Identifying and Amplifying Growth Channels and Research & Testiing
This was the second week of my CXL classes and what a week it was! In accordance with the allotment of my courses, I completed the following to courses during this week:1. Identifying and Optimising Growth Channels, taught by Sophia Eng who is a Senior Growth Marketing Manager at Smartsheet and former head of growth at Workday2. Research & Testing taught by Peep Laja, the Founder and CEO of Wynter, CXL and the host of How to Win podcastBoth the courses had one thing in common i.e. both Sophia Eng and Peep Laja enforced the fact that it is important to realize and acknowledge that we can be wrong more frequently than we like to believe. This is the reason, one should always trust experiments and their results instead of sticking to mere material or emotional experiences.
Identifying and Optimising Growth Channels – Sophia Eng:With regards to the teaching styles, Sophia Eng had a looser approach towards her topic i.e. her course contained more valuable theory and personal experiences than practical tips and materials. Nevertheless, the course painted a comprehensive picture of how to design and deliver strategies and channel distribution plans to maximise the chances of growth for a business. The course suggests looking into various growth channels before deciding on one that seems to be the most suitable for your business type. This might also be why one of the biggest mistakes that brands and business organisations make is that they do not distribute their marketing campaign on enough or the right channels. In order to rightfully devise a channel distribution plan, one you need to do your homework and research the channels that your potential clients are currently using. Once this information is achieved, place yourself on all those relevant channels, but make sure to keep an eye out and quickly eliminate the ones that have a low Return on Investment (ROI) rate.Sophia suggests that you should be able to efficiently customize your marketing strategy and channel distribution plan to be in accordance with your budget as well as a match to your team members’ skills and abilities. Whatever strategy you choose, according to her, the most common channels that would enhance your business’ chances of growth are:• Search Engine Marketing (SEM)Marketing your business through paid advertisements that would show up on search engine results pages (or SERPs)• Search Engine Optimization (SEO)Optimization of your official business website so as to increase high-quality and meaningful traffic• Social and Display AdsBusiness marketing in the form of ads that are displayed all over the internet and social media platforms• Email MarketingSpreading the word by sending out emails to specific individuals or groups of people• Content MarketingThe creation and sharing of articles that are relevant to the existing and potential users, in order to attract traffic towards the business website
Research & Testing taught - Peep Laja: The course was different from the other courses in the sense that Peep Laja delivered the lecture from a workshop, with audiences asking live questions, etc. I found this format to be beneficial in the sense of a change from the ordinary. During the lecture, Peep Laja spoke about the complex marketing strategies that were practically applied without being backed up by scientific research or experimental conclusions. The course mainly focuses on the mind set and work process that is necessary for the successful analysation and testing of your business-related hypothesis. He suggests that the very first step in the research and testing process should consist of ‘conversion research’, in which you observe, analyse, and diagnose the problem areas in a website e.g. from where and through which ways it is leaking money. But it is very important you analyse the right data i.e. the one that actually has a meaning for you, your website, and your business. To fulfil this in a practical and logical manner, Peep Laja presents his six-step framework, known as the ‘ResearchXL model’: 1. Heuristic Analysis:To perform this analysis go through the respective website from a user’s point of view and check for any weaknesses, mistakes, or inconveniences. Specifically check whether it has the right levels of motivation, friction, clarity, and relevance.2. Technical Analysis:Make sure that your website is working from a technical perspective e.g. searching for any bugs, viruses, defects, or other technology-related problems. The analysis will also include a speed-check i.e. how quickly and smoothly each page/link on the website opens.3. Digital Analytics:This step will help you make sure where the issues are arising through the use of Google analytics, which will determine the exact and most likely points where users jump off from your website.4. Qualitative Research:To carry out the qualitative research you need to use two types of surveys with your users to gather authentic and insiders’ data i.e. firstly, on-site polls and secondly, Follow-up surveys.5. User TestingJust as the name suggests this step will consist of users (preferably from your target audience) testing your websites with the specific tasks you provide them with e.g. searching for and locating a specific item in your online store’s website.6. Mouse Tracking Analysis:The last step in the process is there to help you further clarify your understanding of your website’s strengths and weaknesses. The data gathered through this analysis does not have to present a necessary factor but it will most definitely provide you with important insight. For instance, the mouse tracking analysis could provide you with information related to where and how many times your user click on your website or how far down they scroll before dropping off. To recapitulate, both the courses were very informative, each one in its own unique and respective ways, but what fascinated me the most about them was how I was unaware even some of the most basic things, which I thought were unimportant in the business world but found out, thanks to these courses, were a vital part of the process.