The Advanced Guide for Growth Hacking / Proven Methods & Examples

Growth is one of the first aims of businesses, and growth hacking is a criteria that needs to be worked on.

Therefore, the terms, growth hacking strategies, growth hacking techniques and growth hacking tools are highly essential to know in this case.

Growth Hacking has recently become the most sought-after term. Therefore, to grow extremely quick and get millions of users and sales is a necessity to learn Growth Hacking processes that give you more users and more sales!

advanced guide for growth hacking on an orange background with a figure with a business bag running

What is Growth Hacking?

Growth hacking is a method of quickly testing and performing marketing and promotional tactics that are only centered on effective and fast market growth.

The phrase was coined in 2010 by Sean Ellis, CEO, and founder of Growth Hackers.

The main advantage of growth hacking is to reach conclusions fast, with minimum expense.

Answer of what is growth hacking.

Sean essentially became “a one-man growth shop to set and maintain a strong system for himself and for the future generations” as stated in an interview done by Quick Sprout.

Generally startup firms want to get fast results using the growth hacking techniques but growth hacking is compatible with all types of foundations to have successful growth businesses.

Statistic: Number of monthly active Facebook users worldwide as of 2nd quarter 2022 (in millions) | Statista

Fast-growing social networking websites like Facebook have achieved millions of users in a few years using growth hacking strategies based on Statista.

To learn more information about growth hacking strategies, you can get Sean Ellis Growth Hacking Book!

Who are Growth Hackers?

As the first Growth Hackers, Sean Ellis has described growth hackers as “a person whose true north is growth.”

To define the growth hackers’ working style and aims of their studies, growth hackers are only interested in strategies and tactics that encourage growth unlike traditional marketers who are concerned about brand awareness and PR. Therefore, anything about the growth potential is their point of interest.

As a result, lots of organizations have different types of team members, such as growth marketers, growth engineers, product managers, and other positions.

18 Precise Growth Hacking Strategies Infographic

18 Precise Growth Hacking Strategies Infographic

The infographic we have shared summarizes the key growth hacking strategies that will help you through the process. Feel free to follow the steps and take advantage of it while applying them to your business!

You are also welcome to use the infographic if you want to include it on your website :).

How Does Growth Hacking Work?

Before learning the necessary information about growth hacking, preparing yourself and your businesses for this process is needed. For this reason, there are few things to determine:

1. Do You Know Your Customers or Their Needs?

While starting, it’s necessary to make search whether the product fit the market. That is to say, you should make yourself sure that your outstanding products meet your customer’s needs.

To do this, you should understand your customers. The suggestions are:

  1. Customer’s gender, age, education, location (to determine the customer segmentation.)
  2. Which websites they prefer for information other than you.
  3. What their values, goals, difficult and weak points that your product can deal are

Growth Hacking customer avatar worksheet By collecting this type of information from your customers, to optimize your growth hacking strategies for your ideal customers is specified.

2. What is a Customer Journey Map?

Customer Journey Mapping help you learn what makes your customer a real customer.

The customer journey mapping is generally composed of awareness, evaluation, and finally conversion.

Growth Hacking customer journey map

3. Does Your Site Support Conversion?

The conversion-centered plan is another essential point for growth hacking. Therefore, your visitors can:

  1. Get the information they demand to catch the following action in their interplay with you,
  2. Possess an opportunity to engage with you,
  3. Recognize the social evidence that builds your professions and authorization.

Growth Hacking conversion optimization.

You’ll also need to recognize any challenges preventing visitors from converting. In order not to decrease your conversion, check conversion rate optimization guide.

4. How Should You Set Your Goals to Grow?

After determining your customer profile, customer journey, and your website compatibility with conversion, you are ready to dig down deep into growth hacking by deciding some new goals:

  1. Special
  2. Measurable
  3. Obtainable
  4. Related
  5. Periodical

Briefly, you should keep your feet on the ground by determining real goals for your business. To support growth, they should be suitable and realistic. Also, since the time matters, you should not set your goal for forever, but you need to put a time limit to obtain them!

