Growth Marketing: Valid Business Strategy or Overused Buzzword
Finding innovative ways to grow your business, attract new clients and build relationships with customers starts with a marketing plan. Consumer wants and market landscapes continuously change and evolve. As a result, your company needs a strategy that yields sustainable, revenue-driving results that keep up with industry demands. This is where growth marketing comes in.
More and more business leaders are implementing growth marketing to foster customer loyalty through brand transparency and compelling storytelling. But does this strategy actually work, or is it just the latest trend?
Marketers and revenue teams came into 2022 with a list of challenges that have made capturing and maintaining consumer engagement all the more difficult. Traditional marketing methods can take months, if not years, to see results. This leaves leadership, sales and marketing teams questioning whether your strategy for penetrating a market and capturing consumer attention is driving results.
That’s why growth marketing is gaining popularity. It relies on data to quickly maximize demand generation through scientific methods of experimentation.
It’s crucial to deliver messaging that feels hyper-tailored and individualized to customers’ needs. Traditional marketing relies on proven yet antiquated techniques that scrape the surface of reaching a customer. By contrast, growth marketing implements “growth hacking” tactics to constantly experiment with various channels and strategies. This helps leaders determine how to best utilize their marketing capabilities.
Are you looking to gain an edge over your competition, expand your presence in new target areas and develop your brand image with consumers? Then growth marketing has the potential to help you and your company reach these goals.
What Is Growth Marketing?
Today, every business is competing for a consumer’s attention. They leverage websites, social media platforms and hundreds of emails to reach customers and share messages about products or services.
Many companies rely on a few channels to interact with potential customer bases. However, they never fully understand the impact of them or the campaigns they create to reach their goals. Growth marketing tells you what does and does not work in your marketing strategy.
Through growth marketing, a company can quickly create, test and decipher campaigns that deliver results. In essence, growth marketing boils down to a simple method: create, test and then create something else. However, the way a company tests a strategy varies by each goal, with most intending to increase demand generation. That is, increase audience size and build real customer relationships to foster loyalty.
The bottom line is growth marketing proves to be the optimal marketing strategy for a few reasons:
- It’s more efficient than traditional strategies. Growth marketing allows companies to discover what campaigns drive results and adapt to industry shifts more quickly. This puts you ahead of your competition.
- Growth marketing is solely based on data. This means any business decisions made as a result of this strategy are based on proof rather than creative instincts or intuition.
- Rather than tackle multiple objectives in various ways, growth marketing focuses on one goal: growth. Competing interests across different departments can make it difficult to determine how to accomplish a myriad of objectives. But growth marketing can unify a company behind a singular mission.
What Are Growth Loops?
Once you’ve tested a few campaigns and found one that resonates with your customers and drives new business, how will you continue growing? You’ve acquired a new customer, but how can that customer help you snag even more? Growth loops serve this need.
Through a closed system, growth loops leverage input to point customers to a specified action. This action generates an output that drives more customer demand, which then becomes input for the next cycle. Growth loops can serve different purposes, from drawing in new and returning users to improving a company’s reputation and efficiency.
To give you a better understanding, let’s apply this concept to a real-world scenario. Suppose a new client registers for your product or services on your company website. Through the registration portal, the customer is prompted with options to share content or refer a friend. This final step is the output that restarts the whole cycle.
Ultimately, growth loops show how you can reinvest the output of one loop cycle into the next loop cycle. So, at every stage of the marketing funnel, you’re maximizing output. This creates a compounding effect that sets you up for continuous and sustainable growth.
However, it’s important to note that an abundance of growth loops will not generate more growth. Simply put, choose quality over quantity. Having more than one or two growth loops associated with your products or services is typically unsustainable. They become low-powered tools that won’t help you reach your goal. If you want to see results from your growth loops, focus on no more than three and constantly monitor their health and transition over time.
A Simple Framework for Thinking About Growth
When developing a business strategy that delivers results, growth marketers commonly leverage investing, creating and performing. These three vital aspects play a large part in how your strategy will translate into tangible tactics and results for your company.
After examining existing sources of leads, traffic and sales, growth marketers dig deeper into what activity can promote growth. For example, a company might find that it should form or improve relationships with existing customers to develop more brand spokespersons.
The most important aspects of a growth marketer’s job are to draw in new audiences, generate demand and identify ways to grow through their own design. Their creation process relies on analyzing performance trends and listening to customers. They also continuously conduct experiments to find out what succeeds and fails.
The ability to learn quickly and adapt are key characteristics of growth marketers. By constantly optimizing internal processes and aligning various teams like marketing, sales and customer service on these adjustments, growth marketers can improve their buyers’ journey.
All three components bring value to a growth marketer’s framework. However, they vary in importance when you consider individual strategic marketing goals. By experimenting with various channels and campaigns, growth marketers can decide what aspect will play more of a role in their test-learn-adapt efforts.
Growth Marketing vs Traditional Marketing
Growth marketing and traditional marketing share similar methods of attracting new customers but differ in how they secure results. Traditional marketing returns are often vague and varied. However, growth marketing teams take direct accountability for key business strategy results like revenue, user growth and return on investment (ROI).
