📦 Building Blocks For A Baby Brainiac
May 21, 2023
Content Tag


Saturday, June 11, 2022

Welp, kids’ science experiments sure have come a long way…

Just look no further than KiwiCo,  a DTC brand inspiring the next generation of innovators and problem-solvers. 👩‍🔬

KiwiCo has awesome down to a science with over 1,500 expertly designed projects, empowering kids to explore, create, and learn with hands-on kits delivered monthly.

For this edition of DTC Brand Breakdowns, we’re putting on our lab coats to analyze this brand’s marketing channels!

In this newsletter, you’ll find: 👇

📦 Brand Breakdown Part 1: KiwiCo (Facebook)

📦 Connecting with TikTok creators can be simple and seamless with #paid

📦 Find gold nuggets on what consumers really think about subscriptions with Ordergroove

Read till the end to access exclusive DTC swag. 😎

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Let’s get nerdy and dissect some ads. 👇

1️⃣ Definitely the cannonball launcher, WBU?

Where it shines:

  • Superb graphic that visually displays the opportunities for fun projects at their store. We also love using the quad format for showing multiple options.  
  • Starting with a question in the copy can grab attention and drive engagement in comments, which helps boost ad performance and drive brand recognition.

💡 Pro tips from Pilothouse:

While this ad encourages engagement, it’s a little weak on the conversion side. We’d recommend a stronger description headline and CTA here, maybe using more branded copy like “Science Kits for Kids,” “Explore Awesome,” or “Shop Kits.”

2️⃣ Let’s get musical

Where it shines:

  • This is a “whitelisted ad” run through an influencer’s account (Us the Duo). These typically perform really well and are an interesting strategy to test!
  • We love the testimonial-style copy in the post-text – feels super authentic and not as sales-y.
  • Cool photo that shows how the products come delivered (and an excited kiddo doesn’t hurt, either). It could be interesting to test this against an unboxing video.
  • More optimized description and CTA headline here!

💡 Pro tips from Pilothouse:

We’d suggest using emojis in the body to break up the text and draw users' eyes a bit more.

Something we tend to see work well with whitelisted ads is having the brand partner give a special offer (discount, free shipping, free gift, etc.). It makes people feel like they’ve won by finding this ad in the wild!

3️⃣ Brain-building play

Where it shines:

  • The use of a testimonial at the beginning of ad copy adds authenticity for viewers. We’d suggest adding ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ or another emoji so that you know it’s a positive review right away.
  • Brain-building play is a unique benefit statement. We like it!

💡 Pro tips from Pilothouse:

The creative image is teriffic because a) it shows the product in action and b) it uses UGC to create authenticity… however, at this angle, the product does look a little bit like several water bottles stacked on the floor. So if this ad isn’t performing, they might consider testing it against another piece of creative.


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4️⃣ Starry-night STEM

Where it shines:

  • Starting the copy with a call-to-action (“Learn about”) gets readers primed to take action. Having the CTA in the body copy is also a neat strategy for cross-promoting the same ad on Instagram since IG doesn’t show the bottom headline section.
  • The body copy explains the benefits of the product and encourages parents to give their kids something that will last.
  • We love a good UGC video with layover text.
  • Really powerful copy in the headline and description here!

💡 Pro tips from Pilothouse:

Not everyone may be familiar with the terms “STEM” or “STEAM” (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math, in case you were wondering). So they may want to consider spelling out those acronyms or using more lay-person language so that more people understand the product.

5️⃣ Playtime with purpose

Where it shines:

  • The value-add of the product is really clear here; getting new toys delivered every month that are designed to build new skills as your child grows.
  • The creative here looks very professional: a brand logo with a clean and bold text overlay. We also love that it shows multiple families using the product.

💡 Pro tips from Pilothouse:

“Designed by experts” is a good USP, but it could be clearer. What kind of experts? Scientists? Engineers? Child psychologists?

The text overlay on the video changes realllllly fast, so it’s hard to read (unless you’re one of those darn talented speed readers). They may want to slow it down or use less text to fit everything in with longer frames.


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6️⃣ BYO uke’

Where it shines:

  • From the short copy to the punchy video, this ad looks super authentic and like something straight outta TikTok. You almost don’t even notice that it’s a whitelisted ad!
  • We’d play around with adding some emojis to speak to a younger audience.
  • This could be a great retargeting ad to test.

💡 Pro tips from Pilothouse:

The headline could definitely be stronger, maybe something like “I built my own ukelele 😍.”

7️⃣ Vet for a day?

Where it shines:

  • “Discover” is another excellent first word that calls the reader to action.
  • This video does an excellent job of showcasing the product and how it works. The text layover is also crisp and clear.

💡 Pro tips from Pilothouse:

The headline could be stronger here, too. We like to see this valuable real estate used to its maximum potential! Instead of “KiwiCo Store Exclusives,” which doesn’t tell you much, they could use a more value-driven statement like “Education delivered,” “Tested by kids,” or “100% WHOA AWESOME.”

8️⃣ Third-party review

Where it shines:

  • Very cool use of a third-party review as an ad, which can drive a ton of credibility and brand awareness for new audiences.
  • The comparison angle is an interesting approach and can encourage customers to purchase more quickly since they feel like someone is doing the research for them!
  • Love the fact that the main benefit of “entertaining your kid for hours” is front and center.

💡 Pro tips from Pilothouse:

The use of a KiwiCo testimonial in the body copy kind of defeats the purpose of the “mystery” around who wins the comparison. We’d be interested in trying more curiosity-provoking copy to see what performs better.

👋 Stay tuned for Part 2 of the KiwiCo brand breakdown — email!


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🛋 $50K to $21 Million: How Noa Home Scales Furniture Globally (and 4x ROAS Profitably).

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Don’t forget to rate the DTC Podcast  on Apple (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

DTC Newsletter is written by Rebecca Knight, Jordan Gillis, and Kelsey Hess. Edited by Claire Beveridge and Eric Dyck.

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