Dropshipping is DEAD | How to Build Actual Brand

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How Can I Adapt?

It is crucial for marketing and advertising strategies to evolve to succeed as an existing eCommerce brand. For those of you keeping up with Season 4 of The eComm Growth Show, you will know this has been a common theme.

The most significant way to know if you’re a brand is to ask yourself: if your store shuts down tomorrow, would anyone miss your products? (7:37)

What makes your company a brand… not just another online store selling a product.

While we specialize in paid social, we wanted our very own ad specialist, Josh, to use his expert opinion on other things you should be doing with your brand.

As a teen back in 2015, Josh was using cropped images with white backgrounds for Facebook ads. With dropshipping being the main way of advertising at that point, he saw success for what he was producing.

“If you targeted the right audience, you were bringing in thousands and thousands of dollars a week…” (2:18)

That actually will not work anymore. We probably aren’t the first to tell you that techniques that thrived in 2015 will not survive the 2021 market. Without knowing the product quality or who you are targeting… dropshipping has become almost obsolete. But what can we learn from this?

You have to answer the questions that dropshipping couldn’t—learning what the customer feels and why they’re buying a product being the two foundational pieces. When you discover that, you will find yourself building a brand.

Josh has been able to sell around five or six stores that have made six or seven figures, so what’s his secret?

He builds a community around a brand.

Building a holistic brand takes an understanding of your product and your offer. By excelling in marketing, social media, or influencing can get you seven figures, but getting past that is the main hurdle. Knowing the angle of the product is vital.

“That’s what really helps you get off into multiple platforms. It’s really understanding why this customer is buying your product.” (6:03)

In 2021 you have the opportunity to build a community of people that want to come back to your store, support your product, and convince others to buy it as well. They will tell others because they are bought in.

“If no one would miss you, then you are not a brand, you’re just an online store, selling a product to make the money.” (7:54)

Something we can’t ignore is that shoppers are getting smarter and smarter. Having an organic side to marketing and authentic interactions with customers won’t go unnoticed. Gathering customer emails and text messages for retargeting can begin long-term data collection that keeps your community building. If there is traffic to your website, you have to have a plan on retargeting whether they make the purchase or not.

No-cost marketing opportunities like email campaigns and SMS messages might be your company’s first step in achieving a tight feedback loop on what’s working and what’s not.

Social media platforms such as Instagram and TikTok have made products go viral overnight without the company even having to spend a dollar. Why? Because they build an organic story and feed it to a community of people who are bought in on the concept.

“If you know the market, you can utilize being organic 100%, but you have to be posting” (14:50)

Overall, the tools to adapt and thrive moving into a changing market in 2021 lie in shifting from an online store to a real brand. Whether it is transparency in shipping, communicating the story of your company, or sending PR packages, you have to be doing everything you can to be as personal as possible.

“The biggest thing coming up now with the changing climate is to really make your customers important.” (17:21)

Are you trying to dip into finding your product angle and making your own community? Do you want to transition from an online store to an actual brand?

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help your brand grow!

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