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Mis à jour le 03/11/2020

Prioritize Your Hacks

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Welcome to the third and final part of this course. You are already two-thirds of a growth hacker! Perhaps you've already experienced your first hacks while reading. If so, well done, the mindset is beginning to develop! If not, don't worry. This part will help you structure your efforts, launch your first hacks, and build your growth.

You are currently in one of these two possible cases:

  1. The first two parts of the course gave you several ideas of hacks to apply to your business tomorrow! But you don't know where to save, prioritize, or even track them.

  2. You understood the examples and the principles in a broad sense, but at the moment, you have no idea of how to generate new ideas for your business.

This last part will help you address the design as well as the organizational aspect of growth hacking. Even if you have many ideas, you'll still have to generate more because most are short-lived. We'll address the data from all angles: your best ally to iterate on your hacks and find growth opportunities. Finally, I'll share the essential tools to save time managing your growth projects.

Brainstorm Hack Ideas

Growth hacking is an inexact science that forces you to test and iterate your actions. In this chapter, you'll find out how to structure your brainstorming to regularly generate new hacking ideas, and make sure that they match the growth that you want for your business.

Brainstorming is the collective process that enables problem-solving with multiple eyes and heads working on the same subject simultaneously.

You need a little organization to accomplish this! Gather a team of at least 2-3 people. Try not to have the brainstorming moderator as part of the debate. The moderator's role is to properly divide the roles, speaking times, and maintain neutrality and manage the time. 

1. Present the Issue

To best define it, start from the AARRR, and select a stage that seems to be a priority to you and associate it with a persona. The characteristics of the persona will constitute the constraints.

  • Which AARRR stage do you want to address?

  • Which persona is concerned?

  • What is the emotional state of the persona?

  • Where can you create the interaction?

  • How can you wisely lead the persona to complete this task?

Here's an example of an application that resells unsold food from surrounding businesses at low prices:

  • The goal: to launch a massive acquisition campaign for new app users in a specific city.

  • The persona: students in school and university.

The constraints:

  • The target is overloaded on conventional channels.

  • The need to surprise them in their daily life.

  • To operate a massive acquisition campaign at a lower cost.

2. Remember the Brainstorming Rules

For an ideal climate, at the start of the session:

  • Avoid critiques or interpretations of the proposals (either the initial ones or those of others): it censors ideas.

  • Encourage the quantity of ideas (not the quality).

  • The best ideas often come from the interaction of two ideas, which, alone, do not seem to be compatible at the start.

  • Prefer "Yes and..." rather than "Yes, but..., " here again, to avoid stifling discussion.

  • Discourage competition (experts on subjects tend to overwhelm beginners), and encourage listening to give everyone a chance to express themselves.

  • Preserve the climate of trust and spontaneity by not leaving doubts about the quality of the group's contribution, and by using humor without ridicule.

  • Develop a tolerance for time pressure.

3. Gather Your Ideas

Write down all your ideas and make them visible to everyone, preferably using post-it notes: one Post-it note, one idea.

Then regroup your ideas by theme. Or you can also make a list for:

  • Immediately useful ideas.

  • Those that need to be improved.

  • Really new ideas.

Mind mapping is a good way to represent ideas non-linearly; this tool helps identify and organize everything you already know about a subject. With this structure, you can better visualize or control your subject.

Visual representation of ideas in the form of ramifications
Example of a mind map

Based on the previous example, here's a list of physical and digital locations that came from a first brainstorming on where to meet the target audience.

Events category
  • A school event or gala.

  • An event organized by the student office/school.

  • The student lounge.

  • An inter-faculty evening.

  • Music festivals.

Daily tools category
  • Smartphone

  • Facebook

  • Instagram

  • School intranet

  • A school event or gala.

  • An event organized by the student office/school.

  • The student lounge.

  • An inter-faculty evening.

  • Music festivals.

Daily tools category
  • Smartphone

  • Facebook

  • Instagram

  • School intranet

  • Smartphone

  • Facebook

  • Instagram

  • School intranet

4. Intermingle Your Ideas

See if several ideas can intertwine to form one that appears to have more significant potential. You can also improve ideas by reformulating and combining them.

