S5 E16: Email marketing and email templates for ecommerce brands with Liz Krupka at Nomadd Marketing

S5 E16 PODCAST

Liz Krupka, Owner of Nomadd Marketing, joins Retention Chronicles to discuss email marketing and optimizing email templates

Great email marketing has to parallel a brand’s tone and great customer experience. This is what Liz and her team focus on.

Liz and Mariah talk about how some ecommerce merchants have lost creative aspects of their marketing due to the shift towards performance marketing. The key is that these brands aren’t following what originally brought their customers to know and love their brand. So, some emails become too sales heavy, which end up turning customers away.

Liz proposes that instead, brands focus on what drove their audience and hone in on that. Find out which emails are the most successful that appeal to their audience and optimize those rather than fully redoing their emails.

Liz also talks about email templates for ecommerce brands and how to compare templates accurately. Brands must take into account the email copy, email creative, email offerings, the seasonality, historical data, the economy, and more.

There are also considerations brands should make when considering becoming a promotion-heavy brand vs one that does not run promotions.

Episode Timestamps:

  • 2:07 Celebrity endorsements and product placements in social media

  • 6:42 Marketing strategies and post-purchase experiences

  • 12:26 Email marketing challenges and strategies for brands in Utah

  • 17:51 Email marketing strategies and audience analysis

  • 23:04 Email marketing templates and their importance in improving email performance

  • 28:27 Email marketing strategies and industry benchmarks for e-commerce brands

  • 32:38 Marketing strategies, tactics, and best practices for email and SMS campaigns

  • 38:54 Reducing promotions to focus on loyalty programs

  • 43:05 Sustainable marketing strategies for fashion brands


Did you know that 20% of your website traffic hits the order tracking experience? Turn all of that customer engagement into customer loyalty. Malomo helps you get ahead of shipping issues, brand your order tracking experience, and reconvert shoppers while they wait for their package to arrive.

To see what your custom mockup of branded order tracking and transactional email/SMS would look like, fill out this form & we’ll send your custom design right to your inbox!

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

TRANSCRIPT

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

SUMMARY KEYWORDS

branded tracking, email, industry benchmarks, promotion, work, product, email templates, love, sale, audience, super, marketing, feel, Shopify email marketing, buy, compare, hold, design, year, utah, ecommerce email marketing agency

SPEAKERS

Liz Krupka, Mariah Parsons

Mariah Parsons 00:05

Greetings and welcome to retention Chronicles, the podcast with learnings from expert e commerce brands and partners. I'm your host, Ryan Parsons. If you're here, you're either on a quest for ecommerce enlightenment, or you accidentally clicked the wrong link. Either way, I am thrilled you stumbled into our corner of the internet. And I hope you'll stick around. We've got pearls of wisdom for everyone, whether you're running a multimillion dollar business, or simply just starting out on your entrepreneurial journey. Before we unleash the brilliance of today's guest, let's give a shout out to our podcast sponsor Malomo. Malomo is so much more than just another Shopify app, their post purchase wizards making beautiful and branded order tracking smoother than a jazz solo. So our amazing founders, like our guests can keep their customers happy and up to date while they track their orders. So hit that subscribe button, like it'll increase your LTV overnight, and go listen to her other episodes. Echo malomo.com That's gomalomo.com Get ready for insights chuckles and perhaps a profound realization or two with this newest episode of retention. Hello, everyone, and welcome back to retention Chronicles. Super excited to have Liz here with us today. We were getting chatting, we were chatting before getting on this call. And I'm super excited to hear your take on email marketing and all things in the realm. So thank you for taking the time to chat with us today. Shout out to Mackenzie Bauer. She's been connecting me with a lot of awesome people in the space. And you are one of them. So I'm excited to get to chat with you here. Liz. I'm going to kick it on over to you to introduce yourself and tell our listeners a little bit more about you.

Liz Krupka 01:54

Yeah, thanks Maura. I'm Liz I own Nomad marketing. We're a boutique email and SMS agency. A definite shout out to McKenzie and the whole thread wallet seem they're pretty amazing. It makes sure that all of your stuff is like collected together no matter where you are. And so they're one of my personal favorites as a brand and also like to buy and also to work with. Yep,

Mariah Parsons 02:21

yeah, I have my third wallets downstairs hanging on my key rack. And it's just so convenient. Yeah, and like so adorable designs.

Liz Krupka 02:29

I know, I had this aha moment when I first started working like with brands. My sister had one and I was she was like in college because we're like 10 years apart. And I like saw it and I was like you have a third bullets and she's like, Yeah, and I was like, Oh, wow, I was like they're like they're everywhere. Because yeah, I was living in Utah at the time and grew up in Pennsylvania and Jews in Pennsylvania and so I was like wow, I was like amazing people ship like across the country so so cool. weird

Mariah Parsons 03:00

phenomenon. I feel like I had like I've been in the Shopify ecosystem for three years and I feel like I had a similar notion where it was just like everywhere now I look at like, Which brand is what and like, seeing brands that I can recognize outside of like just seeing like okay, what brands are my friends you know, what did they have? What are they wearing?

