This Week in Growth Marketing Ep.6: How To Create A Compelling Story For PR

Abigail Nwaocha
Jun 4, 2017 · 16 min read

This week in Growth Marketing is a curation of 10 of the best Growth Marketing and Growth Hacking post (In no particular order) published on Medium within the week. If you’d like your post to be mentioned in the next week’s episode, please leave a comment with a link to the post. I’ll check it out to determine if it’ll add value to my readers.

Alright let’s get into it!

PS: I‘m working on a List- style Customer Acquisition Strategy article, and I’m looking for sources with successful and failed customer acquisition stories. Here’s the link to the form in case you’re interested:

1. How To Create A Compelling Story For PR by Elijah Masek Kelly

Although you cannot make something go viral, you can drive the phenomenon of social sharing by instilling value and emotional relatability in your story. However, what is important to note here is that if you are a small business trying to get exposure then you need to learn how to find that essence in whatever it is that you do.

Once you understand that, then you need to learn how to tell your story in a captivating manner…

It’s not the story, it’s how you tell it…

That’s Not A Story!

The biggest mistake that most small businesses and startups make when they are trying to get press coverage is believing that their mere existence is a story within itself. “My name is Jim and I have a Donut Shop” is not a story and unless you run the first startup on Mars, then no one is really going to care that you opened up a new office.

Readers are only interested in what your business does after you’ve captured their interest. Alex Wilhelm from TechCrunch has a little bit of advice for people trying to get journalists to cover their work → “When you’re f***ing boring…that’s the worst thing.”

Content like product descriptions or practical information about your business doesn’t have that viral potential because it’s just not that interesting. Before pitching your story to a journalist, give it the ‘who cares?’ test. Test your pitch with a few friends, your grandma, or the barista at the coffee shop and gauge their reaction. Be warned — do not confuse polite nodding with genuine interest. If no one is into your content, don’t waste your time pursuing it until you have a more compelling angle.

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2. Growth Hacking WordPress — 14+1 Plugins You Need Right Now by Ambroise Debret

WordPress is used by 28.1 % of websites (source). Growth hacking is the rage right now. How come we talk so little about Growth Hacking WordPress?

While WordPress websites are really easy to start, it’s way harder to have success with them. By success I mean whatever goal you want to reach: it can be traffic, revenue or email subscribers. That’s why you need the right tools!

Because Growth Hacking and WordPress work perfectly together: WordPress is a very flexible platform which gives us a lot of freedom for experimenting and, effectively, growth hacking WordPress.

Even better, since it’s largely used, many plugins (+50’000) are available out there to help us hack growth without having to know how to code.

A Taste of What You’ll Get:

  • 14+1 Plugins to supercharge your WordPress for Growth
  • Free Plugins that will increase the shareability of your content
  • How to build virality into your website
  • Tools to become a ninja A/B tester & mad data-based marketer

Growth Hacking Applied to Websites

But who said we couldn’t consider websites as products?

So if we look at growth hacking applied to a website, the same AARRR funnel applies! I’m talking acquisition, activation, retention, revenue & referral.

When talking about websites, the AARRR funnel will look something like that:

  • Acquisition with SEO, social media
  • Activation with email list building, A/B testing
  • Retention with your email list & social media
  • Referral with social media shares
  • Revenue with sales

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3. How I Got 22 Follow Links With Infographic Marketing by Abi Travers

I am guessing you are reading this because you already know how important link building is for any SEO strategy.

You understand that it boosts your page’s authority which in turn helps you rank higher for your chosen keywords.

You also know it can be a great source of traffic.

You have heard all about how to use written content to build these links but are after something extra. This is where infographic marketing comes in.

I will show you exactly how I used ‘infographic submission sites’ to gain easy and quick follow links back to my site within half a day. I have even included a full list of the submission sites I used.

I achieved these results for a client. I cannot disclose their identity so instead I am going to use a fictitious example. So please, close your eyes and imagine you own a website focused on the extremely popular topic; ‘The Cows of Bali’ …

In case you need some help imagining this …

STEP 1: Create an infographic

How to choose the right infographic:

Choose one of the keywords you have identified in your SEO strategy. Check no-one else has created an infographic on the exact same topic, or if they have, it can easily be beaten on quality or quantity.

