The start of the holiday ads run usually takes place during the long Thanksgiving weekend. However, this year's schedule is all over the place, to say the least. Even before Halloween and Election Day have rolled around, retailers like Gap are already rolling out their national end-of-year TV and digital ads. Gap’s CMO Mary Alderete spoke about the brand is navigating this new terrain.
The days of tossed over branded swag seem long gone, thanks to young brands making branded apparel a core part of their marketing strategy. In recent years, brands like Glossier and SoulCycle proved a community of enthusiastic fans can act as walking billboards. Now, the awareness-growing tactic is being deployed even by new companies. Now, with in-person events out the window, merch is becoming even more important to DTC startups.
Now that the threat of a potential TikTok ban has all but subsided, e-commerce startups are ready to give their advertising dollars to TikTok. And TikTok wants to make it easier for them to do so, thanks to a new partnership with Shopify, that will make it easier for Shopify merchants to run new ads on TikTok. The new partnership signifies that TikTok -- and e-commerce advertisers' interest in it -- is here to stay.
This year, alcohol brands are getting creative in the ways they're making up for lost hospitality and on premise marketing. In recent months, this has mainly involved delivery platform paid campaigns and social media ads. But with live events at a halt for the time being, brands like Grey Goose are attempting to get customers to buy their drinks from the couch.
At most grocery stores, free samples are out the window. But one vegan frozen food company, Strong Roots, has been trying out a new program with a ghost food truck. Through this, Strong Roots can target regions where it's food is available in stores and then try and get customers to taste it via food delivery apps.
Lingerie startup Adore Me is encouraging more of its customers to become influencers. In February, the company launched its own self-serve platform called Creators, where social media influencers can sign up to promote product. Adore Me's self-serve approach is indicative of how direct-to-consumer startups' approach to influencer marketing has shifted over the past couple of years. Rather than trying to find the influencers with the most followers to promote their product, they're instead focusing on trying to find smaller creators who are more genuine fans of the company.
While parent company J.Crew streamlines operation after filing for bankruptcy protection this summer, Madewell is further building on its loyal following with a revamped rewards program. Chief marketing officer Derek Yarbrough spoke with Modern Retail about the points-based rollout, shoppers' loyalty and bridging the gap between stores and e-commerce during Covid-19.
Over an exceptionally difficult quarter, Diageo reported falling revenue in most countries outside North America, with total sales down 8.4% globally. But Baileys was one small bright spot, with 7.5% in U.K. sales and 9% growth in U.S. sales this year. This was thanks to the company glomming onto social media trends and popular online searches.
Over months of lockdown, many Facebook users have turned to the social media platform to communicate with the people in the next street, or even the next house. For ultra-small local businesses, usually run by a single individual or a few partners, these same groups have become a haven to communicate with customers, advertise their services and even run the business. For the customers themselves, often unable to travel to neighborhoods further afield, they’re a useful tool to connect with recommendations in their immediate area or support local businesses they know to be struggling.
Women’s lifestyle title Marie Claire is getting into the sampling business with the launch of Beauty Drawer. The first 5,000 members to sign up will receive samples of anti-aging cream from the launch partner, beauty brand StriVectin. With retail on lockdown "Working in skincare, samples are the number-one way to get people into a product."
Out-of-home advertising has slowly picked back up in recent months. But now DTC brands, who've long favored the sleek subway ads, are finding new ways to target potential customers as pedestrian foot traffic picks up in cities. Using LinkNYC kiosks allow new brands, like United Sodas, to modify campaign creatives based on daily factors "down to the weather, news cycle and even nearby restaurants," said CEO Marisa Zupan.
Instagram has become a vital and affordable tool for local mom and pop shops, especially when it comes to live updates on hours of operation, product availability and reopening plans. With the pandemic’s quickly-evolving nature, the platform's casual posting nature better lends itself to this info than Google. Meanwhile Google's small business information is often outdated or incorrect.
United Sodas of America unveiled its line of 12 flavors of low-calorie soda last May, which came after two years of development. At the most recent Modern Retail+ Talk, co-founder and CEO Marisa Zupan said the compant surpassed forecast sales by 5x over the past month. “Learning about people’s behavior at their delivery preference was valuable during this period,” she said.
In 2019, the popular headline was that email marketing was seeing diminishing returns. Then, everyone was forced to stay home and everything changed. New data shows that open rates have risen dramatically and email engagement is also on the rise. While it's not terribly surprising, it does mean that brands are rethinking some of their older tricks.
Startups with products that have been in-demand during the stay at home orders over the past few months are using the opportunity to introduce their products to a national audience. It's a tricky time for retailers to advertise right now, but for those who are confident in their messaging, there's a better chance that they can get viewers to remember them as other companies pull back.
New research finds that most millennial and Gen Z consumers would be willing to pay more for sustainable fashion and beauty products.
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