S2 E13: Noah & Mariah discuss B2C and B2B marketing around BeReal and TikTok, as well as the holiday rush


On this episode of Retention Chronicles, we welcome Noah Rahimzadeh to chat! Mariah and Noah chat through;

  • BeReal, the trending platform that calls themselves the anti-instagram, and how brands are experimenting with it
  • B2C and B2B marketing strategies on TikTok
  • and the BFCM holiday rush in ecommerce.

Be sure to subscribe to our pod to stay up-to-date and checkout Malomo, the leading order tracking platform for Shopify brands.

Subscribe to Retention Chronicles on Apple Podcasts


This transcript was completed by an automated system, please forgive any grammatical errors.


tick tock, tik tok, people, real, brands, instagram, marketing, picture, chipotle, partners, post, videos, trends, podcast, interesting, shopify, platform, retention, funny, podcasters


Mariah Parsons, Noah Rahimzadeh

Mariah Parsons 00:04

Hi there, I'm Mariah Parsons, your host of retention Chronicles, ecommerce brands are starting to shift their strategy to focus on retention in the customer experience. And so we've decided to reach out to top DC brands and dive deeper into their tactics and challenges. But here's the thing, we love going on tangents. And so with our guests, you'll often find us talking about the latest trends, as well as any and all things in the Shopify ecosystem. So go ahead and start that workout or go on that walk and tune in as we chat with the leading minds in the space retention Chronicles is sponsored by Malomo. A shipment in order tracking platform, improving the post purchase experience, be sure to subscribe and check out all of our other episodes at go malomo.com. Now I'm recording.

Noah Rahimzadeh 01:02

Also, I will say I have no idea what to do on this. Oh,

Mariah Parsons 01:05

that's great. I was gonna just walk us through it. But basically so this is the first time Noah Hello, listeners know you from our ecosystem episodes. But this is the first time you're joining our chitchat episodes. So really, the premise of them like why Brian and I started them was because we feel like there's just so many different things that like, we like things that we talk about, like in our one on ones and so we were like, you know, sometimes they're valuable sometimes they're not in there, you know, if they're not valuable, they're fun. So we just thought we'd create them. So really, all the the premise of them is like we each bring a couple of topics, usually it's like two to four and it's okay, if you don't have any prep like I think you'll you'll catch on pretty quick and probably have things to pose anyways. But just like topics of like anything in like E commerce or just like the business world like social media, marketing trends, stuff like that. Sometimes they're so random, just like opinion pieces of like, it's like what do you like better? Like this was one of the topics last episode so like Google Maps, or like Apple Maps, and then that leads you down to like funny stories, whatever. Um, so that's like, the premise of it is just like we come on the podcast chat for a little bit about different topics like all around the map, and then get some interesting heartaches.

Noah Rahimzadeh 02:22

Cool. Do you have some topics?

Mariah Parsons 02:24

I do. I do. chat

Noah Rahimzadeh 02:27

with me about

Mariah Parsons 02:28

I do have. I do a topic so that we can chat about publicly. Um, it's the newsletter raisin bread. It's by like marketing hire. I've referenced it on previous episodes, but they just have like a bunch of marketing trends, and like updates and stuff like that. So have you heard of be real like the app? I'm sure you have. Right. Okay. Do you have it?

Noah Rahimzadeh 02:53

I've seen I don't have it do do like a lot of men habit. I haven't seen resharing on Instagram. To be honest, just to set the stage. My social media presence is basically exclusively Instagram. Tik Tok. My Facebook got hacked probably a year ago, I never even bothered getting never looked back. So there's probably horrible things going out from out, but I can't see them.

Mariah Parsons 03:23

That's just gonna tell people to go on. Look, now. You open the floodgate with that one?

Noah Rahimzadeh 03:28

Probably had, you know, probably didn't I don't know Facebook, I might have just put like my normal first and last name. Yeah. Whereas some of the others had aliases for Oh,

Mariah Parsons 03:40

that's funny. It's like your middle name. Like I thought that a lot. Yes, exactly. Yeah, I got you. Okay, so that's fair.

