5 tips to quickly shift from traditional sales to D2C
POSTED : May 18, 2020
BY : Martin Mehalchin

Retail has been shifting to personalized digital experiences for years, but with stay-at-home orders in effect across much of the country, demand for these experiences has skyrocketed. Among companies that are successfully tapping into this flood of demand, one factor is common: they’re delivering personalized, direct-to-consumer (D2C) experiences that can be easily utilized at home and empower customers with information. These D2C experiences are increasing convenience, engaging customers throughout the buying journey, and providing curated or customized offerings.

For many enterprises, however, D2C can be new territory, and it often isn’t clear just how they should begin developing their programs or enhance underperforming ones. Marketing leaders can start by taking five key steps to define the D2C strategy and propel traditional sales models into a new era of connected digital experiences.

Set D2C business goals

Start with the consumer and let insights from consumer data guide the focus and offerings of the program.

Define how to provide extra value

The key to a compelling D2C experience lies in defining how the program will offer additional value, and there’s a wide spectrum on which companies can deliver greater benefits than those available through traditional channels.

Ensure data security

Having an abundance of customer data increases security risks and elevates privacy concerns, which makes it increasingly important to establish protocols for data management and security to ensure compliance with regulations and build trust with customers.

Establish customer service and fulfillment infrastructure

Leaders should consider how their customer service and fulfillment infrastructure is set up now – and how it must evolve to deliver on customer expectations.

Support existing partnerships

Developing a plan to avoid channel conflict and support third-party sales partners as they adapt can help mitigate the challenge of conflict and confusion among existing sales partners.

D2C programs are more than just a new opportunity to increase revenue – they’re a serious investment in the relationship between brands and consumers. Those that design their programs with real insights and dig deep to rethink customer experience at every touchpoint will increase loyalty and retention, build direct connections with consumers, and protect spend as COVID-19 continues to shift purchasing online.

Learn more in my latest post for Toolbox.

Learn how brick-and-mortar retailers are transforming their business models amid industry change.


About the Author

Martin MehalchinMartin Mehalchin is managing director for retail and consumer at PK. He has dedicated his career to working with executives and managers to help them define their strategies and then translate those strategies into results. Among the clients Martin has worked with are Nike, Atlantic Records, Microsoft, Qualcomm, Expedia, Victoria’s Secret, Adidas and DuPont. Martin is a Board member and Chair of the Marketing Committee for the North Cascades Institute.

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