Do you want to grow your business and expand your marketing reach? If the answer to those questions is a resounding “yes”, then it might be time to invest in a growth marketing strategy – and manager.
What Is Growth Marketing?
First up: what actually is growth marketing? It’s a term bandied about a lot in the marketing world, and it’s often bundled together with the concept of ‘growth hacking’. Although both approaches are results-driven marketing methods, the processes are very different.
Growth hacking is a marketing strategy typically deployed by startups. A promise of quick win, minimal spend fixes to increase user acquisitions is certainly appealing for new businesses. Growth hacking was lucrative for SaaS businesses like Dropbox, whose marketing strategies included a runaway success referral scheme.
Growth marketing on the other hand refers to the process of seeking rapid business growth in a longer-term, organic way. The growth marketing method’s primary focus is to attract, engage, nurture and retain customer relationships. Growth marketing offers businesses a multi-channel marketing approach, whereas growth hacking typically involves one specific channel focus at a time.
All growth marketing processes revolve around creating and sustaining loyal customer relationships. This provides a solid foundation for business growth opportunities. We’ll start by introducing you to growth marketing in more depth, before exploring the role of a growth marketing manager, and whether you need one in your business.
Traditional Marketing vs. Growth Marketing
Compared to traditional marketing, growth marketing is more of a hands-on approach to different aspects of the business, including product development. A growth marketing manager suggests iterations during development to improve the customer experience, based on data gathered from various channels via a tool like Affise BI. Growth marketing methods take the initiative to seek opportunities for improvement across every section of the business.
A traditional marketing manager’s role is to market the completed product in the best way they can. This is done with no input with the creation of the product, pricing, and a limited range of market research. In contrast, a growth marketing team handles not only the marketing of the product, but all stages of the marketing funnel, including working with the product team.
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Focus areas: exclusively on business growth
Typical business model: established tech businesses looking for rapid growth
Growth focus: comprehensive analysis of the entire marketing funnel
Key metrics: growth, conversions, bounce rates
Typical marketing activities: experimental approaches covering marketing, sales and products to seek growth in any area of the business
Marketing spend: flexible
Decision-making style: data-backed and exploratory
Traditional Marketing Team
Focus areas: broad business, brand and product marketing
Typical business model: well-established businesses seeking higher volumes of product sales
Growth focus: purely handle the awareness and acquisition stages of the marketing funnel
Key metrics: clicks and impressions
Typical marketing activities: established SEO strategies and content marketing to drive more product sales – they tend not to think outside the box or utilize long processes
Marketing spend: larger than growth marketing strategies
Decision-making style: campaign-driven
What Is a Growth Marketing Manager?
Typically reporting to the CEO, VP of Product or Marketing, a growth marketing manager is a customer-focused role responsible for driving business growth through acquisition, activation, retention and referrals. A growth marketing manager’s position involves establishing and executing a growth plan to increase revenue.
A growth manager’s activities during each stage of the customer funnel can include:
At this stage, it’s all about ensuring customers are aware of what you’re offering. Growth managers use marketing tactics such as optimized SEO, social media marketing, and partnerships with brands and agencies to drive high quality website traffic.
Content is key for this stage of the user journey, so a growth manager seeks to create and deliver educational and informative content to prove their business will help the customer. A growth marker checks landing pages, pricing details, and blog articles to ensure these key pages are optimized to provide the best answers and a smooth user journey.
Approaching the conversion stage, a growth marketer looks at the best way to onboard customers and makes sure there are no drop-offs in the process. The use of customer onboarding templates facilitate smooth transitions, and ensure no crucial details are missed during the onboarding process.
Aligning value with the potential conversions, a growth manager seeks to deliver the most value to the user at this stage to nail conversion and encourage future repeat business. Call to actions are explored for maximum conversion effect, in addition to making the landing to conversion journey as smooth and optimized as possible.
A growth manager looks at how often repeat purchases are made, as well as exploring potential upselling opportunities. Another aspect of the revenue stage is Identifying customer churn rates and post-sale engagements to continue building customer relationships by delivering great experiences.
This last stage of the funnel examines any existing referral schemes to increase referral traffic. Iteration suggestions are made to schemes, together with important social proof elements to establish brand trustworthiness. Media monitoring tools are utilized to judge referral rates and potential future growth opportunities, and solutions like Affise used to boost partnership marketing.
A growth manager works cross-functionally across design, analytics and product management departments to create growth strategies.
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Strengths and Weaknesses of a Growth Marketer
What is required from a growth manager? There are some specific skill sets applicable to this particular full-time job role.
