📦 - Need an Advantage?
May 21, 2023
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Monday, March 13, 2023

Email: the gift that never stops giving. ❤️‍🩹

In this newsletter, you’ll find: 👇

📦 Meta and True Classic: Zero to 9-figures in two years, powered by Meta advertising (and Advantage Plus Shopping Campaigns)

📦 Standing out from the crowd with remarkable content

📦 What you need to know when moving from Google Analytics 3 to 4

📦 Customer experience that turns shoppers into lifelong fans

📦 Why social commerce could explode your conversions in 2023

Read till the end to access exclusive DTC swag. 😎

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


🎧 Today on the DTC pod, we're joined by two ecommerce legends. Helen Crossley, Director of Marketing Science for the Small Business Group at Meta, and Ben Yahalom, President of True Classic.

🚨 Newsflash: Despite concerns around iOS14 updates and privacy changes, the golden days of scaling on Meta are far from over.

Today we're breaking down the five boxes every brand needs to check to be successful on the platform, why Advantage+ Shopping Campaigns are the most meaningful product release since the chaos of iOS14, and the creative formula that took True Classic from bootstrapped to nine-figures in two years.

If there’s one podcast you can’t afford to miss, it’s this one. Let’s dive in!

‍The takeaways 👇


✅ Boxes here, boxes there, checkboxes everywhere

Whether you’re a Meta veteran or a small to medium-sized business looking to gain traction, Helen and her team have set out five key boxes your brand needs to check to maximize your potential with Meta ads.

After analyzing 200k+ campaigns across the platform, Helen says each point below should be part of your strategic roadmap.

  1. The conversions API and pixel. Brands that have their foundation laid with the conversions API and pixel tracking see an approximate 13% lift in performance.
  2. Broad targeting. If True Classic only ran ads for their specific target market, Helen would have never been served the ad that got her to purchase a shirt for her husband! Be broad with your targeting and creatives and let the system figure it out for you, don’t assume.
  3. Mobile-first creative. We’re in an attention economy. Make sure you’re thinking about mobile formats when designing your creatives. Show your branding up front while keeping it short and snappy.
  4. Account structure. Don’t bid against yourself! Set up your account so it’s simple. Not too many ads competing and nothing overlapping lead to a significant performance increase.
  5. Measurement. Brands that measure the positives and negatives of their ads execution (and learn from it) get approximately 18% better performance just for knowing and testing what’s working.

🤖 The advantage of Advantage+ Shopping Campaigns

Once you have a lot of creative, a product with a broad audience, and a decent budget to play with, Helen suggests starting to explore Advantage+ Shopping Campaigns. 🛍️

Think of Advantage+ like an AI ads assistant. Although many fear the AI takeover, Ben highlights the benefits of relinquishing control to the machines.

Advantage+ allows for better and more scalable performance, so start delegating tasks to the bots to elevate things you can impact.

🧠 Dang, that’s creative

Ben and True Classic believe that creative is the single biggest asset within your control to move that needle. Your Meta ad creatives aren’t driven to success through colors and aesthetic — it’s about truly understanding your customer, their motivations and barriers, and who and why they’re buying for.

Lean into a psychology-based approach, utilize UGC for social proof, and make it all about that sale sticker in times of high-sale intent. The customer doesn’t care about your brand and if you’re making money, they just know they have a problem, and your ads should prove your product can solve it.

This podcast is jam-packed with advice for brands just starting out (and mistakes to avoid), including how to measure and evaluate your ad success, leaning into and testing Meta best practices, triangulating your data, how to become a brand that spends six figures on Meta per day, and SO. MUCH. MORE.

👉 Listen to the full episode with Helen and Ben here!


Top Performing Online Retailers Have This One Thing In Common

🔥 Remarkable content

It's no secret that brands with remarkable content stand out from the crowd, but producing fire content for your brand can have TONS of roadblocks. Lack of time, disinterest in the skills. Even drawing a blank on creative ideas.

