Growth Marketing vs. Revenue Marketing: The Difference and Why it Matters

January 6, 2022 | Nick Ilev

growth vs revenue

Growth marketing, revenue marketing, digital marketing...marketing is marketing, right? 

Actually, there's more to it than that! 

Growth and revenue marketing are two distinct marketing methods with a strong relationship. Understanding their differences and similarities can help you realize what goals you should be setting and what KPIs you should be measuring. 

Everyone can agree that businesses want to increase revenue. Figuring out how to do it is the hard part. By really diving into growth marketing vs. revenue marketing (and perhaps mastering both), you're one step closer to figuring out how to positively impact that bottom line. 

What is growth marketing? 

Growth marketing is a marketing methodology focused on: 

  1. Setting and achieving long-term growth goals 
  2. Fostering customer loyalty and converting leads 
  3. Looking beyond the top of the funnel to see how leads behave at each stage 
  4. Producing long-term results that aim to eventually drive revenue 

What is revenue marketing? 

Revenue marketing is a marketing methodology focused on: 

  1. Tightly aligning sales and marketing to increase revenue 
  2. Yielding goal-oriented, cohesive, and predictable results  
  3. Measurably impacting the bottom line in a way that doesn't leave anything up to chance   
  4. Producing faster, measurable results 


growth vs revenue1

How do the different marketing methods compare? 

Both revenue marketing and growth marketing seek to make revenue grow, but the getting-there varies.  

Growth marketing is a little more human-oriented; it's a long-term method focused on acquiring the customers and converting the leads that will see revenue increase. Often, growth marketing focuses less on the sales element than revenue marketing. Growth marketing is, understandably, very popular in B2C, where connecting with the customer is key, but it's also coming onto the B2B scene. 

While growth marketing aims to foster long-term growth (that will eventually lead to more revenue), revenue marketing focuses on more immediate and predictable growth.  This method places great importance on marketing's alignment with sales and customer success and leverages all ways to impact revenue along the entire funnel. Revenue marketing deals with the top of the funnel, the bottom of the funnel, and everything in between. It also pays attention to post-sales with upselling, cross-selling, and sales cycle acceleration. No stone is left unturned when it comes to revenue marketing. 

What KPIs does each method focus on? 

Each of these methods comes with its own KPIs that indicate success. 

Revenue Marketing KPIs 

Beyond revenue, one key KPI to measure for revenue marketing is ROI.  This lets you know how profitable your marketing efforts are and demonstrates if you're making back marketing investments. One of the main reasons for this is that since revenue marketing focuses on producing revenue in the short to medium term, ROI is much easier to calculate. 

Looking at the average sales cycle is also a revenue marketing KPI, as it helps the aligned sales and marketing teams know if they're moving as quickly and efficiently as possible. 

Growth Marketing KPIs 

When it comes to measuring growth marketing, where the customer is king, a popular KPI is customer value over time (CLV), which shows how much a customer is worth to a business over their entire relationship. This fits the more long-term, customer-oriented approach of growth marketing. 

Conclusion 

Revenue and growth marketing are tightly related methodologies with a common ultimate goal but somewhat different ways to achieve that goal. 

At this point, you might be wondering: why not both? Why can't you use both growth marketing and revenue marketing? In truth, a holistic marketing approach can include both growth marketing strategy AND revenue marketing strategy.  

The real question should be how much focus (and investment) you need to put into each methodology. That depends on your growth stage. How much-untapped opportunity is sitting in your existing database, bottom of the funnel, and existing customer base?  

If your answer is "a lot," you might want to put a significant focus on Revenue Marketing. On the contrary, if your existing funnel is tapped out, you need to invest in Growth Marketing more heavily and focus marketing KPIs on longer-term growth. 

 Wanna get started with Revenue Marketing? 

It can be tough to get started with revenue marketing if you don't know where to start. Luckily, our revenue marketing template bundle will guide you in setting the marketing goals and developing the strategy that will get you seeing short- and long-term results. 

Revenue Marketing Bundle CTA

 

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