Wallets are small and often needs replacement, hence are natural impulse purchases often bought as gifts. Hence, Kiril started Big Skinny to offer the world’s thinnest wallets and to solve five key problems men/women have with their wallets. – Size: their nylon fabric material was 5-7 times thinner than traditional wallets – Weight: most weighted under an ounce, better for back and posture – Card Pocket Size: offered extra wide pockets Slipperiness: wallet interiors were rubbery to reduce slipperiness – Lack of Versatility: water resistant wallets though enough for machine wash Kiril along with his marketing director and wife, Catherine Alexandrov was beginning to think about online marketing plans after overwhelming response to Big Skinny’s promotion glitch confirmed that consumers were ready to buy the product online. However, reaching consumers online was challenging due to high costs and other constraints. Taking Big Skinny Online
Big Skinny had internet presence since outset, even after having their own website marketing on internet was a tough puzzle: products were sold on impulse and value primarily, attributes straightforward to showcase in person, however difficult on internet. The options were: – Display Ads: seemed as internet’s closest equivalent to booth at street fairs, their primary model. Although display ads provided rich graphic capabilities online, it has complications too. Internet users were conditioned against display ads for they are irrelevant and irritating most of the times.
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Sold on pay-per impression, rather than genuine clicks, they seemed a risky choice. – Algorithmic Search: listing of Big Skinny links in organic search results based on the proprietary ranking algorithms of search engines which usually factored occurrence & frequency of keywords, pages linking to the item, location & frequency of such links etc. Search engine optimization techniques were usually suggested for better ranking. – Sponsored Search: let the advertisers buy specific keywords they wanted to target (with options of “exact match”/“broad match”), and then would present corresponding advertisements when users searched those keywords.
Advertisers paid on per-click, when users clicked on the ads. Listings were sorted mainly on highest bids and click-through rates. – Social Media: Big Skinny filmed and posted happy customer’s testimonials on its website. They also maintained a blog on how to select and buy wallets. Kiril added “AddThis” applet to allow visitors to share Big Skinny website on delicious, digg, facebook, MySpace, Twitter and other social media. They maintained a facebook page and twitter feed, to both interact with customers/visitors and offer promotions. Interactive Content: to engage customers Kiril included several interactive components on its website like interactive wallet guide based on users choices of aesthetics and lifestyle.
Big Skinny also organized essay contests for its fans. – Online Distributors: established sales presence on 3 online portals: Amazon. com, Buy. com and eBAY. Retail portals take over challenge of finding customers, hosted robust platforms, remit payments timely, managed fulfillment and had strong brand value. A/B Testing: aimed to show different advertisements to different users in order to compare response rates. Big Skinny used automated A/B testing to evaluate alternative sponsored search campaigns by submitting variety of ads to search engine. An option of A/B testing by varying the site in terms of layout, text, pricing etc. was also being considered, however Big Skinny was not ready yet in terms of skill-set and resources. – Other Options: Affiliate marketing, e-mail marketing, coupon sites were also researched and considered.