Just to name a few.

That's why Trend has curated a select group of content creators that brands can utilize to generate stunning videos and photos for their websites, newsletters, paid advertisements, and other marketing materials.

All content this network produces for you comes with 100% licensing rights with no extra costs.

📦 What type of content, you ask?

  • Unboxing videos
  • Testimonial videos
  • Product demonstration videos
  • Portrait photography
  • Product photography
  • Lifestyle photography

Content that aligns with your brand's vision and grabs your audience's attention is now within reach, all at a fixed and affordable rate:

👉 Start your free content brief and save 10% on your first content order today!


There’s Plenty of Data Fish in the Sea?

In a sea full of ecommerce data, we’re all looking for a centralized source of truth.

But what if we told you, yes you, that Google Analytics (GA) has the ability to be that source of truth for your brand.

The movement from Universal Analytics to GA4 has been overwhelming for some, but the deadline for adoption is fast approaching.

Whether you’re already fully set up or need some tips to get started, check out the latest episode of All Killer, No Filler where the Pilothouse Google Team breaks down what you need to know.

Here are some key points to get you started:

👀 What custom reports do you need to have set up?

The team suggests setting up three custom reports to maximize your GA4 data availability. Check out the template gallery before building from scratch — there’s lots of good starting points!

1️⃣ Funnel report. The funnel report shows you the steps shoppers take throughout your site. You can set up your funnel to include steps such as: (1) where people are coming in from, (2) key pages they look at, (3) add to cart, (4) purchase.

2️⃣ User lifetime report. This report lets you quickly and easily see which source mediums (make sure those UTMs are set up correctly!) provide the best lifetime value for your brand. The report organizes by medium/source, total users, lifetime average, lifetime engagement duration, and lifetime transactions.

3️⃣ Conversions report. The conversions report allows you to see a range of data for your conversion events. The three default tabs show conversions by device category (mobile, browser, etc.), date and the value of the conversions by traffic source.

While all of the above reports can be customized to suit your needs, before diving into advanced reporting, make sure to check out the standard user and traffic acquisition reports already setup in GA4! 🚨 These reports will show you the traffic and source/mediums to best understand where shoppers are coming from!

🧐 Should you be all in on GA4 already?

If your brand is already switched over to GA4 and only looking at that data as a current source of truth, you may be missing something.

Just because your brand is all setup, this doesn’t mean all the partners in your tech stack are! The Pilothouse Google team did an audit for a new client and found that one app wasn’t passing data through to GA4, meaning traffic data wasn’t the whole picture.

We get it. The thought of switching to GA4 can be overwhelming. Take the steps to set yourself up for success now before UA stops collecting data on June 30th.

For more on:

  • The differences between UA and GA4
  • Mistakes brands are running into when making the switch
  • How server-side tracking increases attribution

Listen here!


Nothing Hurts More and Costs More Money Than...

Selling without having good customer service.

It's like jumping off a diving board only to realize there's not enough water in the pool. It hurts. 🤕

Top DTC brands leverage great marketing with amazing customer service. That’s why companies like Lovepop, LMNT, and Dr. Martens rely on PartnerHero.

PartnerHero delivers a customer experience that turns shoppers into lifelong fans.

  • Fast launches
  • 30-day rolling contracts
  • 24/7 global coverage across every support channel
  • Deep ecommerce experience

CX and a solid plan are the keys to growing your DTC brand.

👉 Book a consultation with PartnerHero today, and stop jumping into empty pools.

Social Commerce

Let’s Get Social

✨ One-click wonder

Imagine consumers never being further than a click away from checkout. That‘s a future we can get behind, and it’s only becoming more possible with the hype surrounding social commerce in 2023.

If social commerce is completely new to you, rest assured that you are in good company. 😃

Social commerce is selling products through social media channels using built-in checkouts. In ‘traditional’ ecommerce, a dedicated storefront is needed to process a checkout.

