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The persistent theme of marketing is: Marketers ruin everything.

This has nothing against people who do marketing; it’s just the way of the industry. Innovators find a few specific ways to beat the average for a while. These innovators are able to exploit these new strategies for great gain for their businesses and clients.

Adult King Penguin (Aptenodytes patagonicus) standing amongst a large group of nearly fully grown chicks at Volunteer Point in the Falkland Islands.

Eventually, word gets out about their strategies, and more marketers try to use similar tactics to moderate success. As you can imagine, the processes that were once innovative become so commonplace that they no longer yield the same results. Consumers get used to them and start to respond at a diminishing rate.

Yesterday’s growth hacks are today’s case studies and tomorrow’s commonplace tactics.

In order to stand out from the crowd, you must constantly be exploring new avenues for growth. These tips will help to prime you to be better at surpassing the industry average.

Iterate, Iterate, Iterate

Evolve Vs Iterate Major Change Ball Pyramid 3d Illustration

By constantly iterating your processes and A/B testing, you may stumble into your own marketing growth hack. Since your business likely already has a real-world example for iteration, you are in a much better position to find what works specifically for your industry. You don’t have to discover the next big marketing strategy to stand out from the crowd; you just have to perfect your process to be able to execute much more effectively and efficiently than your competition.

Dedicate Company Resources to R&D

Most Fortune 500 companies have an internal research and development department, but that doesn’t mean small businesses are not capable of having one of their own. Being a small business affords you the luxury of being nimble and being able to decide what problems you want to tackle. All it takes is a few hours and some resources dedicated every week, and you might just stumble into something revolutionary.

Dropping liquid to test tube with boiling chemical in round bottom flask, laboratory concept

Start small with a problem your business is currently experiencing. For example, let’s say you want to decrease the percentage of people that abandon their cart at checkout. According to Baymard Institute, the average documented online shopping cart abandonment rate is around 69%.

Let’s suppose you not only want to fix your rate, but you want to beat the industry rate by half. Now you’ve got a goal. By dedicated a few hours researching ways to decrease your cart abandonment rate and using A/B testing, you might discover a new process to incentivizing checkouts that no one else has (yet).

Talk to Your Customers

If you’re wondering how to stand out from the crowd, the answer usually can be found in the crowd.

Industry articles and whitepapers can only get you so far. Most information is very broad and forecasts larger scale trends, which can be useful, but how well do you know your customers? By opening a dialogue with your customers, you not only move your relationship away from being purely transactional and pave the way for future opportunities to provide value, but you can learn a lot about how that customer’s experience has been with your business.

How did they hear about you? How was their experience? What would be something that would take their experience over the top? What’s been something that another unrelated company did for them lately that completely wowed them?

With a list of emails of your customers, there is no limit to the amount and types of conversations you can have with them.

Create a Good Facebook Live Video

The emphasis of this tip is on good. Facebook Live is a relatively new social media tool that has experienced its fair share of good and bad usage. The best way to stand out from the crowd without creating an entirely new process is to capitalize on new technologies. Facebook Live is an excellent starting point because so many businesses have tried and failed to engage their customers through this technology.

Be creative and try to create a Facebook Live video that genuinely provides value to your audience. People on Facebook likely don’t care about your office, so give them what they want. You can even utilize Facebook audience insights to learn more about what your audience likes, then theme your Facebook Live video to cater to those interests.


There is no set-in-stone strategy to stand out from the crowd, other than iteration, creativity, and, in some regards, courage. Before embarking on your quest, be sure to outline your end goal so you can stay true to your mission. Benchmark your progress and goals to industry trends and try to take your brand places that few other brands are willing to go.

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