Conversion rate optimization across channels
A growth manager explores all channels of acquisition to identify the most fruitful areas for growth. Website impressions and clicks aren’t enough by themselves – conversions arevital. A growth marketing manager explores the customer journey in intricate detail.
They ask questions at each stage, such as:
- What’s the best solution we can offer our target audience to address their pain points and prove our industry authority?
- Which call to actions are the most successful at converting users to customers?
- Is the customer journey from landing to conversion as optimized as possible?
- How many users are converting?
- Which website pages are key exit pages, and why?
- Can our website visitors easily find what they are looking for?
- Are our paid Facebook ads generating conversions from our target audience?
- Are our ecommerce marketing efforts engaging enough for visitors to navigate to our tailored landing pages?
Lowering customer acquisition cost (CAC) across channels
A successful growth marketing manager will assess all the business’s marketing channels and analyze which are the most successful for the lowest CAC. Growth marketing involves looking at areas such as remarketing and optimized Google ad campaigns to reduce CAC.
Another aspect of lowering CAC is addressing customer retention rates. Smart growth marketers implement retention strategies by exploring the reasons for high customer churn to fix them. They understand how to spot weak points in the process, and how to resolve them.
Deep generalist who sees the big picture and delegate accordingly
A growth marketing manager is a strategic planner. Quite the opposite to a growth hacker, a growth marketer plans many steps ahead and strives for success in the long-term. Rather than focusing on a single campaign, they examine every stage of the customer lifecycle and delegate tasks to appropriate teams.
Planning, optimizing and scaling paid ads
A wealth of knowledge about paid ads is essential for a growth marketing manager. We aren’t talking about just running a one-off paid ad campaign and hoping for the best. Instead, statistics analysis is conducted, then utilized to maximise opportunities according to current customer preferences.
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No growth marketing manager is perfect. To really succeed, they’ll work best with the business’s wider team of specialists. A multi-tasking mentality is key for this role, but there are some areas that require backup from the rest of the digital marketing and sales team.
Brand and audience development
The development of a business’s branding typically falls to the sales team, who report to the growth marketing manager. A growth marketing manager’s role is to see the big picture and the overall strategy, while brand and audience development work on the specific details thanks to their in-depth customer insights and research.
Product design is carried out by the graphic design team, incorporating information from the growth marketing manager. A growth marketing manager does not typically have graphic design skills, but they would understand enough to be able to see what works, what doesn’t, and what changes need to be made to succeed.
A growth marketing manager works together with the copywriting team to deliver engaging marketing campaigns. Their role is to work out what content the brand needs – and then leave the actual copywriting to the experts.
Typically handled by the business’s SEO specialist, the growth marketing manager will collaborate with them on their researched goals. Together, they can identify SEO growth opportunities and stay on top of SEO trends.
Coordinated by the content digital marketing team, the growth manager oversees the content marketing operations to ensure all content initiatives are optimized for success. However, the fine details such as the exact calendars for email marketing campaigns will be left in the hands of the digital marketing content team.
Working together as a cross-functional team delivers the best ROI from marketing efforts. Ecommerce partnerships benefit businesses by increasing brand awareness through collaboration.
Qualities of a Successful Growth Marketer
A growth marketer’s track record generally includes a bachelor’s degree, with plenty of years experience in marketing roles. However, businesses should remain open to those with experience even if they don’t have a degree.
The job description for a growth marketer’s role includes, but is not limited to by any means, some of these tasks:
- Analyzing the entire marketing funnel for optimization opportunities
- Planning, optimizing and scaling paid ad campaigns
- Creating appealing referral schemes
- Preparing email campaigns and analyzing peak timing thereof
- A/B testing
- Creation of engaging digital content
- Optimizing SEM using tools such as Google Analytics
- Increasing partnership marketing profitability
- Design and deliver multi-channel marketing campaigns
- Technical analysis of the customer journey roadmap and user experience
- Managing social acquisition channels to promote the brand’s message
Opinionated About Creative Tasks
A successful growth marketing manager is a visionary as much as a strategist. Growth marketing at its core is finding new and creative ways to optimize marketing to drive business growth. So a growth marketing manager must have the creative skills to think outside of the box for groundbreaking ideas and marketing methodologies.
A data-driven approach is crucial for a growth marketing manager. As much data as possible is gathered from numerous sources to deliver a marketing plan with realistic goals using workflow software.
Some metrics deployed by growth managers include:
- Conversion rate
- Subscribe and unsubscribe rates
- Email open and click rates
- Customer retention rates
Growth managers analyze key metrics to ascertain the best channels to implement and promote strategies.
