Let’s picturize an ideal startup growth tactic – That primarily comprises of – Scaling, Sustaining and Automating. Same thing, different situation. Let’s consider your online life. Why is it that your anxiety levels hit the sky when you update something on the social media? That’s because you care about your online ‘image’. Your online life, your online presence is the Virtual You. You feel an urge to be the ‘smart guy’, ‘a-know-it-all guy’, or just about anything, but you want to be heard. What if I told you that you too can become an online influencer, boost up your online image, with a few Growth Hacking Techniques?
Okay, so you might have already gotten acquainted with what and how exactly Growth Hacking works and a few Growth Hacking resources, if you haven’t yet, I recommend you give it a read. Okay, so in the preceding para, I’ve just claimed that a few growth hacking techniques applied to your online life, would bolster your online image to an extent when there is no looking back! Growth Hacking is a world of short-living opportunities. There is no tomorrow, there is only Here-and-Now. By the time you come up with an excellent marketing strategy and wait for the right time, watch your competitor steal it from under your nose, while you sob haplessly!
The first thing you would need to be heard, your thoughts be valued in the online world, is to become an influencer. And, trust me, spamming your unreadable and drivel content on social media won’t help in your online image, instead it will only derogate your image! Everyone loves getting taken seriously, and to be so, you need to apply a few growth hacking techniques in your online life, to get listened to and be a trusted leader! So, lets get started.
Growth Hacking Techniques For Your Online Life
Forget Email, Tweet it
Twitter is all the new rage now! Out goes Gmail, in comes Twitter. Seriously, a tweet could easily do you more good than can sending Emails that are spam in disguise.
Reaching out to influential people has never gotten more easier with twitter. If you run a blog, a startup, or probably anything online, and you need to apply for a guest post, need to reach out to influencers, tweet them, instead of mailing them.
- Find the person you want to reach out to on Twitter. Follow him/her, might get you a follow back.
- Tweet about the purpose you want to reach out to that person. Could be like –
“I want to add an awesome post to your wonderful Digital marketing Hack Resources”, “I was wondering about the status of the update that was due this week. Is it still on?”, etc.
- Don’t forget to add related hashtags and Mentioning the person you want to reach out to. (Duh, Twitter basics.)
Change from Mail to Twitter and trust me, you will love the difference.
Dare to Approach Big Players!
Consider you are a blogger and you want to do a guest post at a blog that’s insanely big and popular. Consider Huffington post, The New Yorker, etc., the thought of writing articles over there seems daunting at the slightest of our imaginations, but we are all a piece of our imaginations. Although Google’s latest update causes penalties in 2014 for overdoing guest blogging, a little would do no harm.
And do dare to approach the big players with utmost optimism. Although you need to up your ante as far as your writing skills are considered to write at WSJ, NYTimes or HuffPost, you can make the most of ReadWrite and Medium.com that accept contributed editorship and offer everyone to tell a story at their blog.
Great content gets shared and see your reach, credibility and traffic increase by three-folds by making the most of Medium’s loyal reader-base.
Make the most of Quora
Now here comes the place of the influencers! This is where influencers from different industries set aside a part of their ego for a moment and selflessly cater to the questions of the crowd. Make the most of this important and become one!
Quora is a great resource for finding answers to your typical questions from people who are trustworthy. That what’s sets Quora apart from all the rest of the Q&A forums. Answer questions on Quora in your sector. If you do something that solves an ‘Actual problem’, then it will be discussed around in their network with pretty zeal. Quora is the hangout place for the intellectuals in the startup world.
If you are considering to answer downright 2 line answer at Quora, don’t bother with it, as there are 20+ answers to the popular questions and the worse ones get downvoted quickly. So, don’t just do it for the sake of doing it!
Try Slideshare-ing your Blog Posts
“Pictures speak louder than words” – And so do Slideshows!
You might not have a great knack for slideshows – Duh! But seriously, presenting your best blog posts in the form of a slideshow at Slideshare would be a great tactic for increasing your authority and spreading out about your blog.
List posts look great as slideshows and make the most of them. Make your most popular posts as slideshows as the less popular ones won’t fetch you a great ROI as expected.
Make Educational Courses
Are you knowledgeable in any field? Knowledgeable here refers to being seriously experienced in any field. Try making educational courses at Udemy. Udemy is a great resource for people who seriously want to learn. Do you know something about anything? Udemy is where you ought to be heading for.
You can consider making your course a paid or a free one after making it and considering the value your course is offering to the community. If you happen to make a super informative course, consider making it a paid one. Making courses on Udemy would increase your authority and get noted as an online influencer.
Think, and think again before you post
The simple mantra of growth hacking is “Think. Consider. Re-consider“. Apply it to your online life, eespecially your social media. Think twice, or thrice before posting something on the internet.
