Fairytale Brownies, Journeys Reveal Their Marketing Scorecards
In a revealing session at the NEMOA directXchange conference in Groton, Conn. yesterday, David Kravetz, co-founder of Fairytale Brownies, and Wade Lee Jones, director of direct mail and CRM at teen footwear and apparel retailer Journeys, discussed what marketing tactics and channels are driving positive results for their businesses — and which are not. Here's a recap:
Mailing catalogs is still working — and quite well — for both companies. In fact, both Fairytale Brownies and Journeys have increased their catalog circulation this year and are likely to do so next year as well. Journeys is currently seeing a 10 to one return on ad spend for its catalog mailings. Until that number drops, we'll be putting catalogs into the mail, said Jones. For Fairytale Brownies, mailing deeper into its buyer file (six years) via modeled lists has proven effective, as well as prospecting using names acquired from co-op databases.
On the flip side, social media isn't working for Fairytale Brownies or Journeys. To clarify, the channel isn't driving sales for either retailer. Both Kravetz and Jones were quick to point out that social media can be an effective branding and customer service tool, just not a sales driver — at least for their companies at this time.
Paid search is worth the investment for these brands. Fairytale Brownies is tracking improved conversion rates from modified broad match keywords (e.g., brownie delivery) and an extensive negative keyword list. Journeys has found success with refined paid search techniques such as geotargeting, which drives mobile users to its 1,200 brick-and-mortar locations across the country.
Affiliate marketing relationships with coupon sites hasn't proved fruitful for either Fairytale Brownies or Journeys — the margins are too low and the customers acquired via these sites don't come back to purchase again, Kravetz and Jones agreed — but select affiliate marketing with "mom and pop operations" has worked well for Journeys. Fairytale Brownies concentrates its affiliate program on loyalty programs, Kravetz said.