Growth Hacking Funnels

Growth hackers have a tendency to build strategies for businesses so that they can grow. Therefore, they determine the necessary priorities to start the companies and achieve new customers in improving the strategies.

To make a good strategy, a successful measurement scale is a necessity. Therefore, growth hackers use the “pirate metrics” that is the 5-step metrics model, initial version of AARRR.

They consist of five stages of the growth hacking funnel: Growth Hacking Metrics.

AARRR is an excellent structure to help you better guess your customers. It helps you hold your funnel and allow you to optimize it for the better one.

With the handy metrics you have, you can quickly adapt AARRR and apply them to your business. That’s why the metrics funnel is so functional because it doesn’t need any technical information.

Let’s learn more about the stages!

1. Acquisition Stage

The acquisition is the first metric (A) in the AARRR structure, explains how people find you wherever you are and finally makes customers.

According to the framework’s rule, each way that somebody’s finding your businesses may be considered an acquisition stage.

The acquisition is the first touch of the customers with your service and products. Therefore, your marketing strategies should be sharpened at this point. By applying customer acquisition strategies, you are more likely to achieve since you need to grab attention from the new visitors.

There are types of acquisition, like your potential customers may visit your homepage, surf on your landing page, or reach you through other channels.

Also, the acquisition metrics gained from your strategy should not underestimate your customers since your customers mean more than just a few numbers.

Among other steps, acquisition is the most proper one to learn the customers’ tension and if your strategy is strong enough to make a start.

2. Activation Stage

The next step is activation where the focus is on conversions. While the acquisition stage deals with the mind and the consciousness of the people, activation manages the use of metrics and makes people act.

In the acquisition stage, it is important to catch the visitors and turn them into customers with little details. However, now the action takes the role in the activation.

Any process before the activation stage is not devoted to the interaction with the website because activation provides a click, surfing, researching on the website, or reading blogs and checking features. Therefore, any action that leads to signup should be controlled.

One of the most effective activation activities is the contact after the customers examine the product, its features, and pricing.

During the activation stage, it is critical to follow conversion rate metrics focusing on the success of your campaigns and efforts specifically.

To measure activation, you need to divide the numbers of your users who have an activity with your page by your visitors.

3. Retention Stage

Keeping your customers is as important as gaining new customers, and retention is the meaning of making your customers stick to you.

After turning your visitors into customers in the activation stage, you need to make them come back later so that you can raise your retention rate.

Retention rate depends on the sector you are in; however, you can guess your customers beforehand and be prepared for them.

The customers who know that you have a good service or product will prefer you again when they see anything related to your promotion or advertising. That’s why you need to improve your advertising revenue in case your current customers see and get back for more.

4. Referral Stage

Being known is great, being heard is greater.

Referral is highly effective because when a person uses your product or service and informs another person about them, your impact expands through connections. This is marketing for free for your brand in a sense.

Also, it is undeniable that word of mouth is more influential than you can imagine, and people who hear that a product is good want to try it whether the comment is true or not.

As a part of social proof tools, referrals distribute your fame and provide some types of buttons that encourage people to take actions, such as refer a friend, share this, or invite a fellow.

To exemplify referral, Vodafone UK reveals a campaign of referring a friend. In this campaign, if the user invites a friend to join Vodafone and the friend also joins, they get £25 Amazon gift cards after paying two bills.

Though it seems a little, it supports people to use the product since there is a reward at the end.

5. Revenue Stage

It is not over when you have your customers on your side, but you need to carry on somehow, and you need some increase for this. So, you need to calculate your revenue regularly to catch up.

Also, revenue is just more than measuring the cost-per-acquisition and the cost-per-lead or metrics. This is for both tracking your growth and being aware of the budget distribution.

While calculating the revenue, there are some points to consider, like paying attention to the whole revenue including the clients, their status in the brand, their profit rates, and so on.

If you miss the critical points while measuring the revenue, then you might not see the impact and the process you expect or estimate.

Growth Hacking Funnels Infographic

Growth Hacking Funnels Infographic Representation

The infographic we have shared displays the steps of growth hacking funnels that will help you through the process. Don’t forget to consider them for your business! You are also welcome to use the infographic if you want to include it on your website :).

