Customer Equity Accelerator Podcast

Ep. 105 | Building the DTC channel with Spindrift’s Calvin Lammers

 

"Analysts don’t get the credit for the amount of work and insights to empower business leaders. This is a crucial part of our ecommerce team." - Calvin Lammers

 

This week Calvin Lammers, Director of eCommerce at Spindrift Beverage joins Allison Hartsoe in the Accelerator. Calvin shares his experience convincing brands to establish a direct to consumer presence as well as the process of reaping the rewards. Catch this episode to hear more about how to convince your brand to do the same or to further maximize the value of the DTC channel.

Please help us spread the word about building your business’ customer equity through effective customer analytics. Rate and review the podcast on Apple Podcast, Stitcher, Google Play, Alexa’s TuneIn, iHeartRadio or Spotify. And do tell us what you think by writing Allison at info@ambitiondata.com or ambitiondata.com. Thanks for listening! Tell a friend! See the full transcriptView all episodes.

Contact Calvin: https://spindriftfresh.com/

 

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Ep. 104 | 2020 Customer-Centric Predictions

Show Transcript

Allison Hartsoe: 00:00 This is the Customer Equity Accelerator. If you are a marketing executive who wants to deliver bottom-line impact by identifying and connecting with revenue-generating customers, then this is the show for you. I'm your host, Allison Hartsoe, CEO of Ambition Data. Every other week I bring you the leaders behind the customer-centric revolution who share their expert advice. Are you ready to accelerate? Then let's go! Welcome everyone. Today's show is about building up direct to consumer channels, and to help me discuss this topic is Calvin Lammers. Calvin is the director of eCommerce at Spindrift beverage company. Calvin, welcome to the show.

Calvin Lammers: 00:42 Thanks so much for having me, Allison, a pleasure to be on this show today.

Allison Hartsoe: 00:45 Thank you. Tell us a little bit about your background. I assume you didn't just pop out and become the director of eCommerce. How did you get here?

Calvin Lammers: 00:52 So yeah, like you said, it's, it's definitely been a path to get to where I'm at right now. I started out just an eCommerce world working for woodsy, which was a subsidiary of Amazon to really cut my teeth, so to speak and make me commerce world. And really a great kind of learning ground for bread and sugar bev business and a customer-first mentality from my time there and through that also got connected with a ton of people in the industry, the landscape and ended up getting my search on the brand side working for kind snacks and oversaw their direct consumer business. I had kind, and I really couldn't have been a better first brand to work for and kind of run the direct consumer business for the really leaned into eCommerce, really passionate about can disrupting the industry, definitely with the legacy market for ours at that time.

Calvin Lammers: 01:38 And so really it was a great opportunity to just kind of lead the charge in terms of emerging CPG brands and utilizing direct to consumer channel to both benefit the entire business, but really get a better understanding of the customer and what opportunities exist for the business as a whole. So that was my first brand, and e-commerce direct consumer channel four from there bounced over to the beverage size and was that by brand, which is an enhanced flavor water that was purchased by dr pepper in 2017. I oversaw their eCommerce channel as well and now have been, it has been there for about two and a half years now overseeing the eCommerce shift channel here.

Allison Hartsoe: 02:14 Really. I always think it's very interesting how people's teams shape up underneath a particular area, or maybe you could just tell us what are the different groups that you have underneath your e-commerce umbrella?

Calvin Lammers: 02:25 Absolutely. I think that e-commerce is definitely the far-reaching business with a lot of different touchpoints. To your point, Allison. So within the e-commerce area, we have a customer service team that's focused on our, obviously consumer interactions and experience with both our direct consumer site as well as any of our online retail partners. So obviously any questions that come up about the product, any order issues, we have a team that I'll see is directly interacting with our consumers to make sure that the experience and your process as a team with an enjoyable of a process as possible. So we have our customer experience team that handles that aspect of the business. We obviously have our operations team as well, so they're managing all of our fulfillment, all of our production line, all of our variety packs and assembly of any unique items for the eCommerce channel. And then we also have our financial analyst aspects as well.

Allison Hartsoe: 03:14 Ooh, I love analysts.

