrefs or semrush). Check competitors' footprint on social media Check competitors pricing and positioning. Goals: - Identify new channels to leverage. - Assess potential to hijack some of the competitor traffic.
Sarah Jordi
@fabian_maume You're definitely right on that one and thanks for lining out the 3 steps in such great detail! Definitely a really great and structured approach. The reason I was looking for unexpected "hacks" or learnings is because I think that we tend to actually "get lost" in our own industry tunnel, looking at always the same problems and same potential solutions. And I find it super inspiring to sometimes hear from others about situations that surprised them or that revealed an unexpected result. Even if their solution or hack can't be applied to my project or industry. I feel like it often helps me to go beyond my usual thought and inspiration circle and I really like that. 😊
Devanand Premkumar
@fabian_maume Pretty much right on target. This should serve as a high level guide for people who are seeking initial and tangible results for their respective growth hacking models definition. Thank you for sharing your insights.
Jack Davis
I think you are totally right in saying "growth hacking is super individual and specific". I think that in general growth hacking is unique because it is in a sense a "hack" or something that works but typically should not. I think the McDonalds example you gave is perfect. I think there is tons of crazy growth hacks you could try and most might fail and some might even be embarrassing which is why a lot of people shy away from them. The first that comes to mind is Snapchat CEO handing out QR code flyers in the mall and people would often would turn him down and say no. But even getting a couple users could help immensely which people often don't understand. You could also go around and post flyers and stickers in areas that you are allowed to put them up in. You should also go where your target audience hangs out online / offline and talk to them. The sky is the limit, it just depends how creative and how out of your comfort zone you are willing to get. I even heard the Pinterest CEO would change iPhones in the apple store to backgrounds of his app lol. I hope this helps and good luck with your launch!
Sarah Jordi
@jack_davis7 Yea that definitely sounds right! I feel like I'm always trying to find balance between identifying these "hacks" and then executing them without wasting too much time (because I still have other work to do). And many of these hacks are quite time-intense to execute, and you have to try many before you (might) find one that actually works, haha.