Growth Hacking Strategies

Although growth hacking strategies can be developed for the needs of the business, these 6 of them work very well.

Let’s take a look!

1. Growing Email List

Email marketing is exactly the right way to build an association with your visitors and may assist them to have been subscribers and then customers.

The great side of email marketing is affordable. For instance, when you start to work with MailChimp, for the first 2000 users, you can send emails freely. After that, you can always prefer to use these in email marketing services.

However, growing your email list is another area to work and usually is slow running. To speed up the process you may consider creating popups with a lead magnet like:

growth hacking popup example on an orange background with a green-oriented popup

Lead magnets are an inspiration for marketers to offer their possible customers in change for their email address or also other contact data. Therefore, lead magnets usually suggest a piece of digital, downloadable source, such as a free eBook, documentation in PDF, articles, etc.

Exit Intent is one of the most effective popup types to use since it recognizes the users’ reaction and assists them with the regulated campaigns at the correct time, like before leaving.

Example of lead magnet for exit intent.

Creating these types of popups is so easy, you can visit Popupsmart popup builder and then discover the different types of lead magnets, exit-intent popups and so on. Then, you will see the difference when your visitors become your subscribers!

2. Share Awarding Things

Social media users are incredibly increasing day by day around the world, and it pushes people to make sensible decisions to announce the word in their networks.

Statistic: Most popular social networks worldwide as of January 2022, ranked by number of monthly active users (in millions) | Statista

This provides you with a new range of people, it means a new social area and a new way for businesses.

But totally people aren’t pleased to announce the word on social media because it doesn’t always be enough. They usually think like that “What is it for me? By awarding them for the shares, you are immediately aware of your brand proliferation on media alike wildfires.

Groupon is a specific example of it. If people don’t help them by sharing their news, they probably will not catch their opportunities.

Image of Groupon's deal spreader.

For another example, if you are using Shopify, you might know of apps like Social Marketing All in One to request clients to share the products and when clients accept to do this, as quickly as they award them by a discount.

3. Provide Freemium

People always prefer to take things free, particularly when this has become a valuable kit of specialties. Therefore, the freemium products are the better way for you to attract possible reviewers’ attention as they do not have to pay for experiencing it.

And the way of giving freemium products will provide you with complete specialties so that the users can catch on practicing the product and maybe think about the upgrade.

For example, to collect form submission with popups is a good solution that allows strong contact form details freely, but at the same time you must update for specific beneficial features.

5. Supply Your Products to Bloggers to Review

As you know, giving free products to influencer bloggers in trade for collecting reflections can be a good method to get their opinion about your products.

You can find many companies applying that growth hacking strategy. For example, you can probably find one web hosting that provides the basic hosting plans for free in exchange for an impartial review. Or another competitor firm gives premium services for some months in exchange to review.

Sending products to review permits people to know your products’ features in detail is a smart growth hacking strategy, because then they have a chance to make the promotion of them, even better, supporting you to grow.

A circuit of it only urges people to share in your blog in an interchange with the free account. Also, this is a great method for obtaining content and free promoted products.

To achieve this growth hacking strategy:

  • Search on Google for bloggers who make product and service reviews like yours.
  • Use the smart influencer search tools to see how they are influential and do a free search by logging in with social media channels, like Twitter.

Example of smart influencer search tools.

  • Search their URLs into BuzzSumo to notice whether their blogs are shared, you can see the example below.
  • Finally find a way to touch on with them like email, of course without being hasty and oppressive.

BuzzSumo is also known as an excellent “growth hacking tool.”

Buzzsumo Screenshot that shows shared content

6. Expand Range with Advertising

Compared to all kinds of ads, the charge of social media advertising is almost a little according to Lyfe Marketing’s article.

Cost graph of social media ads.

Because of addressing a very large amount of audiences in every global marketing industry, reaching huge potential audiences is almost inevitable. Also, you can select these audiences as core ones.

For example, when you generate posts or maybe a video on Facebook, only by using the “Boost” button, you can access the advertising interface.

