How to Become
a Growth Hacker
Best Education Tracks, Key Skills, and Top Certifications
Although it’s a relatively new profession, growth hacking is one of the best careers you can choose in 2021. Before it became its own profession, marketing roles included growth hacking tactics. However, company growth has become a more significant practice in most businesses. Therefore, experts who specialize in growth hacker marketing are in demand.
To be successful at growth hacking, you need to understand product marketing, content marketing, social networks, and more. If you want to become a growth hacker, read this guide to find out how.
What Is a Growth Hacker?
A growth hacker is a marketing expert who implements innovative tactics to gain new customers and retain existing ones. These professionals work within specific budgets to test and execute new strategies. As a growth hacker, you will aim to increase a company’s conversion rates and achieve great growth for the brand.
Growth hackers must understand the product or service they’re promoting and the audience they’re marketing to. In this role, you should make data-driven, customer-centric marketing decisions.
What Type of School Should You Attend
to Become a Growth Hacker?
To become a growth hacker, you may not need to attend any school. You primarily need experience in digital marketing and its various concepts, which you can get on your own. However, academic training and qualification will be a significant help. You’ll learn everything you need to know, and finding a job will be much easier.
Below are the best education tracks for growth hackers.
Best Growth Hacker Education Tracks
While growth hacker marketing becomes a set part of Silicon Valley culture, there’s a lot to learn in this field. Growing a company is a very demanding journey, and many entrepreneurs need marketing experts.
To equip you with the skills you need, below are the best education tracks.
If you don’t have a background in marketing or growth hacking and you prefer comprehensive studies, consider community college. Many community colleges have an open entry and only require a high school diploma. You can get an associate degree in less than two years.
Community colleges don’t offer programs in growth hacking specifically. Instead, they teach marketing, digital marketing, and business. This can help you transition into a growth hacker role. According to The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the annual tuition fees for in-state students in a two-year public institute are only $3,310.
Growth Hacking Degrees
For growth hacking, you can complete a degree program in marketing, digital marketing, and business. Bachelor’s degrees take between three and four years to complete. However, postgraduate degrees can take less than two years to earn.
Completing a degree makes you qualified for growth hacker marketing and many other facets of marketing. You’ll be able to progress into a related field and offer more than just growth hacking expertise. Although bachelor’s degrees are more expensive than associate degrees, they can be more helpful in the long run.
Growth Hacking Bootcamps
If you want to dive right into the fundamentals, attend a bootcamp. You can find a program in growth hacking specifically, and it will give you all the tools you need to become a growth hacker. Many students lean towards bootcamps because the programs aren’t as long or expensive as a four-year degree program.
You can complete a growth hacking bootcamp in between 15 and 30 weeks. Some bootcamps run for as little as two days. If you prefer a bootcamp program broader than only growth marketing, you can find many in digital marketing as well.
Growth Hacking Courses
Similar to bootcamps, short courses furnish you with career-specific skills over a short time period. You can find online and in-person courses, although the majority are online. You must be confident in working independently and learning at your own pace.
There are courses on the entire concept of digital marketing and others for just growth hacking. Typically, short courses don’t exceed six months. After completing your course, you’ll receive a certificate. If you’re dealing with debt while in between jobs, short courses are ideal. They are more flexible than in-person learning and much cheaper.
How to Become a Growth Hacker: A Step-by-Step Guide
Becoming a growth hacker requires practical skills to get the job done and help companies connect with their user base. To get you started, read the steps below to become a growth hacker.
Understand growth hacking
First, you need to learn about growth hacking, what it means, and why it’s essential. To gain this knowledge, you can explore any of the education tracks we discussed. You can also read books and watch videos about growth hacking.
Understand digital marketing
Growth hacking is closely tied to digital marketing. So, to gain the expertise of a successful growth hacker, you need to understand how digital marketing works. Choosing to study a four-year degree or detailed digital marketing program will provide you with this knowledge.
Find a mentor to train you
You don’t have to take up a two-year apprenticeship, but try training under an expert growth hacker for a few weeks. This step can help you put your theoretical knowledge to the test. With the help of a professional, growth hacking will be easier to master.
Develop a growth hacking process
There are multiple growth hacking processes from experts that you can adopt. However, you need to find a process that works for you. Research growth hacking processes, give each a try, and make a few tweaks according to your preference.
Develop your growth hacking skill set
Successful growth hacking relies on refined skills to accomplish long-term growth for businesses. You need to practice your skills and processes regularly to perfect them. If you lack confidence in certain areas, attend a short course or bootcamp to boost your abilities.
Key Growth Hacking Skills
If you want to become a growth hacker, you need to understand user experience, how to perform A/B testing, and the basics of product analytics, to name a few. Although growth hacking doesn’t require complex technical skills, it can still be difficult to learn.
Let’s examine the details of each of the key skills for successful growth hacking.
The solution to long-term business growth is phenomenal user experience (UX). Growth hackers should understand that UX includes more than just web design. Customers should have a positive interaction with customer support and quickly find what they’re looking for. Websites should also be mobile responsive.
As a growth hacker, you’ll have to test content constantly to find out which will appeal to the target audience. As a result, growth hackers need to understand what makes a good A/B testing sample, which statistics are relevant, and how to create good testing intervals. Many tools can make A/B testing seamless, but growth hackers should still possess expert skills.
