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How e-commerce startups can grow efficiently

May 24, 2018 • Opinion, Startups

How e-commerce startups can grow efficiently

How e-commerce startups can grow efficiently.

There is a general conception in South Africa that TV campaigns can only be used by big brands wanting to embark on expensive brand building campaigns. This is a myth that needs to be debunked. Smaller companies and start-ups, especially those in the e-commerce industry, can use TV to grow efficiently. Having a partner on board to track and optimise campaign performance is, however, crucial to success.

Businesses in South Africa have a natural tendency to look to online media for their marketing as it is measurable. But online marketing can soon hit a plateau in terms of reach and generating returns. When this happens, it often makes sense to branch into offline media that can deliver a broader audience and higher reach. A general concern for businesses is how to measure ROI on the higher budgets needed for television. With the technological advances of attribution software, this is now possible in South Africa – allowing digital businesses to optimise TV campaigns on key KPIs, just like with online marketing.

The groundwork for a successful performance TV campaign begins long before booking your media. Here are some important factors to consider:

Defining your TV strategy and your goals. You need to identify your relevant target group. Understand the key drivers that will motivate them to take action (buying that product through your e-commerce shop). This will allow you to shape the messaging for your TV commercial creative.

Creating and producing the ad. Make sure that your creative matches up with the goal of the campaign and the positioning of your product. Your creative will determine how your target group will respond to seeing your ad. It could be worth it to produce two versions of the same ad: a longer, 20-second spot as well as a 10-second cutdown. You can run these in parallel until you’re able to draw conclusions about their respective performance, and shift your budgets accordingly. Using TV attribution software will help you to determine the success of the two different ads.

Preparing your product, app or website. A highly efficient performance TV campaign will drive new users to your product or app, but the amount of those users who convert depends more on your website or app than the ad itself. Before you launch the campaign, make sure the user flow on your site or app is clear and all aspects of your logistics chain, payment solutions, and software are in good working order. Sometimes something as simple as not featuring the product that was in your ad, or missing a common payment solution for one of your international markets, can make or break ROI.

Aligning your marketing channels. TV is only one piece of your overall marketing strategy. Online marketing plays a big role in capturing the new demand you are creating through your TV campaign. Not all new users will be coming to your website directly through your URL – some will be searching for keywords around your product. Make sure that your AdWords campaign are up and running and reflecting keywords used in your ad.

Which KPIs should you measure? The most important goal in a performance TV campaign is triggering a direct response, measured by a concrete KPI. This can be a website visit, registration, installation of your app, a purchase etc. The idea is to measure exactly how much traffic is generated as a direct response to your ad that is airing and then calculating the CPX (cost per action). Direct response measures how your target group reacted in a short window directly following the airing of a specific spot. You can then adapt your future TV campaigns according to the spots that gave you the best ROI.

When we at DCMN used our TV attribution software, DC Analytics, to track and optimise a recent TV campaign for Travelstart, this online travel platform recorded a 650% increase in sales generated by TV. We used the software to track, measure and optimise the campaign, resulting in an immediate increase in sales linked to TV. We correlated spot data from TV networks to traffic on the Travelstart platform, allowing us to measure traffic and conversions as a direct result of the individual TV spots.

Performance thinking is an approach that DCMN applies to all our campaigns (test, learn, scale). The results of the Travelstart campaign prove that digital businesses can be just as ROI-driven with their offline marketing as they are with their online channels.

Businesses wanting to discover more about how performance TV works and how to get even more out of their TV budgets, can download a white paper containing knowledge from years of running TV campaigns for some of the fastest-growing digital brands in the world.

By Irina Herf, General Manager of DCMN South Africa


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