Liz Krupka 03:20

So you're you're like almost surprised at a certain point when you're like I don't know this brand Tell Me More now I'm like I've never heard about them like this is strange. I thought I knew every store that I couldn't go yeah potentially shop out in the whole world

Mariah Parsons 03:36

so I know I know and it's like so my like social media feed and everything is just like so targeted now and like this makes sense like I just get I see a bunch of new products and then I like go down the rabbit hole just like it totally gets me but I don't think it's a bad thing right? It's yeah, yeah, it's just like interesting because now we're I just never took inventory of like separate like oh things right? But like just like seeing like oh my god like this podcast is sponsoring this brand or like I'm like oh my god this person is working with this where they're doing a collab with this like it's yeah, it becomes very connected.

Liz Krupka 04:16

I like love knowing how much like people put into placements on things now like when people are like how much do you think this celebrity charges and I'm like, well I actually know roughly how much they probably charge like that kind of stuff is always so interesting. So

Mariah Parsons 04:31

that's a fun Yeah, I haven't had that lens of like, oh, I actually might be able to like pinpoint.

Liz Krupka 04:39

Yeah, like yeah, you definitely know like, once you like are around enough. I mean, paid social is totally not my space. But I've heard enough from paid social teams on like how much certain celebrities charge or like what types of products they will or they won't promote or like, how you can tell if a product is like a paid promotion versus like If it's just sent to them or gifted to them, it's kind of it's super interesting. So

Mariah Parsons 05:06

is that I think my best guess for like knowing is, isn't it now that like you have to put like sponsored your ad or somewhere right if it's like sent to them or know

Liz Krupka 05:14

some some of that but there's also like certain ways that some celebrities will mention things and stories that they like maybe have gotten as gifts. But they'll never show like their faces. It's like very curated experience. They like never actually talked about the product. So they'll like open it and like look at it and like, show it around, but they never actually like, like, hold it up to their face. Hey, I use this product. You know, that's why it was like, I don't know if you've seen that contour cube like wild promotion right now where it was, like Kendall Jenner, like actually talked about our cube and they like didn't actually may never sent it to her or they never actually like sponsored it. And it was like so rare that she like had her face and a shot and was talking about the product because it was like, she had bought it and she was literally just like, I am obsessed with this product.

Mariah Parsons 06:09

Like, whoa, that's awesome. I'll put

Liz Krupka 06:12

up okay. Yeah, you should look at the video.

Mariah Parsons 06:16

Yeah, most definitely. Well, I feel like I, um, yeah, like, just from a I'm not obviously not in the paid media space either. And so most of the stuff that I'm hearing is like transit trans, gentle, or chance. Yeah. Um, and it's like through hosting this podcast where people will talk about these different things. So that's, that's very interesting. Like, knowing the ins and outs of like, this is when someone probably was gifted it versus when Yeah. Paid.

Liz Krupka 06:42

It's, it's ruined marketing a little bit for me. But yeah.

Mariah Parsons 06:47

Yeah, right. I feel like that's the lane, I would go down. I feel like with, like items being shipped to me now, when I'm like actually dying, because just like working out Malomo. Like, my expectations are just so much higher now that I've seen what the potential is with, like, I want to know where my order is, at every step of

Liz Krupka 07:07

the way with email my whole team now it's like, I won't be fooled. I know, an abandoned cart coupon is gonna come my way at some point yet. Whether it's two emails that align or four emails that align I know it's common. So like, yeah,

Mariah Parsons 07:21

yeah, exactly. Yeah. And like, the only thing that will surprise me or kind of, like, stuck with me is when it's done really well. Or like, really not to I'm missing was located. Yeah. Yeah.

Liz Krupka 07:35

I had an experience with on like, never forget super much with the delivery. It was like what changed my mind frame about like transactional like emails and SMS is because I got a product like, and some of this is obviously like luck and timing. And some of it is also like incredible marketing. But I got a like, text message, literally, like 15 minutes after something was delivered to my door. And they were like, here's more information about your product. And I was like, what type of voodoo magic is this? This is incredible. And I was like, post this is like a perfect post purchase experience. Like I talked about it for like months afterward last year, because I was like, this was like, mind blowing to me. Like I was like, so excited that it was like so on point and it was like, this is like your next steps. Like this is how you're going to use a product and so I I'm the same way like when something like really blows my mind. Now I'll I'm not a big advocate of it. So

Mariah Parsons 08:37

yeah, yeah, I also remember seeing like care always emails like transactional emails, but like, their care tips right there for where you need them to like, yeah, that your product is lasting longer than like if you ruin your pots or pans Right? Or like

Liz Krupka 08:55

rug a bowl is the same way. Like I ordered some stuff from rug a bowl and I was like, Wow, your transaction your like post purchase experience was like some of the best I've ever seen. Yeah, so yep,

Mariah Parsons 09:06

love it. Shout out all those brands are doing things. I'm like,

Liz Krupka 09:12

yeah, when you when you can get a marketer to buy that's how you know you've done an incredible job.

Mariah Parsons 09:18

Yeah. Love that. Okay, so let's dive in. Because I love that we just went on that tangent and I feel like we could keep going down it for like another 30 minutes. But yeah, for sure. Can you explain to our listeners or just give them a little bit more background on how you got into this space? What interests you why you founded Nomad marketing and all that good stuff? Totally.

