There’s been a lot of chat in recent years around growth marketing and growth hacking. Coming out as a ‘growth hacker’ was a trend that came and went as quickly as the rebirth of Tamagotchis in the early 00’s.
However, there’s still a lot of truth to it. Although it’s frowned upon by many in the SaaS and product marketing world, growth hacking works.
Growth hacking is essentially finding agile ways to grow your SaaS. Many deem it as unsustainable—you can’t possibly win long-term customers with short-term tactics, right?
I’m going to challenge your perception of growth hacking today, although I remain firm on my hypothesis that Tamagotchis should never have left the 90s.
There are growth hacks, quick-fixes, and strategic plays you can consider that are still customer-centric. If evidence-based, these plays can help you acquire new users/customers with a CLTV that still warms the soul like a hot chocolate on a Winter’s day, marshmallows and all.
Here, I’ll be sharing 19 tactics to try out with those scrappy, agile product teams that are playing the fast game, looking for quick wins, but still have that marathon journey insight. Startup life, eh? On your marks…
Quick-fire growth marketing tactics to try before you buy
1. Put subtitles on your videos
We all know the power of great video content. 86% of businesses are using video in 2022, and 87% of those users report that it gives their business a positive ROI.
Need more convincing? A whopping 19 hours of video content is consumed per week, and with social platforms like TikTok implementing 10-minute-long videos—up from the one minute they initially started with—there’s no sign of slowing down in 2022.
That being said, videos need to be as accessible as possible, so a growth hack to improve your video content marketing strategy is to add video subtitles.
Tool Tip: HappyScribe is a go-to solution for anyone looking to effortlessly add video subtitles. Make your content more accessible to those with hearing difficulties, poor internet coverage, or consuming content on the go having left their headphones on charge.
2. Use graphs to make you pop
Next up, and especially relevant in the B2B world, is lifting your content with visuals, and better yet, data-backed visuals. Graphs will help your content pop while giving your point more weight.
If you’re in a unique position to be sharing data with your audience, then consider presenting that data in bite-sized chunks—think ‘sushi roll content.’
Tool Tip: Piktochart has got a great, free online graph maker that will help you lift your content, and give your content a better chance of ranking via google image search. Growth goals ✅
3. Redefine your user personas
Fair enough, this tip is not one as easily implemented as some others on this list, but, hear me out. There’s a high chance you’re familiar with user personas or buyer personas. There’s also a good chance you made them a while back, and they’ve sat in the virtual drawer ever since. Why? Because you made them with every intent to be a static document.
Whip that PDF out and let’s mix things up. Look at your user data, look at your social media followers, who is actually using and showing interest in your product? Are they an accurate reflection of your user persona documents? If not, it’s time for a revamp. What’s more, remember to mix things up regularly—user personas need to be seen as an ongoing process, not a one-time learning.
4. Find your community hashtags on Twitter
#HashtagsAreNotDead. On Twitter, they’re more relevant than ever and specifically for communities. If you can identify your community-based hashtags for your product or brand, then you give your tweets that much more chance at success.
For example, I have under 200 followers on Twitter—let’s not talk about it. However, when I use the correct community-focussed hashtags, my tweets see great traction. Take a look at the example below.
Yep, 37 replies and 27 likes; not bad for little old me.
5. Build a free tool
Free tools aren’t such an easy lift, in fact they’re not easy at all. However, they can do absolute wonders for growth and brand recognition.
A great example of this is the below free title and meta description checker I use time and time again. It’s a relatively simple tool to create; it’s a character counter at the end of the day.
However, it’s hosted by a B2B Demand Gen agency! So, it’s relevant to their ICPs—me. Figure out what free tool you can create at a relatively low lift, and run with it.
6. Put a face to your brand
No matter your brand, you need to be putting a face to it. People are bot-tired. They’re craving human interactions. But, if you’re not giving them that opportunity to get to know the people behind your product, they’ll struggle to create an emotional connection to it.
Plus, 95% of our purchasing decisions take place in the subconscious mind, and emotions are your route to the subconscious. Show those faces, people!
7. Create authentic email lists
Segmented email campaigns can increase email revenue by 760%. This personalization goes beyond first names.
Segment your campaigns to showcase that you understand cohort needs, and bring a customer-centric approach to your email marketing strategy.
At the same time, we’re not trying to fool anyone. Customers are savier than ever before, tell them why they’re on a particular list and receiving an email, give them the easy option to leave, or tweak their details with you.
At DSLX, we’re about to send our first ever newsletter to our freelance writers. We’re opening with honesty, transparency, and an explanation of why they are receiving the newsletter. Take a look:
8. List your product on ProductHunt
ProductHunt is a great place to garner some more exposure for your upcoming product launch or new features. It’s a space you can start a conversation around your product, get featured on the home page, and it’s totally free!
Tool Tip: ProductHunt.
9. Build a back linking strategy
Backlinking works when done well and with a strong strategy. Figure out your target keywords you want to connect with key pages, and get those partnerships going.