Therefore, you can select your potential audience, budget, and advertising continuation before presenting your advertising to view. If this is confirmed, you are easily enabled to examine whether it is done right, and finally, you can receive an email report about the advertisement.

As an example, PostPlanner’s Scott Ayres can be given because he earned $2400 with sales after paying just $20 on promoting a post.

Value of Post Planner boosting studies.

If you want to boost your post and make sales like the successful examples, use this way as a different kind of marketing. To do this:

  • Define your goal, such as increasing engagement on Facebook.
  • Determine the right audience to reach.
  • Finally, determine the metrics that you want to be successful such as having more people who visit your site and connection.

7. Creating a Free Tool

Do you want a proven growth hacking strategy to encourage people to realize your organization? Making a free tool is completely beneficial.

For instance, there’s an online editorial calendar from CoSchedule that designed the Headline Analyzer, which provides people with free access so long as they sign up to the email list.

When people are in this list, the company has a chance to surprise their subscribers with content marketing tactics, advertise the importance of their funded service, and also give them the opportunity to examine it.

Example of schedule headline analyzer.

Or, another free tool alternative that you can use is the free cookie consent creator tool. That will truly help you provide awareness by serving thousands of sites.

10 Crucial Growth Hacking Tools

1. Google Analytics

The best way to choose to get customer activation is by identifying how it is engaging with customers you’ve already had. That explains why we need any analytics tool, and we can’t deny the Google Analytics role here because it’s free!

Image of google analytics.

You can get information about your audiences, their attitudes, purposes, and conversions, Google Analytics helps you to:

  • Show how the visitors use your site with their flows.
  • Find where in the site that they faced restrictions while utilizing your product or maybe making wanted actions.
  • Learn which pages are working great or not.

2. Hunter

You’ve learned before how emails are valuable to have a successful business, and Hunter is one the favorite tools that assists you to reach the easiest way to find the influencers you want.

Hunter homepage.

Hunter gives you search chances by email addresses by just writing domain names.

This is so simple, isn’t it?

Because you can send an email to all people that you want to contact instantly, instead of by following classical procedures like writing a contact form or using the general email address.

3. MailChimp

Since the invincible ROI is a fundamental strategy in email marketing, you require to add MailChimp as an email marketing in your growth hacking tool list.

MailChimp is the best suggestion as it gives you opportunities to send emails more than 2000 users or sends 12,000 emails monthly without paying.

Example templates of MailChimp.

Other MailChimp services:

  • A range of email newsletter templates.
  • Email workflows to pre-built.
  • An authority to assist you in designing emails.
  • An expanded information base.

4. Semrush

Semrush has many qualified functions because it involves every list of growth hacking tools. As it is a specifically comprehensive tool that concentrates on SEO and search engine marketing.

Semrush highlights 2 key points and if you want to use them, be aware of the other Semrush’s offers. They’re sure that they can increase your visibility and grow lead generation.

Semrush site audit sample page

There is a good way to use Semrush that is its Site Audit tool. It provides you with an overall view of your website well-being and other issues that make it less efficient. Semrush also gives you suggestions about addressing concerns.

Therefore, by using Semrush, you’ll make the site better for both you and your customers.

Semrush organic research page

Secondly, you can use Semrush for your specific aims like competitors research with its Organic Research tool. It allows you to control keywords that have traffic to your opponents.

By using this information, you are knowledgeable about what your targeted market cares about, and you’ll make your own content well-optimized to win-back the traffic.

5. YouTube

Because of being the best way to gain customers and make them active users by promoting the products and showing how they can use them, Youtube is another favorable tool.

Forbes says that 90% of customers report that product videos help them make purchasing decisions, and 64% of customers are more likely to buy a product online after watching a video about it.

If you read our video content marketing post, you can see detailed information about video marketing and will understand YouTube proves itself for this strategy.

Also, you notice that these videos make your sales and lead you better because as the researchers say, Youtube now has 2.6 billion users every month.

YouTube profile page of Popupsmart with different types of informative videos

By having a YouTube channel that shows your onboardings and tutorials videos, you can increase your customer acquisition and retention in your growth hacking metrics.