Liz Krupka 09:39

I'm probably very different than a lot of people. I was working in like big tech big software for a while and I moved out to Utah like eight or nine years ago for a job. And while I was working there, a guy on my team saw that I was trying to apply to work at like My father and Lou lemon on the weekends and at night. He's like, why are you applying for a second job? And I was like, well, like, unlike most people in Utah, I have like, quite quite a lot of student loans that I wanted to pay off. So yeah, yeah. And so I was like, that's what I've been doing. And he's like, You should just work for DTC brands, like there's tons of DTC brands around here. And they would love to have somebody with your skill set. So he then actually ended up like starting a paid media agency. And he hooked me up with a couple brands. And once I started working with them, and I paid off my student loans, I was like, wow, this is like a thing that I could do. And I don't have to like, I don't have to work for a big software company anymore, I can be a bigger fish in a smaller pond, which I really liked. Because when you work at a big software company, or when you work for a big agency, and you work on big brands, which I've done, everything is so locked and loaded, that you have very little input, you know, like or even when you have input, it's like very rare that it's gonna get changed, or that it's gonna like move the needle or help anything. And it was super cool to help businesses that you suggested an idea or a concept and then see it go from something that you suggested here on a zoom to fruition. Like, it was really cool. So I started doing it, and then a girlfriend was like, when are you gonna hire me? And I was like, I guess? Yeah, I guess I guess. Yeah. Like, I was, like, fine. We're clients, and now it's a thing. So 10 employees, and nine years later, here we are.

Mariah Parsons 11:45

I love that you just Yeah. Like a lot. Yeah, a lot of a lot of people who get into the consult consulting space, or the agencies based kind of just say, like, oh, there was an interest. And then I started doing it a little bit. And then just kind of like, you're good, right?

Liz Krupka 12:03

Yeah. And it's like, I, I never imagined, like, if you would have told 15, if you would have told myself like 15 years ago that I was gonna be like, 20 year old was, I'm not 35 yet, but almost, you would have told myself that I was going to be doing this, I would have laughed, like, I would have never imagined that I could figure out how to have employees in all of it. But it's been a wild ride. And I'm super grateful for moving to Utah and what Utah has, like been able to give me so it's been incredible. Yeah,

Mariah Parsons 12:36

yeah, there's a great eco, like ecosystem of DTC people in Utah. Yeah, I feel like even though I'm in Indianapolis, I'm like, slowly tapping into it, just because, yeah, you know, how connected it all is. And like people knowing each other?

Liz Krupka 12:52

The call, right? Yes. It's a really entrepreneurial community. There's definitely other cities that are equally as entrepreneurial. But I was very surprised by it, too. When I moved, I was like, No way, like you think, you know, there are other cities that you think about that are big, like Miami, or Las Vegas, or LA or New York, and I just never thought that salt lake was like, as entrepreneurial as it is. And it's pretty wild to me even still, when I get leads, or when I when somebody contacts me, and they're like grown into Wasatch and I was like that's so it's like wild there's so many brands that you like just wouldn't have thought that are from there that are from there. So

Mariah Parsons 13:31

yeah, my best guess is because it's because that like the lifestyle of like outdoorsy type people who usually and like adventurous and like high achieving Would you say that's kind of it's

Liz Krupka 13:44

it's that and it's also BYU they're, they have a really strong entrepreneur program, they have a really strong business program. They also have a ton of tech businesses that are moving from California and Washington, they're because they're very tax friendly. All of that like good finance stuff that I pass off to somebody else to worry about. And there's a couple of things that made this really cool breeding ground for for it. There's tons of three pls out there and warehouses. So I think it's harder to find people honestly that work like a normal nine to five there than it is to find people who are entrepreneurs, which is was such a change for me because growing up in like living in Philadelphia, I'm starting my career in Philadelphia that was like, if you met an entrepreneur, you were like, do you work or are you a trust fund kid? And also, it was harder because like the red tape of starting a business, the taxes of like city wage tax, City Living tax, like the startup fees and costs were really hard. And so it's just I think it's just sometimes it just like the economy of the city, too, you know, so, not that it's impossible in certain places, but it's like

Mariah Parsons 15:01

There's that. It's a great yeah, foundation. Yep, yep. Okay, make sense? Um, okay, so let's dive into all things email marketing, because obviously, that's what you all are focused on. So I always love to hear, because I want to, like hear about successes, obviously. But I think there's a lot of learnings to be had and challenges. So what are like, Are there any challenges that you're seeing with the brands that you work with? Working with, like, whether it's just starting out, or brands that are coming to you around? Like, what are their biggest concerns around email marketing,