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4. The Growth Mindset & Instagram: A sample chapter from “Secret Sauce: A step-by-step guide to growth hacking” by Austen Allred and Vin Clancy

User acquisition is, above all else, a mindset. The tactics will always vary according to the circumstances of the network or audience you’re targeting, but the thought process is always very similar. We want to take you through the thought process from the very beginning. By the end, you’ll be able to pick this process apart and reverse engineer it — doing so will work on any other network and with any other product or service.

This is probably the most important chapter in this book, so pay attention.

User Acquisition

At the highest level, user acquisition (paid or unpaid) consists of two steps:

1. Creating something desirable enough that some subset of the human population wants it.

2. Getting in front of those people in the right way


We approach every user acquisition problem the same way you should break down any complex problem. The first step is to stop and slow down.

Do not go nuts creating an account or posting or optimizing. Instead, grab a piece of paper and a pencil and start breaking things down into smaller pieces until you have a solidified roadmap.

As you’re thinking through this, do not inhibit or suppress your thought process. You want every thought and idea out on paper to sort out later, and your mind is the conveyor belt bringing those things to the table. If you stop the conveyor belt, you won’t have the idea to play with when you want it. Stream of consciousness here is great; just let thoughts flow wherever they may go.

We’re actually going to take you through our thought process in this instance, and you’ll see how at the end selling $4,000 of custom-sewn neckties wasn’t even a surprise; it made sense that it happened that way.

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5. 5 mistakes to watch out for while creating an app marketing strategy and app marketing tools to avoid them by Robosoft Technologies

There are millions of apps available in App Store and Google Play Store combined and this number is only increasing every day. As the number of apps available in the market skyrocket, the task of reaching out to the right audience and retaining them is becoming even more difficult for app marketers. In this scenario, having a well thought of app marketing strategy has become more crucial than ever.

While devising an app marketing strategy small things can make a big difference and ignoring small details can prove to be costly for app marketers.Here is a list of 5 mistakes that app marketers must avoidfor creatingan app marketing strategy that delivers results.

1. Skipping market research

Successful marketing strategies forany category starts with a robust market research plan — it is no differentwith app marketing too. Researching on competitors and keeping an eye on where they are placed in the App Store and Google Play store, can reveal important information on app naming strategies, categories listed under, keywords on which they are ranked, custome reviews and so on.This analysis can be extremely valuable to get started with anapp marketing strategy.

Here are few popular tools which can help app marketers with their market research efforts.

· Google’s Keywords Tools

· Google Trends

· App Annie

· Priori Data and more

2. Ignoring the importance of beta testing

More often than not, app developers and marketers get carried away by the feedback of their internal teams about their app. But for delivering a successful app, it is critical to look beyond the feedback of internal teams, as they are not the real target audience and such feedback can often be biased.

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6. Growth Hacker Marketing: How To Build Something People Want In 2017 by Niklas Goeke

968 days ago the first post on my blog went live. When I started almost three years ago, the plan was clear:

  1. Read all about marketing.
  2. Growth hack the shit out of it.
  3. Make millions of dollars.

How do you think that worked out? Well, you’re right. If you want to start something online too, today’s book review and summary will save you a lot of time. A LOT.

Growth Slacker Marketing

One of the first articles I read talked about how to create great content. Unlike most people, I did write something after reading it. In fact, I was so convinced of the idea that I went ahead and wrote a whole book.

Six weeks later, my first masterpiece went up:

Knowing good stuff needs good promo, I set to work. I spent an entire day sending 100 custom emails to spread the word and the result was…depressing. I got one valuable tweet.

Still love that guy. Wrote a great book too.

What I didn’t know at the time was that that’s how it’s supposed to be. Of course your first few attempts are gonna bomb. After all, you’ve never done this before.

Where I wish I’d have done things differently is with how I proceeded afterwards. Instead of reading the same five blogs in circles and repeating the same mistakes over and over again, I could’ve picked up one book — just one — and be set with my marketing strategy for 1–2 years.

The name of that book is Growth Hacker Marketing.

