Google him – or browse this site – and you’ll often find Deepak Shukla describe himself – or be described as – a growth hacking expert. In fact, one of the best growth hacking experts in London and beyond. But what does that mean, and why should you hire him and his team to ‘growth hack’ for you?
Growth hacking may appear to be just another fashionable jargon used by business school literature and marketers with no real meaning. While there is lots of terminology like that, which, as anyone who knows Deepak is more than aware of, strives to avoid using, growth hacking isn’t one of them.
Growth hacking is a broad umbrella phrase for tactics that are primarily focused on increasing revenue. It can boost almost any firm, but it’s extremely effective and maybe even crucial for young start-ups that need to grow quickly but don’t have tons of money to spend.
The primary objectives of growth hacking are easy to explain. On a limited budget, recruit as many customers, clients, or users as possible as quickly as is feasible. That is all there is to it. Well, not quite. As you’ll see, there’s actually a lot more to it than that, but it’s a real, viable practice, not just another marketing gimmick.
A growth hacker is a person – or group of people – who come up with and implement low-cost marketing and promotional tactics that lead to rapid growth and client acquisition, and then, retention. Growth hackers are sometimes called growth marketers, although that word isn’t accurate because growth hackers aren’t only marketers. There’s a lot more to who we are.
A good growth hacker is a little bit obsessive, a little bit curious, and a little bit analytical. Things Deepak Shukla has been for as long as he can remember. They concentrate solely on things that will help the company grow. They are always open to new ideas, however new or slightly odd, hypotheses, analysis, and testing. And more testing.
A good growth hacker knows how to discover the best channels for acquiring clients, customers, and users, how to create growth priorities, measure their achievements – and mistakes – and how to scale growth.
A pirate code is followed by growth hackers. At the very least, a pirate funnel. The Pirate Funnel is a structure for segmenting a company or product in order to better show you where your focus should be.
Dave McClure, an entrepreneur and angel investor who established the wildly inventive 500 Startups, invented the Pirate Funnel. It’s known as the Pirate Funnel because its key components – Awareness, Acquisition, Activation, Retention, Referral, and Revenue – spell out AAARRR, which is a very pirate-y thing. And sounds very cool.
Great growth hackers, like pirates, don’t obey established rules and innovate with what they have and what they can gain fast and affordably. They don’t actually go in for the swashbuckling stuff, but do follow that ‘edge of society’ rebel thing.
Over the years, the Pirate Funnel has been tweaked and refined, and each growth hacker creates their own version, adding their own knowledge and experience to the mix. However, it’s a good place to start and an easier approach to communicate the goals of growth hacking to those who aren’t familiar with the concept.
The most effective growth hacking tactics fall into three categories:
All of the following low-cost growth hacking tactics could be employed in a growth hacking campaign within those three sectors, something that Deepak does for growth hacking clients on a daily basis
Blogging – both on a business’ website and as a guest. But not just any old blogs. Blogs that are interesting, engaging and shareable.
Ebooks and Whitepapers – People DO still read long form content if it’s useful or interesting enough, and these longer pieces are great for lead generation.
Podcasts – Podcasting is huge right now, but as a growth hacker, Deepak Shukla has been podcasting for years, both for his own businesses and to promote others.
Cold email marketing – some people think cold emailing is not helpful to any business, but growth hacking experts like Deepak prove them wrong all the time. The key is mounting a good cold email campaign, and that DOES call for special skills.
Cold calling – Another much maligned old marketing tactic that can, in the hands of great salespeople, be an excellent growth hacking tool. Deepak Shulka has built a ton of companies on it.
Social Media Marketing – Social media is an excellent growth hacking forum, and, if you know how to approach them the right way, enlisting the help of influencers does not need to be expensive.
Product marketing from a growth hacking point of view includes a variety of approaches for making your product or service more desirable to your target audience.
FOMO (fear of missing out) can be induced by making access to a product appear more exclusive (by using an invitation-only sign-up system, for example.)
Making the onboarding process more appealing, fun, and engaging by gamifying it
Affiliate marketing, offering referral incentives that benefit both existing customers and the new users they attract.
In terms of more direct promotion, PPC advertising might help some growth hacking efforts generate immediate traffic. But it’s something the best growth hackers avoid as far as possible, as it’s often too expensive.
Growth hacking is at the heart of the Pearl Lemon Group, of which Deepak is the founder/managing director/head cook and bottlewasher . In the beginning, growth hacking was something he undertook because cheap because he basically had no money (you can read more about that here.) Since then, he still makes extensive use of it, simply because it works.
But if you’ve never heard of Pearl Lemon, or Deepak Shukla, before, how remarkable is that to you? The truth is that at the Pearl lemon Group we were following a growth hacking tradition that is much older than you would believe, and that has helped to create some of the companies and products that you not only use a lot but also probably take for granted. Facebook, Gmail, and Hotmail before it, and many more household names were growth hacked to success.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to growth hacking though, as what works for one company, product, offering, or even personal promotion will never work for all. So you can read every book on it out there, but will need to come up with your own ideas rather than slavishly following someone else’s if it’s all going to work.
Growth hacking, like growth, is a mindset. Growth hackers have a unique perspective on the world. And not every entrepreneur is a growth hacker. In reality, they frequently hold opposing viewpoints;
Do you see the distinction? There’s a reason why “growth hacker” has become a legitimate job title. The knowledge, drive, and outside-the-box thinking that growth hackers bring to the table may assist businesses of all sizes and in all areas. And Deepak Shukla (and his Pearl lemon teams) can be that person for you
If you are unfamiliar with the Pearl Lemon Group, you may be surprised to learn that it is only about five years old in 2022. And that’s Pearl Lemon, the parent firm. Other divisions in our company are substantially younger. Despite this, we’ve received numerous national awards in both the UK and the US, have grown into a profitable six-figure business, and are constantly expanding. Growth hacking is responsible for a big part of this.
When you collaborate with Deepak Shukla and Pearl Lemon’s growth hacking teams, you’ll be working with the same amazing crew that helped us grow. This is a group that not only can show you case studies outlining achievements they’ve accomplished for others – which they can – but also continues to practice what they preach on a daily basis.
That last bit is important too. Growth hacking may be an accepted practice now, but it’s one that changes all the time. What worked last year, last month or even last week in terms of marketing, promotion, sales and growth may now be useless. A good growth hacker is always learning, observing and changing up their thinking.
Want to work with Deepak on growth hacking for your latest business venture? Get in touch here.