Growth Marketing vs Demand Generation: What is the Difference?

growth markeing vs demand generation

Both tactics are often heavily contested, so you’re not alone if you’ve ever interchanged one for the other. 

Your enterprise can accomplish its income goals only with the right tactics and techniques. Unfortunately, various methods compete to take the limelight. Specialists of both methods have tricks up their sleeves, and various establishments use these techniques to boost their income or recover from difficult times. 

How can one tell which of these tactics to utilize? Can each tactic cause a major shift in income?

We’ll examine both tactics’ meanings and their contrasts and resemblances. Shall we? 

We shall. Let’s delve in. 

Growth Marketing

As the name implies, this tactic concentrates on a single thing- growth. It employs various sub-tactics over various media to gain and keep clients. 

In this tactic, enterprises and establishments utilize several intelligence networks and quality data to search for possibilities in all aspects and thoroughly maximize them.

This tactic stems from growth hacking. It involves searching for new ways to expand via any possible means. Such marketers seldom set long-term goals. They exclusively utilize swift and innovative solutions. 

Unlike conventional tactics that spread the word and obtain leads, this tactic adopts a comprehensive plan by leveraging data and concentrating on actions that lead to the most outcomes. 

The tactic is based on the Pirate Funnel (AAARRR…do you get?) to spread the word, obtain leads, and see positive enhancement in all necessary metrics.


Source: GrowWithWard

  • Awareness: More individuals becoming aware of your solutions
  • Acquisition: Transforming traffic into leads
  • Activation: Lead nurturing and figuring ways to get these individuals to purchase
  • Revenue: Transforming highly-qualified leads to loyal patronizers
  • Retention: Ensuring your intended market constantly utilizes your deals and offers. 
  • Referrals: Utilizing present client purchase patterns to boost traffic and lure clients.

This tactic uses the first part of the pirate funnel to captivate people and enable them to see value in your deal or package. Then, it uses the second part to retain and keep them in the loop. 

Every excellent enterprise that has endured over the years has tactics which concentrate on boosting income, retaining clients, and encouraging referrals. It is the only way to build a long-lasting, flourishing enterprise.

Typical tactics include: 

  • SEO optimization
  • Blog repurposing
  • Lead magnet creation
  • Email campaigns 

Functions of Such Teams

The desired outcome for people utilizing this tactic is to get new clients and sustain patronage for the longest time. For that reason, such teams use advanced analyses to ensure that nothing stops people from purchasing things. 

These people employ numerous methods and varying data to produce feasible insights to boost your enterprise’s income and widen its clientele.

The teams are not scared of taking risks. Even when failure is clearly in front of them, they have no fear of trying something new. As long as they don’t deplete their resources, they revise their methods if it doesn’t work and test alternative options. Yet, if everything goes according to plan, the enterprise wins.

Daily activities of the teams are: enhancing client loyalty, eliminating barriers that prevent clients from getting to the finished line (sales), developing landing pages, repurposing content, and devising emails. 

Benchmarks to Look Out For

Standard benchmarks people utilize to track the potency of this tactic include: 

  • Boosted traffic
  • Retention stats
  • Boost in client referrals, both directly and indirectly
  • Rise in qualified leads

Demand Generation

Like the other, this data-driven tactic enables enterprises to raise awareness for their deals and packages. It educates individuals about deals and packages, discusses their advantages, and remains by their side throughout purchasing.

This tactic involves determining the intended market, discovering their pains and needs and how your offer can improve the quality of their life or work, and then advertising your offer as the remedy.

The procedure often includes curating informational content via pertinent media to relate to prospective clients or patronizers and searching for buyer intent at critical junctures, utilizing omnichannel methods. This Hubspot study shows that 82% of marketers utilize content to meet their intended market. 

The aim is to raise consciousness and build a rigid, trusted relationship between both parties. If your intended market sees you as an authority or credible enterprise, they wouldn’t think twice about patronizing you. 

This tactic utilizes a sales funnel and develops pertinent information and insights that address clients’ needs at every stage of the funnel. The information that caters to people at the TOFU stage isn’t the same as that which caters to people at the BOFU stage.

Demand gen funnel

Even folks who had never considered that thing before become really interested in it when you reach the TOFU level. This level benefits from primary informative videos and blog posts. But, in the BOFU stage, you need to develop and create in-depth material like webinars, whitepapers, and case studies.

