In our last post about growth hacking, I compared it to Wisconsin basketball. Today I compare it to losing weight.
Losing weight is something most everyone has tried at some point in their life. The diet and fitness industry is a multi-billion dollar industry because it’s something people struggle with all the time. Losing weight is not easy. While there are genuinely helpful programs out there, everyone wants the silver bullet. They want the magic pill that will help them lose the desired amount of weight almost instantly. The same logic applies to growth hacking. What’s the magic bullet tactic that will get me the desired growth?
The short, sad answer to both questions: there is no such thing as a silver-bullet solution.
We live in an on-demand economy. We can have cars, groceries, alcohol, massages all sent to our door on-demand. We crave the immediate satisfaction. Yet when it comes to things like weight-loss and growth hacking, we have to be patient. We have to work hard, stay consistent, and find what works for us.
Lesson 1: Successful Tactics Are Not Universal
There are tons of blogs and forums that are teaching people how to be better growth hackers. Most of them are great. I’m on them everyday, learning just like everyone else. But if I’ve learned anything from these blogs, it’s that what works for Company X doesn’t necessarily mean it will work for me. Same with my fitness routine.
Individuals and companies are different. We are unique and respond to different tactics differently. Don’t assume that because you read that Company Y increased sign ups by 3,000% by adding a green call to action button on the home screen, it will work for you.
There are a myriad of reasons why tactics won’t work for everyone. Different products, different markets, different demographics. If you’re counting on a new tactic that you just read about to be your saving grace, you’re going to be disappointed. Which brings us to lesson two.
Lesson 2: Always Be Testing
Since you can’t assume that a new tactic will work for you, you must always be testing. Even if you have your growth channels established, you shouldn’t rest on your laurels. Keep testing!
If you read the numerous growth hacking case studies, you’ll start to realize that these companies weren’t necessarily copying other companies. They were testing to see what works for them, based on the data they have.
Growth marketing is constantly evolving. As is your product and customer. Make sure your growth hacking tactics are improving. You don’t want to be caught in a situation where what worked today doesn’t tomorrow and you’re now left with no viable growth channels. Keep the pipeline fresh.
Lesson 3: Pour On The Gas
When you do find the growth channels that work for you. Pour on the gas! You should continue to test, but when you know something works, put as much energy in it as possible.
I had a client a little over a year ago. After a few months, I discovered that the best channel for mobile downloads was mobile Facebook advertising. I took my limited budget and put it all in Facebook. Then I would continue to refine the ads and found out that my money would go even further by advertising to Android only users. Cost per acquisition went from $4 to $1.50 once I went Facebook only. I took that CPA down to around $1.15 once I stopped iOS user ads altogether.
Each of these three lessons apply to your weight-loss battle. Remember that just because a fitness blogger lost 40 pounds in a month on a diet/exercise plan, it doesn’t mean it will work for you. You should constantly test out new exercises. At the very least it will keep things from getting boring. But it you might also find a new exercise that’s really successful for you. Most importantly, when you do find what works for you, pour on the gas. If you discover running is your best weight-loss exercise, run! Add in a yoga/pilates class to see how those work, but most of your time should be spent running.
If you are looking to lose weight and grow your business, these three lessons will help you in both endeavors. Just keep in mind there is no silver-bullet. It takes hard work and persistence to lose weight and grow your company. Short cuts will ultimately waste your time.