Marketing Has Changed — A Lot

“Deep down, I think anyone marketing or launching fantasizes that they are premiering a blockbuster movie,” Ryan Holiday states early in the book. Guilty! It sure must’ve felt like that for Ryan too.

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7. Finance questions Small Business Owners Ask: Series by Laura Conti

I’ve recently had the honour of meeting with loads of SME’s who have realised business is thriving and the accounts and financials are too big for them to manage alone.

The conversations with them, and the questions asked of me have been eerily similar, so I have put together some tips and tricks, which I’ll publish over the next 8 weeks. Keep an eye out for the following blogs:

  1. Bookkeepers, Accountants, Finance Managers — Whats the deal, how do I decide what I need?
  2. Outsourcing functions — tips and tricks for selecting a vendor.
  3. Questions to ask when hiring a Bookkeeper.
  4. Questions to ask when hiring an Accountant.
  5. What do Finance Managers do & how to hire a fabulous one?
  6. Think you need a CFO? What do they do?
  7. Simple controls for small business to prevent fraud.
  8. What should I expect from my External Accountant?


Bookkeepers, Accountants, Finance Managers — Whats the deal, how do I decide what I need?

Its an exciting (sometimes stressful) time when you realise you need to hire someone to help you with your business finances. How do you decide what skills you need, and what role to advertise to score the best person for your small business finances?

So, are you confused about the difference between Accountant, Bookkeeper and Finance Manager? Read on.

Tax Accountant (also called ‘External Accountants’). Everyone needs a Tax Accountant. Unless you happen to read tax law as a hobby, the rules are too complex for the average punter. They help you do your tax return, claim the right deductions, structure your affairs to maximise return (ahem *cough* minimise tax). You will need one personally and for your business. Find a good one. (Anyone want to help me write a blog on how to find a good one? its been many years since I was a Tax Accountant).

What can you expect from them? Complete Income Tax Returns (also called ITR’s), FBT Returns, lodgement of ASIC documents. They may do your BAS in the early days too.

External Accountants can be useful in early stages of creating a business to apply for tax registrations, company registrations. They often have advisers to help you set up MYOB/XERO for you to manage ongoing. They should give advice on the best corporate structure for your business, such as Trusts, Partnerships, Sole Traders and Company structures. A high-end External Accounting company (think KPMG, PwC and EY) will also offer consulting services to assist you with strategic planning, marketing, UX & systems implementation.

Note that some External Accountants are developing ‘CFO on Call’ services. More about what you can expect from them in an upcoming blog.

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8. Why Advertising Agencies are Doomed by Philipp Gaul

Masterminds vs. Technology

Due to the inevitable and constant progress of technology, the advertising market has changed drastically. We used to be creative outlaws, strategic masterminds, a bunch of money-making-badasses who love what they do and do what they love. And yes, that’s still pretty much true for most of us. But it was also part of our job to figure out how companies should communicate with their audience, simply based on what we thought would be best. And that’s changed! Big time.

These days it feels more like we’re sitting in the back seat of a car that’s driving (autonomously) towards a future packed with algorithms, data analysis and relentless pricing wars. Agencies are not in charge of shaping the world of advertising anymore. Technology is.

The Current Agency Model is Broken

Despite all that progress in the field of advertising technology, agencies haven’t fundamentally changed the way they operate. They’ve simply learned how to incorporate new tools, how to manage campaigns online, negotiate deals with influencers, download analytics data… and how to sell the shit out of it. (Warning: This is a drastic simplification of what’s happened in the past 15 years…I know)

But even the biggest and most successful agencies out there haven’t worked on reinventing internal processes or improving the agency-client relationship. Our industry is still very old-shool… “Mad Men” style old-school. Only problem is: Neither the budgets nor the market is “Mad Men” style anymore.

But What About the Client

Technology has not only changed the advertising market. It’s also changed the behaviour on the client-side. Modern platforms like Youtube, Facebook and Google have made it insanely easy to create and publish ads. As a consequence, hiring an agency only makes sense as long as setting up an in-house marketing department wouldn’t be cheaper. In other words, agencies are no longer just in a bidding war with other agencies — but also with their potential clients.

But wait, isn’t there something that could still make a difference? Something that’s more important then any technology or software: What about “talent”? Well, not really…talent isn’t a very good differenciating factor to rely on because talent can be hired by anyone, even your client. And there you have it: another big f*** threat for agencies!

