Thanks for joining us

Follow up to Online Marketing in Changing Times

Thank you so much for joining us last week for our Meetup on Online Marketing in Changing Times.

Our panelists

Osa Gaius: Founder of Parrotmob

Osa is the founder and CEO of ParrotMob, a SMS marketing platform for Shopify stores. Before starting ParrotMob, Osa led engineering teams at Mailchimp and BlackRock.

Jayna Grassel: Senior Director, Marketing Strategy at Bounteous

Jayna Grassel oversees digital marketing programs for enterprise-level clients. As a Senior Director of Marketing Strategy, she works on eCommerce, financial, healthcare and B2B clients to design short and long-term digital strategies with a creative bend. Jayna is a trainer at heart and speaks at local meet-ups and national conferences, including MozCon. Her specialities include Paid Media, SEO, Local Search and holistic web marketing. In her spare time, she likes to go fly fishing, volunteer on local community boards and crochet.

Bob Strachan: Founding Partner of Metacake

Bob started his career in strategy consulting for US and European multinationals all across Asia with the Monitor Group out of their Hong Kong office. Bob started his first ecommerce business in 1997 and since then has been working to help companies leverage technology strategy into real growth. Bob started several businesses and currently co-owns Metacake, a leading ecommerce growth team that helps brands unlock ecommerce opportunities and drive sales growth online. Bob has worked with some of the fastest-growing and most influential brands in the world including - Tony Robbins, P&G, Elvis Presley’s Graceland, Dr. Axe, Groove Rings, Walmart and many more.

Mark Lupton: Partner & Fractional CFO/COO at Amplify

Mark Lupton is Partner & Fractional CFO/COO at Amplify. He helps small businesses find hidden profits and avoid cash flow problems. Mark also serves as co-host of the Austin Shopify Meetup (1000+ members). He holds an MBA in entrepreneurship and engineering bachelor’s degree.

Discussion notes

How has the marketing atmosphere changed in the last three months?

Osa Gaius:
  • The shift from retail-first to online-first has forced merchants to develop new marketing and sales channels.

    • Grocery stores → online butchers

  • Online brands have the hand up to develop and take away some new shoppers

Jayna Grassel
  • We’ve seen irregular shopping patterns with Black Friday & Cyber Monday-like conversion rates.

    • Increased basket sizes and more demand for essential items and niche products (e.g. at-home nail kits, hair clippers, patio furniture)

  • 3 months into the pandemic, we’re seeing ad fatigue over safety messages.

  • With consumers streaming more online TV and a growth in screen time, brands have more ad options on streaming platforms. More inventory = a wider brand reach and more impressions.

Bob Strachan:

  • A lot of changes and a lot of opportunities

  • Customers are looking for something different with regard to brand messaging

  • Great opportunity for brands to stand out and gain traction

  • You can’t build a brand on a marketplace

    • Simply transactional

  • Multiple channels help diversify your risk

  • DTC channel keeps you closest to your customers

What should we be doing differently right now?

Osa Gaius:
  • We should be making sure to prioritize deep customer relationships over sales.

    • Need to be constantly checking in with them

  • Brands are forced to think about their DTC channel

  • Cut through the noise with authenticity -- be honest

Jayna Grassel
  • According to a Gartner report, 60% of consumers prefer in-store shopping. With limited retail options available, customers will be moving online, many for the first time.

    • Brands should develop strategies that replicate in-store experiences and be intentional with their online storefronts to cater to new online shoppers.

    • This means investing in marketing and on-site development items:

      • strong product visuals

      • decision-making tools

      • user reviews

      • reorganizing site technology to focus on present realities

  • People are questioning everything so you have to stay authentic

    • Zoom comercial vs commercially shot video

  • Segment your users -- don’t hit them with the normal flow

Bob Strachan:
  • Survive then think as long term as you can

  • Listening to customers

  • Be real/authentic

  • Be kind

  • Step back and assess the "health" of your brand

    • Do my customers know why I love serving them

  • Focus on authentic post sale relationships not just acquisition

  • Every action (email, ad, campaign) should add value

What tactics should we be considering when approaching our customers right now?

Osa Gaius
  • We should be approaching customers where they are (at home and on their smartphones).

  • Email needs to be more like content/organic social marketing

    • The reason needs to be clear

  • Try just basic social networking to share your experience

Jayna Grassel:
  • June Week 1, we saw customers have more predictable, consistent shopping patterns. Optimism is returning and people are less worried about stockpiling items.

  • In the “new normal”, brands should focus on being honest and relatable in their marketing.

    • Out of touch brands stick out in a world where priorities for most consumers have shifted drastically from earlier in the year.

  • Companies need to be transparent:

    • Communicate about supply chain, shipping delays, in-stock items and alternative pick-up methods like curbside pickup or Buy Online Pick Up in Store.

    • Brands should strategically plan when and where to inform users.

      • Is that information best served in an ad, on a site banner, or in a thank-you email, post purchase?

      • They just need to be properly informed

  • Be willing to listen and adapt messaging to avoid fatigue

  • Return on investment isn’t the only lens on advertising anymore -- need to take a stand

  • Contests

Bob Strachan:
  • It's ok to sell

  • selling should = helping

  • Be real

  • Prove that you are a brand that matters not just trying to make $$

  • Take the time to get to know them better

  • Do things that don't scale

  • Focus on the customers that you already have first - esp. the ones that really like you!

  • Bring in your team to see what creative things you can do

  • Influencers

What is the most important metric to track?

Osa Gaius:
  • Customer Conversions per month

  • NPS -- What do people think about your brand?

Jayna Grassel
  • Retention

    • Identify, segment, and market to first-time customers who purchased in the last 3 months differently than their typical customer base.

  • Re-engage loyalty audiences

    • Win-back campaigns for lapsed customers who haven’t purchased in 3 to 6 months

    • Extending loyalty point expiration dates and rewarding customers with extra points

    • Providing premium customer service options

  • Every business has different goals so different metrics depending what that goal is

Bob Strachan:
  • Social channels & store engagement (traffic/clicks, video views, time on site, etc.)

  • Customer satisfaction scores

  • Email opens/clicks

  • AOV - can you encourage your best customers to spend more with you

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