Social Media Advertising Strategies For Top Challenger And Leading Brands

This week the industry convenes at New York’s Hudson Yards for Advertising Week New York, which has returned to host live in-person events. On-demand videos online will also be offered and altogether the event will feature more than 200 hybrid sessions and 500 speakers.

At a panel today led by Alon Leibovich, co-founder and chief executive officer at BrandTotal, Leibovich shares the metrics that exist for optimizing the top and middle of the funnel, and how top challenger and leading brands are using these tools to strengthen their social media advertising strategies.

Holding a Master’s in organizational behavioral psychology, Leibovich likens marketers’ inaction toward optimizing every stage of the buyer’s journey to the feeling dogs exhibited during psychologist Martin Seligman’s experiment on learned helplessness which is defined as behavior exhibited by a subject after enduring repeated aversive stimuli beyond their control.

In accepting that they can’t understand what tactics their competitors are using at any particular moment, marketers have struggled to clearly understand how their messaging, positioning and ads are truly resonating with consumers.

Despite the advent of social media, which has enabled a two-way street and instant feedback, marketers are stuck in the frame of mind when TV and after-the-fact campaign metrics were their only option.

To evolve beyond siloed measurement that only compares your current top and middle of the funnel efforts to your previous efforts, Leibovich suggests following these three steps.


Step 1: Measure and Benchmark

First and foremost, keep tabs on what your direct competitors are doing while also comparing yourself to the industry average. Leibovich emphasizes the importance of ongoing measurement to assess your and competitors’ share of voice, media mix, ad formats, the volume of messages being used and campaign themes.

This includes tracking and predicting pre-click buying intent during the awareness and consideration stages. If, for example, you’re a luxury brand attempting to persuade consumers to pay more than the category index for your goods or services, look to other luxury brands to see how they’re achieving that success. Leibovich cites Lululemon in the apparel category and Ray-Ban in eyewear as standouts.

Step 2: Look At Creative Critically

Social comprises four key components—the copy, the visuals, the theme and the call-to-action. As Leibovich notes, these are levers brands should be adjusting based on what their competitors are doing. He suggests marketers apply the same level of precision and science to creative as they apply to media.

By finding the right balance between data and creative “spark,” brands can optimize their impact and drive creative strategies to elicit the type of engagement that leads to a higher conversion rate.

Step 3: Metrics

Lastly, Leibovich said to measure engagement rate and positive consumer net sentiment to correlate top- and mid-funnel activity with bottom-funnel purchase metrics. At BrandTotal, he noted, social share of voice and engagement rate are two metrics that have a bottom-of-the-funnel correlation.

When Gillette received backlash for its ‘The Best Men Can Be’ campaign, competitors including Dollar Shave Club and Harry’s capitalized on that moment and experienced positive net sentiment while Gillette’s was overwhelmingly negative.

Final Thoughts

Implementing the aforementioned strategy will also require brands to understand which brands are doing better than the industry benchmark currently—their brand or one of their competitors. If a competitor is over-indexing in engagement rate, that should serve as an alert to understand by how much they exceed the benchmark and spur a deep dive on their creative. Then comes time for changing and optimizing your creative because as Leibovich noted, all marketing is performance marketing.

“There’s no dichotomy between brand marketing and performance marketing. It’s up to us to make all marketing performance marketing. This is how it should be,” said Leibovich.

What We’re Reading—Week Of October 11th

How Companies Can Improve Employee Engagement Right Now

Harvard Business Review

Managers must take proactive steps to encourage employee engagement or risk losing their workforce as experts warn of a surge of voluntary employee exits, dubbed the “Great Resignation.” One study estimates 55 percent of people in the workforce in August 2021 intend on looking for a new job in the next 12 months.

Why it matters: Because engaged employees perform better and stay in companies longer, HBR created the Employee Engagement Checklist. Its findings highlight that managers have three levers at their disposal right now: help employees connect what they do to what they care about, make the work itself less stressful and more enjoyable, and reward employees with more time off, in addition to financial incentives.


