After igniting the flash sales market with the launch of Gilt.com during the summer of 2007 and after growing that ecommerce business to an estimated $500mm in annual sales, Gilt Groupe is expanding their business in an unexpected way. They have recently announced the launch of Du Jour, a new digital and print magazine that is aimed at their exclusive customer base of high income individuals.
Editorial content is an increasingly popular way for retailers to increase engagement with a firm’s customers. And this is not the first foray for Gilt into editorial content. The launch of Gilt Taste was noted for the hiring of famed New York Times reviewer, Ruth Reichl, to guide the editorial policy of the new business.Continue Reading
I was recently asked by a client to help them develop a social strategy — which is a fairly common request these days given the limitless press devoted to Facebook, Twitter, and newest entrant Pinterest — but in my experience I have struggled to see any concrete examples of retailers convert their social efforts into dollars in the door. A few retailers have amassed an enormous number of followers on Facebook (Victoria’s Secret is the current leader, topping out at more than 18mm fans at the time of this post), but very few sites have been able to leverage this social base for more than 1-2% of their overall sales. So it came as a surprise to me when I found out that KarmaLoop, a retailer focused on Global Concrete Culture, drove 27% of its revenue through a social program. We are talking real dollars as well – an estimated $20mm+.Continue Reading
When I managed email marketing for Circuit City, back in 2003, email acquisition was always one of my primary areas of focus. Each week I reviewed the number of subscribers that came from the site checkout process, in-store capture, and from the web-site itself. One of our secret weapons was a pop-up that advertised a weekly sweepstakes. Customers could provide their email address for marketing purposes, and in exchange, they were entered to win a free digital camera or somesuch — back in ’03, a 3.0 megapixel camera was the height of technology.Continue Reading
As a novelist my wife has an ear for words. And she alternates between amusement and exasperation with the phrases that seem to take root overnight in the business world and then become obnoxiously ubiquitous. “The Pivot” is the most recent term that seems to be on everyone’s lips, and moving beyond the cliché, it is about company taking radical leaps to alter their business model in order to move past business challenges.Continue Reading
On any given day, a quick review of TechCrunch illustrates the continued innovation in the e-commerce space. In recent weeks the news has primarily focused on mobile and tablet shopping, but two quick posts this morning show that the curation and subscription models are seeing a mini-boom (at least in the venture capital world, which continues to invest heavily in these businesses.) The first post focused on ShoeDazzle, a subscription service where for $39.95 a month you receive a pair of designer shoes curated by the likes of Kim Kardashian, and the second post discussed the Series A round of financing secured by Quarterly, a site allows you to subscribe to people like John Maeda, the president of RISD, and receive curated quarterly packages once every three months.Continue Reading