Open to Any Channel
A growth marketing manager is not limited to traditional marketing channels. Instead, they need to be keen to explore all the available options.
Channels to explore include partner marketing offers. If your company deals with time-consuming manual partner offers, smart managers should be open to investigating automated processes such as CPAPI. As the market-leading data transfer platform for partner marketing offers, CPAPI facilitates a fully automated process for transferring and synchronizing data.
Focused on the Customer
A growth marketing manager’s focus is always on the customer and their experience with the business. Obsessed with customer data, a growth manager combines these insights with their soft skills of perception and user feedback for better experiences.
An example of this is how a growth manager works with the business’s product team. Let’s say that, after analyzing the user website journey, the data shows that users aren’t signing up for product resources. Previous research demonstrates that the resources are both relevant and informative for the users. A growth manager will deliver this information and undertake new research with the product team for them to work on iterations.
An Engineer at Heart
A growth manager’s skill set includes engineering every step of the customer funnel to full optimization. This job role requires working with all channels and all aspects of the business to drive productivity and, ultimately, revenue.
A Little Impatient
While growth marketing managers are all about long-term success, they should be enthusiastic about short term strategies too. This way, they can monitor success and iterate quickly to pivot the marketing focus if necessary.
Growth managers are open to new technologies in addition to marketing channels. From using tools like Affise Reach for working with influencers, to AI and automation – if a new technology offering is going to increase productivity, they will explore its potential. Exploring each step of the customer funnel to determine what’s necessary for peak optimization at each specific stage.
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How to Master the Skills of a Growth Marketer
But what’s the best way to master these skills? Here are four great areas to focus on:
Talk to everyone
As part of their job role, a growth marketer engages with other marketing experts in different industries, and talks to colleagues and customers for their viewpoints and experiences. The best business apps allow easy communications between managers and customers. A growth marketing manager is a naturally inquisitive character, who enjoys in-depth conversations with different people to gain knowledge to help progress his role.
Attend meetups, conferences, online and offline courses
Always looking to upskill, a growth marketing manager typically enjoys learning about things that will elevate their role and deliver value. These types of environments include like-minded individuals, whom a growth manager seeks conversation with.
Try creating your own web store or service offering and try to get customers to it in your spare time
Creating side projects enables a growth manager to perform out of the box thinking to come up with fresh ideas. Activities like this enhance their job role, as it puts them firmly in the mind of the customer; seeking solutions to solve their problems.
Dig through data, find patterns and try to answer important questions about your business
Utilizing all analytics tools available, a growth marketing manager looks at business trends and aligns them with their business’s model. They constantly seek to answer customers’ questions and solve problems with their business’s products. Working with historical data to ascertain if they can predict future growth opportunities is an integral part of a growth manager’s role.
Why Do You Need a Growth Marketer?
If you’re at the stage of business where you have existing customers, established marketing campaigns, and want to scale up, it’s probably time for a growth marketer. A growth marketer will take existing strategies and run with them for maximum traction and business growth.
A growth marketer will help your business to grow, but it can only help if your business is ready for growth.
This means having:
- A successful product
- An audience for your product
- Established social channels
- Budget for a growth marketing manager
- Budget for growth marketing campaigns
Assuming your business ticks those boxes, seeking a growth marketing manager to drive your business’s revenue is a wise decision.
Seasoned brands – no matter how small – benefit from a growth marketing manager. Growth managers take a brand’s identity and run with it to create optimized customer journeys and experiences. Due to this, it’s best to have business data for a growth manager to enable them to work with context.
A growth marketer role isn’t just for thriving businesses in San Francisco. If your business is ready to start scaling and, with a recognized market for your products, a growth marketer would be a very good addition to your team. Your growth marketing manager will quickly tell you which marketing efforts are working, and which aren’t. Using data analysis, you’ll then learn how to improve your digital marketing to improve the customer journey and increase revenue.
A staggering 250 billion dollars was allocated to US businesses’ marketing services in 2021. This figure demonstrates just how vital it is that your business’s message is heard in the digital space. Hiring a growth marketing manager as part of your digital marketing strategy will help you cut through the noise.
Alister Esam - CEO and Founder, Process Bliss
Alister Esam is the CEO and Founder of Process Bliss, a work management software that is reinventing how businesses execute day to day tasks. He is an expert in strategic planning, business process management, and business process optimization. With more than 15 years of experience in helping businesses run at peak efficiency, Alister has dedicated his career to make work easier, and more motivating for managers and employees alike.