Also, to share them on your blog page or other social media platforms makes YouTube a multi-functional growth hacking tool.

Sidenote: It is possible to boost your conversions and YouTube views with a video popup. Here is how you can create a popup video.

6. Zoom

Do you imagine that you can convert your users from free trials to paid subscriptions when running webinars?

Of course, you do!

Because Branded Solopreneur says that between 2-5% of webinar attendees make purchases, and it makes Zoom an excellent growth hacking tool.

Zoom webpage with a photo of a woman smiling while a webinar showing how Zoom is effective in communication

There are many webinar marketing software to run, but Zoom can be thought of as the best one because it has many advantages such as working very well by running webinars and meetings and furthermore.

Also, it serves for free up to 100 participants and calls of up to 40 minutes. Besides, because of having a built-in recording feature, it allows you to record webinars so as to work later to lead generation.

7. FOMO

Social proof is a way of effective growth hacking, and using some social proof tools for growing can create a great impact.

The most well-known social proof tool is FOMO in this list, and it is possible to estimate the meaning from the name it suggests. FOMO stands for “fear of missing out”.

FOMO webpage on an orange background with two figures showing a crowd as an example of testimonials

Growth and knowledge widens by sharing, so by adding FOMO on your website, your visitors will be able to see that they are not the only one who uses your product or service. In a way, it will give them courage to make a step.

By displaying the notifications of your customers’ actions, such as “Jane Doe has just subscribed.” or “John Doe has just paid for the Basic plan.”, you will prove that you are chosen by others, and it is as influential as word of mouth.

8. FreeChat

In growth hacking, communication is everything. You can analyze your customers, your customers can analyze you, you may see what your lacks and extras are, and so on. At this stage, free live chat tools are required to use.

FreeChat is a very usable and effective tool to provide communication with your visitors. By being a completely free tool to use, you can customize and choose the right messaging apps.

Popupsmart FreeChat webpage with a sample free chat popup

Having a chat tool is easy, creating a chat tool with FreeChat is easier.

Create a Free Live Chat Box with FreeChat

9. Zapier

Zapier is a famous integration and automation tool. With its blogs, advice, and integration capabilities, it can be your all-in-one tool.

It is such a potent tool that Zapier is assertive about doing things for you easily. Also, Zapier is a multi-tasking tool, and 5000+ apps are available to work with.

Zapier webpage on a white and orange background

Giving orders is enough to make Zapier work effectively because there are many options for it.

According to what its users say, you don’t realize that you need Zapier until you have it, and the more important thing here is that it makes you feel like you are more in charge after you start using it.

10. CRO Checker

To keep track of your conversions is important for the progress of your website and business. Therefore, checking conversion rate optimization can be challenging, but not with CRO Checker.

There you will need no code to control your website. Also, another advantage of the CRO Checker is that it is free, so you don’t need to worry about the pricing.

Popupsmart's CRO Checker tool with an image of checking analytics and an email bar

It will help you find if there is any broken link, any problem with the pages, which works perfectly. Additionally, all you need to do is to copy and paste the link to the related part when you want to check the working of the page.

Here is how you can do it easily!


Growth Hacking Examples / Case Studies

After understanding all key points of growth hacking, now it is the time to give some specific examples which used the growth hacking strategies and tools and became more successful.

There’s a much well-known company on the list, you can consider them as a case study and then determine the points for your marketing strategies.

Let’s look at the successful examples!

Airbnb Case

Like every company, when Airbnb was started, it had more and more customer providers. Also, it wanted to build its status and have a good reputation. As you can understand, Airbnb reached everything that it wanted to do. But how?

an image and the description of a Airbnb house

In those times, people who were looking for accommodation at reasonable prices usually used Craigslist to find. With the integration, Airbnb became a talented way to give their accommodation providers by copying just a click the list to Craigslist and confirm their lists and finally, post them as an accommodation advertisement.

This provides Airbnb great results because Airbnb is the right way to access the exactly targeted customers and the market.