Calvin Lammers: 03:16 Yeah, exactly. So sometimes you don't get the credit they deserve for the amount of work and the amount of insights and empowering business leaders to really be impactful with the data and the analysis that they're providing. So I think that's sometimes is an overlooked aspect of a healthy business. And so that's another crucial part to our e-commerce.

Allison Hartsoe: 03:33 Oh, you're just speaking to the choir here. I can't believe you said that. I kind of want to make a poster out of that.

Calvin Lammers: 03:40 You can put my face on it if you want to. I will not trademark that by any means.

Allison Hartsoe: 03:46 All right. So I had seen a couple of businesses that are like, Hey, why should I care about direct e-commerce channels? And 90% of my business is coming from mass distribution to Walmart and Amazon and target and any number of other big box stores. Why should I care about the DTC channel specifically?

Calvin Lammers: 04:07 Absolutely. So especially a few years into this so-called DTC revolution, I guess if you were to call it that, and you had all these emerging brands and digitally need a brand that launched with direct consumer. And so I think a lot of those questions that are coming maybe from either established brands or legacy brands that kind of see this emergence of these digitally native brands and what benefits or what's the opportunity for them to kind of get into that market or kind of develop their own capabilities in house. And I think the biggest reason that I would say is kind of going back to what we were just talking about, the data and the insights that you're able to take from it. I think that can sometimes be forgotten about or maybe not given as much limelight as it should be. To your point, I think embracing this with even some of the best examples of digitally native brands, the Casper's of the world.

Calvin Lammers: 04:56 Soylent, I think, is another great term of food and beverage. Graham's best art is online only first, but there is a ceiling in terms of that maximum online only revenue who sweat at certain points. There does need to be an offline traditional retail element to the business wants to kind of cap out or max out with your online potential. I would not say that the online revenue is, shouldn't be the primary goal for companies or brands. I really do think that it's the data, the insights and the customer insights especially that really is the biggest beneficial or reason why you should look at building out the DTC channel or capability and I will caveat that same, but I don't think it's the right answer or the right decision for every brand as if that is something that see every brand, every company needs to relate when analysis themselves and really see if that is something that they would gain those benefits from. But if they were to as a pay customer insights in the data, it should be these deeper leading reason or primary reason.

Allison Hartsoe: 05:51 I'm actually going to take issue with what you just said about maybe it's not for every brand only because I think if a has customers and a brand wants to know more about their customers, maybe every brand should have an eCommerce channel. And there's really only been one example in a B to B space where I was talking with a B to B company, and this company happened to sell pools, and they had such a tiered structure and perhaps to your point they were probably more of a fit for this. Like we have our structure, we have our technicians, we have our way of doing business, and they were a monopoly, and so for them, they didn't want anybody buying directly because they had the structure to maintain, which you know, to their credit was supporting people's jobs and a whole industry, but it was also causing the industry to be propped up by artificial pricing because you didn't have any competition. Right. So I think when you do have, and maybe that's one of the issues you have to deal with is if you are selling DTC, you have to worry about competitors coming in and shopping you and all the competitive elements.

Calvin Lammers: 06:57 Yup. That's a concern. I know when I was at kind snacks, that was definitely a concern internally about as we developed that were really kind of pushing our channel. Their concern was, can I give greater visibility and can I insights to our competition into kind of how we operate, how we think, how we kind of roll out innovation, and that was definitely a concern from our end. In the end, our ultimate can I for where we landed is that we obviously stood behind our product 100%. We knew that our product and in our positioning would differentiate ourselves with our lists and that at the end of the day, we wanted to provide that best in class. You need a total immersive, direct consumer perspective that will let the competition see everything we have on the table, and we're still going to execute as great as possible, and that will be what wins us out in the end.

Allison Hartsoe: 07:42 I always have a theory that even if you gave your entire playbook to your competitors that they actually wouldn't be able to execute it because of the way you know, like the DNA of a business and how they do business. Do you think that's true?

