The first A in AARRR!!!

The primary model of Growth Hacking is AARRR which stand for:


Acquisition – Billy finds you on the internets.

Activation – Billy starts using your product (atta boy, Billy)

Retention – Billy keeps using your product. He must like it.

Referral – Billy loves it so much, he tells his friends.

Revenue – Billy is happy and gives you dollars. We are happy too.


These are the six fundamental steps every online business must go through to be successful. In a perfect scenario, your customer will go through each checkpoint and become a happy client. For every step, growth geek will test and measure how it performs.

Let’s cover acquisition part today. Acquiring customers is the first step. You have to make sure you are easy to find. There are buckets of techniques you can use. From guest-posting, podcasting, to paid ads. But I’ve always been frugal and I love cheap bootstrap way. Usually, fresh start-ups will start with them.

1) Imaginative Retargeting

As a Crossfit enthusiast, I’m guilty of desire to own new equipment. Whether its new lifters, belt, speed rope or another sweat shirt, there’s ever enough. So I check for knee sleeves on Amazon, click some products and after a while, move on to Facebook. I didn’t buy anything. But from some sort of sorcery, the knee sleeves appears on my Facebook sidebar. That is retargeting.

In short it works like this. You browsed on a website. The website drops a cookie, remembering you looked at knee sleeves. Anytime you go to a page that displays ads, it will check for that cookie and show you those knee sleeves.

Statistics shows, 96% of visitors do not buy on their first visit. It makes sense to add retargeting tags from day one.

AdRoll, Perfect Audience, Retargeta.

2) Influencer Outreach or in a more fun way – Audience Hijacking

Organic growth can be slow as molasses these days. How about we steal someone else’s audience to speed things up? First, think about who’s got a similar audience that you have. Now all we have to do is divert those peeps into our page. How to do that?

Alright, let’s think of an example. Ramit Sethi  is a well-known influencer in the financial world. I suggest you read his stuff – it’s amazing and he’s got a huge audience.

I could send a tweet to his account:

Screen Shot 2015-09-16 at 12.40.42 PM

Now what I did there. First I gave him credit. As busy as he is, he won’t reply to my tweet, but his team will retweet it. And now your link to your site is exposed to all of his 92,000+ followers. Pretty cool, eh?

3) Perfect Testimonials

Most of the successful companies have testimonials glued right on their homepage. They are usually accompanied with a picture of a smiling person, cheerfully smirking within. Their  product is making him massive success.

What you can do is – study the testimonial, copy the exact same tone the company used, and send it to them. Include a picture of yourself with a link to your website. Chances are, your testimonial will appear on a company website.

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Bonus Info:

Dave McClure – Startup Metrics for Pirates

What is growth hacking?

In the last few years, there seems to be a trend to add “hack” to any technical or non-technical job out there. It’s a buzzword. But what does it actually mean?

The phrase “growth hacker” was invented by Sean Ellis in 2010, when he was hiring replacement for himself. He thought it sounded cool and the phrase stick around till today. Sean Ellis is the founder of and the  first marketer of super useful little app called DropBox. You may have heard about it. Back in the day he helped many internet companies achieve incredible growth. He became the guy to go to when you wanted to increase your user base.

At the time, Sean received a lot pf perspective offers from educated marketers. They had years of experience under their belt. But they came from traditional background. Sean didn’t need managers to overlook the team. He didn’t need manage outside vendors nor establish corporate objectives. He needed someone who can achieve one thing only. Growth.

The definition could go like this:

growth hacker (noun) – one who’s passion and focus is growth through use of an empirical and scalable method

Wow, that sounds useful. In fact, growth is number one thing that is going to make or break your product. Most growth hackers live in start-up ecosystem. In start-ups, most resources are used for developing next big thing. But let’s say you have a golden egg product already. What now? You need to scale it and bring it to the point when it generates enough momentum to scale by itself. AirBnB could be an unknown product if there wasn’t a smart growth hacking thing behind it.

“If anyone tells you products sell themselves, they probably want you to fail”, said Phil Libin, co-founder and CEO of Evernote.

What Growth Hackers do?

Aaron Ginn says the product is the cake, and the growth is the icing. Your pastry has to be delicious, but the icing is the thing that will induce heavy salivating. It will make people want it.

Growth Hackers rely on analytics. They will check the numbers, test open rates, PPC, traffic till death.

If they do a good job, the data will show, if they are failing fast, the data will be merciless as well. But in the end of the day, users will decide the fate of your product.



Change the subject title, increase cold email open rate

Let’s face it – cold emailing sucks but it falls into a category of guerilla hustling. It takes a lot of time to research your target, you create a proposal that will spark his attention and with a trembling hand, you click send.

*woosh* – Message sent

A day goes by and no answer. That’s ok, he is a well-known guy. He gets tons of emails and pitches. I’ll wait a little longer.

Three days later – crickets. Hmmm… Was my email too “salesy”? Was my title wrong? What was my tone?

Well, chances are, your email wasn’t even opened. Jeez. All the hard work and my email is lost somewhere in his inbox.

Well, how can you increase the chances your email will be opened. Bryan Harris, an author from Videofruit, has a few ingenious tips.

1. Keep it short. If you can make it less than four words – that’s perfect. Think about, how you are emailing your friends. It’s probably in the line of: “hey jason, whats up” or “saturday gig?”. Would you open an email titled “Greetings mr. Smartman, would you check our incredible Goat Training course, that increase their obedience.” Too long, too promotional and you managed to put him to sleep.

2. Keep it casual. Your emails convey your personality. Do you want to come across as friendly guy/gal or you are making it obvious you want something from him.

3. Be relevant. No baits, hidden agenda or hooks.

Need more info?

Fast Company – What we learned from sending 1,000 Cold Emails

Hubspot – The Best Cold Email Pitch I’ve Ever Gotten