A ‘Lack Of Concern’ Over The Death Of Cookies, Study Finds

Ad Age

To understand if the industry is prepared for a post-cookie world, Ad Age and Ad Age Studio 30 surveyed 30 marketers. While a little more than half of the marketers reported having a high sense of confidence in their company to navigate the future of privacy and identity, 70 percent said they don’t have the resources necessary to move through the change with success.

Why it matters: Marketers have little understanding of potential solutions, with 69 percent saying they haven’t implemented any identity solutions while another 71 percent said they didn’t see the end of cookies dramatically impact their purchasing behavior for digital ads. Those who sit back and don’t act run the risk of media plans not delivering on their objectives.


The North Face Marks 55 Years With Crowdsourced Archive Of Exploration

Marketing Dive

The North Face’s fall brand campaign, “It’s More Than A Jacket,” aims to celebrate the brand’s 55-year history by calling on consumers and musicians like RZA and Haim to submit adventure-related stories and photos to be included in its first crowdsourced digital archive. A partnership with the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) will bring the archive to life via participatory programs featuring some of the brand’s most significant designs.

Why it matters: The SFMOMA tie-in enables the brand to connect to its roots, as it was founded in the Bay Area in the 1960s. The campaign will serve as an on-ramp for the brand’s holiday marketing efforts, extend to social media and be leveraged for future marketing efforts.  


Lowe’s Builds Its Own Ads Business

The Drum

Lowe’s announced the debut of its own retail media company Lowe’s One Roof Media Network, a platform offering omnichannel ad services for brands in the home improvement and home furnishing category. Capabilities of the new platform include the following: ad placement on Lowes.com and in the retailer’s mobile app, digital and social media services, sponsored editorial content shared on Lowe’s website and social channels, bespoke research on shopping trends and reporting and media measurement.

Why it matters: More than 100 brands including Kohler, GE Lighting and Samsung participated in Lowe’s One Roof Media Network’s beta tests. The results: one kitchen and bath brand saw a 700 percent return on ad spend. The retailer says some brands generated returns over 1,000 percent and that many have seen surges in daily revenue. Lowe’s plans on launching its next public beta stage soon.

Consumers Plan To Spend More On Holiday Shopping Than Last Year

Amid retailers’ earlier-than-usual rollout of holiday promos, 29 percent of US consumers plan to spend more on holiday shopping than they did last year—despite unchanged feelings about their personal financial situation and the state of the economy. That’s according to a recent study from The NPD Group that tracks holiday purchase sentiment each year.

The research estimates that holiday spending will increase 3 percent during November and December, and 5 percent when including October and early January. Chief retail industry advisor for NPD, Marshal Cohen, says 2021 will be a “hybrid holiday year” that blends the return to celebration as usual with the new pandemic lifestyle. The behavior of store-only shoppers shifting to shopping both in stores and online will also contribute to the hybrid year.

Despite two-thirds of consumers saying they expect their 2021 holiday season to be more similar to last year’s than the pre-pandemic season, one-third of consumers plan to buy more gifts because they’ll be seeing family and friends over the holidays. Plus, nearly half (47 percent) expect to visit or host family and friends.

NPD also found that more Americans are looking forward to the holidays, with 32 percent less concerned about COVID than they were last year. In addition, 58 percent are more comfortable shopping in stores now that vaccines are widely available.

Consumers’ holiday budgets have increased, driven by consumers who plan to spend $1,000 or more. The biggest increase in holiday spending is expected in consumer technology and home products, which have also been among the most popular retail sales categories during the pandemic.

Fifty-one percent of consumers plan to start their holiday shopping before Thanksgiving, compared to 49 percent last year, according to NPD. Worried about supply chain issues, many retailers are already pushing holiday messaging, including Sephora, Target and Pottery Barn.

When asked how to respond to potential shortages, Robert Gerwig, senior vice president of distribution and logistics at Sweetwater, told RIS News:

“Update your customers on shortages and keep updating them regularly. By that, I don’t mean email blast your entire customer base and tell them you’re out of a product, but communicate one-to-one and let them know that your people are working hard every day to try and get them the products they have on order.”

Port delays are complicating the issue. An August report from the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates estimated that US container ports would manage 2.37 million 20-foot containers in August, a 12.6 percent increase from last year and the highest number of containers imported in a month since the NRF started tracking imports in 2002. The NRF and Hackett Associates’ follow-up report in September expects 2.21 million containers, or about 5.1 percent growth from last year.

