How To Ensure Your Startup Team Is Growth Hacking Not Copying

Startups need PR, publicity and proof of visibility for investors and while you may have a PR agency, many struggle with producing enough or high quality content. The all encompassing Internet does provide opportunities but not when we create a content stealing epidemic. Content marketing and growth hacking are not mere buzzwords in hopes of fast movement but need time investment (and therefore money) on creating originality or quality experiences. Copying or hiring  experts who specialize in copying- not in the Picasso manner, does not work. No.

How To Ensure Your Startup Team Is Growth Hacking Not Copying

What is Growth Hacking:

A definition before we start:

Growth hacking is a marketing technique developed by technology startups which uses creativity, analytical thinking, and social metrics to sell products and gain exposure. It can be seen as part of the online marketing ecosystem, as in many cases growth hackers are using techniques such as search engine optimization, website analytics, content marketing and A/B testing. Growth hackers focus on low-cost and innovative alternatives to traditional marketing, e.g. utilizing social media and viral marketing instead of buying advertising through more traditional media such as radio, newspaper, and television. (source)

How To Ensure Your Startup Team Is Growth Hacking Not Copying

1. Is Your Startup Marketing Team Copy-pasting Content? 

The same pitch does not mean the same copy-pasted content. And if someone in your team did make a mistake, own it. Do not show a sense of entitlement (or an aggressive tweet). You and your brands get perceived as douchebags. Sure-shot way to lose trust and potential customers (even if your terrible response does not become viral).

Here’s a Twitter exchange, I am talking about:

Look at their social media response here (was there at the time):

.@Raj_S Hi Raj, fair enough, a retention mail & request to help make something great have the same pitch. If that’s bothersome, apologies.— mygola (@mygola) May 21, 2015

Sorry, it IS bothersome. We can’t scale Startups full of serial content plagiarists. If you are unable to find time to create, do not be afraid to ask for help!

READ: How to avoid brand shaming by not stealing content

2. Is Your Startup Amassing Fake Followers?

What good is a 15K community that talks about nothing in common and has been bought? You need followers interested in the same topics as your brand not bought bots. If as a brand you do invest in a Twitter campaign, the results are never business focused because the community engagement is never relevant or topical. You need to create and curate content that they find interesting. If you curate, you need to credit the original creator, not steal. Let’s not create 10 tweets for 120K followers. It is weird. 

READ: How to create authentic brand engagement

3. Is Your Startup Downloading Google Images For Brand Usage?

Have said this before, but content available on the Internet is not free. If used without citations and attributions, it amounts to content stealing. Even if you translate you need to provide attributes. Finding short cuts on how to use Google images as brand material or how to download Google images without being caught is not the answer. 

READ: How to define original content

In her fantastic book Daring Greatly, Brene Brown says,

‘the way we do things around here’, or culture is complex. We can’t give people what we don’t have. Who we are matters immensely more than what we know or who we want to be.

How would you define, who YOU are? Do you see your Startup team as growth hackers, or a bunch of thieves?

Article originally appeared here


Upasna Kakroo

Upasna co-founded Brandanew in 2014 for the sheer love of storytelling and authentic connections. She has been blogging and documenting digital stories since 2003.