Facebook Case

You can think that Facebook is everywhere because of having more than 2 billion users. However, that’s not completely true, and so Facebook makes its growth hacks to create the user base.

Facebook firstly promoted itself to new users with the purpose of importing their contacts in emails.

Image of tagging on Facebook.

Next, the contacts who were tagged on Facebook by the users received notification emails. The goal was to bring some of these people to Facebook and even more to sign up from their own accounts.

Freshdesk Case

Freshdesk is the SAAS customer support helpdesk.

Image of Freshdesk customer support software.

According to the story of Freshdesk, the founder and the CEO of Freshdesk has been inspired by an article that he read. The article was about a company that raised its prices and made customers unhappy. Therefore, he finally decided to create something for the customer support market.

Beside the foundation process, “he spent $350 for the budgeting of the ads on Adwords, Facebook and LinkedIn with $10, $25, $50 and writing blogs” and obtained more than 150 valid signups. Now, he has his own team.

Groove Case

Do you want to grow while being direct with your customers? By doing this, Groove gained $5M in 3 years of content marketing.

Although they had worked around many methods of content marketing, Groove was aware that the company required an essential marketing strategy.

Groove didn’t share their real growing numbers as a tactic, but they honestly started to share their experiences with their users. As a result of this, they now have a huge amount of user base.

Groove is growth hacking example.

However, they continued for more. During the process, they cared about their users’ opinions. Therefore, they took feedback from its users about their any needs of information and then generated new content about it.

Also, Groove has used an influencer marketing strategy by sharing specific content, and given importance to the reviews, interviews, and other promotional events.

Hotmail Case

Now, you’ll learn the easiest and at the same time, the most effective growth hacking way. I’ll explain this by giving an example from Hotmail that is favorable to Outlook.com.

It is successful because each email that comes from Hotmail involves the signature link to enable the recipients to join and create their accounts for free.

Image of Hotmail signature link.

This growth hacking tactic brought Hotmail “12 million users in 18 months”.

Monzo Case

Do you want to learn a way to get rid of waiting in line? If your answer is yes, there is something different that helps you do it.

Monzo can be thought of as the growth hacking idea for the mobile bank that has now 5.8M in 2021 according to what Business of Apps shared.

Monzo as a growth hacking example.

If you sign up Monzo, you can see how many people are waiting in line in front of you or behind you to create accounts.

Monzo gives a chance to you to skip the line by suggesting the current users. Because of rewarding these new signups, they obtained lots of customers.

Do you want an example that used Monzo and was successful? Robinhood has worked with Monzo and reached a 1 million-person waitlist in the first year.

OneUp Case

As a very profitable app for using social media management, OneUp is a tool that makes schedules and automatically recycles your social media posts.

Therefore, it helps you to obtain further social media traffic by automatically renewing your posts on social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram!

PayPal Case

As we all know, PayPal is the payment processor for online vendors, auction sites, and other commercial users, for which it charges a fee when given in Bharath Kumar J’s blog.

PayPal is a growth hacking example.

It is a favorable system and has faced a viral spread when they decided to make that every sign-up will take a $10 deposit for the PayPal account and generosity of $10 for each new user for their referring.

Stripe Case

Stripe has been built as a technology company, and it gives services to businesses and individuals to receive payments on the Internet.

Stripe is growth hacking example.

According to Fortune, Stripe has raised $250 million in an investment round led by Tiger Global Management, and its valuation has doubled $20 billion in 2018!

Tinder Case

Like PayPal, Tinder is another well-known app that makes people meet.

The first success of Tinder is to reach 15000 early users by going on a road trip to college sororities and fraternities.

Tinder is successful growth hacking example.

By spreading through word-of-mouth, Tinder has reached more than 50 million users.

Wrap Up

Since growth hacking is a very general and critical point for the marketing of a business, it is important to give delicate focus when you work for the growth hacking.

This guide we have prepared for you can enlighten your questions in your mind. Also, you can take examples from the part related.

Still, you might have some questions, ask us and let us find the answers together for growing more!

And please share your opinions, recommendations, real-life examples via comments, so that we can grow together!

Enjoy it!

Check Other Articles

Show Comments