📦 The Urgency You Don’t Have Yet
May 21, 2023
Content Tag


Wednesday, March 23, 2022

As performance marketers ourselves we realized we’re breaking a cardinal rule of marketing...

We send you our content, but we haven’t told you what we want you to do with it.

Read it, yes, but please make sure you click something.

With Apple’s privacy changes, we don’t always know who’s opening the newsletter, so the only way you can let us know you’re digging the content is by clicking.


If you’re new to DTC, welcome! You’re in good company with fellow newcomers from Love Wellness, ReserveBar, The Tartan Blanket Co., Gutsy Kombucha, and Rise & Fall. 👋

In this newsletter you’ll find: 👇

📦 Personalization power with Eric Ji Sun Wu, Co-Founder of Gainful

📦 Solving your abandoned carts in Shopify with Adroll

📦 How to create real urgency for your brand and mean it this time

📦 Aspiring in-platform solution for seamless influencer whitelisting

Read ‘til the end to access exclusive DTC swag. 😎

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


🎧 On this week’s pod, we made some serious gains with Eric Ji Sun Wu, Co-founder of Gainful.

Gainful is a health and supplementation company that offers personalized nutrition systems based on its customers' unique physiology, dietary needs, and goals.

If you’re interested in personalization and how to use it for your brand, you won’t want to miss this one!

‍The Takeaways: 👇

🧍 Pro tips for personalization:

Personalization is so hot right now.

But Eric cautioned against DTC brands jumping on the bandwagon. ✋

Personalization shouldn’t be just slapped onto a company that has a couple of different flavors or colors. In those regards, people tend to like having a choice… Rather than to be told what color or flavor is best for them.”

It has to make sense for your specific category.

“...[And] if you think about the vertical that might need personalization the most, it’s probably supplementation.”

For instance, when it comes to supplements:

  • There’s a lot of misinformation out there.
  • Most people are not nutrition experts; people need guidance.
  • High stakes are involved because it’s something you’re putting into your body every day.
  • Everyone has different supplement needs based on their health, activity levels, diet, and more.

So, if your product aligns with some of these considerations, personalization might be a good move!

👊 Another quiz FTW

Here’s the kicker: You can’t buy anything from Gainful without taking their online quiz. Seriously.

Now that’s the definition of true personalization. 🧐

Once a customer takes the quiz, their recommendations are built on two levels:

  1. System level: They suggest the appropriate product system (e.g. hydration and protein for a long-distance runner).
  2. SKU level: They recommend a protein formula that has a specific macro breakdown tailored to the customer’s goals, activity levels, and more.

Gainful also uses the data to highly segment customers based on several factors (goals, activity type, etc.), then offer them even more personalized marketing, education, and recommendations.

All this work = higher AOV, customer retention rates, and subscription rates for the brand.

“The magic of Gainful is in the personalization… Our goal is to personalize the experience from end-to-end.”

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

Like any smart marketer, he would divvy it up…

First, he would put some funds toward new product innovation:

“Not just on the physical product side (formulations, ingredients), but also on the digital side as well… More of the education, a performance ecosystem where there are platforms, fitness devices, etc. coming together.”

Second, he would invest more into their Registered Dietitian program to give their customers an even deeper, one-on-one access to the RD’s (which is free for customers, BTW. How cool is that?)

👉 Get all the personalization pro tips in the full convo with Eric here!


MISSING: revenue and customers

Last seen: traveling in a shopping cart.

So we've got abandonment issues...

Abandoned carts are something all Shopify stores face. Ecommerce brands lose a jaw-dropping $18 billion in annual revenue when shoppers fail to check out.

But that doesn’t mean you should accept that 🛒 + 💸 = 😭

Nearly 70% of online shopping carts are abandoned, don’t wait to recoup your lost dollars and customers. Download The Abandoned Cart Recovery Playbook for Shopify Merchants to…

  • Learn about the top abandoned cart recovery strategies for your Shopify store
  • Exclusive abandoned cart recovery tips and insights from 3 eCommerce marketing leaders
  • See how Shopify integrations and tools can help win back lost customers

👉 Click here to get your guide!


How to create REAL urgency with your brand

Winning in the digital advertising space is about constantly adapting your marketing efforts to meet people where they are.

We are already seeing behavioral shifts as we transition from the COVID-era of stimulus cheques and high app usage at home. People are excited to have ‘real’ life experiences again and are spending accordingly.

When you mix that with recession fears and expensive commodities, you get quite a different landscape. Not to mention, the tracking challenges post-iOS 14. 🤦‍♀️

The environment has shifted, and you need to adapt. The current environment requires you to give people a reason to act NOW.

