Google is, at this very moment, holding their annual developers’ conference, which would be big enough news, but they also used the opportunity to introduce their new tablet computer, the Nexus 7 and the odd, spherical media hub called the Nexus Q. Google’s entry into the tablet game has been a long time coming, so tech nerds from across the globe were glued to their livestreaming feeds to catch a glimpse – and they also got a glimpse of something else: Brand Labs’ ability to stay way, waaaaay ahead of the curve.
In order to demonstrate the Nexus 7′s media-playing abilities, Google chose the new album, Coastlines by Detroit band, FAWN. They even played some of All The Lights, the first track on the album. Now if the name FAWN sounds familiar to you, it may be because they were featured on Brand Labs’ only foray into musical & scientific self-promotion – the Audiosonic Identiglyph.
The Audiosonic Identiglyph was created as a universal geolocation system that would allow any user armed with a simple phonograph (or “record player”) and a basic, functional knowledge of the Goertzel algorithm and global cartography to be able to locate Brand Labs’ corporate offices with some degree of accuracy.
The Audiosonic Identiglyph featured Hip Parade by FAWN on the B-Side and was released in a star-studded brunch gala at Detroit’s very own Steak Hut. (If you’re ever in town, we strongly recommend Gus’s homemade hash browns, which are like little greasy slices of starch heaven.)
So, anyway, the point is that Google is totally on Brand Labs’ jock. There. We said it. We had FAWN first. Your move, Google. Bring it.
Also, if you want to catch FAWN, you can do so at the CBGB Festival in NYC from July 5-8. It’ll be worth the effort. Brand Labs says so… and now so does Google. What more do you need?
As of this very moment, AutoResponderMax has sent out more than 2.5 MILLION customized emails on behalf of its growing list of clients. That’s 2.5 MILLION personalized connections between our retailers and their customers and no one had to lift a finger.
Now let’s do a little creative math* (*wild speculation) based on this post. Extrapolating from that single anecdote we can say with absolute certainty* that those emails have generated at least $1,297,585.88*. Heck… while we’re guessing, let’s say it it was a billion dollars*! Because it totally could have been*.
Regardless, the fact is that AutoResponderMax is easily one of the easiest, most affordable, most effective marketing tools for your Volusion store – did you notice how there was no asterisk* on that statement? That’s because it’s completely true! Seriously. ARMax is crazy good and the first month is free. Go sign up. Now.
That’s right – Brand Labs will be exhibiting at the Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition 2012 at McCormick Place West in Chicago, Illinois! We’ll be in booth #1133 right next door to our besties, Volusion. Our biggest bigwigs, Kevin Harman and Dane Downer will be in attendance along with senior account managers Katelyn Stanis and Ryan Forrest. They’ll be working the booth all day and the dance floor all night. You should definitely drop by if you’re looking for some high-quality ecommerce knowledge or some wicked sick dubstep.
Also in attendance will be Pauline Turner, our creative director. She’ll be roaming the show floor and attending conferences as part of the Ecommerce Economic Defense Initiative street team. She’ll be accompanied by an impossibly large hippie who may or may not be some sort of ex-convict that we hired as a temp off of craigslist. If you see them, be sure to ask for the official EEDI swag that they’ll be handing out.
So if you’re an existing customer, but we’ve never met in person, come to booth 1133 and say hi! If you’re not a customer yet, come by to find out why you should be. As a matter of fact, no matter who you are you should stop by! We can tell you about the huge contest we’re about to launch. It’s really huge. Like change-the-course-of-your-business huge. It’s worth your time.
… and if you see the giant hippie, don’t look him directly in the eyes.
To learn more about the Ecommerce Economic Defense Initiative, visit EcommerceDefense.com
Jerry Leigh is one of the largest producers of licensed souvenirs & apparel in the United States. Based in Orlando, Florida, they’re well positioned to serve their target market: tourist destinations. That’s right – they make the things that cause your suitcase to be dramatically overstuffed on the way home from your vacation. The next time you’re jumping up and down on your Samsonite in an effort to squeeze in that Donald Duck water bottle, you can thank Jerry Leigh.
