DTC Brands Take Unique Paths to Growth - Retail Innovation Conference & Expo

DTC Brands Take Unique Paths to Growth

We’ve all seen the headlines: Direct-to-consumer (DTC) brands that were once heralded for their innovation are now struggling to reach true profitability. Increased competition online, rising cost-per-acquisition costs, and volatile marketing and advertising platforms are just three of the many factors impacting DTC growth strategies. While many have taken these challenges and turned them into the headlines validating the “death of DTC,” some brands are taking this challenging climate as a cue to rewrite their growth playbooks.  

In a recent feature, Retail TouchPoints senior editor Dorothy Crouch wrote that “DTC brands need to determine what their audience/customer expansion options [can] be once they get started.” IRCE and the DTC Innovation Forum track will feature an agenda of experts and practitioners who will share their perspectives on many of the expansion strategies outlined in the feature, including:

Putting data at the center of your growth strategy  

Undergarments brand ThirdLove is a digitally native brand created to provide personalized and accurate bra-fitting experiences. Now that ThirdLove has four physical stores open, Veronique Powell, the brand’s VP of Strategy and Operations, noted in an interview with Retail TouchPoints that ThirdLove will open at least four more locations by the end of 2022, in Washington, D.C., Dallas, Boston and Scottsdale, Ariz. The end goal for the brand is to open another 12 to 16 additional stores in 2023.  
To ensure a successful transition from online-only to omnichannel, brands need to put their data to good use and create a cohesive view of the customer. This is undoubtedly the foundation of any solid growth strategy and we’re excited to have Nick Bodkins, Co-Founder and CEO of Boisson joining us to discuss how the brand is developing a first-party data strategy that supports ecommerce growth and drives physical retail innovation. Nick is no stranger to the ecommerce and marketing worlds: he has expertise in developing and implementing these data strategies and will have a wealth of lessons to share, especially as he works to scale Boisson’s specialty non-alcoholic spirit business. 

Getting strategic about wholesale  

During the pandemic, we saw many CPG brands go DTC. Now, these brands are facing a lot of different pressures and, in turn, are turning to the traditional model of wholesale once again. But this time, it’s with a twist: innovative CPG brands like General Mills and Once Upon a Farm are looking at DTC and wholesale holistically and are ensuring the two methods play together nicely.  
In her feature, Dorothy spotlighted how online supplement and multivitamin brand Ritual used a combination of physical retail, online marketplaces, branded DTC and wholesale to bring its growth to new heights. Within the first 60 days, Ritual also started selling on Amazon in June 2022, the brand reached more than $1 million in sales and in the fall of 2022, the brand began an exclusive retail partnership with Whole Foods 

“To truly win and grow our brand awareness, we need to meet our customers where they are at, in every aspect,” said Katerina Schneider, Founder and CEO of Ritual in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. “They need to be able to discover us and trust us just as easily offline as they do currently online.” 

Want to learn more about how brands are combining DTC, physical retail, wholesale and other channels to diversify their revenue models? Join us for the Retail Innovation Conference & Expo, taking place June 13-15, 2023, in Chicago!  

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