Finding the right fit: Atomic Group's digital marketing journey

Australian retailer and owner of the Homyped brand invests in digital marketing and email campaiging to improve the buyer journey

Every day 48 per cent of Australians wake up with heel, arch or general foot pain. But despite this, more than half will never visit a podiatrist.

This knowledge is part of what inspired integrated footwear and retail company, Atomic Group, to ramp up its online presence for its orthopaedic shoe line, Homyped.

The task of reaching and servicing that potential customer pool online has fallen to Atomic Group’s ecommerce manager, Cory-Dean West, a veteran of both online sales in the wine industry and bricks-and-mortar retail at JB Hi-Fi.

“We were recognising that if 48 per cent of people are waking up with this sort of pain, and half of them aren’t going and seeing a podiatrist, then how to do we solve for that from an online perspective and help people identify what the foot condition is,” West told CMO.

Homyped has developed an online shoe finder to help customers determine just that then link them to an appropriate product. But certain attributes of the Homyped customer base led West to tread carefully when deciding how to best engage with them.

“Our demographic is quite niche, taking into account we have a much older demographic,” West said. “Digital is not somewhere that this demographic plays in a lot, so those basic customer journeys are very important.”

Delving into data

To this end, Atomic Group engaged its martech partner, dotdigital, to develop forms and data collection protocols to better collect data and strengthen the customer journey. This enabled the Atomic Group team to study customer lifecycles and analyse the purchase pathways closely to create tailor-made triggered email campaigns.

West said this has included ensuring Homyped has been doing the basics right, creating automated customer journeys for welcome, birthdays, abandoned carts and three- and six-month win-backs.

“Once people identify that there is a product out there that can help, and that process has been positive, the repeat purchase rate is quite high,” West said. “The welcome has been the most successful campaign. There was an over 300 per cent increase in revenue in the first quarter of 2021 compared to the previous year, so that is a massive contribution.”

Another journey involving a customer survey and $20 reward drove a 50 per cent repurchase rate. West said Homyped is now looking for additional ways it can improve customer journeys. But

“We are launching SMS campaigns soon, which we have never done before,” he said.

Atomic Group is also taking the time to reinvest back into its products.

“If we’re completely honest, it’s not a sexy product, but it solves a pain point for a customer,” West said. “We’re trying to make that have broader appeal - so bring in a little more of a style element in, but still provide a functional shoe.

“That is a challenge for the design team, but it is also a challenge to communicate that to the customer as well, because you don’t want to lose that existing customer base.”

Atomic Group has also deployed dotdigital across other brands, including multi-brand retail business, Sportsco, which operates 26 franchised stores across Victoria, NSW and Queensland. In this instance, West said Atomic Group has been careful to grow online sales without losing margins for those stores. The new automated welcome campaign contributed 35 per cent of the total revenue growth at Sportsco, with a 30 per cent increase in its database.

“They are pretty big numbers, but we are continually looking to see how we can improve,” West said. “Don’t overlook the basics, but make sure you have a partner with experience to provide that. If we want to improve the end-to-end customer journey, it’s important to work with a team that has had experience in being able to execute.”

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