A framework created by Boxter to help companies grow smarter and faster

Written by Michael Riley on February 11, 2015

Do you hear these phrases about marketing?

  • "Throw stuff against the wall and see what sticks."

  • "Spray and pray."

  • "We know 50% of what we do works, but we're not sure which 50%."

  • "It's worked in the past."


What's the cost of inefficient marketing?


Millions of dollars are wasted every day on marketing that did not produce a return. And what about lost opportunity cost? Many companies are afraid to take risks and experiment with new marketing strategies and technology. 

How do you currently do marketing?

There is an endless list of marketing tools and strategies. A lot of companies use a hit or miss approach based on analytics. Some companies use the assumptions approach of "what do we think our customers want to hear?". The Pragmatic framework has set the standard for marketing education for many years. The usual approach is to launch a campaign, and then see if it works or not.

What's the problem with marketing frameworks?

There's no guarantee of marketing success, especially if you are doing the same thing as everyone else. Modern software tends to be overly complicated and have a high learning curve. A lot of marketing people don't really understand why something fails and what would have worked better. Marketing frameworks fail to include elements like design, story or iteration, let alone a simple step-by-step process. Companies often play it safe and do what everyone else is doing. 

What has changed the game?

There is now more online marketing noise than people in the world. And the Internet keeps accelerating faster and faster every minute. Traditional marketing no longer has the same old ROI. 


- Every MINUTE - 

- 1,400 new Blog posts -

- 48 hours new YouTube videos -

- 350,000 new Tweets -


How does Lean Marketing work?


Step 1:  Customer Discovery & Development
(Problem Solving)


  • Phase 1 - State the hypothesis 

  • Phase 2 - Research the problem

  • Phase 3 - Test solution and do competitive analysis

  • Phase 4 - Verify or Pivot


The goal of Step 1 is to find out who your customers are and whether the problem you are solving is important to them. It's important to test out every hypothesis about the problem, customers and product/service. You have to "get outside the building" in front of real customers and collect real feedback.


Questions to answer:
What are high-value customer problems?
What about your product/service solves these problems?
Who specifically is your customer?
Who makes or influences the buying decisions?


Interviewing potential customers should not create the vision for the marketing campaign. Instead you want to test out the marketing assumptions created by your team. It's important to learn these lessons early and find what doesn't work. 



Step 2 - Customer Testing & Validation


  • Phase 1 - Create value proposition and messaging

  • Phase 2 - Get in front of more customers

  • Phase 3 - Develop content strategy and personas 

  • Phase 4 - Verify or Pivot


The goal of Step 2 is to build a proven and repeatable sales process for the marketing team.  This is achieved by field-testing with as many early customers as possible. Customer validation proves you have found a set of customers and a market that react positively to your product or service. The sales process is validated when a target customer completes a purchase.


Question to answer:
How can we provide value to our customers and make them happy?


Requirements to continue:


1. Unique Value Proposition

2. Customer Personas

3. Competitive Analysis

4. Content Strategy



Step 3 - Customer Growth (Growth Hacking)

  • Phase 1 - Editorial calendar around content strategy 

  • Phase 2 - Test and prioritize channels

  • Phase 3 - Publish campaigns and track data points

  • Phase 4 - Iterate until saturation is reached


The goal for Step 3 is to build on the success of initial sales by creating more demand and drive it into the company's sales funnel. Marketing spending can now be increased since it has been validated.


Question to answer:
What will make our customers grow and share our product/service exponentially?


Step 4 - Brand Building
(Customer Awesomeness!)


  • Phase 1 - Reach mainstream customers

  • Phase 2 - Review goals and teams

  • Phase 3 - Grow and mature the brand

  • Phase 4 - Build out company for customers/brand


Step 4 is time is to scale up marketing efforts and build out the brand based on the results of the first three steps. Now that you have a validated sales process and scalable ways to acquire more customers it's time to expand the marketing team and grow the company rapidly.


Questions to answer:
How do we make our customers feel awesome?
How do we make the company growth sustainable?


How do We Know Lean Marketing Works Better?


Learn more from our White Paper

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Case Study:

6000% Hypergrowth through Lean Marketing



White Paper:

Metrics and Competitive Analysis for Lean Marketing