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The Ad Industry Has High Hopes for Direct-to-Consumer Businesses
June 17, 2019 | WSJ | By Nat Ives.

Advertising has turned its attention to what it hopes will be the next new engine of growth for the industry: direct-to-consumer marketers.

Direct-to-consumer businesses, which offer everything from mattresses to toothbrushes to home workouts, start by cutting out middlemen such as physical retail distributors. And they relentlessly focus on measures such as the cost to acquire a new customer—while relying on advertising, usually on social media, as the main way to grow.......ad executives hope that the booming DTC business can become a major new revenue source for the industry.....DTC brands play in an apparently unlimited range of products and could have rapid expansion ahead.

A varied field
Measures of DTC activity vary, but all indicate rapid growth. For a picture of U.S. ad spending by DTC companies, Magna tracks a basket of 13 companies that it considers disrupters, including footwear seller Allbirds Inc. and bedding marketer Casper Sleep Inc. Their spending increased 35% last year to $378 million, and is likely to grow another 30% this year and 25% next year.

And they’re spreading out from their usual advertising havens such as social media. The 13 brands’ national TV spending soared 42% in 2018 to $137 million, for instance, and is expected to rise 34% this year and 25% in 2020, Magna says........For some DTC brands, diversification is partly about protection.....Bombas LLC decided to move a big chunk of its marketing budget away from Facebook .....fearing its strategy could be hurt if the social network unexpectedly changed an algorithm or shifted a policy......Diversification is also a matter of taking growth to another level. DTC brands are “reaching the scale where they want to talk to the mass market, to consumers everywhere in the country, not just the trendsetters,” ......After a certain point for a DTC brand, increasing spending in the same place begins to produce diminishing returns, says Heidi Zak, co-founder and co-chief executive at DTC bra company ThirdLove Inc. The company says it has sold more than four million bras since it started taking orders in 2014, and has had annualized revenue growth of 180% over the past four years. It declines to disclose its sales figures or ad budget.

“Today, when people ask me where we are, I say pretty much everywhere,” Ms. Zak says, rattling off advertising channels including Facebook, Pinterest , search, podcasts, radio, direct mail, print and TV. The company ran its first national branding campaign last fall to advance a theme of “To Each, Her Own”—with a longer-term goal rather than immediate sales.
advertising  advertising_agencies  booming  brands  customer_acquisition  direct-to-consumer  diversification  out-of-home  self-protection  social_media  store_openings 
june 2019 by jerryking
5 Spectacular Marketing Insights From Cirque du Soleil On Customer Intimacy | momentology
By Lisa Lacy, 21st of April 2016 at 14:05 PM.

So how does Cirque du Soleil use get closer to its fans? Here are five marketing insights from Derricks.

1. Be Ready To Ask & Re-Ask Questions

the live entertainment brand isn’t the new kid on the block anymore....undergoing a huge transformation as a result in part of private investment firm TPG acquiring a majority stake last year.

“And what’s fascinating is this inflection point is a chance to re-ask all the questions,” Derricks said. “Everything is back on the table again. Our brand is incredibly strong on stage, but where we’re challenged is what happens beyond the lights and how to interact with you.”

2. Don’t Miss The Marketing Basics
it’s hard for a brand like Cirque du Soleil to simply deliver an app or the like, so “given the crowded market, there’s a lot of basic blocking and tackling as much as finding the next brand new thing. Sometimes it’s about being in the right place at the right time.”

That means Cirque du Soleil capitalizes on traditional out-of-home tactics like taxi toppers and marquis ads, as well as videos in taxis to create awareness and buzz.

3. Have Smaller Conversations & Tell Stories

Derricks said the brand is hearing from its fans that they want to know more about the performers and what goes on behind the scenes.

“Where we’re challenged is selling the concept of the show itself,” Derricks said. “The most radical thing we can do is to be more intimate. I don’t know if we can be louder, but we can be more intimate and [and bring you] behind the curtain, which is a fascinating new adventure for Cirque du Soleil.

4. Bring People To You

Another part of Cirque du Soleil’s marketing strategy involves breaking down the shows into their component parts and connecting with audiences from there....As a result, the brand has begun experimenting with master classes in fields like makeup and dance.

5. Conduct Team Building Activities

What’s more, noting the circus itself has changed drastically as traditional circuses included acts in which performers were related by blood and were therefore very tightly knit, Derricks said Cirque du Soleil, which includes groups of performers without family ties, had to conjure up its own unique methods of fostering trust....As a result, Cirque du Soleil created Spark Sessions, or corporate experiences for networking, business development and/or milestones, to get other companies involved and to help teach what it has since learned about trust and leadership, "
private_equity  TPG  Guy_Laliberté  entrepreneur  fascination  Cirque_du_Soleil  customer_experience  storytelling  customer_intimacy  LBMA  out-of-home  teams  trustworthiness  brands  insights  outreach  live_performances  corporate_training  inflection_points 
april 2016 by jerryking

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