Cover Story: Child's Play
"Is that perfect? Of course not," says Wing. "The relationship between the channels has always been difficult, but it's more easy today then ever before because our data is more connected."
Brick-and-mortar stores, on the other hand, drive registrations, which are predominantly a part of giggle's online marketing strategy. "Our store employees always ask for the email addresses of customers," Wing says. "We've been doing this since the beginning."
giggle uses search engine marketing (SEM) and search engine optimization (SEO) to drive customers to its website, but it occasionally does some local ZIP SEM marketing around stores. Local stores in specific communities also have blogs, which help with local SEO.
The company also has a traditional affiliate marketing program, a business development partnership with The Wedding Channel, and uses both Twitter and Facebook to communicate with customers and prospects and develop its brand.
"Facebook is almost like an evolved storefront for us, whereas Twitter is more about direct communication," Wing says.
Email is also a key marketing tool for giggle, according to Wing. "We send a weekly email blast to our house list, which is comprised of opt-in subscribers. ... The blasts are similar for each opt-in subscriber, but the secondary message often promotes a specific sale in a specific region."
Thanks to giggle's new integrated e-commerce platform, it will be able to send more targeted emails to its subscribers. "We'll be able to tell subscribers about what's going on at giggle at a more age-specific level," Wing says. "Parents of toddlers, for example, won't receive email messages about prenatal pampering."
giggle's loyalty program is dubbed the "G List" and costs $50 to join, but members get a $75 gift certificate when they do so. Wing says, "If we're planning a special storewide sales event, we let these members know about it before anyone else."