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The HIPE framework: a prioritisation framework for growth marketers

Article originally published in October 2023 by Stuart Brameld. Most recent update in April 2024.

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The HIPE framework is a prioritisation framework designed to help marketing and growth teams determine the order in which to work on experiment ideas.

Prioritisation frameworks help marketing and growth teams to:

  1. Manage internal stakeholders
  2. Bring transparency to team priorities
  3. Eliminate opinions around what is and isn’t important
  4. Empower people to share ideas they feel will have impact

What are the key scoring frameworks?

Opportunity evaluation is an important skill for any high impact growth team that will improve over time. Working on the right projects instead of the wrong ones has a huge impact on team results. These scoring help you to determine what to prioritise and the best places to start.

A number of frameworks existing for evaluating opportunities and prioritising your marketing resources. Some of the most popular are shown below.

FrameworkDeveloped byScoring factors
RICESean McBride at IntercomReach, Impact, Confidence, Effort
ICESean Ellis at GrowthHackersImpact, Confidence, Effort
PIEChris Goward at WiderFunnelPotential, Importance, Ease
HiPPOn/aHighest paid person’s opinion
BRASSDavid Arnoux at Growth TribeBlink, Relevance, Availability, Scalability, Score
HIPEJeff Chang at PinterestHypothesis, Investment, Precedent, Experience
DICETJeff Mignon at PentalogDollars (or revenue) generated, Impact, Confidence, Ease, Time-to-money
PXLPeep Laja at CXLAbove the fold, noticeable within 5 sec, high traffic pages, ease of implemention and more.
Prioritisation frameworks for growth

HIPE framework history

The HIPE framework (developed by Jeff Chang during his time at Pinterest) was designed to address some of the perceived shortcomings of the more popular ICE framework, particularly the challenge of predicting Impact and Confidence with accuracy.

In growth, working on the right projects instead of the wrong ones is usually at least a factor of 10 in terms of experiment impact. It’s normal to have many experiments that don’t beat the control group and therefore have no impact. However, you do want some major successes to balance those out. Great experiment evaluation is a required skill for any high impact growth team. 

Jeff Chang, Pinterest

How to use the HIPE prioritisation framework

Unlike some other prioritisation frameworks it is specifically designed for growth and experimentation and finding great growth opportunities.

HIPE framework factors – Image source

The HIPE prioritisation formula

HIPE is a list 4 factors, as opposed to a more rigid formula like PXL. Below are the core questions from the framework as well as other questions to consider based on Jeff Chang’s original article.

FactorQuestionConsiderations
HypothesisWhy will this idea have a significant impact on metrics?Opportunity size / affected users?
Increasing intent or decreasing friction?
InvestmentHow much time will we have to invest in this project?Time to develop/implement?
Time to maintain?
PrecedentIs there a precedent for this working in the past?Relevant past experiment?
Note: avoid industry benchmarks where possible
ExperienceIs this change a good user experience?How does this impact longer-term quality metrics?

Resources

Recommended additional reading on the HIPE scoring framework and prioritisation in general.

Final thoughts

For marketing and growth teams, the specifics of the various different scoring frameworks, and their pros and cons matters far less than picking one and implementing it within your team.

Creativity combined with rapid iteration are the keys to making progress on user growth. Remember that you can get to 10X growth by a combination of 2Xing a few different metrics, hitting one out of the park, or getting 10% increases across the board. They all multiply together to be 10X. If you can brainstorm a lot of ideas, going for quantity over quality, you’ll have a lot of ideas to evaluate for impact versus cost.

Andrew Chen

Got questions? Ping me on LinkedIn or on Twitter.

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