Best Practices Adopted By Brands For Better D2C Marketing

Posted on January 15th, 2021
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Best Practices Adopted By Brands For Better D2C Marketing

Today, several direct-to-consumer brands are gaining immense popularity in a world that was previously dominated by Amazon, eBay, and Alibaba. The current D2C market size, which accounts for 11.1% of the total US retail sales, supports this hypothesis.

The number of upcoming D2C brands is growing at a faster pace in 2021. According to statistics, 81% of Americans claim that they will make more than one D2C purchase in the next five years. Most direct-to-consumer brands have managed to garner a loyal customer base, with 63% of shoppers claiming that referrals and discounts attract them more than digital advertisements.

Looking at the statistics and the high-popularity of the D2C model, it is imperative to deduce that the D2C approach is here to stay. To maintain the relationship between brands and customers, D2C enterprises need to brush up on their marketing strategies and come up with a robust product portfolio that satisfies the consumer's ever-evolving demands.

Direct-to-consumer marketing cuts the middlemen, making it completely different and more convenient than traditional brick and mortar retailers. The digital age has replaced door-to-door salespersons and contact center executives with smart product catalogs on various devices and channels that are easily accessible by a large audience. Here, brands are mainly using e-commerce websites as their hub for sales, setting up their own websites, promoting them on social media by adding purchasing options, and intelligently marketing their customer-centric niche.

With the advent of social media platforms, direct-to-consumer marketing has spread its reach across buyer segments that were previously untouched. Survey reports presented by Yotpo claim that 61% of D2C brands are using social media platforms to spread their reach among customers. Search engine optimization (SEO) practices account for a 51% increase when it comes to customer engagement and reach, allowing brands to operate independently without relying on e-commerce platforms like Amazon.

Categories like pet products, personal grooming products, beverages, snacks, beauty products, and mattresses are gaining huge momentum and account for a large market share.

Different D2C brands use unique and smart techniques for increasing customer engagement. Let's take a look at some best practices used by brands to enhance the retail experience and achieve a wider reach.

  1. Sharing deeper insights into the product

Using a D2C model has its own advantages like having the undivided attention of the customer at all times. Once a customer comes across your brand, they visit the online store or social media page immediately, reducing the chances of competition among multiple other products in the same segment. Brands can use this advantage to share exciting insights into how their product is manufactured, triggering interest among the customers. The transparency attracts more customers and also gives them the faith that you are manufacturing quality products.

Warby Parker, a direct-to-consumer eyewear company, serves as a great example. The brand has an entire page dedicated to show how its products are designed, manufactured, and quality-checked. This allows the customers to lay their trust in the brand as it allows customers to dive deeper into the designing process, work culture, and corporate social responsibility (CSR) practices.

  1. Encourage a community of customers

Customers are the biggest asset for any direct-to-consumer brand. The loyal ones promote referrals, make multiple and repeated purchases, and spread the word through social media. D2C fashion brand TechStyle has effectively used this strategy to expand its community to 5 million customers. The brand has launched a membership program that delivers high-quality fashion apparel to its customers on a monthly basis. The subscription includes shipping charges and allows customization as well.

TechStyle enhanced its value proposition further in 2018 by teaming up with global pop star Rihanna. Their marketing strategy tells us the benefits of a subscription model. Brands can leverage this strategy to maintain a steady flow of customers and encourage loyalty, thereby fostering a strong customer community.

  1. Try going offline

While social media and online marketing are one of the pillars of D2C marketing, there are several other options that the brands can explore. For instance, if your brand has a sizable consumer base, you can consider opening a store. You can start with location-specific content targeting on social media channels like Instagram and Facebook. After reaching a considerable engagement peak, you can launch an offline billboard campaign and open doors to an actual store.

As we know, D2C brands already are ahead when it comes to having a ready and interested audience. These customers will readily flock to stores once they are launched, encouraging them to return again and again and bring their friends and family to check out the store. This does not mean that you are returning to traditional brick-and-mortar techniques as following continuous marketing strategies to promote the brands would still hold importance. A store will provide another high-level channel for interaction, adding to the brand’s credibility.

  1. Create your own customer demographic

Strategies used by direct-to-consumer brands are generally focused on identifying and speaking to a unique customer base. Along with basic demographics like age, gender, and location, brands should perform thorough market research to identify the customer's exact pain points and problem areas.

Several reports suggest that millennials are driving the D2C industry as they prefer to shop online and from brands that speak to their personality as compared to other generations. These insights can help D2C brands to finetune their marketing strategies and find their ideal target audience.

  1. Maintain customer engagement

Most direct-to-consumer brands are digital-only. As a result, customers can sometimes get disconnected after buying the products and might not. This can happen due to many reasons, like improper customer support or customers finding a new brand in the given niche.

To prevent the customers from moving away from your brand, it is advisable to have a post-sales communication strategy that maintains the connection with the audience even when they are not looking to buy any product. These strategies can include hand-written thank you notes with packaging, email marketing, informative content on new products and services, and additional customer support.

  1. Partner with influencers

A brand’s visual identity is highly important for its digital success in retail. Maintaining a consistent and uniquely curated feed across social media platforms generates authority and credibility for the brand.

It is important to make sure how the products are photographed, resharing the user-generated content on stories and other displays like cover photos should follow a certain pattern that reflects the brand’s image. This practice makes a solid impact on the audience.

Wrapping Up

Crafting an effective D2C strategy can seem a little daunting at first, but once you get the wheels rolling, you will start attracting a steady flow of customers that will propel your brand’s journey to new heights. Some key takeaways are mentioned below:

  1. Highlight the values of each product and service your brand offers.

  2. The customer journey can be a part of the production and fulfillment journey of your brand.

  3. Leverage continuous engagement methods to build a loyal customer community.

  4. Explore multiple sales channels for better reach

  5. Use market research to find customer demographics and other micro-demographics.

  6. Focus on post-sales communication to maintain communication with the audience.

  7. Maintain a strong visual identity to make your brand more noticeable.

Best Practices

Posted on:
January 15th, 2021