Growth hacking: Beyond the bubble

Business growth

Growth Hacking has been a buzzword for a while. But does it apply only to digital businesses? Even for digital businesses, does growth hacking end up with an only digital footprint?

The answer is “NO”.

Indians start-ups have a very different terrain to conquer than the Silicon Valley Start-ups. Even though the Smartphone & 4G penetration is increasing every day, the Indian consumer is still far away from getting acquired only through digital means. We need several touchpoints to potential customers, to convince them to use (more importantly PAY for) our products.

Let’s look at several offline hacks our online products could use (& are probably already using):

1) Momoe (Digital Wallet guys) set up a “Dhai ka Chai” shop opposite to Flipkart office. They got the Tea Stall guy to sell Tea at Rs 2.50 and subsidized it for Flipkart employees.

  • Marketing Cost – Rs.1500 per day (Rs.7.5 x 200 Chais)
  • Result – 100 App downloads (@50% conversion)
  • Customer Acquisition Cost – Rs.15
  • Additional benefits – Loads of Social media coverage

It’s a great way to reach out to early adopters.


2) If you have a Dating app or an Ed Tech

  • Conduct an event around a college
  • Marketing Cost – Rs.4000
  • Result – 500 new users
  • Customer Acquisition Cost – Rs.8
  • Additional benefits – Loads of WhatsApp, Hike & WeChat messages

3) If you are an On Demand – Convenience start-up like Food, Grocery, Water delivery

Set up a kiosk at Apartment complexes and start taking orders there itself. If you get a 300 flats housing society, you have spent a worthwhile day

  • Marketing Cost – Rs.5000 per day
  • Result – 100 orders
  • Customer Acquisition Cost – Rs.50
  • Additional benefits – Repeat customers whose LTV will cross the CAC in a week, not to forget the word of mouth spread

4) If you are Cab booking, Ticketing booking, Carpooling service

  • Conduct a special event at corporate IT parks giving away free kms on cab rides
  • Marketing Cost – Rs.5000 for kiosk including rent & give away of Rs.50 to 100 customers
  • Result – 100 orders
  • Customer Acquisition Cost – Rs.100
  • Additional benefits – Repeat customers & branding creation

5) If you are Health, Fitness, Sporting start-up

  • Conduct a Walkathon event in an IT Park or a Residential locality with RWAs.
  • Marketing Cost – Rs.10,000 for event set up, badges, water & instructor’s fee
  • Result – 200 registrations
  • Customer Acquisition Cost – Rs.50
  • Additional benefits – Immense branding as people will show off on Facebook & WhatsApp about their participation

The listing will help you to think differently than just mundane FB ads or Sponsored ads on Google or Just dial. Every business will have its niche touchpoints with customers.

Identify it, Exploit it!!! Let your customers brag about finding you!!!

santoshAuthor: Founder-SpotPlay, ex founder- Panache Silver Retail| Growth Hacker-Biz Dev| 12 yrs Inv Bank| 2 yrs Retail| Prog Lead – SLP| Cyclist| Runner| Civic Leader


Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily policy or position of Stars of Startups or WiseLane Ventures Pvt Ltd. Assumptions, data, analytics, graphics and such other information are used for representational purposes only and cannot be treated as an official reference. Any information in the interview is by no means a guaranteed verification.

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