The best brands are just like best friends. You love to be around them, trust them with your juiciest secrets, and always have them on the top of your mind.
With so many direct-to-consumer brands competing for customer loyalty, it’s the brands that develop #realbonds with customers that stick around for the long haul. According to a recent study by Sprout, 64% of consumers want brands to personally connect with them. When people feel connected to a brand, 57% will increase their spending with that brand. Even in the age of digital shopping, we’re hardwired for connection – and the same is true for the consumer-brand relationship.
In celebration of Best Friends Day, here are a few of our favorite DTC brands taking the consumer-brand relationship to the next level. These brands are about far more than selling products to customers; they’re about building #realbonds with real people through personalization, open communication, and good times.
Bon Bon Bon – When it comes to a personalized shopping experience this DTC brand takes the cake (or shall we say chocolate!). Bon Bon Bon offers a fun and easy build-your-own box experience with tons of exotic flavors to choose from. Curating boxes themselves keeps customers feeling engaged with the brand, reinforcing the consumer-brand relationship from the get go.
Here’s how a conversation might go after sending a friend a generic box of chocolates:
Friend 1: Did you get the gift I sent you for #BestFriends Day?
Friend 2: Yeah, chocolates. Thanks, bestie.
Here’s how a conversation might go after sending a personalized Bon Bon Box box:
Friend 1: Did you get the gift I made you?
Friend 2: BEST GIFT EVER.
Friend 1: Added a bunch of Creme Brulee, since that’s your favorite!
Friend 2: You’re the BEST best friend anyone could ask for.
See the difference? Way more personal. Way more likely to boost brand loyalty.
As if it couldn’t get any better, the brand has a dedicated SWAG section on their site with everything from branded T-shirts to baby bibs to magnets. Swag is another great way this next-gen brand extends its messaging beyond selling chocolate. From killer copy and UX to outrageously yummy chocolates, this brand sure knows how to foster sweet customer relationships.
ThirdLove – This DTC brand prides itself on a truly authentic relationship with its customers. ThirdLove is on a mission to create bras made for women of all sizes by using real women’s measurements. They don’t use size templates and even offer half-cup sizes to fit women of all shapes and sizes. One of the main ways the brand nurtures relationships with customers is through its VIP tier loyalty program, Hooked. After extensive research that included emailing customers directly, the brand opted to call their top customers “Admirers” or “Devotees” to make them feel a part of their community. They also decided to give their members perks and gifts at least once a month to encourage brand affinity. On Valentines Day, the brand gave away breast pins and free boxes of candy to thank dedicated customers. By leveraging brand partnerships, the brand keeps its customers on their toes, always anticipating the next delightful surprise.
Good American – Founded by Khloe Kardashian and Emma Grede, this DTC brand is far more than a denim and activewear brand; it’s a platform that portrays strong values for all women, namely inclusivity and body positivity movement. The brand proudly offers jeans of all sizes, ranging from 00 to 24 (most brands only go up to a size 12) and recently introduced workout clothes, dresses and a maternity collection. How does Good American stay connected to its customers? In keeping (up) with the Kardashian spirit, the brand uses social media to chat directly (DMs and comments) with fans and to get real-time customer feedback. By encouraging an honest and open dialogue, they’ve gathered essential data to help them make adjustments to design and sizing. Last year, they introduced a new in-between size 15 after learning from their customers that it was difficult for those who fell between sizes 14 and 16 to find a pair of jeans that really fit. The brand’s response sent waves throughout the fashion industry and made their stance on consumer-brand relationships clear – customer comes first, always.
Warby Parker – This pioneering DTC eyeglasses brand was among the first to adopt user-generated content as a means to connect with customers. The brand began fostering intimate relationships with customers by communicating with them directly on social platforms like Instagram and Facebook. Their famous hashtag campaign #warbyparkerhometryon encouraged customers to post photos of themselves wearing trial frames and get feedback from friends and family. The campaign encouraged engagement, grew their community, and most of all was an admirable display of trust in their customers. By turning customers into loyal and influential fans (and reposting their original content) the brand emphasizes that relationships are what make a brand. Cue the High School Musical soundtrack 🙂
Along with viral customer-centric campaigns, Warby Parker has mastered turning mundane interactions into remarkable bonding experiences. A great example of this was when its team responded to questions on Twitter with super casual YouTube videos to encourage a more personal relationship.
Are you a DTC brand looking to bond with customers during the last-mile? We’re a fast-growing last-mile startup that enables brands to turn the last mile into an outstanding #PostPurchase experience. Talk to us today, let’s start delivering tomorrow!