Think about how much easier a conversion would be if your customer never had to leave the platform they found your brand on.

💃 Future-licious definition

The future of online shopping may not be on a storefront at all.

Thanks to social commerce, entire product catalogs could be contained within the pages of Instagram Shops, Pinterest Pins, or even Shopify’s Linkpop. It’s arguably the most efficient way to increase those conversions and reduce the most amount of friction for your consumers right now.

Now, if Meta could open up the checkout on Instagram to businesses outside of the US, that would be great, but we’re not bitter about it. 😒

😱 Don’t forget…

Another huge benefit to social commerce is the “social” part! The ability to share, save, and discuss products with trusted friends and family in-platform becomes organic social proof. 🔥

Let’s say your ad hasn’t converted a viewer into a customer yet. There’s a few simple actions that social media platforms encourage so users can generate social-proof all on their own:

1️⃣ A person sees your ad with a product tag

2️⃣ They share it with their friend and ask for an opinion

3️⃣ Their friend says they love it!

4️⃣ That person taps through an easy on-platform checkout

5️⃣ You’ve just made a sale!

This engagement process extends into gathering feedback from your audience too. Check out the comments on your product posts! While some content management systems (CMSs) like Shopify offer this feature, it’s far easier to interact on social media.

Being responsive to your audience shows that you value their opinion and time by engaging with their content. Make them feel special and answer their questions to grow relationships into something that produces more lifetime value (LTV). 💸

🤔 The numbers

Social media companies gather vast amounts of data on their users. With so many metrics and data points to reference, your brand can leverage tools like Tiktok’s Video Insights or Instagram’s Best Practices to make the most of every ad you show and each product you tag.

The depth of analytics that you get with a CMS can vary. This depends on the amount of users on the platform, what businesses are using it, and many other factors. On the other hand, key data points on social media platforms contain metrics from hundreds of millions of users.

In short, we can guess there are likely more users on Meta’s platforms than those interacting with Squarespace sites. With more users available, you can compile data from larger demographics to assist with your ad targeting and discoverability without dealing with tricky SEO practices.

🤯 More to come

Social commerce is here to stay and grow in 2023. Be sure to brush up on any eligibility requirements your brand needs to meet ASAP! Check out the eligibility list below to get started on your platform of choice:

Stay tuned to these pages or the dev blogs of your favorite platforms to know as soon as your region becomes eligible for the new wave of social commerce!

Quick Hits

🚀 AI-generated personalized videos. ChatGPT is just the tip of the AI Iceberg. Maverick lets you send personalized videos at scale all from one recording, perfect for delighting your customers. *

🔎 Google expands VPN access to all Google One accounts. This acts as an additional layer of safety for your browser by shielding your IP address from hackers and bad actors.

📱TikTok bans are closer to reality after further legal developments. TikTok has responded with further initiatives to address users' privacy concerns.

🤓 Keyword Insights shows valuable metrics from TikTok’s platform. Scroll through the list to see the most popular terms and specific metrics like CTR and frequency of use.

🌆 Americans want to delete Instagram the most out of the leading social media platforms. Recent polls show that over 900K searches involve the process of deleting or deactivating Instagram.


🔊 Have you heard our latest podcasts?

🧖‍♀️ Bushbalm's David Gaylord goes B2B, Enters US retail bigly, and rides the Vajacial wave on DTC.

👀 Ronak Shah - Obvi Collagen - Obvi's biggest blunders (and how you can avoid them) - C-Suite Mentor Preview.

🚀 BattlBox John Roman - The Subscription with the ~$1000 LTV and the Netflix Rocket Ship.

👟 Kuru Footwear’s Turnaround Playbook: Sean McGinnis On The CRO Tactics That Doubled Revenue (C-Suite Mentor Preview).

🧑‍🦲 iRestore Hair Growth System: Kevin Chen - The True Impact of Costco.

💡 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 and Michael Venditti. Edited by Claire Beveridge and Eric Dyck.

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