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Thinking About Marketing As A Strategy For Growth Not Just Sales

Mostly we market to sell more.
The restaurant owner who tells his staff to remember to ‘push drinks and bottled water’ is marketing for increased sales today.

The alternative is to be the marketer who bakes growth into his business by delighting customers, giving them a story they want to tell (and a way to share it).

The modern marketers at technology startups call this growth hacking. Growth hackers optimise their businesses to acquire new customers by first delighting one customer and then making it easy for that customer to share the story with their friends. They win by delivering on a promise, by connecting customers and having a plan not just to sell more to each customer today, but to give every person more to talk about and an easy way to do that.

Last year hotels in New York lost out on a million booked nights because of Airbnb. The hotel’s strategy has been been to maximise revenue from each captive guest, while Airbnb’s has been to facilitate a real travel experience one guest, one host at a time.

It turns out that growth hacking is really the practice of creating and leveraging word of mouth with intention and it’s not confined to technology businesses. When we market for long term growth and not just sales we adopt a different posture. We’re in the business of doing the right thing by every customer over time and we begin each day by asking a different set of questions.

The salesperson asks, “How much can I sell?”
The gifted modern marketer asks, “How much difference can I create?”

Image by Lady K.

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