Other than the fact that Mickey Mouse is always fun, there’s another good reason to talk about Jerry Leigh’s new Volusion store: it’s not a retail outlet. It’s a wholesale site that can only be utilized by preregistered clients. That’s not necessarily earth-shattering news (that a wholesaler would use Volusion to better serve their clients) but it’s worth pointing out when it happens simply because there are far too many wholesalers out in the world that have failed to recognize what a useful tool an ecommerce site can be. There are wholesalers out there (you know who you are) who still take orders over the phone while working from a printed catalog. We know the old ways can be comforting, but come on! It’s the 21st century for crying out loud! Put down the invoice pad and pick up your mouse!*
*Don’t actually “pick up” the mouse or it won’t work. We’d like to assume that you already knew that, but if you’re a wholesaler without an ecommerce site, there’s a chance that the operational subtleties of the personal computer are entirely baffling to you.
This is an actual, unretouched screen shot from our boss’s iPhone showing that as yesterday, The Red Hat Society’s online store had made $1,118 in April by using AutoResponderMax – that’s a 2,281% ROI. If you haven’t already clicked over to AutoResponderMax to start your free trial, then allow us to give you all the details…
We own and operate The Red Hat Society Store. That gives us a lot of first-person insight into the needs of the average Volusion retailer. That insight led us to build AutoResponderMax – the email marketing tool for Volusion. We built it to meet a lot of the communication needs we have with our own online store. The screen shot here proves that we were pretty successful.
What you see here is a shot of the AutoResponderMax Dashboard app for iPhone. (Which is totally free, by the way.) It shows April’s usage data. Stated simply, ARMax sent 2,154 event-triggered (and personalized) emails to Red Hat customers. A remarkable 70% were opened and 41% of those resulted in click throughs. Those are all really good numbers if your only goal is to build your relationship with your customers. If, on the other hand, you’d also like to make money, the real number to look at is this month’s revenue – $1,118. That’s over a thousand dollars of revenue that is directly related to emails sent by AutoResponderMax. The Red Hat Society Store is on the Plus Plan (the most popular level) which means that thousand dollars cost us exactly $49 – bringing us back to that incredible 2,281% ROI – except that it isn’t incredible. It’s credible – and provable.
We have trouble talking about AutoResponderMax sometimes because basically we always just want to say, “Try it, for crying out loud! The first 30 days are free and it’s awesome and it totally pays for itself over and over and it’s so easy and what are you waiting for? DO IT, DO IT, DO IT!“ Now, with this photographic proof that it works so dramatically well, we’re almost overwhelmed with the desire to reach out of the screen, grab your mouse and sign you up ourselves. Of course, that would be rude, so we’ll just strongly suggest that if you’re a Volusion retailer and you don’t have AutoResponderMax, you’re almost certainly leaving money on the table and that’s just crazy. Go sign up right now!
Brand Labs is about a lot of things, but our real bread & butter is custom ecommerce development. Yes, we design Volusion sites. Yes, we build ecommerce apps. We do a lot of things for a lot of online merchants, but custom development is the one thing we do that gives our clients an undeniable edge. We say “undeniable” because when your store has something that your competitors don’t have, you’re ahead of the game before the shoppers even arrive. By definition, you’re more prepared to serve their needs. You’re more prepared to earn their trust. You’re more prepared to win.
… but maybe you don’t think you need custom development on your site. After all, Volusion does a good job of providing a feature-rich platform. Why not just do what you can with what you’ve got? Well, off the top of our heads, we can think of ten reasons…
- You’re unique.
No matter what Volusion introduces, they don’t know you personally. They don’t know the exact thing that you need to express your individuality properly. They don’t know your particular value proposition. That’s not a failing on their part, it’s simply a fact. You are uniquely qualified to identify your store’s specific needs and to act on those needs.