This tactic unites designated teams within the establishment to concentrate on accurately projecting a sales funnel while focusing on recurring income and referral campaigns. This tactic is more concerned with shortening the sales cycle than long-term expansion.

What Do These Teams Do?

These teams concentrate on discovering new markets, curating content for them, obtaining leads, piquing their curiosity, and maintaining engagement. 

A typical demand gen team comprises specialists determining their intended market, employing analytical technologies, watching client choices, and recognizing the right techniques to reach their objectives. 

Typical roles in such teams include: 

  • Director: supervises designated teams within the establishment and assigns duties. 
  • Vice President: The VP supervises the execution of the plan
  • Operation Manager: Oversees the systems and equipment utilized for data-driven efforts.
  • SEO Specialist: oversees SEO campaigns and material
  • Content Strategist: in charge of developing the content plan and media-specific distribution tactics
  • Copywriter: develops and edits copy

Consider outsourcing your campaign to a top-notch agency like FrescoData if your enterprise can’t afford such devoted staff.

Standard Benchmarks to Watch Out For

  • Cost Per Acquisition
  • Close Rate
  • SQLs and MQLs
  • Cost Per Lead
  • Lifetime Value
  • Conversion Rates

Similarities Between Both Tactics

It’s super easy for individuals to interchange both tactics, and they’re not entirely wrong. Both tactics are almost similar. Some similarities to consider include the following: 

Data-driven Tactics

Both tactics use data to run campaigns and reach their intended market. They track KPIs and benchmarks and measure daily, weekly, and monthly developments. 

Reaching Ideal Clients

Both tactics work with intent data. They concentrate on reaching the ideal clients rather than hopping from one tactic to another, expecting results. 

They Align Designated Teams 

In both tactics, designated teams (mainly marketing and sales) join forces to create a plan to obtain leads, transform them, and make more money. 

Difference Between Both Tactics

Both strategies are dissimilar for the following reasons:


One is concerned with growth, while the other is with income.

As the name suggests, the former is concerned with growth, while the latter is concerned with income. Does this mean that the latter isn’t concerned about growth? Not at all. It’s more concerned with reducing the sales cycle. 

Furthermore, does this mean that more money doesn’t lead to growth? Not all the time. Although income is a critical growth component, raising money without significantly improving other growth indicators is probable. 

All elements of the pirate funnel (AAARRR) are optimized through growth marketing to cut expenses from client acquisition and boost loyalty. The three As in the AAARRR funnel concentrate on transforming ideas and assisting clients in appreciating the enterprise’s worth. At the same time, the three Rs maintain those clients and draw new clients in by learning from their experiences.

Team Structure

Establishments barely have devoted demand gen teams since they spread the tasks across the board since designated teams within the establishment can take up one or all of those tasks. 

Growth marketing teams, however, collaborate across departments. Designers, developers, copywriters, content producers, and operation managers comprise a standard team.

Some establishments have such teams in-house. But, outsourcing to a top-notch agency with committed staff will free up your time to work on more vital aspects of the establishment. 

Dissimilar Retention and Referral Systems

Growth marketing establishes long-term enterprises, while demand gen concentrates on short-term sales. Does this mean the latter doesn’t consider client retention? Not at all. It’s not just a big priority compared to its counterpart. 

Demand generation raises the market’s consciousness.  The enterprise establishes itself as an expert by giving prospects pertinent information and responding to their inquiries. 

Brands continuously produce materials to entice their intended market, and the cycle repeats once they purchase something. This tactic prioritizes client acquisition above upselling and referrals. 

However, growth marketing concentrates on both sides equally. People have realized long-term enterprises cannot always rely on luring new clients all the time. Your clientele has to be strong enough to entice new clients via referrals, even if you never rerun an ad.

Which Tactic Should You Go For?

There is no simple solution to this. Enterprises have utilized both tactics to widen their client and grow their income. Choosing an appropriate tactic is solely dependent on your model. 

Demand gen is typically crucial for early-stage enterprises that want to spread the word about their deals and offers. Yet, growth marketing aids enterprises that have already raised awareness in establishing an environment that promotes long-term success.

Both tactics can operate simultaneously.

Let FrescoData Guide You

FrescoData is a data-driven agency that offers insights and customized information to enable your enterprise to discover new markets and boost its income. 

Thanks to our top-notch automated and analytical technologies, we can mirror offline and online digital campaigns by utilizing both tactics for excellent outcomes.

The best part? We never jeopardize privacy. 

Contact FrescoData right away for assistance. 

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