Founder and CEO
Following working with ecommerce for AOL and having three children, Kara gained weight and found herself with unhealthy habits including an addition to diet soda. She launched the first fruit-flavored unsweetened water after realizing the health impact of adding fruit juice to water in her personal life.
When her first sale to Whole Foods led to reorders the very next day, she knew she was on to something big. Through connections she sold to Google, Starbucks (but lost the contract) and then Amazon. It is now the largest independent beverage company in the US with no relationship with Coke, Pepis or Dr. Pepper-Snapple
She drove growth through office environments where employers realized the benefit of healthier employees. However, she felt that she needed a direct relationship with end-users. Despite concerns regarding the wholesale business model now responsible for millions of dollars of sales, Kara launched a website and began email marketing through Klaviyo. These same tactics worked to launch Hint Sunscreen, made in a similar way and for the same reasons as the beverage.
From this experience, Kara completely rejects the idea that wholesale product companies can be removed from the consumer and can depend on third parties to host their platform (like Amazon). She regularly receives warm customer feedback expressing well wishes for her health and even asking for company growth advice, even though the conventional wisdom to grow a wholesale brand was to pay for expensive product placements in grocery chains which she avoided entirely.
Klaviyo offers more than just a way to communicate with your customers and prospects via email. Customers use Klaviyo in many unique and powerful ways to not only grow their businesses, but to also regain control over the customer experience. Hear about the power of Klaviyo from four customers, including up-and-coming brands and well-established businesses, and learn how they’re using it to build deeper relationships with their customers and grow sustainable, thriving businesses.
Moderator: Joe McCarthy, Director of Performance Marketing, Klaviyo (@JM1731)
Ilona Abramova, Head of Content, AppSumo (@AppSumo)
Rebecca Melsky, Co-founder & CEO, Princess Awesome (@princessawesome)
Patrick Coddou, Founder, Supply (@soundslikecanoe)
Emily Baird, Digital Marketing Manager, Nuun (@nuunhydration)
Each panelist described their experiences testing and segmenting through Klaviyo. For example, Patrick Coddou discussed adding a short two-question survey into a campaign that has allowed much better customization.
Rebecca Melsky uses Klaviyo to plan new-product launches by predicting spikes in advance. Ilona Abramova created a custom field that populates with how much money a recipient would have saved had they joined AppSumo Plus and received 10% off each purchase.
Emily Baird discussed Nuun's unique nature in that it doesn't seek to drive more than 5% of revenue through email sales, preferring instead to use email as a community generating tool and generate sales through partnerships. However, Nuun has been surprised by how much revenue campaigns have generated despite having no promotional links or sales verbiage.
Advice from these heavy-hitters includes being "less lazy" about developing creative promotions (from Patrick) , prioritize new ideas on a 1-5 scale of impact verses effort (from Ilona).
Head of Direct Marketing
Death Wish Coffee (@DeathWishCoffee)
What makes a really great newsletter? Death Wish Coffee will spill all the email beans. Learn how the brand used its data to realize its newsletter content had become stagnant, and how the team used data to uncover an opportunity to grow customer loyalty and increase campaign revenue—all while flexing their creative muscle.
Will presented a case study on how upgrading newsletter content grew his brand, noting how competitive coffee markets are considering that it is the third most consumed beverage after tea and water, respectively.
Will's first task was to determine the goal of clickshare, or the estimated share of all achievable clicks that a campaign has received. After a lot of thought and discussion, the brand settled on clickshare as a reliable metric of content utility, moreso than open rate or click rate. The first step was to remove sales pitches from the newsletter, The Scoop into a differentiated Thursday Sales Email (which still gets a 34% open rate).
For The Scoop, Will compared the content goals of his audience (interests and value) with those of Death Wish (products and brand) and tries to balance across both. By reducing the number of articles, emphasizing video, personifying the brand, communicating in a natural, casual way and creating a simpler, cleaner brand presentation, Will's revised email newsletter raised clickshare to 76%. This met the company's predetermined goal and raised sales significantly.
Death Wish Coffee realized that sticky content needed formal planning. So, to resist the time-constrained temptation to "throw something together," the company now generates content in regular two-hour "Scoop Sessions" in which the first hour is devoted exclusively to brainstorming and the second hour is used to determine milestones, deadlines and logistics.