Marketers Underestimate Power Of Word Of Mouth, Direct Mail And In-Store Signage

Brands are betting big on influencers these days but a new study from RRD shows they’re underestimating the power of word of mouth, which the data show is actually consumers’ preferred method for learning about a new brand, product or service.

Other untapped traditional channels include direct mail and in-store signage, a finding that reflects the major differences between marketer assumptions and what consumers say actually influences their brand awareness and buying decisions.

Word of mouth is the preferred method for brand awareness for 28 percent of consumers yet just 4 percent of marketers cited it as a consumer preference for awareness.

Word of mouth outpaced social media at 23 percent, cable TV at 12 percent and online/digital ads at 11 percent. What’s more, RRD found that word of mouth has a higher research-to-purchase ratio (40 percent) than social media (30 percent), online/digital ads (27 percent) or print ads (16 percent). Meanwhile, just 7 percent of marketers identified word of mouth as a channel that results in consumer purchases.

While 82 percent of marketers believe influencers drive purchases, just 26 percent of RRD’s respondents said that influencers make them more likely to purchase new products or services.

Almost a quarter (21 percent) of marketers said that shoppers use Snapchat to discover new brands but only 7 percent of consumers agreed.

In addition, at least one in three consumers follow brands they like on Facebook, YouTube and Instagram. When it comes to following their favorite brands, consumers prefer Pinterest (21 percent), TikTok (20 percent) and Twitter (19 percent)—over Snapchat (16 percent) and Reddit (11 percent).

Fifty-one percent of consumers, particularly Gen Y (65 percent), were more excited to receive direct mail in the past year than they were in the year prior. Other cohorts did too, including Gen Z (57 percent) and Gen X (53 percent). At 36 percent, baby boomers were the least excited about getting direct mail.

As indicated by 62 percent, consumers are ready to resume their pre-pandemic shopping habits. Many tested the waters with new brands but 35 percent admit that these changes due to the pandemic will only last less than six months whereas 43 percent of marketers expect consumers to not return to their pre-pandemic shopping habits for another 6-12 months.

Lastly, 58 percent of consumers told RRD that in-store signage is influential in their purchase decisions, with 80 percent preferring to shop in stores with signage that helps navigate the store and avoid crowds.

RRD’s findings are based on twin surveys conducted among 250 US marketers and 1,000 consumers in July 2021.

What We’re Reading—Week Of October 4th

A look at the advertising and marketing insights from the major publications we’re sharing internally this week.


How To Build Digital Dexterity For Better Business Outcomes

Harvard Business Review

Digital dexterity can be defined as the “ambition and ability to use technology for better business outcomes.” The key steps necessary to mold employees’ digital dexterity include: 1) showing why it matters, 2) arranging development experiences to foster digital dexterity, 3) tasking employees to act as “digital translators” to help guide leaders through digital business initiatives and 4) developing “skill disseminators” to coach others.

Why it matters: After discovering some of the benefits of remote or hybrid work structures, more than 90 percent of midsized organizations intend on transitioning to hybrid work for at least some employees. The nature of hybrid work highlights the utility in new meeting solutions, collaboration and communication services, personal productivity tools, and—most importantly—a focus on improving digital dexterity to encourage productivity. 


Marketing Lessons From Ozy Media’s Downfall

AdExchanger

Ozy Media engaged in an array of scandals that led to its inevitable collapse. From inflated audience numbers to securities fraud, Ozy’s story provides marketers with insight on how best to avoid falling victim to similar schemes in the future. 

Why it matters: According to independent ad fraud researcher Augustine Fou, because all media companies buy traffic, marketers must study detailed analytics to determine where their ads ran and whether those sites are engaged in Ozy-like tactics. Similarly, Method Media Intelligence chief risk officer Marc Goldberg stresses the importance of verification for all media buys and recommends that publishers stop buying traffic sub-penny per click, marketers start asking questions about traffic acquisition and investors do due diligence on acquisitions and growth plans.


