Growth Hacking (and how it applies to novels)

Just finished reading my first ever book on marketing-Growth Hacker Marketing by Ryan Holiday. It makes some interesting points, but here’s the main lesson I learned from it:

Customer feedback is king. In the modern era, Mr. Holiday points out that businesses can get immediate feedback on just about everything. Before launching a campaign, companies with good marketing teams will test headlines, slogans, everything. They aren’t gambling on a possible path to success; they know their pitches will work before they launch them, because every pitch has been tested for its ability to generate interest.

But how does this help us as authors? Holiday gives a possible answer: treat your book like a startup. Don’t simply pick a cover because you like it, go onto forums and ask readers if they like it. Don’t settle on a blurb that you think will work; pitch your book to people and see if the blurb generates genuine interest. Because, like it or not, the novels we write are a product being offered, and if you don’t market it like a product you’re leaning too heavily on chance.


That’s just my opinion. I’d love to hear yours. Have you heard of growth hacking before? Have you had any cool ideas to market your novel? Do you already get feedback on covers and blurbs before you post your novel, or do you prefer to go with what suits you? Leave me a comment down below.

6 thoughts on “Growth Hacking (and how it applies to novels)

  1. The trouble with that is that unlike a normal business we can’t really show much of a story before we publish it. I’m still kind of uneasy about posting bits in locked forms or showing a whole story to a beta I don’t know. And then that comes across as not being open to criticism. I’m fine with criticism just a bit edgy with internet sharing XD

    I’ve never heard as much about companies mining for text so they don’t have to pay writers as I have since joining the online writer’s collective again this year. Creepy goings on…

      1. Oh it’s mostly in the form of scam job listings where if it’s under a certain amount of words companies don’t have to pay you. I’m a newbie to all this so I don’t know the names of it in legal terms. I guess blogs are safer but I wouldn’t put anything pass them.

      2. Yeah, that’s one of the hardest things about being a writer… So hard to protect your work. I always try to picture it in a positive light, like if I ever have to worry about others sharing my work I must be doing something right.

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