Noah Rahimzadeh 03:51

But real quick, I see the trends in social media through Instagram. Because like, once something starts taking off, people just start re sharing it on Instagram. So it was tick tock. Now be real is everywhere on Instagram. So that's how I'm familiar with it. Okay. Not soon, not intimately familiar.

Mariah Parsons 04:15

Okay. Okay. So I think all right, let me I'll tell you so basically, like brands are starting to experiment with it with be real, which I think is really interesting.

Noah Rahimzadeh 04:29

Like that premise of be real. Like yeah,

Mariah Parsons 04:33

yeah, so be real. It's like how they are marketing themselves is like the anti Instagram, where it's like no filters. It's once a day everyone posts, there's no likes, there's no you can like React. So it's like you take a picture of yourself, and it like becomes an emoji. Or you can just like have a regular emoji. So there's I think actually there maybe is a comment section but there's no like liking and you just you have your you don't know how many people are following each You count. So you just like you have your friends on there. And that's it. And so that's the whole premise of be real. And there is a, like a notification that goes out once a day. And it says, like time to be real. Take your screenshot, you have like, officially two minutes to post in that timeframe. And it's supposed to be like, you just capture what you're doing in the moment. Now, like, of course, if you're missing the notification, like, you can post after, um, and so that's the whole premise of it is like, they're the, you know, they take away the fakeness, the filters, all of that.

Noah Rahimzadeh 05:37

And so what is the double sided camera? Oh, yes,

Mariah Parsons 05:40

it takes a picture with both cameras. So like, if you're holding it, and it's a little bit delayed, so like, you're holding your phone, right? Like, you're taking a picture a selfie with friends, or whatever you're doing whatever's in the background, and then the other camera, it'll like the back camera, it'll take a picture, like a second or two after that. So like, some people have gotten really creative with it. And they're actually really pretty deceived. Because, like, if there's a beautiful landscape, and then it's like the picture of you right? Like it, and you can like toggle back and forth between the two. And like I've seen on Tik Tok, like people, like throw their phone up, and like, they take a selfie, throw their phone up in the air, and then it's like, you capture everyone who's there, or like a cool angle, stuff like that. Yeah, so there's like really, really cool applications of it. And I don't know of any other app that like takes a picture of the same time with both cameras. So like, for instance, one of my friends just got engaged and like, the be real went off when they were getting like, during, like, right after they got engaged. And while they were taking pictures, and so like, one of the pictures is like her with her ring, and then like him in the background, and then they were at Yosemite. So it's like a beautiful picture is mountain. And that's what she put on Instagram, like. So those are some of the applications. Now, how brands are using it is like there, at least this is what I read. So like Chipotle and ELF the makeup brand are the two that like I read this article on, and Chipotle is using it to like, do like discount codes and like secret menu items. So it's kind of like FOMO marketing a bit. The whole premise is they're like sharing coupon codes, or like discount codes or, like secret menu items, stuff like that. And being like the first people to use this, like this code, the first 100 People that use this code are gonna, like get this exclusive, like $100, gift card, stuff like that. So that's how they're using the real AI. But like, there's also skeptics out there who are like, the platform's gonna be gone. Like there's been like, 15 versions of this, like, did you hear dispo? It was like, David. Oh, my God, what is the youtubers name, shoot, all think about it. Um, but like, it was like another version of this. Whereas basically like a disposable camera app. Like takes pictures and like, you can share it with other friends. Like, it's like, a photo album, basically. But it's an app. David dobrik. That's the name I was trying to think of. So like, he had his own thing. So like, there's also the other side of the coin, or people are like, this is not going to be around for a while. But I mean, there's a there's a decent amount of people who use it, like SNL had a skit on be real. Did you see that with Myles Taylor? No. So it was like, like, it just seems like be real is catching a lot of people's eyes like I've now seen. So some I don't know who it was, but like some email, it was like the the subject was the two little yellow exclamation points, which is what the real uses and it's like, it's time to be real, like get this this Yeah, we're in think right, like, so it is kind of catching on where it's like a social or like a cultural cue. It's like, oh, you're in the know about this, whatever. Yeah, um, but SNL they just had like, in a funny skit where basically the like Miles Teller, his character and some of the other SNL characters were like robbing a bank and to be real went off. And so like, it was, yeah, like, everyone was like, we stood out like, like, so like, the robbers like miles Taylor, his character was like, like being told about what the real is, and they were like, you have to take your phone, but it'll take a picture, like, at the same time of like, both screens and then mild toddlers, like, his character. It's like, put your hands away, like, whatever. And then he's like, but wait, show me at first like, so. You know, it's it's kind of catching on. Um, so I just thought it was interesting, like brands starting to get on there. And last chitchat episode. Brian and I talked about Chipotle in the metaverse so it just seems like they're trying like their marketing team is just going off and seeing like, you know what, what can we do with all the He's different platforms. So super interesting.