How PepsiCo’s Pepviz Platform Tools Help Retailers Increase Sales

Food Dive

PepsiCo is launching Pepviz, a platform that uses analytics, data science and other tools to help retailers ensure they are carrying the right product mix and optimizing shelf space. Pepviz will also help attract new shoppers, drive store trips, boost loyalty, encourage impulse buys, improve product mix and increase sales. The platform focuses on shopper behavior and tells a retailer what customers are buying at its store in addition to what they’re buying at other stores in the area, thus helping retailers determine whether to modify basket sizes.

Why it matters: Because consumer needs may vary from store to store, it’s important for retailers to understand how best to cater to them. Pepviz’s approach to harnessing and utilizing data will allow for CPGs to become more nimble and responsive to consumer needs during the ongoing pandemic, in part, by making it easier to predict where the market is headed and how CPGs can sell more.


Existing Customers: Your New, More Reliable Influencers

The Drum

A number of elements seem to be contributing to the demise of influencer marketing, including loss of audience trust, rising fees, difficult-to-measure metrics and murky legal hurdles. Mention Me’s partnership with TheIndustry.fashion produced a report showing that 60 percent of people are more willing to purchase a product recommended by a friend of a family member than by a celebrity or social media creator.

Why it matters: Influencer marketing is set to reach $13.8 billion this year. To harness that power and incorporate it into a multi-faceted marketing strategy, brands must recognize that 51 percent of consumers trust recommendations from friends above anyone else as compared to just 2.8 percent who trust influencers.


IPG’s Marketing Intelligence Company Launches Kinesso Intelligent Identity

Marketing Dive

IPG’s marketing intelligence company launched Kinesso Intelligent Identity (Kii) on September 30. Kii connects identity across the web and within walled gardens and can enable a 20 percent rise in campaign reach through match rate improvements. It’s IPG’s response to privacy-first identity issues and addressability as third-party cookies are phased out and as mobile ad identifiers are limited.

Why it matters: Kii provides a solution to the issue following the end of the third-party cookie by effectively connecting identity across all avenues of the marketing landscape. Kii may also offer cost savings by linking a brand’s first-party CRM data and mapping it to Kii identifiers.

What We’re Reading—Week Of September 27th

We’re rounding up the most insightful articles for senior marketing leaders this week.


World’s Most Influential CMOs 2021

Forbes

Forbes’ ninth annual round-up features chief marketing officers who are shaping business, culture and society. The publication’s pool of candidates was drawn from over 500 chief marketing officers and brands from across a wide range of Forbes lists and external lists such as the World Federation of Advertisers and the Brand Finance Global 500. Candidates that were considered had to be active and in their role from at least January through May 2021. 

Why it matters: Forbes’ top five most influential chief marketing officers are: Bozoma Saint John of Netflix, Stephanie McMahon of WWE, and Dara Treseder of Peloton, Raja Rajamannar of MasterCard and Nick Tran of TikTok. Brands seeking to maximize profits and increase engagement can study the strategies deployed by 50 of the world’s greatest marketing professionals.


Holiday Marketing Gets An Early Start With Promos From Target, Pottery Barn

Ad Age

Despite it still being September, continued delay-causing supply chain problems have forced retailers to start holiday promotions earlier than ever. Target announced it’ll host its annual Deal Days event from October 10 to 12. Several other marketers including Sephora, Williams Sonoma and Pottery Barn have included holiday messaging in their email communications this month. Introducing holiday deals early marks brands’ way of being solvent and encouraging consumers to shop early before supply runs out.

Why it matters: Experts say that because Amazon has trained consumers to expect on-demand delivery, brands are doing everything in their power not to be the first to admit they’re struggling with shipment delays. Still, Pottery Barn’s West Elm brand recently told a customer: “Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our global supply chain has been stretched to new levels, resulting in temporary delays.” 


Unilever’s New Startup Program Kicks Off With Eye On $3.4T Social Commerce Opportunity

Marketing Dive

As part of its broader Positive Beauty strategy, Unilever launched a new program to partner with startups and scaleups (later-stage startups with proven growth) that specialize in live streaming shopping, shoppable media, gaming commerce and group buying. Applicants will pitch for the Positive Beauty Growth Platform and winners will receive the opportunity to test ideas with Unilever brands like Dove and Axe. The Platform is a collaboration between The Unilever Foundry and Unilever’s Beauty & Personal Care division.

