The Collins English dictionary word of the year for 2022 is permacrisis – a term that defines “an extended period of instability and uncertainty”. A perfect way to describe the unprecedented events that retailers have faced over the last 3 years, and a term that will be equally relevant over the next 12 months.
However, there are opportunities for those brands who remain laser focussed on delivering value to their customers through first-class proposition, offers, and experience.
As we head into 2023, there is pressure on marketing budgets and margins, combined with customers who are more hesitant to try new brands.
Therefore, it is key that DTC brands find more effective ways to acquire and retain customers. This article shares some ways you can do this.
If you want to find out more about the strategies DTC brands should be adopting right now, join one of our Teach-Ins.
Investing in understanding your customers and your data
Retailers are investing in data science and technology to get a Single Customer View (SCV).
This is hardly surprising.
BCG research has shown that companies who link all their first-party data sources can generate one and half times the incremental value from a single ad placement, communication, or outreach than companies with limited data integration capabilities. Plus, double the improvement in cost efficiency.
Reducing reliance on third-party identifiers
Retailers across all categories are focused on increasing their efforts on first-party data capture so they will become less reliant on deprecating third-party identifiers. Both Apple and, by 2024, Google are phasing out third-party cookies which have been a key source of data for their algorithms.
Retailers and direct brands are in a strong position because you gather first-party data through websites, loyalty schemes, and subscription services. A robust data capture strategy feeding a personalised experience enabled by your SCV database makes for a compelling customer experience – your shoppers see tangible benefits from sharing their data.
Experimenting with marketing
Now is the time for experimentation with marketing channels and finding the right mix of old and new formats - despite the temptation to retrench marketing budget in difficult times. It's making sure your activity is profitable and scalable, not merely efficient.
Make sure you build an effective customer contact strategy to reach customers throughout the purchase path. It’s important to see how channels work in combination, rather than seeing them in silo.
Retail Week recently published their 2023 report that surveyed the UK’s largest retail and omnichannel companies on their marketing. The report revealed that Instagram and Email Marketing is used by 82% of those surveyed.
TikTok is continuing to increase in popularity with 63% of brands utilising the channel. Interestingly, TikTok’s growth is clear to see as it is nearly on par with YouTube, which is used by 65% of brands questioned. It’s important to stay open to new platforms and trends that could grow your business.
Working towards being more green
Sustainability remains a key buying factor for customers, and more so with successive generations. Retail Week’s report revealed that sustainability and social good is beginning to take over as the loudest mission statement.
ESG responsibility is no longer just a nice to have.
Where can you implement more greener initiatives in your business?
Communicate your initiatives with your customers as this plays a substantial part in people’s buying decisions, with demand expected to only increase.
Make sure you can support your claims though – Gen Z customers in particular, will be looking for evidence that you practice what you preach.
Building an online and in-store strategy that reinforce each other
Despite many predicting the pandemic step change towards online would be the new normal, physical retail has undoubtedly bounced back, but consumers expect something different now.
The physical store is a place for ‘building community’, ‘capturing data’ and is ‘the beating heart of the brand’, according to Retail Week’s report.
Brands are focusing their attention on making sure the customer’s journey is connected and experiential, and the most forward-thinking brands are building their strategy so online and in-store reinforce each other.
If you’re feeling uncertain on where to focus your efforts amidst everything going on, we share the successful strategies over 200 DTC brands use at our Teach-In sessions.
Hosted by our Chief Data Scientist, Kevin Davis, we cover everything from how to apply customer economics for sustainable growth to what a good customer contact strategy looks like, and lots more. Sign up now: more2 Teach-In
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