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3 Traits Successful Growth Hackers Have in Common

Chelsea bock

Growth hackers can boost your fledgling business to new heights virtually overnight, but this requires certain inputs before you can ever hope of achieving such results. Don’t get starry-eyed too quickly though – even with the right stuff, it’s extremely difficult to become the next million-dollar app, business, or especially social network. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try, and that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to hack your growth, or even to grow quickly. The three traits listed in this post seem to have played a common role in the successes of many companies and brands who have hacked their way to the top. By mastering these traits and using them to your advantage, you can have a shot at the big-time too.

Making the Most of Few Resources

Even with only a little money to spend, there’s still a lot that can be done. A recent study has shown that the largest reason for an app being successful is because of word of mouth. In fact, based on the people polled for the study, word of mouth was twice as important as the next reason for downloading and using an app – the app being featured in the app store or the top charts list. Making a top charts list or being featured is difficult in itself, but word of mouth? While promoting widespread word of mouth can be difficult, if you have a great product and a faithful user base, it’s important to interact with them and encourage them to be evangelists for your cause. Instead of doing all the marketing yourself, why not get some of your trusty fans and customers to do it for you?

Being Ambitious

It’s said that to have something you’ve never had, you’re going to have to do something you’ve never done. This is true in all aspects of life, but especially in business. YouTube took this to heart when they edged out their competition by offering a feature no other video hosting site was comfortable with. YouTube created a feature to quickly and easily paste code into another site to embed a video on the page. Other sites didn’t want to risk sending users away from their sites, so they omitted this feature, but it ended up almost single-handedly sending YouTube to the top as it still remains today.

Getting Creative

Finally, any good growth hacker require some element of creativity or originality. For example, the brands New Relic,, and Invision all offer a free T-shirt to anyone who signs up for their mailing lists. People love free shirts, and if the shirts have a cool print on them, these companies just invested not only in new leads for their email lists, but also for walking billboards who are likely to tell their friends.


Free stuff isn’t the only creative option though. The company Circa hacked their way to more downloads and users by allowing their current users to text their friends content from within the app. After their friends received the text, they’d also be given the option to download Circa. Circa came up with a brilliant growth hacking method by getting people to essentially recommend the app to their friends, which we’ve already seen is the most effective way to get more downloads for apps, and to encourage those on the receiving end to download it.

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