Calvin Lammers: 07:55 Right. I 100% think that's true. I've seen that plenty of times, even in my relatively short career, especially in this DNAs where I think there's been more and more content and things written about, especially from a direct consumer perspective that is the hot kind of focus for a lot of contents and what your success stories and how new brands or new companies built their business. So I think all of that is widely as readily available, but there's a reason why it's not common or, and it's not widely replicated because there's a number of intentional pieces going back to how the brand is built, how it's positioned, what exactly makes it unique, and then I'll see people asking that company actually executing on that beneficial.

Allison Hartsoe: 08:35 Yeah. I want to switch into examples here in a second, but before I do that, I'm just curious if you've seen any distributors that are actually giving more customer insights or more information than before.

Calvin Lammers: 08:48 When you say in terms of distributors, in terms of retailers or,

Allison Hartsoe: 08:52 any mass market place, so like on in the make-up, it might be Sephora or Amazon or Target or any kind of mass aggregator and redistributor.

Calvin Lammers: 09:01 Yeah, I think the largest one from my experience, it has definitely been Amazon, but I think one of the biggest kind of restriction or one of the biggest holdups or you both. To my experience and just speaking with others in the industry is that actually has been the biggest hurdle is the insights, and the customer data, in fact, typically is kind of a black box or Amazon that they do not share customer information. They really keep not to themselves, and regardless of how much money you spend with them, that is typically been something they were reticent to share. So I think it's been interesting in Walmart actually just their Walmart media group just announced their new program for 2020 to bring in some advertising partners and really develop their advertising platform to rival Amazon, well-established advertising division. But I think the interesting piece with Walmart's is that at least in the announcements they made, it's clear that they want to lead with not only will they share the online data from any advertisers, but they also have the in-store piece and that obviously with Walmart being the largest retailer, that is just massive. Do have access or visibility into that in-store data and that's where I think competition reads innovation obviously, and it's, to me that's biggest kind of opportunity moving forward from a large mass-market retailer and in customer data and just overall information that's really going to unlock a lot I believe.

Allison Hartsoe: 10:17 That is great. I will link to that announcement in the show notes just so we have some reference to look at. I had not seen that announcement, but that looks fantastic because I spend a lot of time looking through the Amazon piece, figuring out how do you find them in, and they've just been locking it down more and more, and I think rightfully so. There's a lot of concerns about privacy. Nobody wants to get sued. And did you find as you decided to go into DTC, did you have to address the privacy issue as well?

Calvin Lammers: 10:44 Absolutely. As a forefront of any consumer conversations then, especially felting, any DTC channel as any initial conversation. When I broached the DTC topic with any general counsel or legal teams that I've had in my career that should be in that first kind of line of questions that you're asking both yourself and just the company about how you're protecting their customer information and making sure that our customer data is populating managed. So that's been a widely discussed topic in my career. And so that's simply been a hesitation where even when I was at Buy, one of the barriers to actually lacking a direct consumer channel at Buy is that after we were acquired by dr pepper, that was a big point of concern for Dr. Pepper's team about that customer data and how that would be managed.

Allison Hartsoe: 11:27 Did they have a particular way they got comfortable with it? How were you able to kind of have that conversation with them to mitigate risk and help them see that there was a real benefit and a good trade-off?

Calvin Lammers: 11:37 Wait, it was both the customer privacy and data concerns that prevented us ultimately from launching our direct consumer business there. And I think this is kind of goes back to the kind of points that I made earlier. I don't think direct to consumer is right for all companies in particular. You get into issues, especially if it's going to be a beverage space where you have the more established companies that have just sugar bottle or agreement. And so then you get into certain territories that you can't sell products due to agreements that you have in place. And so that was kind of the other concern that was brought up in why launching a direct consumer business would pose a number of risks for a larger company like that along with the customer had data and privacy aspect.

Allison Hartsoe: 12:14 I see. So maybe one of the reasons why we can't buy Dr pepper online and other products is there are legal agreements that are causing them not to take the leap,

Calvin Lammers: 12:23, unfortunately. Right.

Allison Hartsoe: 12:24 Okay. Well, tell us about some other examples of where you've seen DTC, perhaps do a little bit better.

