📦 - Did We Just Become Best Friends?
May 21, 2023
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Monday, October 3, 2022

Did we just become best friends?!

In this newsletter, you’ll find: 👇

📦 A dark posting hack for TikTok

📦 Learn exactly which campaigns and platforms drive your DTC brand the most revenue with Northbeam

📦 The inspiration you need for uber-clickable CTAs

📦 Use one-click AI with Black Crow AI to group your site visitors into profiles based on their likelihood to buy

📦 The 7 deadly sins of cashflow management

Read till the end to access exclusive DTC swag. 😎

👉 If a pal forwarded this to you, subscribe, so you never miss out.


Don’t Know How to Darkpost on TikTok? You Do Now

We bet you didn’t even know you could dark post on TikTok. However, TikTok has made dark posting content available without making a big fuss about it to advertisers.

Here’s what the Pilothouse TikTok team has discovered: 👇

  • Simply upload your video to your TikTok organic
  • Make your video private
  • In video settings, select “Branded content and ads”
  • Next, select “Ad authorization” and “Only show in ads”

Voila! Easy as that. Now your brand or a creator can share a spark ad code with you and you’ll be dark posting in no time! 💡

This feature (or hack) bridges the gap between improved performance on spark ads and allowing a major variety of testing within standard ad placements.

This is your chance for testing galore! 🚀

Note: spark ads do re-direct to your organic page if users click your username. Make sure you have a solid organic presence on the platform!


Meet the new gold standard of ad attribution—Northbeam!

You’ve spread your ad budget across several platforms and ad campaigns.

The next move is to learn exactly which campaigns and platforms drive your DTC brand the most revenue. 💸

But, how do you see which ads are working and which you should abandon? Northbeam.

Northbeam uses the world’s best first-party to show you the true impact of your ad spend and tells you what channels, campaigns, and creatives are making you money!

Developed by data scientists, media buyers, and marketers with decades of experience scaling brands, Northbeam is more than an e-commerce analytics platform — it’s your guide to profitable growth.

👉 Start your journey with Northbeam today and have your best Q4 ever!


Inspo for Creative and Uber-Clickable CTAs

“Shop Now.” “Learn More.” “Sign Up.”

Good ol’ classic CTAs.

But don’t they just get a little… boring? 🥱

Yeah, we think so too. After all, the text you use on your CTA buttons is not just a conversion tactic. It’s an opportunity to let your brand voice shine and bring a smile to your customer’s faces.

Now, we’re not suggesting swearing off the almighty “Shop Now” for good, but it might not hurt to test some variations on your CTAs. You might be surprised how they perform!

To get your creative juices flowing, here are some of the most unique (and utterly clickable) CTAs we’ve seen lately. 👇

🏊‍♂️ Huckberry: “JACKNIFE!”

This CTA from a Huckberry sales email has us stoked for summer (and these groovy swim trunks!) Fun and relevant catchphrases can be a simple swap for the usual “Shop” button.

🍑 Tushy: “SIGN MY A** UP”

Instead of the same old “Subscribe” or “Sign Up” which a savvy shopper is likely to ignore… Tushy’s pop-up catches your attention with a well-placed potty pun.


Here’s another fun one from Tushy for good measure (their website is full of creative CTAs if you need inspo’). Who doesn’t want to feel like a king or queen on their porcelain throne?

💀 Liquid Death: “KILL PLASTIC”

This CTA is spot-on for Liquid Death’s branding and a refreshing alternative to the typical “Learn More” button. (This link takes you to a page about why aluminum is environmentally superior to plastic.)


We dig this double-meaning CTA text by Super Coffee. Positive energy ✨ and positive energy ☕. Clever.

Keep scrollin’ for more creative CTA inspo’. 👇


How this beauty brand added a bit of holiday magic to their marketing

iOS 14.5 may be the Scrooge of holiday ad performance, but there’s good news. 🎁

With a pivot in strategy and the right tools, you can put those ad dollars right where it counts—toward your most-likely buying customers.

With Black Crow AI, you no longer have to worry about iOS updates. Instead of tracking third party cookies, their platform uses one-click AI to group your site visitors into profiles based on their likelihood to buy (low, medium, and high).

Then, you can turn those profiles of likely purchasers into tangible lists for your marketing campaigns.

Alleyoop is one brand that adopted BlackCrow AI’s tech and saw stunning results during their 2021 holiday push, including:

  • 55% increase in revenue
  • 50% more marketing-driven sales
  • 10% higher ROAS in their Facebook holiday campaign

👉 Read the case study to find out how Alleyoop used BlackCrow AI to boost holiday ad performance and learn how you maximize your holiday ad spend this season too.

