📦 - Let’s Hear It For The Coupons!
May 21, 2023
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Wednesday, November 30, 2022

CONGRATS! You made it through Black Friday and Cyber Monday! Time to kick back, relax, read your Wednesday dose of DTC, and fill out this quick subscriber survey.

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If you’re new to DTC, welcome! You’re in good company with fellow newcomers from Miller Road, Caravan Coffee Roasters, Funkin Cocktails, and Candle Co. 🕯

In this newsletter, you’ll find: 👇

📦 The benefits of using coupons in your Amazon listings

📦 Learn how the pandemic, supply chain issues, and the death of the cookie have forced CMOs to throw out their playbooks and re-assess their priorities

📦 Going on Shark Tank and how Plufl made seven figures TikToking about dog beds for humans

📦 Producing and scaling content exactly when you need it most

📦 Are you timing your social media posts correctly?

Read till the end to access exclusive DTC swag. 😎

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Should Coupons Be In Your Amazon Strategy?

If you’re worried about running coupons due to price sensitivity or brand perception, here are some facts we think you should know…

🎫 Coupons are a powerful tool that:

  • Boosts sales velocity
  • Increases your best seller rank (BSR)
  • Has long-lasting effects when combined with targeted advertising

What some brands don’t realize is that the actual cost of running a coupon on Amazon isn’t the same as a sale price since customers have to actively apply the coupon.

Typically, the Pilothouse Amazon team sees 40%-60% of people actually apply the coupon.

What does this mean?

When setting your coupon value, you can set it higher than your target discount. You get to show buyers an enticing offer but still end up in the black with the percentage of shoppers that take advantage of it! For example, if your brand is running a $10 coupon, but only 50% of purchasers clip the coupon, the true cost was only $5/sale. 🤯

Additionally, you will still usually see a boost in your conversion rate (CVR). The majority of the Pilothouse Amazon coupon experiments have resulted in an increase of units sold which translates to a boost in net profit.

For example, on a recent two-week makeup product coupon promotion of 20% off, the team saw:

  • 52% of purchasers apply the coupon
  • 2.19% increase in conversion rate (6.92% up to 9.11%)
  • 34% increase in revenue
  • 23% increase in profit
  • Best seller rank (BSR) increase: 10,281 (16,044 to 5,763)

Sure, coupons are handy to boost sales velocity and profit, but the true benefit is a lasting effect on increased rank and relevance. 👍

By being deliberate when you run a coupon and supporting it with targeted advertising for the keywords you are trying to rank for, you can increase sales volume through your target keywords.

If done correctly you will see a ranking increase and increased efficiency in your advertising, which in turn will make it easier to maintain your new rank moving forward.

Typically, the team runs their coupons for two-week sprints in order to maximize the benefit, give enough time to impact sales velocity, and not fatigue your customers.

For discounts, 20% has been a sweet spot for us to increase sales velocity, but even a dollar or two can have a measurable impact. As always, test it out for your brand and follow the data, happy testing!

Not sure how to maximize your returns and impact on Amazon? No worries, the Pilothouse Amazon Team has ya covered. Reach out!


What 100 CMOs have to say about the future of marketing

What if you could learn exactly what eCommerce brands and DTC marketing execs have to say about the current state of marketing?

Sign 👏 Us 👏 Up 👏

The good news: Wunderkind surveyed top marketing leaders on the state of marketing in 2022, and spun it into a must-read, in-depth report.

Their report explores how unique challenges like the pandemic, supply chain issues, and the death of the cookie have forced CMOs to throw out their playbooks and re-assess their priorities.

The best part?

You can find out exactly how these leaders suggest approaching these challenges, thinking outside the box, and paving a new and lucrative marketing path in today’s ever-evolving world. 🌎

👉 Read the CMO State of the Union report now to uncover fresh insights and unique opportunities for your DTC brand.


🎧 This week on the DTC pod, things are getting cozy with Yuki Kinoshita, the creator and co-founder of Plulf – the first-ever dog bed for humans. 😴

Plulf was created for nappers by nappers and has been featured on The Tonight Show, Good Morning America, the New York Post, Fox, The Dodo, and many more.

In this week’s episode, you’ll learn about Yuki's recipe for securing over a million dollars in sales before ever shipping a product, leveraging his Shark Tank experience after the fact, and much more.

‍The takeaways 👇

🤑 The million-dollar strategy

Yuki and his team saw incredible success with the launch of Plufl, seeing a huge spike in revenue before even starting to ship products out. So what was the secret? 👀

Well, like many other DTC brands are also experiencing, it’s no secret at all that a solid TikTok content strategy is playing a massive role.

“I think it's so important to create good organic content… because what happens is that TikTok can be a great testing platform. You go on there and you post videos… and even if it's a flop, it doesn't matter [because] tomorrow it's another video, and you do something else.

What you can do now is you can look at the videos that do well on TikTok and then select videos that you like and then repurpose them [for other platforms].”

🦈 Swimming with the sharks

Being on (and striking a deal with sharks Mark Cuban and Lori Greiner 🎉) was a game changer for Yuki and fellow co-founder Noah Silverman. However, they quickly realized that this was something that they could continue to capitalize on for the further success of their company.

