Plus-size women’s apparel retailer Eloquii Design Inc. is “all about video from here on out,” says Kelly Goldston, vice president of marketing for the retailer, No. 546 in the Internet Retailer 2017 Top 1000.
The reason is simple: Video is the most effective way for the retailer to connect with consumers.
“Young consumers don’t just want to like products,” she says. “They want to like the people they’re buying from. Videos enable us to explain to prospective customers who we are.”
Videos are more complicated and costlier to produce than still images, which is why Eloquii aims to “get its money’s worth by maximizing the number of testable videos it can get out of a shoot,” Goldston says. “You can get away with a less-experienced photographer and most consumers won’t notice,” she says. “It’s harder to do so with a videographer.”
As a result, the retailer seeks to gather enough footage in each video shoot that it can cut into multiple clips. For instance, in one recent shoot it generated content focused around three stories: the brand’s origin, the retailer’s love of its customers and why fashion matters to the brand. Eloquii then cuts each of those stories into a 15-second and 60-second video. It also makes sure each video can be cut into vertical and horizontal formats.
“That’s 12 videos that we can test from a single shoot,” Goldston says. “That quantity enables us to test and optimize to understand what shoppers respond to.”
Facebook and Google are where Eloquii spends the vast majority of its digital ad dollars. And on Facebook, in particular, video ads are cost-effective. “It’s no secret that Facebook favors video,” she says. “And Facebook users respond to them. The [cost per click] for video ads is lower than it is for our static ads. If we can lower our CPC by 5% or so, that makes a big difference in our budget.”
While video ads represent Eloquii’s fastest-growing digital marketing channel, the retailer is also increasingly focused on print catalogs. The retailer works with data platform providers such as Datalogix to find prospective customers. While catalogs hark back to an earlier retailing era, they’re a “great vehicle for discovery,” Goldston says. “We load the catalogs with products, but we also use them to tell our customers’ stories.” Every catalog, for example, features at least one customer telling her story.
And catalogs, like video ads, help the retailer build relationships with consumers. Those shoppers who receive a catalog and then convert have a 23% higher customer lifetime value than other consumers.
Tailoring its ads to the channels that resonate with consumers has paid off for Eloquii, which grew an Internet Retailer-estimated 43% last year.