Proof of Concept: What It is and How to Do It Right
Before developing an idea into a product, there’s a crucial step that every business must take: executing a successful proof of concept. Learn more.
Abby Czarniecki is a Digital Marketing Analyst at Topo Designs — an outdoor apparel and backpack company that was looking to capitalize on Cyber Monday to boost their flagging sales numbers. At the last minute, she changed their digital marketing strategy—and with the help of AdRoll, the brand managed to deliver the most online sales to date. We sat down with Abby to hear her #DareToGrow story, and learn how the brand has consistently earned a strong return on their holiday marketing spend ever since.
Cyber Monday gift-giving time is definitely our busiest time of year. It’s the online equivalent to Black Friday – which happens after Thanksgiving – but that entire weekend has turned into a discount animal of its own.
The moment I understood that we needed to scrap our entire Cyber Monday plan and start over was the Saturday after Thanksgiving. I was home and received a call from the boss who said things weren’t looking great. I grabbed my computer, took a look at how we'd been performing so far and quickly realized we weren’t going to cut it for that weekend.
I was really scared. This was my first holiday season at Topo Designs, and the stakes were really high, both personally and for the company. Not hitting our Cyber Monday goal would be detrimental – and to try to make up the revenue to hit our yearly goal would've been near impossible.
To solve the problem, we went back to the drawing board and realized we had to offer a bigger incentive for people to purchase. So, the marketing manager, the company founder and I ended up redesigning our whole Cyber Monday promotion.
We decided to do a ‘surprise-and-delight’ type of campaign where, once visitors reached the site through an ad, they received a better deal than they expected. We incentivized people to spend a certain threshold on our site to receive a free gift card, as well as free shipping. We ended up running that deal along with 25% off any product on the site.
We already used AdRoll to deliver our digital ads, so we knew the platform was delivering our message to a ton of people and sending a lot of traffic to our site. AdRoll takes care of so much of the nitty-gritty and it frees up our time to be creative.
It’s also a huge support when it comes to having to think on our feet. Any time we need to make quick changes, I can rely on a quick call to our account manager and we can change things up if we need to – which we did, in this case.
When it comes to attacking big sale days, it’s better to keep it simple. Initially we overcomplicated our Topo Designs promotion, trying to be creative to stand out from the crowd. It turns out, Cyber Monday is a time of year when people just want to purchase quickly and easily. I look back at the ads from that weekend and I kind of cringe a little bit because we were trying to do too much. Luckily, we've learned a lot since then and AdRoll has been a huge help to make sure that we have clear and concise messaging in our ads.
So, for anyone doing holiday campaigns, recognize what your customers want and focus on that. Make it an easy time for them. Also, don’t get caught up in overly complicated or creative deals to try to get people excited. Remember what it comes back to – helping people accomplish their goal of giving gifts to people they love in their life.
Learn how top marketers like Abby turn make-or-break moments into breakthrough opportunities. Interested in getting your campaigns up and running on a growth platform? Update your AdRoll campaigns or sign up for an AdRoll account here.
Last updated on October 7th, 2022.