Liz Krupka 15:37

um, I'm okay, there's a couple of things. So one big thing, I posted this on my LinkedIn the other day, love it, there's a, there's a there's been such a focus on performance marketing, that there's this lack of creative marketing now. And there's this very big cookie cutter, like if this works for this brand, do this. And if this worked for this brand, like cookie cutter, bake, repeat, like do things until kind of like you see it so many times that you just want to like throw up, and then you never want to see it again. And not all audience, not all audiences work like that. So for example, there's a brand that I work with named rags, their kids apparel, clothing, and they're a limited edition brand, or there's another one like this, and that's really big for jewelry called trust and Ikaika. And they sell rings, and their audiences are super FOMO based. So when they're FOMO based, there are certain things that work for them and an email marketing. So like, you can send out one email and one text. And what you're trying to do is push as many sales as possible through from that email or that text and sell out, right. But then if you're playing for the sellout game, there are certain email strategies that probably like that are going to work for other people that are probably not gonna work for your audience. So you and not maybe never work, but like, you're gonna have a harder time with a Winback strategy. Because the whole reason that your audience came to you isn't necessarily because they're a wildly like, a buyer who wants to be wildly educated. So somebody like caraway, for example, that's probably a pretty educated buyer. If I had to guess there's less FOMO going on there. It's more people who are like, do I want to spend three or $400 on pots and pans and why? Okay, you're the best, but like, what are you doing that makes you the best, oh, you're toxin free. And they probably want to get multiple touchpoints before they're buying something. And a lot of people will come to me and be like, you work with this brand. Like they're getting this percentage of revenue from email marketing. Let's rinse and repeat that. And I'm like, wait, hold on, like you kind of can't just like all content is not the same, right? All email marketing, like performance isn't the same, just because they'd be your audience. So there's a reason that your initial audience that you grew started to follow you what is the reason? And then what can we do to build a strategy and a program around that, there are some best practices that everybody should have, you know, like, welcomes abandoned browser session abandonment. But then once you start to get back to that post purchase, or once you start getting back to the transactional emails, you really have to think about your type of audience and like, what is it going to be that's actually going to pull them back and email. Another big thing or like, pitfall is people will come to me and be like, so we turn on email. That means I can turn off ads, right? And I'm like, No, man, like, I was like, hold on, like emails, like a retention game. It's for your current customers, it's to show your current customers love. So some of it is running big promotions or sales. Some of it isn't even that stuff. If you're not a promotion based company, you can do loyalty programs and points. You could also send like some of our best emails all the time for almost every brand. Our emails where they don't even feel like a sale at all, like some of our brands, like one of them is trying right now. Just like being like, things that our team thought were really fucking funny this week. Ooh, sorry. No, that's okay. Okay, I was like thing. I'm, like, you know, and it's like a just links and a digest of like, funny stories that they read on the internet. It has been never mentioned a product they never mentioned, like anything salesy and they it somehow crushes week over week, right? Or UGC content. And so, I think everybody thinks that you can kind of like cookie cutter everything. And there are some best practices that I would say work like 30 40% of the time, like all of them. And then there are things where you to really start looking at your audience and combing through them and planning campaign. and the strategies around them. And you like need, you need to like have a great pulse on your brand and the content that your brand responds to. Yeah,

Mariah Parsons 20:11

so what happens? And maybe this isn't, I guess, on you all to help a brand figure out but if someone doesn't know exactly what is bringing an audience to, you know, what grew their audience why people are coming to their brand, like, Is it maybe a brand has tried like education, but also a little bit of FOMO? Marketing, but also a little bit of like, you just see your like, celebrity or ads? Or like, maybe they've tried a little bit of everything, and they're not exactly sure. What is pulling the, I guess, what has the biggest piece of the pie? Is there a world in which you're helping brands kind of figure that out? Totally harm their email marketing? Okay, what does that look like?

Liz Krupka 20:57

A B tests, man, AV testing stuff all the time. We even tried an AV test recently with a client where we tested, they were in two different like pr, pr, like publications, one was like, pretty liberal. And the other one was pretty conservative. And their team was like, I wonder if our audience is as conservative as we think they are. And I was like, let's test the content pieces. And they were like, what, how, and I was like, open rates. Like I was like, if we put in the subject line, like, you know, same subject line, but we just change out who the media like supplier was. Let's see who wins right like, or let's see, maybe there isn't a like clear cut winner, maybe it's a 49 51% split, and your audience doesn't really care about politics, which is possible. Or we ran something a two way text. It was right around the time where Nick Saban and Bill Belichick were both like we like exiting football. And we had been making tons of sport sports references in campaigns. And we started to get like subscriber stats that we thought that while the audience was 5050 split in terms of like, how many people were in the database, almost 80% of the people who were buying were women. And that's like pretty common, right? Like women are the more natural like shoppers of any household. And this was, this is a product that's pretty unisex, like men or women could buy it. It's a home. It's a home brand. It's pillows, pillow cube. And so we ran a text, like specifically like putting a bunch of different choices out of like, we were like, Hey, is Bill valid check on I go to Vegas? Is he gonna go to Washington State or DC? Is he gonna go tan with Nick Saban? On the beach? I don't care about football. Why are you sending me this? And like, we just think that he should go like take a nap. And it was like a clear cut winner that people didn't actually care. Like, we had very few people who responded where they felt that they were going to go. So there are ways you can test what content is going to work if you're creative enough around, like coming up with a campaign schedule that looks like that. And I would say you just have to be intentional about your content. And especially with email, like a lot of people will come to me like it physically hurts my soul. Like it aches when people will be like, you can just like slap together an email, right? And I'm like, I want to die. Like, yeah, like you totally can just live together and email. But like, Man, I would love it if every brand, like even if you're sending last emails in a month, but you're way intentional at the beginning for like four or five, six months about what you're sending, and how you're sending it, then you can start to ramp up and you can be like, Ooh, this is really working. And this isn't. Another big thing is templates. Like people like get the EQ when you talk about email templates. One big thing that I have pushed my team to do this year is like I want every brand that we're working with to use templates. And I don't necessarily mean that that means that you're never changing anything. But I want the structures to remain the same. So that what we're doing then is like at the end of the quarter, were comparing like, well, this template is far underperforming? Is it the content that's in the templates now? Or is it the actual templates, but like when you have so many moving parts, and you're changing up every email every time and you're never able to look at the analytics of things, and go back and compare and contrast? That's pretty hard for your email program. Because then you start to be like, well did March think because of the content? Or did March think because like of the emails that were sent, like the designs or did it sink because of like the products and the promotions, you know? And so if you have like some certain things like everything else, like if you have like a control and a variable to measure things against, that's when you start like to see your email program, like really take off?