- You’re not doing everything you can with your Volusion store. You know that smart phone in your pocket? You’re currently using about 4% of its total capabilities (we may have just made that figure up). That phone can do amazing things and you’re using it primarily to text people that you’re running late. Your Volusion store is like that. It can do amazing things that you’re currently not using. Are you using the Deal of the Day function? Is your mobile store set up properly? Are you doing everything that Volusion allows you to do out of the box? Probably not. So, if we may continue to use the smart phone comparison: even though your phone is capable of doing a lot of things that you aren’t using, you still paid extra to download Angry Birds because it was a specific need that you were able to identify and address (i.e. your deep need to throw birds at pigs). Custom development is like that. You should definitely try to use all of the great functionality that’s built right in to Volusion, but just because you’re not, that doesn’t mean that you can’t add some features of your own. Custom development for your Volusion store is just like apps for your iPhone.
- You’ve got ideas.
Just because we’re ecommerce experts (and Volusion is filled with ecommerce experts), that doesn’t mean that we (or they) have thought up every single thing than could ever possibly be thunk. You have insight. You have a plan. You know things about your business that we don’t, but we definitely know how to act on your ideas. Don’t let your ideas die in your head.
- You’re probably right.
You know that one thing that you think you know better than anyone else? That one annoying thing that seems so simple and would make your life as an ecommerce merchant so much easier? Or make your store more successful? You’re probably right. Why not fix it instead of just letting it drive you insane?
Read the rest of the list after the jump… (more…)
While searching the Internet this morning for important new pictures of baby sloths, we stumbled on the video we’ve posted below. Before you play it, we’d like to warn you about a few things. First, it’s eleven minutes long. Second, you’re going to want to watch all of it. Finally, unless your heart is a tiny, ice-cold cinder, you’re going to cry. We’re misting up just thinking about it, but that might be because we’re also listening to Sarah McLachlan, so we’re probably thinking about that frigging animal shelter commercial that always drops like a bomb into the middle of whatever lighthearted romp you’re watching on TV and brings your life to a screeching halt while you scrape together all of your change to donate just so you can make all the big-eyed homeless puppies stop crying in HD all up in your grill.
The video below is the opposite of that. Enjoy.
Okay… now just pull yourself together now so we can talk about this like the totally composed businesspeople we are. So, that was deeply charming on a lot of levels – the boundless and inspiring enthusiasm of youth, the near-universal love of The Arcade and the way that something so frivolous can bind us all at such a basic level, the unqualified support of a working class father for his son’s passion project, the pride of accomplishment – there’s a lot of real genuine heart-string-plucking going on here.
… but did you notice how no one gave a crap about Caine’s Arcade until a savvy outsider stepped in and started a social media campaign in support of it? Did you further notice that Caine’s Arcade also benefited from the Holy Grail of viral luck – an appearance on the front page of reddit? The Internet basically prevented this from being an incredibly sad or possibly even heart-crushingly tragic story. Let’s talk about how all of this could have played out after the jump…
BTTF.net isn’t just the Internet’s leading dealer of Back to the Future-related merchandise, they also happen to be an old Brand Labs customer. We designed their current site and just recently we created a great new Deal of the Day page using Volusion’s built in functionality.
Deal of the Day is a proven way to engage your regular customers and encourage repeat visits, which is perfect for a site dedicated to a series of movies about returning and returning and returning.
If you aren’t currently using Volusion’s Deal of the Day, you’re missing a great opportunity to build loyalty and move product. You’re also missing the chance to…
… this is usually the point at which we’d say something clever and quote the movie or something like that, but you know what? For all of its deep impact on popular culture, Back to the Future is almost entirely devoid of catchphrases except for ones that only make sense in context, so we’ll just end here by saying:
Where we’re going, we don’t need roads.
See? It just doesn’t work. Our apologies.
Ensuring that hipsters and nerds are not walking around topless, frightening the general populace with their pasty white skin and ironic shoulder tattoos, Old School Tees is more of a public service organization than a Volusion store.
If you’re looking for a wide variety of ways to prove to the world that you’re not likely to be running for public office any time soon, Old School Tees can hook you up. Perhaps a sexually suggestive Fred Flintstone shirt will do the trick. If not, the perhaps a mildly sacrilegious Big Lebowski tee? Either way, Old School Tees is ready to put something on your chest that’s quite a bit funnier than the large food stains that usually reside there.