Noah Rahimzadeh 10:03

So can you tell me again the use case of like Chipotle so use case for

Mariah Parsons 10:10

it. They're so like their pictures that like a burnt like a marketer takes? Yeah, I haven't seen them. But this is what they described in the articles like, the one of the pictures will be like a secret promo code. So if you like if you were I followed Chipotle and saw the be real come up from Chipotle, then we go online or we take it to a store. And we say, Hey, I saw this be real with this coupon code. Like, say it's a free bowl or whatever a free burrito? Can I have it? And if you're one of the first 100 to like, redeem it, you like get this perk, I guess. So that's how they feed into I wonder if I like looked it up and just saw like if there was a example of it.

Noah Rahimzadeh 10:56

So you get the for real for real code first 100 people? Wow.

Mariah Parsons 11:02

Yeah. There you go. So like, that's how, okay, so you can see, like, View All 10 comments, whatever. And like it expires the next day. So like, that's what they're doing to, like, generate a following. But like, you can't really see how many people are following there be real. But that's what they're doing to like on this new platform. Which is very interesting.

Noah Rahimzadeh 11:23

Yeah, sick use case. I wonder. Okay, so then, like, how long? I guess it doesn't matter, because they cap the number of people who can use that promo.

Mariah Parsons 11:34

Yeah. But like, super interesting. And like, for influencers, like I could see the application there of like, you know, you follow an influencer and be real, and they post about Chipotle. And it's like, they're just kind of like, it just grows and grows and grows, right. Like, if the platform is still getting enough traction, to the point where it is now. Like, if that that keeps up, then, you know, I could see like, why is that any different from Instagram or like anything like that? Yeah, so just very, very, very interesting. This? What?

Noah Rahimzadeh 12:11

This is awesome. I love this use case.

Mariah Parsons 12:14

Yeah. Isn't that fun? And

Noah Rahimzadeh 12:17

I feel like there's so much opportunity for this. Like, what brand like there are a few brands that like wouldn't benefit like any considerable.

Mariah Parsons 12:30

Exactly. Average this? Yeah. Yeah, I'm trying to find the number of like, how many downloads? They had.

Noah Rahimzadeh 12:38

Way to Grow social media following as well, right. Yeah. But I would imagine you I don't know what the feed is like, like, when what's the feed experience? Is it like, scroll through just like everything else?

Mariah Parsons 12:57

Yeah, yep. So like, people who have posted for that day, and you can only see something for that day. Like, you can't, you can go back and look at your own library of pictures that you've taken, but like, say I posted on be real, and you were one of my friends. You can't go back and see yesterday's post for to me for for myself, it's just 24 hours. Okay?

Noah Rahimzadeh 13:18

So, so when people like post their be real on Instagram, it's either like a screenshot or Yes. Well, I need to like save that.

Mariah Parsons 13:27

Exactly. So like, I can save my own pictures. If I was to put like your reel on mine, I would have to screenshot it. But like, I can go back in my library of the reels that I've taken, and save any of them. And that's how like people can upload them to Instagram. Got it? Yeah.

Noah Rahimzadeh 13:49

Oh, very cool. So basically what you're saying is we should

Mariah Parsons 13:53

Oh, I already have like in the works

Noah Rahimzadeh 13:55

be real and Yeah.