At Pilothouse, we are seeing this play out across the brands we work with, regardless of vertical. Winners nearly always have an urgency element to them.

Urgency levers are easy to come by: % off, buy one get one, new limited edition styles, limited stock... The list goes on.

Creating an urgent statement is easy. Integrating this strategy long-term is the challenge. Don’t be the brand who cried wolf. Consideration periods are higher now. To close that gap without losing brand integrity takes serious effort.

Here’s what you can do:

1️⃣ Be honest

  • If you’re not sold out when you said you were going to – if the sale was “about to end” and it's still happening six months later in an ad... Your threat is no longer credible and you have lost the battle.
  • “Extended sale” bonus days are okay if done sparingly. Make sure the risk is worth the reward. Over time, you’ll likely see your final day sale revenue equal the cumulative final and bonus day periods.

2️⃣ Get specific

  • Product stock transparency: Show the consumer the inventory amount they saw on the ad to reinforce brand and consumer transparency. If you have high inventory numbers, use the number of discount codes available as your scarcity lever.

3️⃣ Alternate your urgency levers to maintain the feeling of exclusivity

  • If you have multiple SKUs, space out sections of your store to be on sale to increase the duration between sales. That way, you can pivot winning messaging while maintaining the feeling of a sale happening.

4️⃣ Weaponize FOMO

  • Turning off a sale to stay credible or running out of stock early can be used to your advantage. Show what the consumer missed out on, and transition their eyes to what is still available if they act now – further building your threat credibility and cementing future messaging.

5️⃣ Playing hard to get

  • Keeping the consumer on the hook without playing your hand and deteriorating your brand is vital. Remind the consumer that they missed out on product A, but offer them product B first. If you provide product A right away, it won’t feel as special. Then, you can use holidays to collect the attention of these people with an offer on product A with the option of running much longer.

Even the most sale-sensitive brands can get urgent and drive intent in a way that doesn’t harm their image. Do it tactically, and do it fast. You won’t want to be late in adapting to this cycle.

If you’re looking to stay on top of trends and best utilize your Facebook ad space, reach out to the Pilothouse Facebook team! 🔥


What do influencer marketing platforms and pizza spots have in common?

They both charge you extra for things that should be included.

Yup, it sucks when you have to pay more for the good stuff (we're adding pepperoni if ya buyin'!) 🍕

That's why we recommend that DTC brands check out Aspire, which includes influencer whitelisting as standard. 🙌

Brands already using Aspire include Empress Gin, Minted, and SmartyPants. Here's why:

  • Authentic integration. An official Facebook partner means no more third-party "workarounds" for whitelisting.
  • Centralized management. Ads Manager and Aspire actually connect, giving you streamlined access to your creators.
  • Build high ROI  campaigns. Optimize ad campaigns with whitelisted influencer content for lower CPA and higher CTRs.
  • Easily manage permissions. Seamlessly request content usage rights all within the Aspire platform.

Aspire offers a native, in-platform solution for seamless influencer whitelisting at no extra cost.

It's time to get a slice of the action.

👉 Your next-level influencer whitelisting starts here.


🎯 The Juice is like noise-canceling headphones for marketers. It allows you to focus on relevant content, without the unnecessary noise of LinkedIn or Twitter. Silence it all with The Juice. *

🛍 Adobe unveils a new augmented reality shopping tool.

💰 Meta files a new lawsuit over the sale of fake customer reviews on Facebook.

🔥 Selling on Amazon vs. eBay: The eCommerce Showdown.

👏 Google launches new 'Related Search for Content' ads to help improve on-site engagement.

🤯 Mark Zuckerberg confirms NFTs are coming to Instagram.


🏋️‍♂️ Why Personalization Might be the Biggest Opportunity in DTC with Eric Ji Sun Wu, Co-founder of Gainful.

💄The Fast Road to 8 Figures with Jones Road Beauty's Cody Plofker.

❣️ Molly Garraway on Growing a CX Team to 100, and Then Starting from Scratch with LoveSeen.

👟 Restructuring Google Ads for Customer Avatars with Sean McGinnis from Kuru Footwear.

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.

Was this email forwarded to you? Sign up here.


🚀 Advertise in DTC Newsletter.

💰Check out our course on Facebook and Instagram ads!

📥 Work for The DTC Newsletter: Send an email to Rebecca, rebecca@directtoconsumer.co, if you’re interested in writing for us!

Get Exclusive Digital Marketing Content From DTC

By signing up you agree to our terms of use