One recent session on Best Friend Day developed the idea of coffee being the customer's best friend. This eventually led to a series of humorous videos with one employee dressed in a "coffee" shirt and accompanying another to get ice cream, play catch, etc.
Will also plants "easter eggs" (usually the word "egg" in white text) that is not promoted on social media or elsewhere. The first five clicks to an exclusive landing page win unadvertised premiums that involve significant value (e.g., $60 cooler). This generates substantial social proof and enables Death Wish to test new products.
The non-promotional nature of the newsletter is underscored by the fact that it contains zero product links. The result of 11 weekly newsletters to date have resulted in a substantial newsletter list increase to 101K with an average open rate of 43% and rising brand popularity.
Will has been working to send The Scoop out at 8AM to generate office-worker buzz among workers looking for a brief escape from the "daily grind."
Senior Product Manager, Klaviyo
Boston Convention and Exhibition Center
One of the best ways to grow your business is to build a marketing automation strategy that makes money while you sleep. Klaviyo Flows allow you to create automated touch points across the entire customer journey—ensuring you’re consistently engaging your customers with personalized, relevant messages. Don’t miss our resident Flow expert teach you strategies guaranteed to help grow your business.
"Make Money While You Sleep" sounds like a pretty click-baity, if not downright spammy title, but Alexandra opened with statistics showing how flows outperform campaigns, including having average open rates that are 1558% higher.
She then presented a slide of two dozen flows she contended were all important to develop the customer relationship, just as you would nurture a friendship, when most people create four flows and stop there.
Here are Alexandra's tips on a flow-by-flow and topic basis.
Add a branch for customers versus prospects at the top and then tie back into the main flow.
Add a split so that only high-value carts get discounts to better maintain margins.
Add a location split to offer free shipping domestically and a discount if international to control shipping costs.
Provide category splits for your top categories to tailor copy just to that topic and send general subject lines and copy to everyone for whom no specific category split has been created. This tactic should be used for many flows.
Also, Alexandra urged the audience to use data science by using the lifecycle touchpoint from the Klaviyo library, noting that one customer sent a flow with 9 emails and still got a 32% Open Rate on the ninth email.
Predicted Customer Lifetime Value and Predicted Gender also enable much more targeted flows.
She underscored the importance of continuing to test. Even if you just send to a small sample set an email that reflects an untried idea, you will statistically grow revenue by testing. For example, optimize your series length by testing adding an additional email or two while monitoring engagement.
Finally, Alexandra recommended tagging profiles with first purchase date. One flow tags each profile with the specific date of the initial purchase, then a second flow follows up with specific content to celebrate the anniversary of the first purchase. Depending on how many years are involved and whether additional purchases have taken place since, the content and discount change.
Another example of tagging profiles includes adding categories to target initial purchases, continued purchases and categories abandoned altogether. Flows can also tag customers into particular loyalty tiers: customers who have purchase X times, X+Y times, etc.
To design a flow, consider your goals, triggers, customer personas and benchmarks for open rates, clicks and conversions.
Besides smart sending, tagging recipients as "in flow" (and then running a separate flow to remove the tag) will prevent a prospect from receiving too many emails.
Andrew Bialecki (@abialecki) discussed the evolution of Klaviyo's building $3 billion in "owned revenue" (which consolidates revenue generated through email, websites and mobile purchases) with some backstory.
In 2011, Andrew as a Boston software engineer, started RunningSneaks on the side, to enable visitors to register for upcoming races. In interviewing prospects, he identified a lot of interest among race event organizers in better online registration tools. He knew that the longer he spent connecting with prospects, the better his business prospects became. However, especially as a part-timer, he simply couldn't scale himself and, as an engineer, became obsessed with the problem of scaled marketing.
He eventually launched Klaviyo in 2012 because email was the best way to scale marketing. Owned revenue turned out to be typically between 15 and 60% of total revenue. With easy-to-scale email, this slice of owner revenue can grow.
Due to the massive investment made in high-tech platforms today, a lot of companies accept that their business must be built on somebody else's platform, but now the pendulum is swinging back to companies owning their own platform, in this case their email list.
When you build your revenue based on a platform you control, you can be yourself easier. As an exercise, Andrew asked Klaviyo employees to introduce themselves with an email and saw a tremendous variety of subject lines, imagery and storytelling.
Tom McClintock is the owner and founder of Relationship Martech.