How MyBudget, Coopers Brewery and Sweat marketing giants find ‘common’ ground

‘On The Road’ video reveals how ‘marketing at core’ of disparate trio of companies and how data analytics is playing a vital role in success

Left to right: Wavemaker's James Hier; Coopers Brewery chairman Glenn Cooper; MyBudget's Tammy Barton; and Sweat CEO Tobi Pearce
Left to right: Wavemaker's James Hier; Coopers Brewery chairman Glenn Cooper; MyBudget's Tammy Barton; and Sweat CEO Tobi Pearce

MyBudget, Coopers Brewery and Sweat are all very different companies, but all have two important things in common: Marketing is at their core and data analytics at their fingertips.

That’s the main message delivered by a host of marketing chiefs featured in the fourth episode of Marketing Dividends, On The Road, filmed in Adelaide. The show featured Sweat founder and CEO, Tobi Pearce; Coopers Brewery chairman, Glenn Cooper AM; MyBudget founder and director, Tammy Barton; and was hosted by James Hier, Wavemaker chief growth and product.

CMO checked in with the series, which revealed how even though the businesses are all vastly different in scope - from beer to budgeting to bikini bodies - the marketing journeys of these trio of companies are striking a chord and seeing similarities. 

Analytics in budgeting

MyBudget’s Barton said the company’s marketing platforms have contributed substantially to overall business growth.

“If marketing performs, the business performs,” Barton said. “A couple of years ago, when we launched our most expensive campaign to date, within a week leads actually started going backwards and we didn’t experience any growth for the first time in the history of MyBudget.

“Six months after the campaign, which was pulled, we returned to our traditional marketing approach – using real clients, showcasing their success stories and how we’ve helped them in business. Once launched with a new creative, we saw our leads go up by more than 40 per cent.

"It is not just that marketing has a direct impact on growth, it is the right marketing has the direct impact on growth.”

Barton, who admitted to being a “penny pincher”, started the business in 1999 from her home, and now has a staff of 250 and 20,000 clients. She is on the cusp of taking business global. She has built up the business using a combination of TV ads and a huge referral system.

The company is using analytics to inform important business decisions for its day-to-day operations and, coupled with gut instinct, Barton said it's integral to solving client issues.

“Gut instinct comes from really knowing your client, knowing your product and knowing what they want, knowing what their pain points are and then being able to solve those issues for them," she said. "Once you know that, and you combine that with the data, then you can make the right decisions for them.”

In going head-to-head with its competitors, Baron said the company has an advantage given trust is a barrier for entry for its competitors.

“It is credibility that plays an integral role, combined with our offering of a premium service and solving our client’s pain points… is what keeps us at the forefront,” Barton said.

“We are dealing with people’s money and finances and it’s quite an emotional thing, so the fact that we’ve been around since 1999 helps. We have helped nearly 75 thousand Australians and we manage close to a billion dollars every year.

“That credibility plays a part, and also in making sure that you’re always providing a premium service. How do we disrupt ourselves and how do we innovate? And never be complacent with the product that you’re providing.”

Beer with ‘personality’

Similarly, Cooper said marketing plays a bigger role in the Coopers Brewery business today than in the past. This is in part because the company has to compete against multinational breweries with deep pockets with their marketing spend.

"The company has had to find a unique voice, that is often times quite quirky. We’ve had to differentiate our marketing communications in a unique way without alienating our customer base who see us as a traditional brewery,” Cooper said.

“It is now more relevant than ever that we try to control that position because if we don’t, we will become just like the others and we will get murdered. They have massive boxing gloves - we’ve got little gloves. And so in the end we have to market, but in a unique way.”

Social media now has a huge role to play. “As consumers and markets evolve through generations, we believe that the personality of the Coopers brand plays a part. With the advent of social media, for example, we’ve had to adapt strategy, which gives us the opportunity to continue to promote the personality attached to the brand.

“As generational changes occurs and people's personalities change, we’ve tried to adapt to that period.”

Similarly to MyBudget, Cooper cited a number of challenges in strategically managing a cluttered category.

“If you go back a generation, guys would just drink the one beer and they wouldn’t swap between brands," he commented.

“Today, research shows there are typically seven brands you’re likely to purchase in any given category before you return to your favourite. The craft beer market has exploded and though we’re the original craft brewers some say to me ‘Coopers you’re too big to be craft’ which is really frustrating as we’re the grandfathers of craft. But we’ve evolved our marketing to talk more about our new craft offerings as opposed to our 155-year-old history for these new drinkers.”

Don’t sweat it

Meanwhile, online female fitness community, Sweat, relies on four key marketing pillars - feasibility, profitability, scalability and sustainability - across the wider business environment. Pearce, along with partner and fitness guru, Kayla Itsines, built the $100 million brand and is using social media and data to capture the female 20-35 market. 

“While the traditional 4Ps of marketing are important to the brand, we use these four pillars to influence decision-making internally, in relation to not only marketing but other business decisions as well. Ultimately, marketing provides the ability to invoke or emit a response from a user, whether it be their engagement with our content or making a direct purchasing decision,” Pearce said.

The marketing strategy is about reach and awareness, which provides the company with the ability to push its messaging and branding. It also gives it the ability to invoke an action or emit an action from the user, whether it be in engaging in content or making a purchasing decision.  

Sweat also sees data analytics as being vital to success, with two key characteristics being attribution and accuracy. Pearce said analytics has helped it realise the true ROI potential of its marketing practices, allowing its marketing spend to be tripled as a result.

“Our strategy would work in almost any organisation in the world; however, the execution is going to dramatically differentiate from business-to-business. Fundamentally, the philosophy and decision-making process we utilise is designed to mandate favourable long-term business decisions,” Pearce said.

Pearce said the company has a significant amount of exclusive proprietary technology and content and it offers a range of unique programs and products.

“For example, some years ago there was a six-week abs program from a new competitor that said ‘yes, we’ll get you the abs you want in six weeks, guaranteed’. But the likelihood of that happening is obviously not that high so the likelihood they’ll continue to spend money with you is obviously quite low," he said.

"People will deviate to products like ours that are trustworthy and deliver sustainable results. We don’t have customers who come and go. We have customers who come and stay."

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