Mariah Parsons 25:02

Yeah, so I love that and I, I, before diving into kind of like the ins and outs of the email of email templates and kind of how you're able to look across the board, especially like, across different brands for you and your team. Um, what's your, because like, we have email templates for post purchase, and we find, like, brands love when it's a template, because it's easy, but what's your rationale when you said like, people get the ache around templates? Is it just because that brand name? connotates? Yeah, like, they can't notice that you'll remove the branding? Yeah, that and

Liz Krupka 25:36

also, like, when you look at like Canva people or anything like that Canva is awesome. Because it's stuck, right? You're like, I can go in there. And I can whip up anything that I want. I think tools like that which which are amazing, have started to give people like, it's like, well hold on, then everyone has seen it, or everyone has used it. Like there are things about email marketing, that are just general good practices and design all the time. You should have a CTA up above the one for like, higher above the like third, you know, so people, if they're on their phones, or in a desktop, they're not having to scroll to get to the button if they want a button, right? That's something that's like standard, every email has it like or should have it and like, it's kind of like across the board. You should be designing like for dark mode and light mode. You should be designing for mobile first. Like those are some things that templates do killer well, like crazy well. And I think templates don't don't have to mean that you're unbranded anymore. I think it just means that you're trying to outperform yourself all the time. Because then what you can start to do is be like, these are our bottom three templates. Let's delete, like remove, cut the dead weight and design three new templates and see how those perform.

Mariah Parsons 26:58

Yep. Okay, so is that what you all like you are meant to do? Yeah, the, like, bottom three templates? And then idea. Is that right? Like it just keeps going up and up and up?

Liz Krupka 27:09

Yeah. And then also, eventually, you're designing like, a template set for yourself. So then you're like, Well, I have like 35 templates. Now it doesn't even feel like I have templates anymore. Because sometimes do is businesses are like as marketers, you start to be like, I have to beat myself or like the brand. Like I have one brand right now who's like, like, they always want to, like they want their the last email the next email to be better than the last. And I was like you, you get like obsessed with yourself a little bit. And you're like, Oh, what if they noticed that, like, we use an email that looks similar to this last year during the sale, and I was like, nobody remembers. I've been working on this account for five years. And if you would have told me that I'd have been like, really we use that. It's because like, if you're sending out an email, and you have a million subscribers, only half of them are opening it. Like, probably 17% of them are actually clicking through. And that's like 17% will be like pretty high. And it's probably closer to like seven to 10% Maybe sometimes depending on the email. And nobody's remembering like, they're not storing this away in their minds where they're like, oh, wow, like, I'm gonna call them out if they use this design again, you know? So, yeah,

Mariah Parsons 28:27

you remember the feeling of like, how when, in the beginning of this podcast, we were talking about just like, Oh, I remember what they did, and that it was important and that I liked, like, okay, the way that they set up post purchase, right? You remember like, oh, it was yeah, you couldn't tell someone the details of it unless it really, really, really stuck with you. And there are like, one out of like, 1000 purchases that you're making. And honestly, honestly,

Liz Krupka 28:49

for me, like, I would have to like I take screenshots of the ones that I really liked and receive them on my desktop. I'm still even if it's one that I was like, really obsessed with, I would have to go back and read it to you to remember verbatim what I really was obsessed by it. What I remember being obsessed by was the experience not necessarily like the design, or that it like was perfect in dark mode. I remember how I felt when I received it. Yeah,

Mariah Parsons 29:16

yeah. So and I also think it's funny, like because I write our emails for Malomo. And so when I'm drafting them, like we have our monthly newsletter, right, regular cadence, and it's the same structure, but it's different content, right? But like I try and spice it up and have some puns and emojis and whatnot in there. And sometimes I'll find myself going into like, Oh, I really have to like, what if, you know, like, this is super similar to like, last Valentine's Day, right? Just because it's February when we're recording like, super similar theme wise to like trying to make puns about the holidays. And I'm like nobody, nobody is remembering that and even if they are then there's like at least some regularity to Oh, oh, they know like, this is a monthly newsletter they're expecting it anyways. Right? Like, yes, some expectations that someone would have for getting an email like that there's a the CTA, a third, like, like, easily accessible, there's probably like a login or sign in in the upper right corner. Like there's just things that you wouldn't even think about that people would expect. So I like the the notion of like, looking at templates, and you're looking across, like all the brands that you're working with, right to see like, Okay, are you breaking Yeah, into like industry or like, specifically, I'm in the customer experience.