Mariah Parsons 13:58

Yeah. Oh, believe me, like Okay, so this is also one of my other tangents is, it's tangentially related but like dropping easter eggs or like cultural references. So like, like, Taylor Swift just dropped her new album, right? I'm an avid Taylor Swift listener love her. Exactly, exactly. Who isn't. So I seen a lot of things trending that has to do with Taylor Swift. Um, and like, whether it's on tick tock or Instagram or anything like the idea of like little easter eggs and that like FOMO marketing I think it's pretty much the same play of like the be real because you have to be like in the know about it. Yeah. So like the my mind of course, with just like tick tock and everything is racing with how I can somehow seamlessly wrap in any little. Any little like Easter egg?

Noah Rahimzadeh 14:56

Yeah, okay. I like it does Malomo have a tick tock Do we have a tick tock?

Mariah Parsons 15:01

Okay, so it's almost like I told you to ask that question. We don't yet, but I have gotten the approval to make one. So

Noah Rahimzadeh 15:12

was that like a hard? Was that like a hard thing to know? I was gonna say, I feel like Yeah, our Alicia would be like, why are you even asking me that? Yeah,

Mariah Parsons 15:22

yeah, exactly. It was just more like, Oh, can I do it? We've been talking about it for a while, but just with, you know, normal stuff like it, it got kind of put on the backburner. But now, what am I quarterly goals is to really like expand that and look into it. So look out for us on tick tock.

Noah Rahimzadeh 15:40

Are there any, any of our like, partners in our ecosystem that have them that you sort of admire?

Mariah Parsons 15:48

Oh, okay. Okay, I see what you're saying. So I have to do a deep dive on our partners, which is like part of it I thought for a second you were saying brands and I was like, there's a ton of our brands on Tik Tok. Yeah, yeah. Um, partners, specifically, though, I need to look into I know, there's a lot of people just like, I don't think, partners necessarily, there's going to be as large of a market for but merchants it's crazy. Like, I feel like everyone right now is trying because why wouldn't you like the discoverability is so high on tick tock, that's what's so appealing to it. But like, I feel like I saw maybe I'm gorgeous. I looked in one second. Let me look. I feel like I looked up a couple of our partners a while ago, to try and see when I was like, making the case. earlier. Yeah. Um,

Noah Rahimzadeh 16:40

well, yeah, the reason I ask is because like the b2c application is like, super apparent, makes it tough. Yeah, I don't think that it's as clear for b2b but I also am like an avid believer that a lot of the things that go on and b2c marketing should and will eventually be, yeah, b2b. So like, I love the idea of incorporating b2c strategies and our marketing. But I'm curious like, if others are doing that, which is the first reason I asked and then what your thoughts are on like, what that experience will be like on Tik Tok the Malomo Tiktok channel, like, will it be retention marketing focus will be specific to our product. Like, what are your? Yeah, so

Mariah Parsons 17:28

sure, I don't know how exclusive I was gonna say, to tune in to figure it out. No, there's a ton of market for like, tips and tricks and stuff like that. So but getting back to your question of what I see it I see like the podcast, especially the market for podcast right now is on tick tock. Like the scalability there is big. So like, just the

Noah Rahimzadeh 17:53

What do you mean by that like getting podcasts like podcasters, or going to tick tock or that's a great channel for like, acquiring new podcast listeners, or maybe

Mariah Parsons 18:03

both. So like, the consumer is going to tick tock and like scrolling through and they're, if they see like a 15/32 clip of podcasters. That's funny. Their algorithm if they like, stay on the video longer, we'll feed them more of those videos. So like, the consumer is getting more and more familiar with those podcasters and their faces and their humor and like, or their education, whatever they're specializing in, and then going to the app to like going to Spotify and subscribing because they like those listeners or like Tik Tok will just keep feeding them so they see them more. And then for podcasters podcasters are using that as their platform for content right now. Like creating short short form video and getting their message their audience like growing their audience on Tik Tok. I've seen a ton and they're like, definitely couple that I know, I saw on tick tock and I'm like, then these are these are funny. And now I listen to them. So it's that like, that I see is the it's more of the brand awareness, like the brand building on tick tock. And then for us as well, the so that, like the podcast would be both the educational things like all the tips and tricks that we're learning from our partners in our merchants. And then like the funny side, right, like of us talking about, like be real in marketing, like that's just interesting stuff, or at least I think it is. And then also like product updates too. So like, oh, like we work. You know, we work with Shopify to do this, like look at this new update, like our problem orders launch, right like taking little 32nd video and explaining like, Oh, if you're in the Shopify ecosystem, this is why this might be relevant for you. So it's a bunch of the stuff that we're encouraging our brands to put on their pages is like we can equally educate. Yes, merchant but also like the consumer on a good experience what that looks like for them. Yeah. So it's like that, I think is where we could kind of get like one step and two steps, like in the like connection connectivity with the consumer.

