As direct-to-consumer brands shift more of their marketing dollars towards television, streaming platforms like Hulu are also starting to take up a greater portion of their time and energy. Last year, lingerie startup ThirdLove did two custom sponsorships with Hulu, tied to two Hulu original series, Little Fires Everywhere and Mrs. America. Based on the success of those campaigns, ThirdLove vp of marketing Rebecca Traverzo said the company plans to pursue more custom sponsorships in the future. Meanwhile, telehealth platform Ro recently incorporated Hulu into its Valentine's Day campaign.
Five months in, and strategic differences between TikTok and Reels are emerging for brands. In particular, Reels has become the platform of choice for big, established brand accounts. In contrast, challenger brands -- and their influencer partners -- are gravitating more toward TikTok. That is thanks to a mix of algorithmic differences between the two platforms and an existing comfort with Instagram from incumbent companies.
Starting tomorrow, Modern Retail is unveiling two new email products: The DTC Briefing and the Amazon Briefing. Both will feature reported stories and exclusive analysis about their respective retail niches. The DTC Briefing will be delivered every Tuesday morning and the Amazon Briefing on Thursday mornings.
Over the past few years, Google has been testing out a variety of ad formats designed with e-commerce companies in mind. Now, it's starting to slowly change some of those advertising formats. These moves are indicative of Google's current strategy: streamlining its shopping advertising formats in favor of making it easier for merchants to run campaigns, as well as to run ads across more Google properties.
Other news to know
Vox looked into the experiences of Black employees at Amazon. In interviews with more than a dozen current and former Amazon employees, Vox found signs that Black employees “are promoted less frequently and are rated more harshly than non-Black peers.”
Etsy’s sales continue to skyrocket as the company reported during its fourth quarter earnings last week that revenue was $617.4 million for the fourth quarter, up 129% year-over-year. Masks made up 4% of total gross merchandise.
Outdoor Voices has named a new CEO — Gabriella Conforti, formerly the chief merchandising officer at Urban Outfitters. Outdoor Voices chairwoman Ashley Merrill has previously said that Outdoor Voices’ revenue grew 50% last year, after a tumultuous period following the resignation of founder Ty Haney as CEO.
The number of monthly broadcasters on Twitch nearly doubled in 2020, from 3.6 million to 6.9 million. And last month alone, viewers consumed over 2 billion hours of content. As Twitch grows and its demographic diversifies, many brands -- including those that might not conventionally associate themselves with gaming -- are realizing that their potential customers are already on the platform.
Lost packages typically mean lost revenue for retailers. With the current e-commerce sales boom, the chances of having to replace delayed or lost customer orders has increased. Despite having to eat the added costs, a number of brands are figuring out new ways to deal with this mounting problem.
After a year of significant e-commerce growth, Best Buy executives said the company is now focused on preparing for the shift to online shopping to remain permanent. During its fourth quarter earnings on Thursday, Best Buy reported that e-commerce sales were up 90%, and now represent 43% of its total sales. CEO Corie Barry said that the company is projecting that next year, e-commerce will still make up roughly 40% of sales. In order to prepare for this shift, Best Buy is rethinking both how its stores look, and how it staffs those stores.
Following into the steps of DTC brands like Harry's and Bevel, Old Spice is opening a barbershop concept store that doubles as a content studio. According to parent company Procter & Gamble, the Columbus, Ohio shop will be open to the public for grooming services. And it shows Old Spice trying out some new experiential marketing strategies.
Candice Matthews Brackeen is looking outside of typical Silicon Valley circles for the next billion-dollar company. She's a general partner at Lightship Capital, which raised a $50 million fund last summer that's focused on companies from the Midwest that have Black, Indigenous or People of Color (BIPoC) founders. "Right now we're trying to build the best portfolio possible to return capital to the LPs," she said on the Modern Retail Podcast.
After years of focusing on growing within large cities like New York and Los Angeles, skincare startup shop Heyday is going the franchise route to expand. The company, which closed a $20 funding round this month, is hoping the addition of a virtual consultation platform will help it gain a bigger presence.
Walmart is reaching out to sellers, trying to get them to try out its third-party marketplace. These direct reach-outs appear to be rare, limited only to the bigger players on Amazon, but they indicate Walmart’s increased commitment to bringing third-party sellers whose products have already found success on Amazon directly to the Walmart Marketplace.
Modern Retail Summit LIVE
Apr 21–Apr 23, 2021
At the Modern Retail Summit LIVE, retail executives will come together virtually to discuss effective strategies for driving sales by building a loyal customer base both online and offline.