Why it matters: Unilever’s program is a realization of the fact that technology needs are shifting rapidly in the packaged goods arena and that it must strategize to stay ahead of trends. The beauty and personal care categories are ripe to benefit from a union between influencer marketing, social content and commerce. Unilever, through this program, aims to amass as large a portion as possible of the growth of these segments as they increase by 30 percent until 2028.


How To Determine Whether TikTok Influencer Marketing Is Good For Your Business 

Entrepreneur

SocialPubli chief executive officer Ismael El-Qudsi implores brands to ask themselves three questions before considering whether to invest marketing dollars in TikTok: 1) whether your ideal customer is active on TikTok; 2) how flexible and creative you want to be with your brand; and, 3) whether your marketing goals align with TikTok’s capabilities.

Why it matters: Although TikTok’s popularity can’t be overstated, it’s not necessarily the right platform for every brand. Its principal demographic might not be your target audience, you might not be willing to go outside the box in ways that TikTok users expect, or you may want to focus more on ads and platforms that offer universal ecommerce functionality. There are a number of elements to consider before hopping on the bandwagon and spending marketing dollars on a TikTok campaign that isn’t purely for advertising purposes, but rather for awareness and engagement.


The Curious Case Of Puerto Rico Within The Marketing World

Adweek

The majority of Puerto Ricans value the relationship with the US and the citizenship it brings, yet Puerto Ricans also value their Hispanic culture and the Spanish language. One reason many see Puerto Rico as the Caribbean extension of the US Hispanic market is that Puerto Ricans carry American passports but are unable to vote in presidential elections while living on the island. For others, Puerto Rico remains a distinctly Latin American market.

Why it matters: According to Jaime Rosado, owner and CCO of RosadoToledo&, brands that perform better in Puerto Rico are those that localize their strategies based on the uniqueness of its market.

Angela Rodriguez, senior vice president, head of strategy, ALMA, says marketers should be cautious not to lump Puerto Ricans in Puerto Rico together with US efforts since the identity drivers and barriers of one whole may not necessarily translate to the other.


Evolution And Opportunity In The Post-Pandemic Economy

McKinsey & Company

The three main trends that the pandemic accelerated and are likely going to persist at varying degrees moving forward include how companies adopt technology, remote work and consumer digital transactions.

Why it matters: Contrary to how companies normally respond to recessions, the pandemic caused them to adopt new technology to keep operations going – from automation and robotics to virtual reality (VR) headsets that enabled technicians to repair machinery remotely. Before the pandemic, about five to six percent of Americans regularly telecommuted. During the pandemic, that figure rose to 35 to 40 percent. Last, consumer pulse surveys indicate that consumers find digital transactions efficient and convenient even on channels that hadn’t tried such transactions before the pandemic.

Standing For A Data Culture With Tableau’s Jackie Yeaney

Jackie Yeaney is the CMO at Tableau, where she is responsible for empowering and educating people on seeing and understanding their data.

In this episode, Jackie and I discuss how she ended up at Tableau, what Tableau is working on, and how they go to market. Jackie has more than 20 years of experience as a marketer, but she started her career as an Air Force officer. Later on, we discuss what she thinks marketers should focus on and the misconceptions and responsibilities of being on a board of directors.

Jackie says that being a successful marketer “has far more to do with being data-driven, understanding your customer and the market better than anyone else, and putting your energy there to target and be relevant.” She believes companies win by doing these things. Not by screaming from the rooftops.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • The importance of seeing and understanding data
  • Maintaining brand voice during an acquisition
  • How to build trust and relevancy with your audience

Key Highlights:

  • [01:58] Jackie’s side hustle 
  • [04:34] Jackie’s career journey
  • [07:51] Who is Tableau? 
  • [09:58] Overcoming the fear of being data-driven
  • [12:22] Salesforce acquires Tableau 
  • [14:01] Maintaining Tableau’s voice in the acquisition 
  • [19:24] Building trust and relevancy with your audience
  • [23:54] The misconception of being on a board of directors
  • [30:12] An experience that defines Jackie makes her who she is
  • [37:04] A topic marketers should be learning more about
  • [39:30] The brands and organizations Jackie follows
  • [41:42] The biggest threat and opportunity for marketers

Resources Mentioned: 

Subscribe to the podcast:

Connect with the Guest:

Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart:


Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

Interactive Brands Win At Loyalty During Pandemic

Lockdowns in the last year-and-a-half illuminated which brands managed to maintain or gain loyalty through the pandemic. According to Brand Keys’ annual Loyalty Leaders List 2021, consumers chose to recognize established brands rather than support new ones. 