Calvin Lammers: 12:31 Yeah, absolutely. So going back to kind of my first rinse with kinder leading with DTC and utilizing DTC in the best possible way with kind. That was very much scenario, I'll be in new company. So working on gaining national distribution. And so one of the easiest ways to gain that national distribution is through DTC. And so right off the bat we've launched our direct consumer channel and store for kinds that we had availabilities nationwide. Even if you know, in Montana, if we didn't have availability in any stores in Montana, we at least had our for customers to have access to our product. And so that was kind of the first main reason that we launched it. As we went along, that obviously evolved, and after a couple of years, we started really seeing that sampling was the main focus for the company. And so we built out a very large field team that we did sampling events on four different markets.

Calvin Lammers: 13:25 But then along with that, we also cast into our direct consumer store and essentially created a digital sampling program. And there were two aspects to it. So one was this program that we called Kind Awesome. I'm obviously big company was built around kindness and in having sharing Pintak, and we created a card where you could sign up for this program, you could get 10 of these cards send to you, and you could give them out to 10 of your friends or any ten random people you meet on the street. Each of those cards would have a criminal code to redeem honor store to receive ten free kind bars. And really saw that as a great guerrilla marketing way to really increase her sampling opportunities without needing to have our marketing team in every possible location and utilizing that type of policy, and you'll kind of platform that we built to enable that. So I think that was a super exciting effort from cross-departmental teams to build health and programs. So it obviously was not just the eCommerce team, the directing super team. And so I think that was a great vision of what an entire company and a coalition of teams coming together to build a program and utilizing the capabilities of a direct consumer platform I could look like.

Allison Hartsoe: 14:34 Calvin, what's so cool about that is not only is it a great program, and it's a generous offer, and it aligns with the brand, but people who are usually passionate about a brand we usually consider to be high-value customers. So in the act of giving ten cards to 10 friends, you're essentially spreading from one high-value customer to people who might be like them and probably have a very high propensity for being another high-value customer. So that's a very clever strategy. And it sounds like it worked well.

Calvin Lammers: 15:05 It could work extremely well. There's a reason why we had a, and it's for a number of years after we launched it, and it was because of just that, both the feedback from existing customers want to your point about those customers that would be wanting and willing to share this brand that they're enamored with, that they love. And those were our most passionate and loyal customers. So that speaks volumes when to their friends and people that they know that they're advocating for this brand. And we can never ask for a better so to speak, marketer for us, so that was just fantastic for how that and both those people that were loving sharing the brand, but then also people, obviously Bev has the brand shared with them, love the experience, so it was as well as we possibly could have hoped or imagined.

Allison Hartsoe: 15:45 This program makes me a little hungry. Does it still run? I'm wondering how can I get on this program?

Calvin Lammers: 15:50 Unfortunately, I believe it did end in 2017, so as far as I know, I do not believe it's still running, unfortunately. But that's not to say I know they still have a widespread and sampling program, so hopefully you can find some time buyers somewhere close by.

Allison Hartsoe: 16:05 No, that's a great one way kind of distribution, like you said, it was designed to enable broader marketing sampling, so that's an angle of DTC. that makes a lot of sense. Sometimes we think about it only from the data sense, but that's actually a very strong angle too. What other examples can you share about ways that people have taken advantage of DTC?

Calvin Lammers: 16:24 Another example with kind of going back to the data aspect with this on the flip side is that we actually did utilize the data in ordering insights that we had from our work. And we realized that we had a number of office customers that were ordering our products. So office managers kind of loading the pantry for their companies. And so obviously saw that as a huge opportunity since a massive number of, whether it be tech companies or especially I live in New York, a number of high companies that dock their office countries with free snacks, free beverages for their employees. And so I saw that as a great opportunity again to kind of cabin into these companies and provide a perfect opportunity to get in front of new customers. And so going back to what I mentioned before, we have this massive field marketing team, and so we utilize that ordering data with these offices to say, okay, this particular business is really ordering a lot of our products.

Calvin Lammers: 17:15 Maybe there's an opportunity to do a office sampling where we would have a dozen team members go to the office, bring not only our bars, which was our established product, but how some of our other lines like our granola line and try with them over our face with her no less, or try to go a granola bar, a different new products, and really saw that as a great opportunity to both get into products into these offices, but also reach new customers that we know already have an appetite for our product. So I think that was another example of kind of utilizing the established kind of company assets that we had at the time, but then also layering in that DTC data and insights to really leverage that to an even greater extent than we otherwise could have.