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9. The Inbound Flip : or How I Turned Inbound Sales Spam into Qualified Leads and Dollars by Jacek Grebski

Some people say that there are only two things that are certain in life, these are death and taxes. Except that these folks have never run a company which if they did would immediately make them realize that there is in fact a third absolute certainty in life — this is the spam sales email.

Look, I’m not going to rag on email marketing, it’s an incredibly effective tool if done right. But running a company, be it an agency, a startup, or a retail bank means you’re going to get emails like:

Hi Jacek,

This is Tim over at Whatever, we’re super excited about what you’ve been doing lately with your company and want to let you know that Whatever SaaS will help you do whatever.

Do you have 15 minutes to get on the phone so I can show you how Bob’s SaaS can be leveraged to do that thing.

Speak soon, Tim, Sales Guru at Whatever

Well I don’t know if you’re like me, but I’m an inbox zero type of person, a clean inbox gives me an overwhelming sense of peace. And a sales email here or there is fine, but when you’re getting somewhere in the ballpark of 50 of these things daily, that little zen email garden of mine can quickly turn into chaos. So what’s a dude to do.

Unsubscribes? This just leads them to talk to you more.

Spam Filters? These get bypassed by biz dev gurus.

All in all it was taking me about 20–30 minutes a day to go through all the sales emails I was receiving and cleaning them up. Too much time to spend on this.

Turning lemons into lemonade (and dinners).

Turning the tables with a canned response.

Hi Tim,

Thanks for writing, as you can imagine I’m very busy, but if you’d like to book 15 minutes please send $hourlyRate to my PayPal account at jacek @ and I will happily get on the phone with you.


Enter responses of disbelief and outrage. “Haha, very funny” some would say, “You’re kidding?”, said others and there was also the occasional ”f**k you”.

I mean how dare I ask people to compensate me for my time? The audacity of it all. But what happened next was fascinating.

Some people would actually pay to pitch me, and as if sales reps all pulled from the same target list the volume of biz dev emails slowly lessened.

Follow ups stopped dead cold, and I made enough extra cash to go out to a few really nice dinners in New York, buy an Oculus + Touch, and get a few other small trinkets. But that’s not where the story ends.

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10. Frameworks and Models for startup Marketing — Part 1/3 by Nikhil Samuel

This article covers the first third of major frameworks that I have encountered that might be of use to you when you begin to think about startup marketing. I will briefly go through the classical startup frameworks and the delve deeper into frameworks that are specific to marketing and growth.

The article is a response to my own need for frameworks for unhindered thinking and clarity in making marketing decisions.

So, why are startup frameworks useful in the first place?

Startup Frameworks make for a great starting point in putting forward your ideas, implementing them, or looking at them from a different perspective.


Porter’s Five Forces —

Let’s start off with the classics. Every reader who has gone to business school or has an inclination towards business has come across the 5 forces framework.

Micheal Porter propounded the Five Forces Framework model leading to a large-scale adoption by many organisations. The basic tenet of the framework is that any company faces 5 major forces of competition when in a market, not just from its competitors.

The five forces are:

  • Threat of new entrants — What is the time and cost of entry into the market? Are the barriers of entry high? What are the cost advantages? Is there technology protection? Do you have specialised knowledge about the market (contrarian question by peter thiel)?
  • Threat of substitutes — What are your substitutes in the market? Are you 10x better than them (peter thiel)?
  • Bargaining power of customers — How many customers do you have? What is the average basket size? Are customer price sensitive? Are the switching costs high?
  • Bargaining power of suppliers — How many suppliers do you have? How big are they? Will you be able to quickly substitute suppliers? Are you overly dependent on one supplier?
  • Industry rivalry — How many competitors do you have in the market? Are you 10x better either in speed/quality (Peter Thiel)?

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The Growth Metric

Every business needs growth, but what constitutes growth? as marketers this is a question we must answer.

Abigail Nwaocha

Written by

Growth Marketing consultant for Startups, Small businesses & Agencies| lover of written art | LGBTQIA

The Growth Metric

Every business needs growth, but what constitutes growth? as marketers this is a question we must answer.

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