Note, back linking doesn’t come easy. If you’re running the strategy in-house, then outreach is a full-time job in itself. If you’re outsourcing, then I’d suggest reaching out to Skale. They’re a link building SEO agency that I’ve been a writer with for nearly three years. They have a stellar link building team and process in place for their clients that’s garnered some great results.
10. Try Twitter threads for a seamless social experience
Twitter threads are massively overlooked, but they’re so rewarding! They give your content an ever-green twist that makes it worth the hours of strategizing and copy-crafting you put into your social media content plan.
I’ve been using Twitter threads with a client of mine, Codility, for a few years now. They’re a great way to work long-form content into the platform, and we repeatedly see click-throughs from these threads on the older links in them when we add to the thread.
11. Value C-Suite social strategies
LinkedIn is a powerful place for people. If your teams aren’t using it then you’re missing a massive growth opportunity.
People come to LinkedIn for thought-leadership, so make sure your C-suite staff are serving it up on a plate, with all of the trimmings. I love this example from the Co-founder of Chameleon, Pulkit Agrawal. If it had come directly from Chameleon, I don’t think it would have been so successful.
Let your C-Suite staff showcase their knowledge and passion, and have your marketing team consider their channels as equally important as your brand channels.
12. Find your founding members
If you’re new to the scene, like apple-for-the-teacher-on-the-first-day-of-school kind of new, then an ambassador program focusing on founding members can be a great shout.
I was recently invited to be a founding member of Trove—an up-and-coming social media & blogging platform that’s kind of like Notion meets Pinterest meets Medium. It’s a really interesting concept, and the team gave me a referral code (TRVE10) that I can share with my community and help to grow the platform.
As a hand-picked founding member, it gives me a social and emotional responsibility to see the platform succeed, and I’d highly suggest new SaaS models doing the same.
13. Whatsapp for business
Meet your customers where they’re at. Of course, Whatsapp is a lot bigger in Europe than it is in the US, so it’s also important you understand your market on this growth hack. However, meeting users where they’re at, and giving them multiple options to reach out to your brand, will massively improve your customer retention efforts.
Tool Tip: WhatsApp for Business
14. Let your customers build your products
Continuously look for ways you can connect to and learn with your customers. When your customers are responsible for the growth of your product, they are responsible for its success.
Ask your users about features they’d like to see, features they expected to see given your product messaging, and let your users know you’re delivering on their input.
Tool Tip: Typeform is a great tool for gathering and organizing qualitative product feedback.
15. Podium your people
Identify your power users, and biggest brand ambassadors. You can do this by running an NPS survey, or looking at your in-app engagement data. Once you’ve identified this, champion these users, thank them for their loyalty, and reward them for helping your product succeed.
16. Foster micro-communities
People are using your products because they have a similar job-to-be-done, and most-likely share similar interests. However, that’s not to say you’ve got a community. These people are your users, not your community.
Strong communities need fostering, they need a common interest to tie them together, and a place to share that interest. Identify what that is, and manage that space to create a welcoming and safe environment to help you build more loyal customers.
Remote Year do this really well, take a look at some of the moderated communities I’m in within their company Slack.
17. Run a technical SEO audit
Technical SEO audits are often a quick win, although they’ll take a little bit of time to implement, they’re well worth it. A few things to look out for are:
- Meta description + title tags: ensure each page has unique copy—no repeat content
- Image title tags: ensure your alt descriptions and image titles are accurately reflecting the image and page topic
- Repeat content: in any startup’s earliest years they’ll often shortcut a website build by reusing the same product messaging, exactly the same way. This essentially puts your pages competing against each other. Make sure all of your copy is entirely unique.
- Site speed: large images or on-page assets can drastically decrease your site speed. Find out what’s slowing your page load down and reduce its file size.
Tool Tip: ResizePixel is a great free tool for helping you reduce image size while keeping quality.
There’s a ton more you can do in a site audit, but this is a great starting point.
18. Referral campaigns
We’re all familiar with the DropBox referral campaign that helped the SaaS grow a massive 3,900%. However, that’s not to say it can’t be done again, that it can’t be done better.
If you can implement a referral campaign that rewards referees with product perks over cash rewards, then you’re on a growth win at a low-cost lift.
19. Automate cumbersome processes
Big growth often comes from eradicating those tasks that take up time, but need to be done. Look towards your processes and figure out what you can either outsource or automate.
You’ll be surprised by the amount of time you can save down the line if you put in the time now to free up and streamline your processes. Give yourself room for growth.
Tool Tip: Levity is a fantastic drag-and-drop AI tool I’ve found to help you automate those mundane tasks.
Interested in learning more about growth strategies?
Did you get your roots done?
There you have it, 19 growth tactics to try out that I promise you will last longer than that tamagotchi spree. Take your pick, figure out what’s right for where your business is right now, and let me know if you end up using any of those tools! You can find me on Twitter, perhaps you can help me get that follower count up to 200.