Guest Post by Shiraz Hemani.
As a growth hacker, I often have to weave my work into legacy marketing efforts like PPC, broadcast marketing, print advertising, and guerilla marketing. Every form of marketing has its own measure of success, whether it’s CTR, MQL’s, or email list growth, but measuring how growth hacking impacts your lead machine can be difficult if you don’t know where to start. In this post, I’ll give you some actionable tips and discuss the 5 growth hacking benefits you’re overlooking!
Branding & Identity
If you’re going to stand out, you have to tell the story of how you’re different. For examples, look no further than Netflix and Dollar Shave Club during their early years. In both cases, the upstart keyed on the customer pain points that their very well funded competitors were failing to address.
Your growth hacking efforts should put you in front of the leads that are looking for a product or service that addresses their pain points. This is especially beneficial if you’re a newcomer in your space so make sure you’re telling an interesting story.
Not sure if your story is interesting the right audience? Work closely with your conventional marketers to pin-point the stories that have resonated historically and use those as your starting point. Also, watch for Twitter conversations and LinkedIn Groups where people are asking for suggestions on tools or services where your offer can help. Get involved with the conversation but remember – be helpful and interesting – don’t just jump right into your pitch!
The SEO benefits of blogging and social networking definitely can’t be overlooked. Whoever runs your PPC campaigns already has a great idea of what keywords have a history of good performance so get them involved in your growth hacking process too.
Remember, even searchers that don’t use a particular social network will still get search results that are impacted by social networks. This is somewhat obvious with G+ and YouTube when it comes to Google searches but SumAll has a great post that breaks things down in more detail.
Always use themes in your blog posts (and in your social posts) that mirror your best performing PPC campaigns too. Give yourself a chance double dip with some organic traffic!
Do you find that a portion of your marketing generated traffic ends up as quote requests? On the surface that looks good, especially if that was your call to action. However, the story behind that interaction may not be what you’re hoping for. It could be a window shopper who is early on in the process or someone that has decided on an alternative product but needs to show competitive bids as part of their internal process.
Tracking your lead quality can be difficult so get your team together and start measuring quality according to each capture mechanism. Landing pages are a great start but tools like MailChimp and Socedo are great for A/B testing talking points, DM captures, and tracking follower growth rates too. Also, the leads you get from your blog and social activity are higher quality so measure them with a higher benchmark than your PPC leads.
Add to Your Existing Campaigns
You’ve already invested in your existing campaigns, but that’s not enough! When you get a new lead from an existing campaign:
- Follow them on social networks
- Engage them with an email campaign that is driven from your blog’s RSS feed
- Look for any insights that help you understand how they prefer to purchase
This gives you a chance to convert a portion of your existing leads that would just be slowly dying on the vine otherwise.
When you mix growth hacking into your social selling efforts, try to target SQL’s and bypass the MQL stage. Step one, have a clear understanding of what differentiates your MQL’s from your SQL’s. Now you can focus your efforts on the leads that are more informed, closer to making a decision, and more likely to be a decision maker.
All of this effort takes a lot of time so measure whether these leads close more quickly than other deals. You should also measure if the average deal size differs between lead sources. Review your findings with the rest of your team and your superiors too! Transparency and collaboration will help you to adapt if you run into any hiccups.
Avoid PPC Saturation
Saturation is always a concern when you’re involved in PPC campaigns. There’s no question that PPC works so you’ve got to keep it as a part of the mix. However, when a campaign is successful, all you can do is throw more money into those keywords to up your lead count. At that point, your larger competitors (i.e. those with big budgets) will up their bids on key terms to try and price out their competition (you!). Diversifying your lead gen allows you to avoid PPC saturation issues.
Shiraz Hemani is a husband, father, geek, and a fan of all Tampa Bay area sports teams. He combines his background in growth hacking and his passion for technology to help startups realize their early potential. In his spare time you’ll find Shiraz taking a jog or enjoying some time with his iPad (when his daughter isn’t using it to watch Frozen). He invites you to connect with him on Twitter and LinkedIn and always consider him a resource if you need help with implementing a growth hacking strategy!