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Difference Between Growth Hacking and Digital Marketing

Every business needs to grow and expand in its area of interest. This is however not a smooth ride as businesses often struggle with customer acquisition and retention, hence sales and marketing. In marketing, you’ve probably come across the terms growth hacking and digital marketing. But what do the terms refer to? Used in marketing, these two share the same logic of experimentation, creativity and analytics to accomplish the set goals. Although they may have similar interests in terms of business growth, the two differ in various ways.   

What is Growth Hacking?

This is the execution of every step in the sales funnels among other strategies to promote business growth. Growth hackers focus on business growth in not only the marketing department but every other department, a model common in start-ups. They not only use common marketing strategies but also create new strategies to acquire and retain consumers at a low cost. 

While the work of growth hackers sounds like basic marketing, this process also encompasses:

  • Creative marketing
  • Data and experiments
  • Automation and Engineering  

These people harbour a combination of unique qualities including;

  • They are tech-savvy
  • Hugely rely on data-driven results
  • Are creative and eager to learn
  • Has a wide array of knowledge but has dominant skills

What is Digital Marketing?

With the technological developments currently available, business owners have no choice but to switch to online strategies in marketing. Digital marketing is the marketing of services and products through online platforms such as social media and Google. It mainly focuses on increasing brand awareness, acquiring new consumers and maintaining a relationship between consumers and a brand. 

Digital marketing is common in the fists step of the sales funnel, Awareness where prospects need to know that a brand, service or product exists. 

Strategies carried out by Digital marketers involve;

  • Improving inbound marketing by using SEO strategies
  • Nurturing and building social media networks 
  • Thought leadership strategies to emphasize the credibility of a brand, product or services
  • Email marketing
  • Content marketing
  • Paid Search (PPC)

Digital marketing has not only proven itself effective but also a necessity especially in this internet age. 

Similarities between Growth Hacking and Digital Marketing

  • Both employ different strategies aimed at improving brand, product or service awareness

Differences between Growth Hacking and Digital Marketing

Definition

Growth hacking refers to the execution of every step in the sales funnel among other strategies to promote business growth. On the other hand, digital marketing refers to the marketing of services and products through online platforms such as social media and Google. 

Aim

Growth hackers focus on the growth of not only the marketing department but also every other department in a business. On the other hand, digital marketers focus on increasing brand awareness, acquiring new consumers and maintaining a relationship between consumers and a brand.

Technical background

While growth hackers have a technical background and are hence tech-savvy, digital marketers may not have a technical background hence are not tech-savvy.  

Sales funnel process

While growth hackers focus on the whole sales funnel, digital marketing focuses on the acquisition of consumers. 

Data-driven approach

Growth hackers rely on data-driven results by consistently measuring, testing and optimizing methods used. On the other hand, digital marketers use assumptions to optimize their next process. 

Growth Hacking vs. Digital Marketing: Comparison Table

Summary of Growth Hacking vs. Digital Marketing

Growth hacking refers to the execution of every step in the sales funnel among other strategies to promote business growth with a focus on the growth of not only the marketing department but also every other department in a business. On the other hand, digital marketing refers to the marketing of services and products through online platforms such as social media and Google with a focus on increasing brand awareness, acquiring new consumers and maintaining a relationship between consumer and a brand. 


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References :


[0]Smith P & Chaffey D. Digital Marketing Excellence: Planning, Optimizing and Integrating Online Marketing. Taylor & Francis Publishers, 2017. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=biwlDwAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=Difference+between+Growth+Hacking+and+Digital+Marketing&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjIx8K-3f3oAhXqxoUKHZ6ZDFs4ChDoAQhkMAg#v=onepage&q&f=false

[1]Nader Sabry. Ready, Set, Growth hack: A beginners guide to growth hacking success. Nader sabry, 2020. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=XXzNDwAAQBAJ&pg=PT19&dq=Difference+between+Growth+Hacking+and+Digital+Marketing&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjIx8K-3f3oAhXqxoUKHZ6ZDFs4ChDoAQhDMAQ#v=onepage&q=Difference%20between%20Growth%20Hacking%20and%20Digital%20Marketing&f=false

[2]Emmanuel Fauvel. 101 Tips About Growth Hacking: Winning Tactics, Winning Strategies, Growth Hacking Examples, Small & Big Brands Hacks. MyPublishingCompany, 2017. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=UT01DwAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=Difference+between+Growth+Hacking+and+Digital+Marketing&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjY8Ja03f3oAhUE0uAKHf5rAxwQ6AEIZDAI#v=onepage&q=Difference%20between%20Growth%20Hacking%20and%20Digital%20Marketing&f=false

[3]Image credit: https://pixabay.com/de/illustrations/growth-hacking-marketing-strategie-2899886/

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