Magnetic has been very fortunate to work with some of the best leaders in our industry, the types of leaders that build successful teams, develop strategies that make a difference and are catalysts for positive change. These individuals take ordinary ideas and transform them into extraordinary realities, which will be shared in Magnetic’s Extraordinary Leaders Series.
We love learning from our customers and are excited to highlight extraordinary leader and Magnetic client, Patrick Keller, Director of Ecommerce at Sundance Catalog. Sundance Catalog is a premier lifestyle brand founded by famed actor, director, and visionary filmmaker, Robert Redford. Sundance Catalog offers women’s and men’s apparel, footwear, jewelry and home decor and although it started as a traditional catalog business, it now has seven successful brick and mortar locations and a thriving eCommerce business. As a multi-channel retailer, Sundance Catalog is on a mission to create a seamless shopping experience for customers across all channels. Patrick views Sundance’s multichannel marketing approach as a valuable opportunity to connect with customers in store, online and through print. We sat down with Patrick to give us some insight into his omni-channel strategy and learn how Sundance continues to strengthen its brand identity, while also strengthening its relationships with customers.
M: With brick and mortar locations, a website and a print catalog, how has your customers expectations and shopping behaviors changed across all these channels and how does this impact your data strategy?
P: Customers are giving us tremendous amounts of data through feedback, which is very valuable. We get customer data from social media, product reviews, net promoter score (NPS) comments, chat transcripts, etc. With these open lines of communication, customers expect us to listen and react at a higher level than in years past. We can’t rely on transactional data alone anymore to make decisions. Like most companies, we are constantly striving to use the wealth of information to segment our file and offer a more personalized experience.
M: You’re getting a lot of valuable information about your customers, but how do you balance what the data tells you about the customer with the customer’s actual experience across your channels?
P: In its simplest form we use a champion / challenger method. We try not to deviate from the current customer experience without testing and using the data to verify we are indeed making the process better.
M: How are you leveraging this abundant data for customer acquisition?
P: We’ve moved beyond a single (catalog) touch point to drive acquisition. Understanding the customer journey and the points of engagement along the way is the first step. Understanding the value of each engagement and the impact they have is a top goal for 2016. We have invested over the last few years in a new database and data management platform (DMP) to improve our understanding on the path to purchase or customer funnel. Now we are looking into technology and data models to help us make smarter decisions on how we spend our budget to acquire new customers. Improved lifetime value models and fractionalized attribution are all on the radar this year.
M: You talked about creating a seamless customer experience across all Sundance Catalog channels. How do you also preserve customer loyalty in doing this?
P: It all starts with staying true to the brand. Our brand is our corporate compass and everything we do aligns with our mission statement. This offers a layer of stability and consistency across all channels that customers can expect and depend on. Key factors that make the Sundance brand unique are our quality products with a strong focus on value and customer service. It’s my job as a marketer to convey this message consistently through all channel messaging.
M: With any Omni Channel strategy, you need to think of an effective attribution model. How have you approached this challenge?
P: Improving attribution is another top goal in 2016. We started with a “what’s the problem” and “what’s the opportunity” mentality. Oversimplifying, we came away with the understanding that there are opportunities to continue to grow our understanding of the impact each customer engagement has on our business. The growth of web marketing, retail and more sophisticated catalog marketing over the past few years has created a lot of questions and new challenges we are working to address as the organization grows and customer behavior changes. The opportunity is in our ability to cut out some the redundancy in our costs and reinvest that money to acquire more customers at a higher lifetime value (LTV). Then, we reinvest that money to nurture existing customers towards multi-category and multi-channel which would generate greater brand loyalty and a higher % of wallet share.
M: We all agree Sundance has become extremely successful and your extraordinary leadership certainly plays a role in that success. What lessons can you share with our readers about your past mistakes and how you were able to overcome those challenges?
P: It’s important for everyone in the company to be bought into the idea of corporate growth over personal or department growth. When we succeed as an organization, the individuals succeed. This is a critical philosophy in order to achieve your attribution goals. If department heads and managers are not on board or don’t trust the data, everything from that point on will be watered down.
Patrick’s recently participated in Magnetic’s Data Magnified San Francisco event. Learn more about the Data Magnified series, featuring extraordinary thought leaders. For more information about Sundance Catalog and a look at how they’re personalizing the experience for each individual, visit www.sudancecatalog.com
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