The Retail Tipping Point

David Stychno creative

Sculpture by Isamu Noguchi

 

Growing retailers often place companies like Amazon on a pedestal, strategizing about the hurdles necessary to overcome and place themselves amongst the upper echelon. But let’s be honest, comparing yourself to the Amazon of today is simply unrealistic – and will likely only frustrate you.

Every company reaches what I like to call a “tipping point.” Some hit it at the $20 million mark, some at the $50 million mark, others much later. This “tipping point” forces a company to evaluate their strategy and make a crucial decision: continue with the status quo, or adapt and dig in to their customer data to move that revenue needle forward. If you are like most growing companies, you are probably leaning more towards the latter, devising a plan to move beyond optimizing one-time transactions and entering the realm of sustainable revenue through retention.

We’ve all heard the cliche that “it’s 5x more expensive to acquire a customer than to retain one.” Regardless of what statistic you hold true, acquisition is simply the more costly marketing strategy. But let’s not be penny wise and dollar foolish: growing retailers need to continue focusing on acquisition. The key is in optimizing your acquisition investment by ensuring you have a strong retention net in place.

Acquisition and retention are two vastly different animals that require their own unique tools for customer insights and campaign deployment.

There’s a very common mistake made within these “hyper-growth” organizations when they hit this transition: the unnecessary tendency to stop the presses, rip everything out, hunt for the silver bullet and replace it with tools that further over-promise and under-deliver. This is commonly referred to as “re-platforming.”

Believe it or not, you can significantly innovate your organization to drive the revenue needle forward by enhancing what you currently have in place. Before making significant changes to your current marketing stack, take a step back and assess how you can simply fine tune your existing engine to optimize for retention. Frequently, a complete system overhaul can be avoided by introducing a solution that sits on top of your current tools to multiply your efforts.

The sheer purpose of the above ramble isn’t to provide you with an answer, but to simply challenge you to question your status quo. You just need to dig in. Are you truly preparing your rapidly growing organization to join the enterprise elite, or, are you simply on an endless hunt for the perfect solution?

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