“The 2021 loyalty rankings describe a desperate desire by consumers for a return to normalcy. Over the past year loyalty has experienced a COVID-induced medical and marketplace trial-by-fire, the toughest test of customer loyalty we’ve measured in nearly 40 years conducting loyalty research,” said Brand Keys founder and president Robert Passikoff.

Brands with high customer loyalty can sometimes act as proxies for emotional values that are missing in consumers’ lives. These brands are six times more likely to fulfill that role during certain periods, for example, lockdowns.

Home Depot, PayPal, Clorox, Hulu and Purell, for example, all maintained loyalty leads established during 2020, as per Brand Keys. The top 10 Brand Keys loyalty leaders are Amazon, Apple, Netflix, Domino’s, Amazon, Disney+, Google, WhatsApp, Instagram and Nike. All brands except Instagram and Nike were in the top 10 in 2020.

Of the top 20 Brand Keys loyalty leaders, Discover experienced the largest gain from the 16th to the 12th spot, while Samsung experienced the largest loss from 10th to 14th.

“The stronger the loyalty, the better the behavior shown toward a brand. The better behavior represented by sales, the stronger a brand’s bottom line,” added Passikoff. 

New additions to the list this year include TikTok (#21), Apple TV (#26), Levi Strauss (#46), Red Bull (#61), Walmart.com (#64), Crest (#65), Svedka (#86) and Lululemon (#90).

While this year’s top 100 included significantly fewer new brands than previous years, some brands fell out of the top 100, including cosmetic brands Lancôme, Estee Lauder and Clinique; Vodka brands like Grey Goose and Ketel One; and Insurance brands like Progressive and Farmers.

Some brands’ return to the list through the pandemic reflect consumers’ longing for a return to the marketplace and as Brand Keys notes, “lifestyle regularity.” These brands included McDonald’s (#72), Shake Shack (#80), Mastercard (#81), Call of Duty (#82), Konica-Minolta (#93) and iTunes (#95).

Of the top 100 loyalty leaders, the brands that saw the largest gains included Pinterest (+22), Chobani (+21), Lyft (+17), Old Navy (+17), GEICO(+15), Ford(+15), Dick’s Sporting Goods (+15), Purell (+14), Chase (+12) and Square (+10).

Among those with the largest losses included Zara (-27), Costco (-23), USAA (-19), Budweiser (-19), T-Mobile (-18), State Farm (-18), Haagen-Dazs (-16), New Balance(-14), Sam’s Club (-14) and Zappos (-9).

Because loyalty is emotional and so are consumers, establishing a connection and satisfying expectations are imperative to growth during crises. Brands that make connections and satisfy mostly emotional expectations do about six times better during crises, and always better than their competition, according to Brand Keys.

Brand Keys’ data was derived from a cross-category study of brand loyalty among 1,260 brands in 112 categories between August and September 2021.

What We’re Reading—Week Of September 20th

A look at the trending articles we’re tracking this week.


Carl’s Jr. And Hardees Bring Adult Swim Toys To Combo Meals

Ad Age

Timed to Adult Swim’s 20th anniversary, the network, Carl’s Jr. and Hardees have teamed up to include specialty toys in combo meals, including the restaurants’ mascot Happy, Space Ghost from Space Ghost Coast to Coast, Robot Chicken from the show of the same name, Nathan Explosion from Metalocalypse and more. Available from September 22 to November 7, the toys will add $1 to the price of a large combo meal.

Why it matters: Patty Trevino, senior vice president of marketing at CKE Restaurants, parent company of Carl’s Jr. and Hardees, says she can’t recall ever seeing a meal targeted at adults that included a figurine or a toy. 

News of the collab follows McDonald’s announcement that it will reduce its use of plastic toys for its Happy Meals.