Creative – Part 2

🦖 MeUndies: “ENTER THE PARK”

The perfect CTA for a limited-edition Jurassic Park collection. (Let’s face it, ALL the copy here by MeUndies is killer. 👌)

🍸 Seedlip: “HAPPY SIPPING”

This CTA by Seedlip is the definition of uber-clickable. Instead of inviting customers to “Shop” or “Buy,” they’re proposing a Garden Party with delicious mocktails. Yes, please!

Eddie at VeryGoodCopy: “💔 💔 💔”

Who says you have to stick to text in your CTAs? Using emojis is another effective way to portray emotion, show personality, and stimulate curiosity (which ultimately leads to clicks). Plus, you can get super creative with them!

🕺 Four Sigmatic: “DECLINE WITH REGRET.”

Sometimes it’s less about the text on the CTA and more about the experience after you click.

In this email (a webinar invite) from Four Sigmatic, we found ourselves thinking “hmmm… wonder what happens if you decline?”

To our delight, the link led to a Finnish Disco Lesson video on YouTube (which, in our humble opinion, is 5000% a must-watch). Props to Four Sigmatic for taking advantage of this small opportunity to make their customer’s day. 👏

🥣 Off Limits Cereal: “CEREAL SUCKS :(”

This pop-up from Off Limits Cereal uses a similar tactic. What could possibly happen if (in the unlikely case you’re a psychopath, of course) you clicked “cereal sucks :(“?

We put on our detective hats to find out… and got taken to this TikTok video about why, in fact, cereal does NOT suck. Genius.

👉 We hope you’re officially inspired to step outside that CTA box, surprise and delight your customers, let that brand personality shine and who knows, maybe even see your click-through rates soar!

Cash Flow Management

Show Me The Money

You’ve got the product, sorted the distribution, and even got a sweet deal on your packaging. Awesome! But… Ron Shah, CEO of Obvi wants to know if you have your cashflow management skills locked down? 👀

Ron’s Twitter thread outlined what he calls “the 7 Deadly Sins of Cash Flow Management.” Keep reading to see if your finances are in order.

💰 Focusing too much on interest rate

When looking into business loans for your brand, interest isn’t the only important factor.

Yes, a lower interest rate is nice, but here’s three other factors to consider:

  1. What’s the term of the loan?
  2. Is the loan secured?
  3. Is there any flexibility built into the repayment plan?

🏠 Keep your financial house in order

If record-keeping and other finance-based tasks are on the bottom of your to-do list, it’s time to prioritize them.

Ron suggests being diligent about keeping your financial records in order and shell out for a great accountant.

☔️ No rainy day reserves

Don’t pocket every nickel and dime you make, and don’t put 100% of it back into the business either!

Take some of your hard-earned operating cash and toss it into a savings fund. You never know when you might need it.

The Obvi team puts $5K per month away just in case.

😎 Invoices =/= chill

How big is your accounts receivable number right now? It’s exciting to see it grow, but the money isn't actually yours until it hits your account and your AR sheet is $0.

Ron suggests following up, putting pressure, and being desperate when collecting the money you’re owed.

📈 Unrealistic sales projections

Your sales goals can be big, but make sure that number is actually achievable! If you have it, use historical evidence to make objective and realistic sales projections.

At Obvi, they create best case, worst case, and most probable scenarios in their modeling.

💸 Overspending on sales and general expenses

When starting out, brands need to spend more to get the resources they need for product creation, marketing, selling, and delivering. No surprise here!

However, once your business is past the start-up stage, you should be looking to lower that number. Obvi’s SG&A expenses are now less than 10% of their profit and loss sheet.

🥸 Not knowing your numbers

As a founder, it’s mission critical to know your numbers! When someone asks what your:

  • Conversion rate
  • Lifetime value and retention rates
  • Customer acquisition cost
  • $ amount on hand

You should know! You’ve gotta know your numbers to have a handle on your cash flow.

Any tips you’d add to managing your cashflow? Reply to this email and let us know!

Quick Hits

🐦 Twitter leans into emerging video trends with new video showcase elements.

🛍 9 new features and tools for easier shopping on Google.

🥷 Microsoft says two new Exchange zero-day bugs under active attack, but no immediate fix.

☎️ Facebook: Using call ads to grow your business.

🥸 TikTok says fake account removal increased 61% to 33.6M in Q2 2022.

🔊 Have you heard our latest podcasts?

🔋 Two Hacks to Increase Subscriber Conversion by 50% with Tea Drops and Recharge.

🦷 Thinking in Billions with Josh Elizetxe Founder of Snow Oral Care.

👟 Retail Giant Steve Madden on Retention at Scale with Hannah Sinclair and Bluecore's Sarah Cascone.

💄 Growth vs. Customer Experience: Cody Plofker and Eli Weiss from Jones Road Beauty Weigh In.

🕺 Disco's Benjamin Smith on Nailing Your Product Market Fit With Creative, Offer, and Landing Page.

🆕 Overcoming the New Normal With a Content Creator Network, Crossrope's Srjdan Popovic Returns!

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

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

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