Allison Hartsoe: 17:56 Very nice, good, and outside of kind.

Calvin Lammers: 18:00 Yes. So I said it gives me what syndrome can be seen a ton of success with really just launching new flavors and getting customer insights in terms of light flavor mixes go really well with each other. That's been very powerful for the company as a whole. As we said, we're still relatively new. We're vastly growing. I am wildly growing our distribution so we don't have gas eight kinds of customer insights outside of our direct consumer channels. So it's been super exciting for us to gain those insights into what customers are looking for. Are there certain flavors that maybe we don't have wide distribution important yet that they're only able to get from our direct consumer. That also enables us to say, okay, this fiber is outperforming under artists' stores versus your offline channel. So it's a matter of just availability. If so, can we take this information to our retailers and say this is how well it performs in our direct consumer channel. Clearly, there's a customer appetite for it and make the case to gain on-shelf availability for these flavors that may not have the current distributions. So from the vendor perspective, it's primarily been, I know that labor mix assortment and being able to leverage that with gaining distribution with our traditional retail partners.

Allison Hartsoe: 19:09 So I want to follow up on two things there. One is the innovation side. Do the customers also give you more insight about whether they wish to flavor or was a little bit different, or they wished to different kinds of flavor was available? Or do they mix flavors like you make cereal and kind of, you know, come up with new flavors?

Calvin Lammers: 19:27 So I think our customers are definitely passionate and they love to give feedback, and that's what we love about them. They've been absolutely great about providing feedback on any new flavor launches. There's any aspect of the flavor that they wish was different. If there are new flavors that they would like. And we definitely retain that and we keep that as an opportunity to report possible new flavors. And then, as a company, we're constantly updating and enhancing any flavor profiles as we go along from customer feedback. So definitely something that we're keeping, and even when we launch new flavors on our social media profiles, we're asking our followers for their suggestions, any new players that they'd be interested in. So that's a great way to leverage that consumer voice.

Allison Hartsoe: 20:07 And it's interesting that you mentioned social media because this is obviously a powerful channel. Is that where you get most of your inbound feedback about what people like or don't like, or do you take it in other channels too? If it's a mixture of channels, what do you think the percentages across different channels?

Calvin Lammers: 20:22 Absolutely. So I would say it's primarily social media absolutely. We do house phone number that customers can call in and leave, talk to our customer experience team. We have obviously a write-in, but yeah, it's primarily social media. So we have our team that is monitoring and responding to any customer feedback and then also analyzing the customer insights and the communications that they're having. What are the takeaways? Are there any hot button topics or opportunities from a product standpoint that could be great to kind of look at? So yeah, it definitely is a primarily led by our social media kind of channel though for those insights.

Allison Hartsoe: 20:56 I've heard that some companies, particularly very customer-centric companies will start their executive meetings with comments or at least a key comment from the customer base. Does that happen at Spindrift as well when you surface the hot buttons in the topic?

Calvin Lammers: 21:12 Absolutely. I mean our customers and their feedback, their comments is definitely a support friends of everything we do, especially within our eCommerce channel, that is something on a biweekly basis. We're meeting, talking through any current hot button topics. If we have any reoccurring issues, med kind of come up through our customer comments through our social media channels and our email and our phone conversations. That's something that we're constantly discussing. In all honesty, its how we continually improve our experience with their direct consumer channel, if you will. A lot of the optimizations that we've kind of made have been because of customer feedback and right. It's what, whether it's been Kennedy's layout or navigation on-site, the checkout experience and new variety pack options, any assortment addition. A lot of those drinks have come through listening to that customer feedback and those communications.

Allison Hartsoe: 22:02 Nice. I had just have one other question. I don't know if you've run across this, but I had heard from another company who was selling a lot online that they took all of their data about what sells in the local area to a store, a large retail store in this case, and they were not able to convince them that even though they were selling like gangbusters online that this retail store should carry their product. This was like a head slap to me. Why the distribution resistance?