Liz Krupka 30:38

We definitely use like industry benchmarks. We also, we also do compare each other like against ourselves too. And, and like, there's one of the brands that we work with, and they told me this motto for this year that I was very inspired by. They're like, we're not worried about what everybody else is doing. We're worried about, like, wandered versus wandered. And so we're worried about like, okay, like, Let's beat brand over like brand to brand to themselves all year, every year. Now, should we worry about industry benchmarks? Totally. But like, I think, for example, like someone like thread wallets, like, when you look at their industry benchmarks, it's kind of unfair, almost because they're in the accessories business, right? How do you compare a $35 like crossbody bag or backpack to a like, they will get lumped in with like big accessory brands like not luxury, but like, they will get lumped in with somebody like a bass, well hold up, like their average order value is always going to be lower, they're always going to be in the bottom, whatever percentage of that, or their, you know, like, customer lifetime value is always going to be less. And that's not because there's less obsession with the brand, or that the brand isn't as incredible. It's like merely because of price point. So there are certain things where it's like with industry benchmarks, we take them as like, that's one thing that I always take with a grain of salt. Now, if you can pull like a perfect industry benchmark, like your perfect competitors, and compare that which we do for all of our clients that I'm cool with. But sometimes when you look at tools like like a clay, VO or anything like that, and they're like, hey, here are your industry benchmarks for the quarter. And they're lumping you in with like designer, retail apparel accessories, you're like, Wow, this is like a really wide net that you're casting. So like I would suggest, I always suggest to brands like pick your competitors. Also pick like your Northstar, right. So like if you have a Northstar company that you want to be like, compare yourself to those if you can find their metrics, because that's a better footnote and a better footmark for you. And then compare yourself to yourself. Yeah, and also people who are like your similar email database or SMS database size. Because, again, if you're comparing, like an email database of like, 400,000 people to, you know, a million and a half. Well, email can contribute way more for a company who has a million and a half database then who has 400,000

Mariah Parsons 33:17

Yep, yeah, numbers do play a difference. And like, you're looking at them like, oh, we should be hitting these this benchmark. You also have to understand internally what your numbers

Liz Krupka 33:26

Yeah, like Mark and Mark is incredible. When it's like, we get we provided 117% lift, but I'm like, that's also marketing math, right? Like I'm like, Okay, is it 100% 17% off of an email that like was never sent before? Because it's actually less than you know?

Mariah Parsons 33:44

Yeah. And like understanding attribution windows, right, like different Yeah, platforms, different teams, different agencies, partners, whatever you have it have like a different definition. Right? So you just don't understand also

Liz Krupka 33:56

different like brand expectations and different brand positions. So like we have a brand who like they're trying to get rid of promotions like almost wholly in Yeah, so they like they want to run maybe too big sales a year but they like want to be out of the promotion game. You've done like understand the expectation then of like, what your marketing is going to do, you know, because compared to like an industry competitor who might be running on sale all the time, or you know, there are certain things to where it's like for example, I had this conversation with a client the other day they were like hey, like industry standard is supposed to be that like we have X amount of emails in the abandoned cart series and like the last two should be discount focus. And I'm like well, that's like from a brand perspective. Do you guys want to do that? Because if you if you want to discount so yes, they're going to perform right but like you guys as a brand will Have you moving away from discounts? So like, Do you or don't you? What's like more important to you write the revenue like, and I totally get that. Like, it's all important. But sometimes you have to, like make a call of like, is the brand voice and like the way that we want to talk about and stand for the brand more important than, like industry best practice? Sometimes it is sometimes it isn't that just a call that like the team has to be. And so or like number of emails, people, that's one of the biggest questions people always ask me is, I'll be like, how many emails should we be sending in a week? And I'm like, totally, some of it depends on what your audience will take. Like, there are certain audiences who are like, this is abusive, please stop. And then there are certain audiences who like or like, email me all the time, like built basics. I don't know if you follow them, they text all the time. Like, they text more than any brand, like that I've ever seen. And, but that's just like, I've, I haven't unsubscribed because I'm like, Well, I kind of expect that from them now as brand, right? And so one of the brands that I work with came to me and they were like, Hey, we've been seeing that this brand is texting like six or seven times, like, in a week? Do we want to do that? And I was like, totally care. But you also have to be aware of like the billable spend to there, you also have to be aware of like, is that something that your brand voice wants to fall in line with? Or not? You know, because a couple months ago, you told me that customer service told people to lay back because they we were getting to too many text messages. And we've heard them back. So it's like, sometimes there's choices there that you have to make where it's like, I see somebody doing this and I'm like, Okay, we need to have like diamond hands here. And like, just because you see it somewhere else doesn't mean we necessarily like need to do it. It might work for you. We can test it and try it. But it also might not and it's okay, if that's not your brand voice like you don't have to be like everybody else.