A growth marketer is responsible for all the processes that improve business revenue. This includes everything from acquiring new customers and turning them into loyal brand advocates. A growth marketing manager also finds ways to revive inactive subscribers and reduce marketing costs.What does a growth marketing person do? ›
A growth marketer is someone who runs constant, iterative tests throughout the funnel, and uses the results to craft data-driven strategy updates that lift key performance metrics. Think of them as a CMO-lite, or a modernized marketing manager. They're more focused on strategy than execution, though.What's the most important part in growth marketing? ›
To growth marketers, growing revenue is the single most important metric to gauge performance. The best growth marketing teams are able to track campaigns and isolate the sources that are generating the most dollars.What do you know about growth marketing? ›
Growth marketing is the process of using data gained through marketing campaigns and experimentation to drive growth. It can help you anticipate change and plan your strategies to make constant improvements. Growth marketers are always analyzing data and feedback on what's working and what isn't.What makes a good growth marketer? ›
More often than not, it's emotions and feelings that guide purchasing decisions. A great growth marketer is able to put themselves in the users' shoes and understand their context, pains, and needs. This allows them to anticipate triggers and create moments of connection and trust with users.Is growth marketing hard? ›
It's tough. Even growth marketers themselves have a hard time defining what they do. “I think it's a billion-dollar question,” growth marketer Derin Oyekan told us.Is growth marketing good career? ›
Growth marketing is a high-growth career. Other domains of digital marketing such as content marketing and social media marketing can be difficult to link directly with concrete revenue results. And so, when budgets are tight, these could be some of the first jobs to be de-prioritized.How do I become a growth marketer? ›
- Step 1: Understand Growth Marketing. ...
- Step 2: Build the mindset of a growth marketer. ...
- Step 3: Learn the growth marketing process. ...
- Step 4: Master the growth funnel and metrics. ...
- Step 4: Develop your growth marketing skillsets. ...
- Mental Model 5: Think Agile & Lean.
Growth marketing is a data-driven approach that focuses on acquiring and retaining customers. Digital marketing, on the other hand, is a more traditional marketing approach that focuses on raising awareness and generating leads.Is growth marketing the same as performance marketing? ›
Growth marketing is about building long-term growth. It aims at retaining and bringing new customers to your business, experimenting with new approaches, and failing fast to quickly zero in on what works. Performance marketing, on the other hand, is a short-term strategy where you pay for quick, measurable results.
Growth marketing revolves around implementing experiments to enhance the result of the target area. Brand marketing encourages the promotion of your products to further help you create a strong brand identity.How do you organize a growth team? ›
- Step 1: Lay the right foundation. ...
- Step 2: Choose your growth team model. ...
- Step 4: Hire the right people for your growth team. ...
- Step 5: Create a culture conducive to growth. ...
- Step 6: Managing your teams. ...
- Step 7: Growing your team.
B2B growth marketing is a newer approach to marketing that focuses on generating leads from qualified prospects through content, email marketing, social media, and other online marketing tactics. It is great for businesses trying to increase leads, sales, and revenue in a short amount of time.What are growth marketing channels? ›
In marketing a growth channel is the medium through which you acquire new customers into your business and retain them.What kind of mindset should a marketer have? ›
The only people that make it through to the other side and become successful, are the ones that don't quit during the difficult times. The mindset of a digital marketer required to succeed must include patience, persistence, continued education, and constant analysis and optimization of campaigns.What does a VP of growth marketing do? ›
Along with positions like Chief Revenue Officer, VP of Growth is a relatively new executive position that attempts to fuse the world of sales, marketing, and product development into a data-driven role aimed at maximizing revenue opportunities.What is the difference between demand generation and growth marketing? ›
Let us take a look at the differences between the two: Growth marketing is a more holistic approach that looks at the entire customer journey, from awareness to conversion. Demand generation, on the other hand, is more focused on generating leads and getting people interested in your product or service.What is the difference between growth marketing and marketing? ›
Compared to digital marketing, growth marketing places a heavy emphasis on not only converting users but also retaining them. Marketers can also go beyond digital channels, using traditional methods to reach users in your target audience.Is growth marketing the same as performance marketing? ›
Growth marketing is about building long-term growth. It aims at retaining and bringing new customers to your business, experimenting with new approaches, and failing fast to quickly zero in on what works. Performance marketing, on the other hand, is a short-term strategy where you pay for quick, measurable results.What is the difference between growth marketing and brand marketing? ›
Growth marketing revolves around implementing experiments to enhance the result of the target area. Brand marketing encourages the promotion of your products to further help you create a strong brand identity.
Let us take a look at the differences between the two: Growth marketing is a more holistic approach that looks at the entire customer journey, from awareness to conversion. Demand generation, on the other hand, is more focused on generating leads and getting people interested in your product or service.