Why A DTC Shoe Brand Spends Big On Instagram And Facebook

Digiday

Fulton, a New York City-based DTC footwear brand targeting millennials, currently allocates 60 percent of its total ad spend toward Facebook and Instagram. Despite Apple’s data privacy crackdown and an oversaturated marketplace, the brand has yet to reduce its Instagram budget given 65 percent of its sales are attributed to Facebook and Instagram. Instead, the brand has dedicated 20 percent of the total ad budget to experiment with incremental channels like TikTok and newsletters.

Why it matters: As per Fulton’s co-founder Libie Motchan, Instagram’s retargeting, conversion, performance measurements and optimization capabilities are the reason the platform is a crucial part of the brand’s media mix. “We see it as a tool to help us destigmatize the category. [Shoe insoles] could not be a less cool product or category, but it was very critical for us to develop a curated Instagram,” said Motchan.


The Market Minute: Consumer Brands Are Capitalizing On The IPO Market

Crunchbase News

This year, VC-backed consumer brands that have gone public include FIGS, The Honest Company and Poshmark. Other consumers brands in the IPO pipeline include Brilliant Earth, Dutch Bros, Olaplex, Allbirds and Warby Parker.

Why it matters: According to Rick Batenburg III, a venture capitalist at Cliintel Capital Management Group, consumer-facing companies are going to do well because people know what they are, and people like what they understand. That, and deals are much more accessible thanks to platforms like E-trade, Robinhood and Public.


Why Digital Video And Influencers Are Shaking Up Travel Marketing

Adweek

According to a Morning Consult report, 63 percent of people engage with travel influencer content more now than they did before the pandemic.

Why it matters: Amid the meteoric rise in digital video consumption, travel brands have a rare second chance to make a first impression; video and influencers are two powerful mediums to accomplish that. Adding an influencer campaign to business-as-usual ad strategies is expected to become the gold standard in travel advertising as it’s been shown to improve sales lift.


Climate Week Kickoff Sees Brands Pledge New Ambitions But Is It Too Late?: Short Takes

WWD

Several companies have announced renewed sustainability pledges ahead of the United Nations Assembly and Climate Week in New York City. In addition, Amazon’s Climate Pledge added 86 new businesses to its roster, including Asos, Selfridges and Procter & Gamble.


Why it matters: ASOS and Primark’s sustainability ambitions have been met with backlash over their vague or open-ended goals. Primark is committing to increase its recycled materials and has been working with its partner CottonConnect since 2013 to develop its sustainable cotton program, which now counts 3,000 farmers and aims for a 100 percent transition rate for uptake of regenerative practices by 2030.

Breaking Out Of The Sea Of Sameness With Save A Lot’s Tim Schroder

Tim Schroder is the senior vice president of marketing at Save A Lot, focusing on delivering quality foods and customer experience.

In this episode, Tim and I cover what Save A Lot is and how they compete in the grocery category. We also discuss modernizing and revamping the company and the brand refresh with a new marketing campaign. When embarking upon a major update of their brand, Tim says, “When I started looking at the competitive landscape and saw what the other big and small grocery chains were doing, I just saw a sea of sameness.” Listen in to hear how Save A Lot leans into modernization and stands out from the crowd.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How to think about modernization in marketing
  • Where you should be listening to your customers
  • Staying ahead of the curve of digitization
  • The power of music in campaigns 

Key Highlights:

  • [01:14] Tim’s career as a mascot
  • [02:20] Tim’s journey to marketing at Save A Lot
  • [04:11] What is Save A Lot? 
  • [05:37] What brought Tim to the grocery industry
  • [07:24] Their modernization project
  • [11:00] The importance of listening to your customers
  • [14:02] “Like a lot, a lot” campaign
  • [20:04] Breaking out of the sea of sameness
  • [22:16] An experience that defines Tim, makes him who he is
  • [24:01] Tim’s advice to his younger self 
  • [25:15] What marketers should be learning more about
  • [26:02] The brands and organizations Tim follows
  • [28:08] The biggest threat and opportunity for marketers

Resources Mentioned: 

Subscribe to the podcast:

Connect with the Guest:

Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart:


Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.