An essential takeaway from Accelerate22, the global ecommerce acceleration summit presented by Pattern, was this fundamental brand principle: strengthening your brand affinity with consumers is an essential part of getting ahead in your ecommerce strategy.
During the digital marketing acceleration track at Accelerate, Beau Oyler, Chief Design Officer at Pattern and Enlisted Design, led a panel discussion with brand experts from consumer products to B2B services who shared the following profoundly simple advice to help all brands accelerate their brand online.
Most brands that we talk to at Pattern and heard from at Accelerate struggle to stay consistent in their branding. A lot of times, this comes from disparities between their ecommerce and brick-and-mortar presence, as well as other issues like leaky distribution and unauthorized sellers. It makes sense—if you aren’t in control of your distribution and selling, you can’t dictate how you’ll be represented to consumers.
All of the panelists agreed that how you brand yourself to your online customer base is a crucial component of your ability to establish a strong connection with your audience. Staying true to your brand is essential to gaining repeat purchases, improving lifetime customer value, and increasing your overall brand equity.
“If you don’t take a stand, you won’t stand for anything,” said panelist Ti Chang, Co-Founder and Chief Design Officer at Crave. As a seller of luxury pleasure products, Crave can’t take advantage of many traditional marketing avenues—their brand, messaging, and imagery won’t appeal to or resonate with everyone.
But, by staying true to their brand in every aspect of their business, from product development to packaging to customer service, Crave is reaching the right people and finding their own niche in the ecommerce space.
Pattern works with econtrol law firm VORYs to help brands develop the right tactics for dealing with all kinds of control issues. They help brands turn around disjointed selling and distribution strategies, while Pattern’s studio teams work to accurately represent brands’ products and identity while optimizing content like product images and listing copy to perform its best.
The Accelerate expert panelists also lean into customer-focused community building to help brands stand out. Two key components of this strategy are social media marketing and influencer marketing.
Social media can get overlooked in an ecommerce strategy, but trends toward live selling and China’s example of social media selling success show that brands who prioritize this aspect of their marketing strategy are going to be much more profitable long-term. Social media is a great way to interact with niche audiences in a more personal way, leading to devoted followers and brand advocates who truly champion your success.
When advising leaders on influencer marketing, all panelists agreed that the key to finding great influencers for your brand is to connect with people that already love your products. The size of an influencer’s following isn’t as important as their passion for what you do. And their sponsorship will be more meaningful, authentic, and fruitful for both of you if they’re already voluntarily talking about you.
Shaun McBride, Co-Founder of Spacestation Gaming, strongly encouraged brands to seek and accept collaborations with others. This is an important strategy for his brand—his company’s unique niche is full of small but extremely creative brands that each possess their own strengths and devoted communities.
As he’s developed opportunities with these brands, their collaboration has paid off on both sides, even when partnering with smaller brands than his own. In fact, a partnership with a smaller brand has often offered better returns for Spacestation Gaming. As those small brands grow (and their customer base and influence with them), they have greater ability to promote Spaceship Gaming across all channels.
The Accelerate panelists noted that the key to successful brand partnerships is always keeping collaboration top of mind. As you cultivate an open, helpful attitude in your unique category, you’ll be able to learn more faster, share the benefits and resources of your communities, and grow alongside each other long-term.
As an ecommerce accelerator, Pattern’s mission is to help brands maximize their profitability across online selling channels. We have the resources and partnerships needed for any brand to regain ecommerce control and win over competitors. We know that when brands are optimized to perform their best, they can most effectively communicate their value and unique product offerings to consumers.
Contact us here to start enhancing brand affinity for your products.
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Entering the ecommerce landscape is a huge undertaking for any brand—it usually requires a large investment in resources and expertise to really be successful. Any brand can quickly get in over their heads trying to navigate the nuances of SEO, fulfillment and logistics, distribution control, listing optimization, and meeting the numerous other requirements and administrative tasks to show up well on marketplaces.
Unfortunately, because it’s so easy for third party, gray market, and unauthorized sellers to obtain and sell products online, many brands find themselves pressured to execute an ecommerce plan without the right resources to succeed on marketplaces and their other channels.
So, for brands looking to enter the ecommerce space or improve their current and future performance, it makes sense to partner with an ecommerce consultant.
Pattern’s global presence and proven success with hundreds of brands has allowed us to develop highly effective ecommerce consulting services. We can guide your brand to navigate issues both large and small in marketplaces worldwide. To maximize your ecommerce efforts, you’ll need to understand what an ecommerce consultant does and how to select one who drives the right value for your brand and products.
An ecommerce consultant is a specialist in the ecommerce space who can give you personalized guidance on how to market your products and grow their presence on digital marketplaces.
An ecommerce consultant should be able to analyze your brand, audience, category, opportunity, and current roadblocks and help you understand how to utilize your resources (or what resources are missing) to be most effective in capturing your opportunities in the ecommerce space.
Not sure how to evaluate a consultant? Here are 4 key attributes to look for as you make your choice.
At Pattern, we prioritize brand obsession for a reason—we know that a brand-centered mindset makes a crucial difference in the outcomes and results our partners achieve. So in our experience, when you begin your search for an ecommerce consultant, it’s important to look for a partner who is specialized in ecommerce, invested in the product, and passionate about helping brands build and improve their strategies. Typically, this means finding someone that consults exclusively for ecommerce marketplaces, rather than choosing a consultant who offers many different services.
It’s also important to avoid choosing a consulting partner who can’t deliver the right experience for your brand. The best indication of whether your potential consultant can do that is to review their history, data, and results with other brands. Ask if they’ve helped others in your selling category, if they’ve solved specific issues your brand is facing, and why they feel you are a good fit. The key is to leave the conversation feeling confident that you understand your consultants’ capabilities and whether or not they match up with your needs.
It’s best to pick a consultant who knows how to guide a brand onto and through multiple marketplaces worldwide. You’ll want to take a look at your long-term strategy and think about the regions and platforms you’re currently on and where you might want to take your brand in the future. If your consultant is truly great at what they do, they’ll be able to help you perform well enough with your current product roadmap that it’ll be a no-brainer to expand your presence at the right time.
The most effective partnership with an ecommerce consultant will be able to give you both recommendations and point you to solutions for making those changes in your planning, processes, and execution. Your time and money is valuable, so you want to make sure that you’re spending it as efficiently as possible as you follow your consultant’s advice. So, before you commit to an ecommerce consultant, ask about the resources and concrete solutions they typically recommend to the brands they work with.
Finding an ecommerce consultant that checks the boxes can be a difficult task. At Pattern, our entire focus and drive centers around giving brands the tools and resources they need to succeed on domestic and international ecommerce marketplaces.
With over 100 global ecommerce consultants across 10 global offices, we have the right tools to partner with brands across the world to achieve better ecommerce success. We give specialized advice, then make sure our partners have all the adequate SEO, social media, CRM, Amazon multi-channel fulfillment services, and ecommerce outsourcing services they need.
Interested in ecommerce consulting services? Set up a call here to learn what Pattern can do for your brand on global marketplaces.