Entrepreneur 15.02.2016
By Morten Hellesøe Poulsen & Sebastian Kinegaard

Growth Hacking – 5 ways to find those little growth hacks that will make your business BIG!

Former employee at Google and co-founder of Plytix, the #1 online product-image bank, Morten Hellesøe Poulsen, gives you 5 growth hacking techniques that makes a huge difference for your company’s growth.


"Eat like a Bird and pooh like an elephant is what growth hacking is all about"

 

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                                                                              Photo by: Yasuhisa Hasegawa
                                                                          

So, you have an idea and a business plan but you are not seeing any growth in your business. Or, you are growing but not at all as you would like to grow. Immense! 

This is where growth hacking becomes important for your business.
When Morten is to describe growth hacking he quotes venture capitalist and former Apple employee, Guy Kawasaki’s famous words: ‘eat like a bird and pooh like an elephant’. Growth hacking is about finding those little hacks that makes a huge difference for your company.  

1. Integration Hacks

What: Integrate your own product with existing products on the market. 
Who: Spotify used Facebook-login to let their users spread the word on Facebook. Remember when, in the beginning, Spotify, posted on your Facebook-wall, every time you listened to Katy Perry? Embarrassing for you maybe, but goddamn effective for Spotify! Later, Spotify stopped posting their users guilty pleasure songs on Facebook, but not before Spotify’s integration hack led them to immense market growth. 
Best Practice: Ask your users, which other systems they use and consider integrating with them with. Don’t be silent about it if you partner up with other products! Dedicate a page on your website to tell your users about their benefits of this new integration.

2. Community Hacks

What: Hacking into other product’s user base to promote your own services.
Even though this may remind of integration hacking, tapping into other’s user base isn’t as much about integrating directly with other platforms as exploiting their communities.  
Who: Uber understood that in order to disrupt something as old as the Taxi-industry, they needed to retain early-adopters. Uber got their Word of Mouth going by giving free vouchers to people attending tech-conferences and start-up events. 
Best practices: Make sure your system is geared to follow up. If Uber had given 100 free vouchers but only had 5 Uber-cars, people would probably complain over not being able to get a ride home. Be very targeted and test on a small scale before going crazy. Uber probably tested their service at one conference before going all in. 

3. Invite Hacks

What: Using your existing user base to invite new users to your platform.
Who: Dropbox grew through the mantra: “Invite for storage”. Existing users were rewarded with additional storage space as long as they invited new users to join the platform.
Best practice: Make the invite and sign-up process easy. Dropbox provides you with a list of your email-contacts to make it easy for you to invite them. Make the sign-up a one-click solution. Make new users sign up with their email or Facebook account. Reward existing users for their will and effort to invite new users or make them feel upgraded in a way.

4. Embed Hacks

What: Embed your products on other companies’ platforms.
Who: YouTube became the largest video platform because they allowed 3rd part websites to embed their video player onto their own site. All YouTube’s competitors refused to do the same because they wanted all the traffic generated from the videos onto their own webpage. This led to their failure and made YouTube the largest video provider.   
Best Practice: Make sure you have something people want to embed. Make it super easy to embed. Find a way to direct people to your own channels from the embeds. Youtube not only made it simple for all websites to embed. At the end of a video, YouTube suggests related videos and if you click on them, you will be redirected to YouTube.

5. Engineering Hacks

What: Develop software that will automatically develop growth.
Who: Ebay used to suggest a list of different payment models where Paypal was only one of them. Therefore, Paypal developed a bot that automatically made transactions on Ebay to become the most popular payment method on the site. Being the most popular, made people believe that Paypal was also the best and most trusted. This bot eliminated all Paypal’s competitors and made it the
no. 1 payment method on Ebay.
Best practice: Identify how you want to measure growth (KPI’s) and develop software that focuses only on that. When you find those KPI’s ask yourself what are the bottlenecks to reaching critical mass and develop a software that can do the heavy lifting for you Last but not least. It’s ok to fake it ‘till you make it, just like Paypal did!

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