Traditional marketing is based on campaign-oriented short-term goals, whereas growth marketing focuses on strategy-based long-term goals. In addition, traditional marketing is commonly more company-centric and largely focuses on acquisition. The majority of the planning is based on intuition and evaluated annually. In contrast, growth market planning is founded on evidence and data. It prioritizes acquisition, retention, cross-selling and upselling.
Growth marketing, sometimes called growth hacking, leverages marketing activity to quickly foster the growth of the company in a sustainable and effective way. While the term “growth hacking” may sound like a quick fix for drawing in customers, it’s quite the opposite. Growth marketers put in significant time and resources to grasp how current marketing strategies are working before they create new growth techniques.
More and more companies are ditching traditional marketing and turning to growth marketing for a few different reasons:
More antiquated strategies like traditional marketing still rely on tried-and-true methods of attracting customers using the basics, while growth marketing utilizes a variety of tools to see what channels capture consumer attention. These tools include videos, infographics, written content and much more. Traditional marketing methods can initially show positive returns but tend to diminish in effectiveness as competitors take more aggressive approaches.
Traditional and growth marketing both seek to grow a company’s audience base, but the impact through their tactics varies. While traditional marketing is geared toward onboarding customers through initiatives and processes, growth marketing organically focuses on drawing in new business by developing a brand’s identity.
Traditional marketing focuses on orienting the buyer’s journey to be sequential so the customer follows a set of steps to purchase a product. The process is similar to a funnel. Growth marketing, however, reorients the process so a consumer can enter into this purchasing funnel at any stage of their journey, effectively optimizing more purchasing points.
Benefits of Growth Marketing
Still wondering whether growth marketing is well-suited for your company? It’s essential to first understand the benefits of implementing this results-driving strategy. In fact, many of the upsides of growth marketing directly address the challenges traditional marketing brings upon marketers. It’s yet another reason why an increasing amount of companies are embracing this approach.
Eliminating the intuition on which traditional marketing is based, growth marketing relies on data to deduce what works and what doesn’t. This helps you make better decisions.
Building Brand Image
Rather than focusing solely on driving new traffic, growth marketing prioritizes the customer journey. Its goal is to deliver better experiences that build deeper personal relationships with the client and improve brand perception.
Growth marketing looks into how your company can ramp up or scale back your marketing efforts according to your revenue streams. Without concrete results, traditional marketing demands you to spend money continuously on campaigns.
To use the growth marketing strategy effectively, it will require your product, sales, customer support and analytics teams to collaborate with marketing to reach a unified goal.
By leveraging sustainable progress, growth marketing utilizes self-learning to reach goals and drive revenue. Rather than using guesswork, growth marketing implements a strategy to identify achievable revenue targets.
When you effectively leverage a growth marketing strategy, it works in tandem with your growth loops to fuel, accelerate and restart them without your intervention:
- Fuel: Guide prospective clients into the model. This can be achieved by reeling customers in through social media ads or paid TV segments.
- Accelerate: Streamline the process of clients moving through your model to take action. SMS reminders or push notifications are great examples of gently encouraging consumer motivation.
- Restart: Draw clients back into the loop to restart the process. Restart mechanisms can take a variety of forms, from emails offering special discounts to calls to action (CTAs) linked to a specific product.
Implementing a Growth Marketing Strategy
You now know how effective growth marketing can be for your company in driving results for both your consumer base and revenue stream. Now, let’s look at implementing a growth strategy that fits your marketing goals. Understanding what your objectives are and how they’ll set you up for future success is vital.
Because you’ll be focusing on the entire funnel of your buyer’s journey, you should consider executing multiple strategies simultaneously. Combine some of your usual tactics for best results:
Content Creation + Sales
One of your goals might be to bring more traffic to your website and elevate engagement with your resources. So, you can create blog posts, white papers or other online assets that drive brand awareness and client acquisition. Then, direct your sales team to act on contact request forms or prospects who’ve exchanged information for gated content.
Brand Loyalty + Upselling
If your priorities are to retain established or existing customers, you’ll want to encourage repeat or new purchases from them and build brand loyalty. Retention and nurture campaigns can serve this objective through personalized offers and customer loyalty programs.
With your existing customer intel, you should be able to deduce that certain industries or segments gravitate toward a specific product or service you provide. Use this information to entice these clients with an offer that both recognizes their preference and introduces a similar product or service.
Special Offers + Monthly Subscriptions
Conversely, you can incentivize clients with more frequent purchases. Or, offer subscription plans that existing customers pay for monthly in exchange for a free or discounted product. Just make sure you’re inspiring purchases of additional or complementary services or products at the same time.
Referrals + Branding
Another tactic to consider is creating a referral program, which relies on word-of-mouth and customer advocacy. This is all about building brand perception, as loyal customers usher in new ones by touting a brand to their friends, family and coworkers.
Ultimately, every strategy that aims to draw in both new and existing customers should include an incentive. This could be free products, one-time discounts or recurring savings.
Grow Your Organization With Ingage
If you’re unsure of how to start implementing a marketing strategy based on storytelling, experimenting with content creation and building brand image, Ingage is here to help.
Ingage is the industry leader in interactive content creation through its unique combination of software and storytelling. With more than a decade of dynamic digital content creation experience, it can help you tell your brand story to both new and existing customers.
Leverage customer engagement and develop growth loops through Ingage’s extensive digital storytelling expertise. As a result, your company will flourish far into the future. Contact us today to take charge of your marketing strategy and start a free Ingage demo.