Mariah Parsons 36:52

I love the phrase diamond hands of like picking and choosing what you want to follow. I haven't I haven't heard that one.

Liz Krupka 36:59

Yeah, I think I got told this. This was like when I was like, I was like literally like Vegas ones. But when somebody said it to me, of course, it's like, yeah, they're like, You have to learn how to hold you need to have diamond hands. So like imagine, like you have like, valuable diamonds in your hand and Sam or someone offered you a good deal. Because like I have sometimes I'm this way where I'm like the deals go and take it you know, and yeah, it's like, Wait, this is my first deal. Like I need to learn to like cold and like take a deep breath and be patient. And, like see myself through to like the bigger picture. But that is hard in the moment. Like, especially around Black Friday, I get panicked like calls or texts like that from clients all the time, or they're like, this brand is doing this, like should we have been doing and I'm like, no, like, you know, your margins, you know, you shouldn't have done like up to 70% off. Like, if you really feel like sales are flat, we can do something but like, diamond hands. Yeah.

Mariah Parsons 37:57

And Azar like if you're in Black Friday, Cyber Monday, especially, It's so chaotic that you already have been planning for your strategy, you're really better off just hunkering down instead of like trying to spin something up really quickly. And then like pushing play, and then it probably won't be nearly as good as it could have been. The views are also like

Liz Krupka 38:19

100% of the mistake, well, maybe not 100, I'm okay, I'm gonna say 99 mistakes. Yeah, 9095, or something, mistakes that I've seen my team or like, a marketing team make is because you're moving like that, like you like you, you made a decision. And it is great to be flexible and nimble. There's totally a space for that. But there is also a time where you need to like hit the brakes a little bit and have people check you and be like, Hey, is the juice worth the squeeze here? And also, like, do I have the right team in place to move this fast and to make this decision? Because like, there's always something that happens there where it's like, Hey, we've decided to run a last minute discount. And then you get like a panic text where it's like, Hey, I forgot about like, all of these items that are like $16 And now people are getting them for like $3 because they were on sale, we decided to run a site wide sale. And I'm like, I mean, this is what happens when you texted to do this last night and we turned it on this morning. You know, like it's like, that's just a click through the cracks. Yeah, they just yeah, that's just like human until like robots or AI was running everything that happened at some point like yeah, although sometimes I judge EPDs and always right. I'm like,

Mariah Parsons 39:36

oh, no, it's like super unfactual Yeah, you have to check. That's like part of the not preface or like caveat, but like, they quite literally say, Yeah, it'll sometimes spew out lies. So you have to you have to and I'd like to get back

Liz Krupka 39:53

to you. Dude, I got in the actual year my child GPT girl I was like trying to like conference some funny wedding. hashtags for a girlfriend that's getting married. And I was like, do you even understand the concept of wedding hashtags? Like these are garbage? And definitely not. Yeah, garbage is subjective. And I was like, No, these are trash. This is I'll send you a screenshot. She was so saucy with me. And I was like, Whoa, first of all, your computer don't get like, yeah, I will turn you off.

Mariah Parsons 40:21

Yeah, exactly. I'm still I still hold the battery. I feel like there's a lot of social media trends, where it's like people doing that, right where it's like, especially with the image ones, where it's like, create this, but they're mad. And it's like, something stupid, like a fruit or whatever. Right? And tells a whole story line. Um, but more. Yeah, exactly. Give me more. Yeah, give me more energy, whatever it is. Um, yeah, so I agree. It's, yeah, it's one of those things that is like, you're probably just better off sticking to your own strategy. And like tails all the time. You'd also mentioned that, like, someone would like someone's trying to get away from the promotion game, what would be like a rationale that like that brand is? Why would someone want to move away from like the promotion side of things of like running soon,

Liz Krupka 41:09

I will, after this call, send you a link to somebody posted about it on LinkedIn. And it was like, they did the formula. And they did the math on like, not offering a welcome offer. But some of the thoughts around not running as many promotions is basically like, the whole idea. And the whole concept of running a promotion, especially like on welcome is that you're just trying to get somebody in the door and to buy and then you and then like, sometimes they fall off, right? Like they buy once and then like, now it is your job with like the product or with marketing to try to keep them. But again, that doesn't happen all the time, obviously. But what happens to your consumer who has been buying from you. So like when you stop running promotions, like all the time, or like when you don't run flash sales. What happens from the person who like, you're basically like rewarding your first time buyer, and then you're never rewarding your loyal, you're like loyal customers. So their concept is trying to figure out ways to build like loyalty programs, and build in other perks or things for their loyal customers and their loyal clients and grow that base, while also still trying to grow their new user base. And they don't want to always just grow their new user base by throwing a discount at them and hoping that they buy like they do believe that they have like an incredible product. Therefore, they want you to buy because of the product. And because of the branding. And because of the mission and the messaging, not necessarily because of a deal. Now they do run two big deals every year, but they pulled away from running like a ton of different flash sales, or they pulled away from running, you know, like running into an inventory situation where they're just like, oh, you know what, like, we have way too much stock of this. So we're going to run a sale. And because they decided to be more less promotional base, and more intentional based. They've also really worked on their inventory game. So they've nailed it. They're almost like never in two in stock and two out of stock. Like there's some of the best companies that I've seen that's done it. And then on top of that, it's thread wallets. And then on top of that, by the way, like they're also that's like a sustainability ish play, like, which they never call out. But it's like if you're never over producing or under producing, and you're just producing, like, that's incredible. Now, some people would tell you that like, maybe that's not good, like, maybe they could ramp up or whatever. And there's definitely arguments like here and there for it. But I think from a brand perspective, if you're like really strong in that value, and you're really strong, like if you're really strong in that value, then let's also get really creative in your marketing. And for us, it's been like, fun and kind of like a challenge to like, what are things that you could suggest on how to market this that aren't a promotion, like a promotion is like, honestly a pretty easy way to like get sales, but kind of like it's like definitely a low hanging fruit. Like if I'm feeling lazy and somebody's like, what can I do to move this product? I'm like, I'll put it on sale. And looks like hold on, like I could like, put on my thinking cap and help you think of different campaigns or different ways that we could market this that aren't a sale or that aren't a promotion. Or you know, and so I love that challenge because it's

