Top 7 Learnings from the Ecommerce Growth Show

👉 Register to attend the 2024 CommerceNext Growth Show on June 11-13 in NYC to learn from 150+ industry leaders about ecommerce and retail growth.

Last month, we hosted our annual Ecommerce Growth Show in NYC. The conference brought together 1700+ executives from the retail and DTC sectors to discuss the latest trends and growth prospects. With 120+ expert speakers delivering presentations during 50+ sessions, the show was exceptional and highly valuable. 

From cutting-edge technologies to customer-centric approaches, in this blog, we will unpack the key takeaways that will help you navigate the ever-evolving landscape of ecommerce and unlock new growth opportunities. Read on to explore the top seven learnings from the highest-rated sessions at this year’s ecommerce conference.

1. Domino’s Reinvented: Boldly Innovating for Today’s Changing Customer Journeys

Takeaway: An Obsession With the Customer Wins Every Time

Domino’s, a brand long known for its commitment to customer satisfaction, continues to put the customer first. Christopher Thomas-Moore, Chief Digital Officer at Domino’s, emphasizes how a brand’s messaging has real breakthroughs when it is relevant and leans into the tensions/underlying issues of its consumers.

The pandemic transformed every aspect of people’s lives, and it is essential for marketers to move forward and avoid simply continuing their pre-pandemic practices. Addressing different tensions in society and in people’s day-to-day lives can create a powerful bond between the brand and its customers, leading to increased loyalty and advocacy. The company recently launched a way to order Domino’s with Apple Carplay, citing a focus on customer convenience and a way to avoid the increasingly long drive-through lines. Domino’s constant focus on an obsession with the customer shapes their every decision and creates a special and memorable experience. 

2. How Forever21 Stays Culturally Fluent and Connected to Their Customer 

Takeaway: Meet Gen Z Where They Are

As the name suggests, Forever21 has an audience filled with Gen Z who require different marketing strategies than those used in the past. To accomplish this, Forever21 strives to meet Gen Z on the platforms they already actively engage with. Winnie Park, CEO at Forever21, describes how in order to create a relationship with Gen Z consumers, you can’t do everything for profit. 

Gen Z is notorious for hating being “marketed to.” This is why Winnie has opted for strategies such as tapping into the virtual world of Roblox and creating specific festival clothing lines to form genuine and long-lasting connections. Engaging with their consumers through natural and influencer marketing has proved successful for Forever 21 as they do more than slap their logo onto something. 

3. Panel Shifting Marketing Mix in Response to Measurement & Targeting Challenges 

Takeaway: Ensure Advertising Efforts are Reaching your Target Audience 

The rise of privacy laws and the evolving use of data has forced marketers to adapt their advertising strategies. This expert panel discussed the best practices for reaching target audiences through various examples of their own businesses’ advertising methods. 

During the conversation, they also touched upon the importance of continuously seeking out new customers and expanding the customer base in sustainable and enduring ways. Doug Jensen, SVP Go-to-Marketing Analytics & Activation and Learning Center of Excellence at the Estée Lauder Companies, explains how his company has decided to change the approach of the marketing mix to be much more forward-looking. Using this approach is in response to influencer marketing and other new advertising strategies, reflecting their commitment to staying ahead of industry trends and consumer preferences. 

4. Keynote: How ChatGPT and Automated Experimentation Will Kill Mundane Marketing Tasks 

Takeaway: Take Advantage of the New AI Tools 

Over the last 6 months, ChatGPT has become an online sensation. AI has transformed the way that people work and has the capacity to kill mundane marketing tasks. George Khachatryan, Co-founder & CEO of OfferFit, explains his vision of using AI to automate experimentation and make A/B testing obsolete. 

Three obstacles currently stand between marketing and the dream of personalization. Iin the coming decade, AI is poised to address all three challenges: data integration, content authorship and experimentation. This session explored what new AI models can and can’t do and how AI tools will help marketers achieve 1:1 personalization and creative production at scale. 

5. The ZSuite by BCG 

Takeaway: The Secret to Connecting with Gen Z 

In the ZSuite, Ekta Chopra, Chief Digital Officer at e.l.f. Beauty, discussed the unique shopping behaviors, social media choices and sustainability views of Gen Z.  She details how being present is the key ingredient for engaging with Gen Z and emphasizes the importance of making sure that the content you produce truly reflects your brand. 

Given Gen Z’s constant exposure to information, brands must be prepared to adapt and evolve consistently. Ekta explained the importance of the customer journey, highlighting that despite the initial stages of Gen Z’s journeys commencing online, the ultimate purchase decision can be made online or in-store depending on convenience and urgency. These findings underscore the importance of implementing an integrated omnichannel strategy for brands targeting Gen Z. Gen Z also values brands that share their same beliefs and create authentic and unfiltered content. By incorporating these findings and insights into their marketing strategies, businesses can effectively engage with this generation. 

6. Unifying Sol de Janeiro’s Email & SMS Program Reveals Big Wins 

Takeaway: The Power of the Right Partnership

Sol de Janeiro, the Brazilian-inspired beauty and lifestyle brand, partnered with Listrak to consolidate their email and SMS program, which has since led to notable advantages. Genevieve Head-Gordon, Director of Ecommerce & Growth at Sol de Janeiro, and Karen DiClemente, Head of Retail Practice at Listrak, discussed the benefits of their strategic partnership and the lessons they have learned along the way. 

By centralizing their reporting into a single location (Listrak), Sol de Janeiro gained valuable insights into the revenue-driving factors and a clearer understanding of their consumers’ engagement through messaging. Sol de Janeiro now sends an SMS every day and has worked up to that cadence by understanding that their customer is not as engaged through email. SMS has the ability to be much more personalized, resonating with Sol de Janeiro’s mission to showcase the brand’s ethos and create a fun shopping experience. 

7. Rethinking Video: Easy, Efficient & Engaging Content Creation for Your Brand 

Takeaway: Supercharge your Marketing MixBy Adding Video 

Most retailers are not set up to scale video content, but it is vital for driving customer acquisition and retention. Sunday Sky is the leading detail video provider platform for marketers and Megan Well, VP Product Management, describes Sunday Sky as “the Canva of video.” 

Getting started with video content is easy and the strategies are already integrated within your business. Megan highlights three retailers who are rethinking video by making it more cost-effective, more personalized to support audience targeting strategies and measurable so the optimization is accessible and able to be improved. She shares how Signet Jewelers, the parent company of more than 10 brands, was able to create tens of thousands of unique and personalized videos with the support of only 2 marketing channel managers in under a month. With the help of Sunday Sky, Signet Jewelers has now created a highly engaging customer experience and supercharged their marketing mix. 

These top seven insights are just a taste of the abundance of ecommerce growth strategies shared at the 2023 ecommerce conference. Take a look at the recap of the Ecommerce Growth Show on our website and find more videos and learnings on our Youtube channel!