“The internet is written in ink.” – As quoted in The social network, is fair enough to be true. Don’t post something you think might be embarrassing in the future. Think before you post anything on the web. Its all up to you to consider what’s fair for you to post on the web and what’s not. But do remember that your online past is not erasable and would stick on forever, so try to make it less worse.
To tell you about forced virality, I would need to tell you a small story. A few years back, I came across a game that was pretty fun to play with. After playing a few levels, a blank screen popped up! I was required to invite a friend to join the game to proceed to the next level! Simple, yet effective. The game was worthy of getting played for a few more levels and that is enough to force the player to refer it to a friend.
This is what forced Virality is all about. Encourage social sharing by offering an in-product benefit. Offer your customer something that he can’t refuse but will be compelled to click the social share button to get his hands on his coveted target. Here are few great resources for learning about viral marketing:
The third phase of Growth Hacking is user retention, which is the foundation on which a startup thrives. Re-targeting or Re-marketing is nothing but advertising to your customers again! Now this might come off as pretty silly to those thinking why advertise to the ones who are already your customer?
The answer? That’s because showing banner ads to completely random strangers who know nothing about it has very less CTR compared to the banners that connect with the audience and say – ‘Hey, I’ve met you before – Oh, wait, I’m your customer!’ moment.
Consider Adroll for re-marketing as it is much better than what Google Adwords has to offer, and has a one week free trial to experiment with their service.
Connect with the Influential people
“Celebrities are hard to get.”
– Eva Ho, VP of Marketing & Ops at Factual
Find those people. Find the celebrities of your sector and reach out to them. Remember Rule #1 – Ditch the Mail, and make the most of Twitter. Reach out to the influencers as a message spread out by them has great repercussions on your reach.
Offer them help and fulfill your promise. Influencers are the difference that your company lacks to get it to the next level. Do something to get noticed by these influencers and see your product/service top the charts real quick!
Consider ‘Drip’ Email Campaign (CRM automation)
Drip marketing is what the entire Retention technique of growth hacking relies upon. Nail the technique of drip marketing and consider you have mastered the art of retention of users.
Users tend to forget your service or product as time goes by. Re-capturing inactive users is a must for getting back on track. Drip marketing or lifecycle marketing is the only way to get back your inactive users to use your service.
Did your user stop paying for your service? Offer them an 100% discount for a month’s service and give them a chance to like your service again. Has your customer never logged into your site for more than a month? Mail them about the update to your dashboard.
Scrutinize your Landing page
Your landing page is an ocean of limitless possibilities, don’t mess around with it, dumping everything into it! A/B testing is a must for targeting users, but don’t overdo it. Don’t fuss a lot about your UX. There are hundreds of overwhelming design choices available, but are all those really necessary? Re-consider it.
Take a look at the top websites – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, etc. What you can see is their subtlety, yet effectiveness in getting a bunch of more users onboard. Stick to that tactic. Test your landing page for better effectiveness, but don’t make it your only priority. What you have to offer comes first rather than how you present it.
Re-consider your Social Campaigns
Social campaigns are a complete no-no for me! I hate social campaigns that are based on individual benefits rather than a value adding for the community. Instead of running awfully value degrading social campaigns like ‘Re-tweet this to win ___’ campaigns on social media, consider offering, let’s say, USER A with a dynamic generated content and offer him to share with his social media network. USER B sees the shared content by USER A, feels something good about it and follows in his steps.
This could be illustrated by an example of Klout. Klout offers users their own social media score and let’s them share with their Facebook and Twitter friends. This creates vanity and curiosity. Build curiosity around your service, add a social share to it, and watch your traffic pop up.
Be Real Quick!
One of the most important part of Growth Hacking is to be at the right place at the right time, and at a lightning pace. I’ve told this before, and I keep telling again, wait for the right time to act on that unique idea of yours’ and get busy sobbing later after someone implements it just ahead of you.
Be real quick! Everything needs to be speed up in this world that demands rapidness. Be it your website’s loading time, or a feature that has struck to that brilliant mind of yours. Act on it right away and leave no stone unturned till you achieve what you were set out for.
Prioritize your growth metrics
How do you measure Growth? It actually varies from person to person. Prioritizing your growth metrics is an important issue. Considering focus on WOW (Week over Week) growth.
As Stumbleupon says, citing Facebook’s rise, ‘Usage is the only thing that matters the most. There will be no company without users’. Considering focus on the week over week growth of your company.
There is no replacement to experimenting. You won’t learn a thing until you try it out for yourselves. Go Beta, just for a bunch of users, but launch it sooner. You can learn about the demand for the service through it and would set you right on track. Try all of your wildest growth ideas. New entrepreneurs find it pretty easy to get swept away by their grand scheme of things, but its way to easy to miss out on the actual facts. Experiment. Iterate
So, which growth hacking techniques have you been dealing around with lately? Shout out your thoughts and experiences below.