Noah Rahimzadeh 20:16

Mm hmm. Have you? Have you looked at any of sharp fires in the past?

Mariah Parsons 20:23

I definitely did like, but this was like, Navy. And it might have been literally last, like February that I did. So it's been a while. So I have to look again, and do a deep dive.

Noah Rahimzadeh 20:37

Oh, here we go. I just want to see what what sort of stuff they talk about.

Mariah Parsons 20:41

Yeah, I'm sure like the thing about tick tock. It's, it's kind of all over the place. Which is fun, because you never know what you're gonna get. Like, there's some that are educational videos, or some that are funny, like Duolingo Do you know Duolingo? The language learning platform? Yeah, so like Duolingo they have a bird, or sorry, not bird and our mascot. And they like they got their following because they started just doing like, funny tic TOCs of like, their marketing interns like bugging the CEO. And like it's them in the costume. Like all these different, like, funnier trends that they did in our costume. And then people were like, Oh, this is funny. And now they have a huge following on Tik Tok. And they're like, leading the way and like scrub daddy to like the sponges. They're leading the way as well. Um, AARP, just like they went viral on Tiktok. Like, there's really no there's no like rules yet as to what is and isn't okay. And I, I think with tick tock that'll probably stay around for a while. And why there's so much potential on the platform.

Noah Rahimzadeh 21:54

That is really, really interesting. So the one that I just pulled up from Shopify is it's like says boss, he wants you to focus on Twitter content. Next, next thing is like, this is you

Mariah Parsons 22:12

is it marketing intern who wants to be on Tik Tok? Yeah. Yeah, see, like, I know that trend. And that's so that's so true. So like, I am going to rope in all the rest of our other like, see, they have that little Shopify bag. Like, you know, it's yeah, it's like the little logo. Um, I've made jokes about us getting like little butterflies. And I'm like, come on.

Noah Rahimzadeh 22:37

Yeah, we wear the costume. I mean,

Mariah Parsons 22:39

Oh, for sure. I would, I would. So get the team involved in this. Like, I would make everyone and everyone who be comfortable like being on a video beyond the video. Like, can you not see like majority of our team? Oh,

Noah Rahimzadeh 22:52

yeah. I'm into the office more than like, once every once every two months.

Mariah Parsons 22:56

Exactly. Exactly. tiktoks I was like, today is a tick tock tick tock day guys. Like come in. We're gonna spend an hour like making content get like, all everyone who's in Indianapolis do it and then people who are working remotely can like, you know, also be making videos because it's so easy. So yeah, big plans. Big plans. Yeah.

Noah Rahimzadeh 23:22

Yeah, I think that yes.

Mariah Parsons 23:24

Ideas. Let me know, too. We could brainstorm

Noah Rahimzadeh 23:26

Well, yeah. Once we launch I'm sure. I'm sure we'll have plenty. And I said Brandon earlier, but I think he's haven't seen some success. Brandon from electric. Yeah. Oh, that's huge. With his tick tock that the only reason I know about is because he posts it on Instagram. There you go. But yeah, that he's he's started to get a little following himself. So he might pick his brain on some tips and tricks as well.

Mariah Parsons 23:53

Oh, for sure. Yeah. Yeah, I'm excited for it. Um, so more to come on that that was literally just decided, I think this Monday, so a nap today's? Yeah, today's Tuesday. So yesterday,

Noah Rahimzadeh 24:07

very cool. Excited. When, when are we hoping the first bid goes live.