“When you actually go on Shark Tank, the airing night traffic you get… is phenomenal. But what you can really do is take that and now you’re a Shark Tank brand forever. You can create so much content and ads… about how you've been seen on Shark Tank… So it really is just great for our brand, our continued traction, and getting ourselves imprinted in that in that world.”

💰 What Yuki would do with an extra $50K:

He’s doubling down on his TikTok content strategy.

“Making more content, honestly, and hiring a videographer part-time or full-time. We edit all our TikToks right now, and it's great, but it's time-consuming, and it limits the number of TikToks we can make. I think that's really where a lot of the money will go -- video creation and content creation.”

👉 Listen to the full episode with Yuki Kinoshita here!


🎁 The one thing many marketers forget during the holidays…

…is to test their UGC ad creatives in advance!

You probably know that UGC video ads are high converters because they are full of social proof, and you may be starting to wonder how you can leverage UGC video ads this Holiday season. 🤔

🏆 Knowing your winning ad formula makes it faster to produce and scale content exactly when you need it most (Hint - That's right now!).

Thankfully there's Insense! Their powerful creator marketplace helps you:

  • Get a steady flow of authentic UGC starting at $50 per video within 12 days.
  • Manage multiple collaborations simultaneously in one space.
  • And all of this is easily managed by one marketer.

👉 Get up to $200 credits for UGC until Dec 6 by clicking here to book a free strategy call!

P.S. - As a festive bonus, the free Creative Testing Guide from Insense helps you to identify the best-performing CTAs and hooks for higher conversions.

Social Media

❓ Who, what, and where

Have you noticed that a couple of posts didn’t land the way you expected them to? It could be down to the time you posted them.

This factor is often overlooked in the social media landscape, especially considering the impromptu nature of content.

When someone generates a creative idea or insightful thought piece, it’s totally normal to draft it up and post it right away. It’s so good! How could a brand sit on such good content? Trust us, before you tap that publish button, consider two things:

  • The time of day
  • The location of your audience

Their location could be hundreds of miles from your business’ headquarters. If you engage people all over North America, for example, try to identify the most invested people.

➕➖ It’s time for math

Once you have a list of your top three most popular regions, consider the time that your successful posts were published for those viewers.

If this is all new to you, there are some helpful guides and studies that we found online to help determine the most active times in each region across North America per platform.

You could determine that the best time to post on TikTok for your audience is 8:00pm on a Thursday. If your target audience is in Vancouver, British Colombia, then you would need to post at 11:00pm to compensate for the time difference and speak directly to that audience.

Hootsuite conducted a study of over 30,000 TikTok posts to gather information on the most optimal time to post each day. Generally, you want to consider posting at these times for your most engaged regions:

  • Late on Monday and Friday
  • In the mid-morning Tuesday to Thursday
  • Mid-day on the weekends

👑 Divide and conquer?

With all of these variables to consider, crossposting is starting to look like a great idea, isn’t it? We can see why but tread with caution here. Crossposting can save you plenty of time however, you also run the risk of looking disengaged, robotic, or even lazy!

Each platform has specifications for content. A comparison to make is Twitter with a 280-character limit, while Instagram creators have 2,200 characters to work with. Adapt your content to each platform so that each audience gets a tailored experience for their platform of choice.

⏰ Time it right

This provides even further value to scheduling your content across your social media portfolio.

Once a TikTok is drafted, write out a behind-the-scenes breakdown of the post with some bonus footage for your Instagram audience that could drive engagement on both platforms. Then, schedule them to both publish at the appropriate time.

While posts can be time-sensitive, there is no point in crossposting if it wastes an opportunity to engage your audiences.

Have you seen positive results in crossposting across your portfolio? Which platforms work well together? Let us know in a reply!

Quick Hits

✉️  Updates to Gmail searches.

📸  Snapchat arrives on Microsoft Store.

🐥  Twitter launches new ad targeting options.

👩‍💻  New Zoom Mail and Calendar give workers a ‘Toggle Tax’ break.

🤑  Black Friday, Cyber Monday divisions blur as shopping habits shift.

🏆  Shopify merchants set a new record.

🔊 Have you heard our latest podcasts?

💰 Wealthsimple, Harry Hothi - Marketing Wealth-Tech in a Downturn.

🐶 Puppy Dogs and Ice Cream: Jason Kutasi - Performance Marketing Children’s Books (To 8 Figures).

🪄 MagicLinks, Aleks Chojnacka: Influencer Marketing State of the Union (Plus the future of Live Shopping)

👻 Every Man Jack, Troy Petrunoff - Spooky Retention, Segmenting Gift Buyers, and BOOGO Gamified Sales.

📈 Scaling SPF and Finding Your Most Affluent Customers Ahead of the Recession with Supergoop and Lexer.

💡 Listen to the Biggest Marketing News Stories Today.

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

DTC Newsletter is written by Rebecca Knight, Kate Gullett, and Michael Venditti. Edited by Claire Beveridge and Eric Dyck.

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