Calvin Lammers: 22:32 Yes, we encountered that and heard about myself. I think it's maybe not as common as it was a few years ago that that happens as much, but I still encounter that. I think the online customer is a different customer than the offline customer for whatever reason. I don't think that's as widely believed anymore. I think that understanding of how the two channels kind of interplay and really are targeting more customers, maybe slightly different, but I think that widely held perception has changed, but it's definitely still been the case in certain occasions where we've kind of led with a, well either we fell on in the Amazon or what flavors do well on Amazon process to certain retailers and just how not been received well at all or it's just been dismissed. So I definitely have encountered that in myself. The hope obviously is that that will change and I think that's end of the day.

Calvin Lammers: 23:19 I think myself and a lot of others believe that you'll really have to, it is not a binary thing anymore, whereas it is offline versus online. You need to have the perspective that you should be wherever and whenever the customers want your product. And so whether that's ordering through your DTC channel because you have and conscription program and get access to new flavors, whether that's ordering through crying now because you need a pack because you have party in two hours or whether you want to go to Costco and load up on a variety pack, you should be available and you ready to meet the consumer wherever they are. And it should not be a binary, antagonistic or relationship. It should be a complementary relationship.

Allison Hartsoe: 23:58 Oh, I love that. That's really well said, Calvin. So let's say that I'm a fairly new brand and I just starting out, if you took all the things that you knew and said, Oh, you know, I should have done this, or maybe I'll do this differently. If I want to launch my DTC channel and I've got resistance from my company, what should I do first?

Calvin Lammers: 24:17 First and foremost, you should write down reasons why you want to launch a direct consumers. So, kind of going back to what you were talking about earlier, I think it should primarily be led with data and costumer insights, but that's the primary reason is it's you want to have a launchpad for or a testing grounds for new product innovation is that you want to gain national distribution while you went from an online perspective, while you continue to work on your offline distribution, you really need to prioritize what are those primary reasons that you're looking in and have an interest in launching a direct consumer business because not only will that help you make things stronger case, but that should also influence how you build out your aggressive consumer channel. So obviously it's a new product and innovation test ground, so to speak, that experience is going to be very different from if you're looking to kind of build out just availability and primarily looking at a revenue channel to business start with. So I think that's really iron out in kind of establish what your priorities are and primary objectives. We're building out a direct consumer channel instead of just the idea that what we need to have one because everybody else is having one.

Allison Hartsoe: 25:23 How important is it to quantify the cost versus benefit when you're outlining those reasons?

Calvin Lammers: 25:29 Yeah, so I would say that it can be a huge hurdle I guess right off the bat isn't cost so I think you'd definitely be to quantify that and make that clear to your stakeholders and in leadership and that isn't always the cheapest channel to launch. For sure there is number of cause, whether that'd be the technology build-out, the platforms, the team that you need to staff to enable and run directly for business and maintenance and I think that's the always forgotten thing where you go to your leadership team and say, okay, this is going to be an $800,000 development project for a platform, for the technology, build out integration. And then I think there are some times can be the misunderstanding is like, Hey, you did the $800,000 projects. We never have to worry about that again. You come back two years later. We need to enhance an aspect to the store. We need to do another redesign or replatform what we did a few years ago. I thought that was it, and I think that should definitely be made clear at the start is that nothing is ever finished from an eCom and direct consumers standpoint. There is always ongoing maintenance role. He should be ongoing optimization and then has enhancements and the end of the day that does cost money and so it's not a one and done thing, unfortunately.

Allison Hartsoe: 26:37 Okay. So the first reason was to write down the other reasons why you want to launch a DTC channel and then what do you do next?

Calvin Lammers: 26:44 So after you kind of write down those reasons, we actually designated a project manager internally to really treat it as an internal project to shepherd it through the different project Gates, and we're seeing sign on and sign off at every stage of the project. And really how that ownership so that I think that ethics can happen many times with direct consumer launches. It can get caught up in right page, it can get caught up in kind of wheels turning with the decision making, whether it be on the design strategy, the ownership of different aspects of the project, but kind of designating a project manager and really treating it as a true project I think was one of the best decisions that I've seen in terms of launching it. Not only a direct consumer channel but then any reforming or any development aspects of it. I think that's super crucial to ensure a successful launch and development of both the channel and the platform itself.

