Why Growth Hacking is a bit naughty

Romy van Baarsen, 12 December 2018

As children we are born being creative and open minded. We learn about the world around us by asking questions, many questions. “What is the sky made of?”, “where do baby’s come from?”, “what happens if..?”. It is this openness that is the keystone to much of the learning, it helps children to make sense of the world around them.

What if we go back to this childish innocence and ask questions about our customers, our value proposition etcetera? Isn’t that how we will learn the most? I think this is where many companies miss their chance. I admit, it is hard to step out of a daily routine and start testing things that are out of the box or maybe even a bit tricky. Nonetheless small ideas can mean big wins, but if you don’t dare to test these ideas innovation won’t happen. Innovation starts and ends with mindset and that’s where Growth Hacking comes in.

When thinking of a hacker many people will think of an image like this:

However, please don’t recall this image when thinking of a Growth Hacker. Growth Hacking resonates more with an image like this:

During the Growth Hacking Bootcamp at The Talent Institute we learned many tricks and tools that can be implemented immediately the next day at work. It makes going to work fun exiting! Furthermore, the bootcamp thought us a whole new way of looking at things, it invited us to think more out of the box and dared us to test stuff. This is what made the bootcamp especially so valuable to me. Even weeks after doing the bootcamp I still get back to my notes from these two days to read certain topics or refresh my mind. That’s what I call food for thought!

To give you a sneak peak of what you can expect from a Growth Hacking Bootcamp at the Talent Institute I will share 5 Growth Hacker rules with you that I learned from the bootcamp.

Rule #1

Think like a pirate

During the bootcamp we learned about the AAARRR funnel. This funnel starts with awareness and ends with referral and is way more on point in this digital age than the old marketing funnel.

Rule #2

Think like a Growth Hacker

Next to thinking like a pirate Growth Hacking is a mindset and so you need a growth mindset. Let’s go back to the “Yes we can” era. Never lose your big picture out of sight.

Rule #3

If you want to conquer the world, start with Belgium

When you want to conquer the world, you have to start somewhere. Why not start with Belgium?

The same counts for getting to your big picture. Start with looking at the full pirate funnel and then break this into small steps. You’ll need data, as data levels all arguments. You can dream big, but start small with quick and cheap tests.

Rule #4:

Dare to fail, but do so with style

Buzz Lightyear tries to fly many times and he also falls many times. However, when he falls he tends to say he is falling with style. Be like Buzzlightyear and dare to fail, but always fail with style: gather as much learnings from it as possible.

Remember: without failing there is no learning and as we all know without learning there is no gaining.

Rule #5:

Dare to be naughty

Growth Hacking can be on the edge. Don’t hesitate to try new things! Tom Kollée, our Growth Hacking teacher told us that he once used a photo of a cat for a Facebook post of a company that had nothing to do with cats. However, this posts had a much higher conversion rate than any other of the posts before. Score!

So let’s be naughty and save Santa the trip, give the man a holiday. Stop reading blogs like these and start doing, the only way is up. You might fall a few times in between, but the learning curve will be rising and at the end the information you gather is priceless.

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