Mariah Parsons 44:28

Is this a challenge? Yeah, it's exciting. Yeah. Yep. Okay, so that makes a lot of sense. And then, um, yeah, so it's like you're still holding room for incentivizing customers. It's just not with promotions.

Liz Krupka 44:41

Yeah, like it might be things like an affiliate program or referral program. It's also just things with like, we heard you were like launching the products that you're looking for the patterns that you're looking for. Maybe it's doing like charitable donations or like being better in the community. Maybe it is being like more sustainable. I know for me like, if I can shop sustainably? I'll definitely try to do it even if I have to pay a premium for it. And even if I don't have to shop it on a promotion? I've been like, super

Mariah Parsons 45:16

aware my eyes are

Liz Krupka 45:17

aware. Yeah, yeah. Where's it go? Great word I've been super aware of like the waves even that I've caused with, like how much I've been buying or like, you know how much like you recycle through like fashion. And so it's great when you like, can play help, like help play a part in

Mariah Parsons 45:36

that? Yeah, yeah, I very much this new year have started to really tune into like, when I want to buy something sitting back and like thinking for a couple days, like, yeah, what would I use this for? Why would I need it all this stuff. And like, kind of challenge myself to only really shop in a super sustainable way this,

Liz Krupka 45:55

this girl that I met on the train, like a couple of weeks ago, was saying to me, she tells herself if she's gonna buy something that she used to throw two items out. So she will like literally look at the item. And she'll like go to her closet and be like, what are two things in here that I'm really willing to part with? Like right now. And if she's not really willing to part with them, she like holds on it. And she said that almost always does the trick. She said like maybe like 15 to 20% of the time will she go back and be like this is something that I actually like really want like that. I'm willing to give up other things for an order. Oh, that was like, she had like not a lot of storage space in her apartment. So she was like part of it is also like I don't have a lot of storage but logistics. Yeah.

Mariah Parsons 46:44

Logistically, I can't have that.

Liz Krupka 46:45

Yeah. Like I literally can't squeeze it in. But it's like

Mariah Parsons 46:49

27 dresses that movie. I love that movie growing up.

Liz Krupka 46:52

Yeah, she opens the door and they expand. So yeah, yeah.

Mariah Parsons 46:57

Okay, love it. I will tell people to shot like to look into just like LASIK, cleaning out and Athleta and Thread Up program I've used

Liz Krupka 47:08

I love throwing up. I think it's the coolest thing ever. I you might you might be one of the only other people that I've heard that's like us, isn't it? Because it's like I tell everyone,

Mariah Parsons 47:22

like as much as I can. Like literally any chance. It's so yeah, I'm also a major, major fan of just what they're doing. And like I've used the program, obviously, multiple times. So I'm glad glad we have each other in that. Yes, I know. We're coming up on time and as much yeah, continue chatting. This has been an absolute blast. Liz, I could talk to you all day about email marketing. It's super fun, just learning about all the creative things these brands are doing and how they're keeping it fresh. And really making sure that the consumer always stays first. Thank you for making the time. Yeah, I've connected me with some other guests that we have coming up. So I'm really excited to get to chat with them. Yeah,

Liz Krupka 48:01

I'm super stoked about it. I can't wait to see like, what their conversations are like, because like, I think there are people who are like way incredible on the space. And like the coolest thing I think about even doing any of this has been like I have met so many neat business owners and I've met so many cool businesses with like a purpose that it's like, when you can shop like small, you know, some of them even small, but when you can shop like not at a big conglomerate. Yeah, I try to because it's like, it makes a difference. It doesn't make a difference. Yeah, they're employing people and they have missions and values and it's neat.

Mariah Parsons 48:40

So yeah, that's cool. Seeing that the relationship if you can, you know support someone. Yeah. And you're in your realm. Yeah. So

Liz Krupka 48:46

my dogs just chilling. I love it. I

Mariah Parsons 48:48

love it. What's their name? I see little corner.

Liz Krupka 48:52

His name is Rainier. He's big boy. Oh

Mariah Parsons 48:55

my god. I wish I was napping on the couch. Yeah, and it's bracing for all. Okay, well, we'll end on that note.