Close this search box.

Andre Kempe,


Admiral Media,

Nov 1, 2022

Growth Marketing vs Performance Marketing: All you need to know

Imagine you have decided to open a new business, like a home goods business. You did your research, created a business plan, and carefully put that plan into action, i.e. selecting a location, hiring employees, managing your budget, etc. How are you going to make sure that your business stands out among the many others already present in the marketplace? Statistics have shown that thousands of businesses open each year all around the world. The spread of globalization has resulted in increased competition from all over the world, as products are no longer available only in their native countries. In this scenario, business marketing helps you in standing out among your competitors. Marketing allows you to get more eyes on your business and can aid in better targeting your intended audience. There are many different kinds of marketing strategies that can be used by companies to market their brand, products, or services. Two of these marketing types include growth marketing and performance marketing. Any marketing aims to help grow your business gradually over time. This article details the major differences between these two types of marketing: Growth Marketing vs Performance Marketing. By learning their strategies, goals, and tactics, you can determine which marketing works best for you.

What is Growth Marketing?

It is a type of marketing that analyzes data obtained through marketing campaigns to improve growth. Growth marketers examine the feedback received from users and determine which factors were a success and which were not. Growth marketing is the name of making constant changes and improvements to your marketing strategies. In the current digital age, it is foolish to keep using the same marketing strategy. Changes are constantly introduced, which means that a marketing tactic that works today might not work tomorrow. In short, Growth marketing involves product manufacturing, product marketing, analysis of results, and then remarketing with a different and improved approach. Traditional marketing practices usually focus on increasing product awareness and converting prospects into customers. Growth marketing goes even further beyond and also focuses on user retention. This is done by using techniques like search engine optimization, email marketing, data analysis, and A/B testing. The results obtained can help a company understand things like key demographics, the level of interaction of users with your product, and how much they are willing to pay for it. The results can then be useful to further improve or introduce new marketing tactics.

What is Performance Marketing?

As the name implies, performance marketing is performance-based marketing that is driven by results. It is a kind of marketing in which the company or brand pays the marketing service only when a certain objective is completed, i.e. a lead, click, or sale. This kind of marketing is best for companies that are looking to reach their audience at scale, as payments are based on a user’s interaction with the marketing content. Companies looking to use performance marketing for advertisements usually get in touch with marketing agencies or publishers. The said agencies then post the advertisements on several marketing channels like search engines, social media platforms, mobile ads, and more. But instead of using traditional payment methods, the agency receives payment based on how well the ads perform. The greater the number of sales, clicks, or impressions, the more they will be paid. Payment can come based on the following factors: Cost per click (CPC), Cost per impression (CPM), Cost per leads (CPL), Cost per sales (CPS), Cost per acquisition (CPA), etc. Learn More: Performance Marketing Agency

Growth Marketing tactics and channels

The commonly used growth marketing tactics and channels are:

  • Implementing search engine optimization strategies, making use of link building and keyword research.
  • Using automated email marketing to send emails at regular intervals.
  • Targeting your audience through personalized ads based on behavioral data.
  • Publishing blogs or articles on your websites with CTA’s to create lead magnets. Lead magnet refers to any free service or product that is for gathering contact details. This can take the form of newsletters, subscriptions, free trials, etc.
  • Sharing your content on various platforms like social media platforms, sites, blogs, etc.

Performance marketing tactics and channels

The commonly used performance marketing tactics and channels are:

1. Social media marketing

Nowadays, social media marketing is one of the best ways to reach a wider audience and increase brand exposure. With a large number of people spending most of their time on social media sites daily, it is a no-brainer to use them to build your presence in the market scene. Ads can take the form of pictures, shorts, videos, etc.

2. Native advertising

Native ads are those ads that seamlessly blend into the platform they are featured on. They take on the look and feel of their platform and as such don’t feel like ads. Native ads can be highly advantageous for getting good results from performance marketing, as they don’t disrupt the user experience like banner ads. Research has shown that native ads result in an 18% higher lift in purchase intent compared to banner ads. A/B targeting is to evaluate the performance of different formats of native ads.

3. Affiliate/Influencer marketing

Affiliate or influencer marketing involves affiliating yourself with well-known influencers or a social network to promote your products. In turn, the affiliates receive a commission for every click or sale made. Affiliate marketing can be highly advantageous as the influencers have an already in-built audience and can use their social media reach to build brand awareness. This can then translate into new leads or customers. And as this is performance marketing, there are little or no risks involved as you would only have to pay for measurable results. You can also receive information from your affiliates regarding the behavior of their audience to construct ads that can deliver the most optimal results.

4. Search engine marketing

Search engine marketing involves paying search engines like Google to advertise your services and products. When the user uses a search engine to look for a relevant product, these ads will be the first thing he sees.

Metrics and goals of Growth Marketing

The metrics and goals of growth marketing are:

  • Generating direct or organic traffic to websites, social media pages, etc.
  • Email metrics like clicks.
  • Revenue is coming from the help of current customers through testimonials or referrals.
  • Retention metrics like cross-sell upsells, and churn rate.
  • SEO metrics like the ranking of your website or certain keywords.
  • Leads of any kind like marketing qualified leads.

Metrics and goals of Performance Marketing

The metrics and goals of performance marketing are:

  • Cost per click: The amount an advertiser pays when a consumer clicks their ad.
  • Cost per acquisition: The amount paid by an advertiser when a consumer completes a certain action, i.e. a click or sale.
  • Cost per lead: The amount paid by an advertiser when they receive a sign-up from a customer.
  • Cost per impression: The amount paid by an advertiser on getting one thousand impressions.
  • Return on investment: It is calculated as sales growth minus marketing cost divided by marketing cost. It indicates how much a company or brand gains by investing in the advertisement.
  • Return on ad spend: How much a company earns per dollar spent on ads.

What should be your choice?

The correct answer depends upon several factors. An emerging business or company should prioritize growth marketing over performance marketing. The main goal of a new company is to increase customer engagement and product sales. Growth marketing can help a young company grow from all angles. Growth marketing strategies can evaluate data received from marketing campaigns to optimize and improve marketing tactics in the future. On the other hand, performance marketing requires higher investments in dynamic, native, social media, affiliate, and other marketing formats which may not be suitable for an early-stage company. Similarly, performance marketing will also not favor those with lower marketing budgets. Performance marketing is best for established companies who want to run one-shot campaigns.

Conclusion – Growth Marketing vs Performance Marketing

Overall, both growth and performance marketing strategies have their benefits and disadvantages. Growth marketing favors emerging companies, while performance marketing favors multiscale companies. If your company is a fit for performance marketing and would like to get started with some of the best and most experienced experts in the field, reach out to Admiral Media for an initial consultation.

Join +3.000 app marketers and beat your competitors