Here's a creativity technique to help you find a wide variety of hack ideas and different ways to combine and manipulate them called SCAMMPERR:

  • S: Substitute - What can be replaced? Who/what else?

  • C: Combine - What could you combine to multiply the possible uses? Could you merge two activities?

  • A: Adapt - Place your concept in another context. Has anything similar happened in the past?

  • M: Magnify - Magnify, enlarge, or extend? What can you add? Time? Force? Height? Length?

  • M: Modify - Can you change the meaning, color, movement, sound, smell, and shape?

  • P: Produce or find another use - Are there other possible uses if it's changed?

  • E: Eliminate - What's not necessary? Can you subtract? Remove? Decrease? Can you eliminate certain rules?

  • R: Reorganize - Any other arrangements? Other sequences? A different order?

  • R: Reverse – Change the negative into positive and alter expectations? Can you turn this around?

Here are some new ideas based off of the food app example:

  • Get all the student offices in a specific city's schools to become ambassadors.

  • Target music festivals in the same town.

  • Offer an awareness of waste during lecture courses.

5. Turn Your Ideas Into Applicable Solutions

After getting your fill of new ideas, it's time to get back to critical thinking and concentrate on the best solution tailored to the situation. Reconcile the solutions with the constraints to make them applicable and achievable.

Let the PILLARS System Inspire You

Your brainstorming gathers several stakeholders, but the growth hacker takes over to test all these great ideas. You'll need to organize them for daily management.

PLACE

Locate where you'll use to get your message across. For example: Facebook, email, or school lecture hall. 

Student Facebook groups focused on eco-friendly behavior.

IDEA

State what the hack will concretely accomplish.

Promote a special offer (link) of getting two sandwiches (one for you and another for a friend) at local shops aimed to prevent food waste.

When the student clicks on link, the user will see nearby restaurants that have great food at great prices. To claim offer, they simply download the app.

LABOR

What action(s) has the company taken to realize this idea? This part is important because it lists all the implemented efforts for the chosen strategy.

It's also a great archiving system to find out what has been done in the past in case one day you want to outsource part of your growth or do a handoff between two people. The real purpose is to have an overview of the efforts made, which further enables more informed decisions on the subsequent actions.

  • Join various Facebook Groups.

  • Ask admin if we could talk about our app in a way that would be meaningful for the group.

  • Create a download link for the app, tracked using Bit.ly.

LINK

 

This is a CTA (call to action) and not only a URL. 

Place here what you need your user to do to complete the goal.

A Bit.ly link between the mobile app download and the Facebook group.

AUDIENCE

All of your hacks can be useless if they are addressed to the wrong audience.

For this project, we could have chosen a target who is conscientious of waste and ecology, but this hack is less suitable for them.

Our audience is hungry students with low budgets.

RESULTS

After listing all the efforts, you want to know if the hack works or not.

We're going to track two types of data by creating a small funnel to remember the path on which our target travels.

Facebook group > Click on Bit.ly > download the app.

We can't get the number of people who open our app or the number of views of that visit our app page; the two types of data to be tracked are:

  • The number of visits on the Bit.ly link.

  • The number of downloads of the app.

SPEND

Consider not only the financial value but also the time spent. It is up to you to decide how detailed this part should be. This step can be used to plan a future budget, but also to know whether a task is easily scalable or not.

The number of hours spent creating the content (visuals and account, etc.). All of the elements listed in the Labor column.

I estimate this creation to require a maximum of 3 hours. Zero euros spent.

Let's Recap!

  • Create a structured methodology to optimize the conception of your hacks and their implementation.

  • Set up a brainstorming process to generate new hacking ideas: revisit the problem, regroup, intermingle, and transform your ideas.

  • Adopt the PILLARS System methodology to manage the implementation and testing of your new ideas.

To structure your method, you'll need metrics to prioritize your actions. Learn how to define the appropriate KPIs in the next chapter.

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