Mariah Parsons 24:13

So I'm looking to start it either this or like this week or next week and just start putting in videos that we already have. And like, that'll be mostly from the podcast and just like launches and whatnot, just to get some of that base content in there. Because it'll take a little while obviously, to like, kind of find your market and like even out and then hopefully, like start getting a cadence for like more of the trending videos and like getting the team involved. So that would probably be a could be maybe, depending on people's work loads and whatnot, maybe in q4, like December before the holidays, but people are going to be very busy so I'm not expecting much until q1 from other people

Noah Rahimzadeh 25:00

Yeah. Okay. How has this isn't my first first holiday season in E commerce? Yeah, how was last year?

Mariah Parsons 25:11

Yeah. So I like it was just like a fever dream is the best way to describe it. And that's even coming from me which I am not on the, like directly on the customer facing side of Malomo. So like, product and CS, definitely are the two branches that I would say get hit the most, because they're obviously, like more customer facing. And then sales really does like, take a little bit of a breather, because traditionally, merchants aren't looking at this, this time of the year to like onload, a new surface service that really comes in like q1. So I really saw like a bunch of movements from like, partners to get the word out there about Black Friday, Cyber Monday, like that's when we had our two big webinars in November in January. So like, I was pretty busy with that. But December, it was mostly just like being consistent being there from for brands, like no matter what. No matter what, like vert, or team you're on for Malomo. So yeah, it's weird because it like definitely hypes up with like Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and then a little bit of a divot and then like you hit the holidays, and it's like, almost like a ghost town. Like, no one's online. No one's really buying because they're celebrating with their family, you know. So like late December, it really kind of stalls out and then picks back up in January. That's fun, though. I think like it being the first time to be in the holiday season and ecommerce.

Noah Rahimzadeh 26:57

Yeah, yeah, for sure. I'm excited for my first go round. I feel like it's like, I feel like anxiety is high across everywhere, like partners, clients, prospects, agencies, but at the same time, it's like, the most exciting time. Yeah, for us all. So exactly. And also, like, obviously, there's a bunch of horrible things happening in the world and, and the economy being where it's at. But we know we're gonna see an uptick. So it'll just, it'll just be interesting to see like, what that actually ends up looking like and what,

Mariah Parsons 27:40

like how big the uptick is. Yeah. Yeah.

Noah Rahimzadeh 27:43

Consumer Sentiment is and consumer spending around the holidays. So I'm really curious to see how it all plays out.

Mariah Parsons 27:51

Yeah, I definitely think it'll Yeah, I think there's a lot of nervous energy around, like, what its gonna look like. So it'll be interesting, kind of, like in the new year to sit down and sift through it all. I was just going through our social like, calendar to to, like, jog my memory of what we were doing. And like, even now, it's crazy, because we were just launching this podcast last year, in like, early September, so q4, or just end of q3, but like in October to like, episodes with like, our second episode went live in October and then, like Pura Vida house like a couple other Ned. Couple other podcasts episodes, so like, definitely weird to sit here now. And like,

Noah Rahimzadeh 28:45

the whole thing now.

Mariah Parsons 28:47

It is a whole thing now. Yeah. So it's fun, though. I'm curious to see we'll have to put it up, put a pin in it and see, like, what your interpretations are after this year? Yeah. If they met kind of your expectations, or if they went completely differently. Yeah, I remember last year too. It was the shipments like the shipment delay what it shipped mageddon, right like of January, like that was a big thing that people weren't expecting of like the canal and everything being backed up. So I remember that being a big, big part of a lot of people's you know, take aways from the holidays,

Noah Rahimzadeh 29:33

especially if you can't proactively communicate those delays. Yeah, I mean, how horrible about

Mariah Parsons 29:39

Yeah, if you didn't have you know, those systems in play, people just wouldn't know their their gift or their right um, it's still on a ship somewhere.

Noah Rahimzadeh 29:52

On a ship somewhere. Yeah. Not coming for a few months. Yeah, maybe maybe this Christmas. They'll get it?

Mariah Parsons 29:59

Yeah, yeah. I hope that makes I hope that makes sense. Why around this Christmas? Good. Okay. Well this is fun. Thanks for joining. No. Thanks for having me.