Growth hackers must comprehensively understand product analytics to determine how users interact with a company’s product. They will track and analyze this behavior to help companies curate products that their consumers want. This skill allows growth hackers to quickly identify when a product is not ideal for a company to sell.
Growth Hacker Salary and Job Outlook
According to ZipRecruiter, the annual average salary for a growth hacker is $68,300, which equates to $33 per hour. These professionals usually work full-time in an office environment.
Growth hacking is a fairly new concept, so there are fewer statistics on job outlook. However, the Bureau of Labor Statistics suggests that advertising, promotions, and marketing manager job opportunities will increase by six percent by 2029. This job growth is faster than average.
Entry-Level Growth Hacker Job Requirements
To become an entry-level growth hacker, you need three to five years of professional experience. The average salary for an entry-level growth hacker is around $54,380, according to PayScale.
Although you don’t need academic qualifications for this job, you need extensive hands-on experience. Growth hacking demands critical thinking and quick problem-solving, which can develop after a few years in this industry.
What Does a Growth Hacker Do?
A growth hacker cultivates and implements conversion rate optimization (CRO) strategies, executes and analyzes growth hacking tactics, and uses the lean startup process.
Below are the details of each of these growth hacker responsibilities.
A growth hacker must determine the relevant key performance indicators (KPIs) for CRO. They will create a CRO strategy aligned with the objectives of the business. It’s also crucial for growth hackers to analyze their CRO strategy if it isn’t working and know how to make the necessary improvements.
Analyzes Growth Hacking Tactics
Once a professional has executed a growth hacking strategy, they must track and analyze how it performs. To do this, growth hackers must have a competent handle on statistics, data analytics, and data analytics tools.
Uses the Lean Startup Process
The lean startup process is designed for startups to reach their objectives while eliminating potential challenges. To offer expert services to startup companies, growth hackers must know the ins and outs of this process.
Growth Hacking Certifications
For growth hacking, there are no specific professional certifications available. However, you can complete a course in growth hacking and receive a certificate. Below are the top certificate courses for growth hacking.
Growth Hacking with Digital Marketing (Version 7.3)
Udemy offers an advanced course teaching the intricate relationship between growth hacking and digital marketing concepts. You’ll learn how to segment email lists, tell better stories through marketing, design customer funnels, and more.
To complete this course, you must have a basic understanding of technical concepts like search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing, email marketing, and paid advertising. This course includes nine hours of video content and four assignments.
Growth Master Training Course
Sean Ellis, who coined the term “growth hacker,” instructs this course, so you can expect high-quality training on the most essential concepts. This is one of the best courses you can take for growth hacking.
This program will teach you how to stay consistent, conduct a successful growth meeting, ensure the strategies are working, and so much more. There are eight modules in this course, and after scoring 90 percent on a 10-question test, you’ll receive your certificate.
Growth Hacking Immersive Course
GrowthTribe offers a three-day course on tools, techniques, and strategies for growth hacking. After this course, you’ll be able to identify innovative and cost-effective growth opportunities, implement a scalable process for experimentation, and adopt a problem-solving mindset. You should be familiar with traditional marketing techniques first.
How to Prepare for Your Growth Hacker Job Interview
Growth hacking is a competitive industry, so you have to impress the hiring manager every time. Prepare for a growth hacker job interview by nailing down the fundamentals and your top solutions for common challenges.
The list below contains the top growth hacker interview questions to prepare for.
Growth Hacker Job Interview Practice Questions
- What is your next course of action if you’re not achieving your goals?
- How would you guide a client to their first win?
- Which data analysis tools have you used?
- What are the key components of growth marketing to you?
- Why did you decide to focus on growth marketing?
How Long Does It Take to Become a Growth Hacker?
As professional growth hackers need years of experience, it can take at least three years to become a growth hacker. In those three years, you should gain substantial hands-on experience and certification.
To advance in this career, you should get certificates to verify your skills, improve areas you struggle in, and rack up professional experience.
Should You Become a Growth Hacker in 2021?
If you find interest in digital marketing, you should become a growth hacker in 2021. There is high job growth for this profession, and you can access ample resources to help you start your career. Having expertise as a growth hacker also allows you to take on various marketing roles and progress your career.
If you want to become a growth hacker, pay attention to industry experts like Andrew Chen, Sean Ellis, and Ryan Holiday, and never stop learning. This is an ever-evolving field, so you should evolve with it.
Growth Hacker FAQ
What is growth hacker marketing?
Growth marketing is a practice of digital marketing that describes using budget-friendly, innovative marketing techniques to increase the success of a business. Growth hackers focus only on strategies relating to company growth.
What is the difference between a growth hacker and a digital marketer?
Digital marketers focus on all aspects of marketing relating to a business. This includes CRM, paid advertising, PR, and web design. A growth hacker solely focuses on a company’s growth strategies.
How to become a growth hacker?
To become a growth hacker, you need to learn the fundamentals of growth hacking and digital marketing. You can then develop your growth hacking process and perfect your growth marketing expertise.
How does a growth hacker help with revenue?
Growth hackers develop effective growth marketing strategies to expand a business and direct more consumers to it. It’s also vital for growth hackers to find low-cost growth techniques for businesses to make a higher profit.