Calvin Lammers: 27:34 And then after that, I think it's really along with the project management, it's setting a certain date or amount of time post-launch to release, assess the early results. I would recommend probably six months post-launch. So you finally have access to that early set of data and insights, both the success and failures of different aspects of the launch and a channel that should allow enough data and insights at that time to really get a true assessment of how things are working, how we launched one. Are your assumptions or kind of going back to the reasons why you're launching, are those holding true six months into it or has it changed since you originally launched to gain insights about customer ordering profiles or habits, but you haven't actually been following up on that? Or were you wanting for the innovation labs, so to speak, but those launches have not gone all your ambition? I think that's the, that's a time when you can reassess it and obviously pivot if needed, but then also just make sure that you're staying true to that division.

Allison Hartsoe: 28:32 I think that makes a lot of sense. To circle back to it. In fact, you can probably set a framework for how do you know it's successful upfront and then start looking at whether you think you're trending toward that or not so that at six months you're probably, you're not getting a surprise. That's what the first time you're lifting the cover on the data,

Calvin Lammers: 28:51 Right? Yeah. Nothing shouldn't be a surprise at that point. I hope it isn't, but yeah, you never know. But I think that's where if you have a framework and you have those kinds of milestones in place ahead of time, that will help alleviate any surprises like that could disrupt all the work and foundation that you had or built out to that point.

Allison Hartsoe: 29:07 Oh, these are great suggestions, Calvin, and especially the one about the project manager, I think that makes a ton of sense and is one of those things that people don't always think about. The hurdles of getting things through and the sense of ownership. The last thing you want after you launch it, you go through all this pain, you launch a DTC Channel and then somebody comes in, they're like, man, and you're like, ah!

Calvin Lammers: 29:28 Yeah, it's all strengths of the wind. Then at that point, it's, yeah, you don't want that. And development agencies will have their own project managers so if you have either overseeing the entire project, both from a development agency side who's ever-developing the platform or technology as well as internally just having that cohesive and just kind of pull you over the entire project on from both end that just kind of enable you to have a much more successful launch and development process. Then does your otherwise Whoa, that thing.

Allison Hartsoe: 29:53 So now if people want to reach out to you to ask you followup questions or to try some different Spindrift flavors, how should they get in touch with you?

Calvin Lammers: 30:04 Absolutely. So that's the way to get in touch with me. I'm on LinkedIn, Calvin.lammers. And you can obviously try out any of our products on our website at spindriftfresh.com, we're, we're in a number of national retailers as well to target Kroger as well as Amazon. So definitely check us out if you haven't, and our channels would love to connect with anybody who has any followup questions. I always love talking shop about any common indirect consumer strategy and kind of topics. So I would love to connect.

Allison Hartsoe: 30:31 Then we will link to that website in the show notes as well in case anybody just wants to click on it. As always, links to everything we have discussed will be at ambitiondata.com/podcast. Calvin, thank you for joining us today and sharing all your insights about the DTC channel. It's nice to have somebody kind of call out the little gotchas that people don't always think about.

Calvin Lammers: 30:53 Hopefully, I went through that too. Others don't fall assistance to those routes, so hopefully that those are good to kind of watch out, but that's been a pleasure speaking with you, Allison.

Allison Hartsoe: 31:01 Thank you. Remember, when you use your data effectively, you can build customer equity. It's not magic. Just a very specific journey that you can follow to get results. See you next time on the customer equity accelerator.


Key Concepts: Customer Lifetime Value, Marketing, Digital Data, Customer Centricity, Long-Term Customer Value, Marketing Leaders, Analytics, Creativity, Product Development, Audience Research

Who Should Listen: CAOs, CCOs, CSOs, CDOs, Digital Marketers, Business Analysts, C-suite professionals, Entrepreneurs, eCommerce, Data Scientists, Analysts, CMOs, Customer Insights Leaders, CX Analysts, Data Services Leaders, Data Insights Leaders, SVPs or VPs of Marketing or Digital Marketing, SVPs or VPs of Customer Success, Customer Advocates, Product Managers, Product Developers

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