Why D2C brands are changing their course - from Facebook to TV.


When launching a new product, direct-to-consumer brands have found that Facebook and other social platforms can be a terrific place to advertise. Here, they can target relevant audience segments. They can test different offers and messaging. And they can drive traffic directly to their site or online store.

However, they’ve also learned that these environments have their challenges and can only take them so far. In “Pivot to traditional: Direct-to-consumer brands sour on Facebook,” Rich Fulop, founder of Brooklinen, says: “We’re trying to move away from Facebook as fast as we can, CPMs on the platform are double what they were a year ago. We’re fighting in this little slip of real estate with everyone else out there and it’s hard to cut through.”

In the same article, Jake Kassan, CEO and co-founder of DTC watch company MVMT, says: “For a brand like us, starting off, it was a no-brainer— jump on FB and build a brand.” Kassan added, “You’re not going to see that as much. The barrier to entry is far more difficult than it ever has been.”

To truly scale, these DTC brands have realized that they need to expand offline. And as they venture into this new “offline” frontier, they’re discovering DRTV makes a perfect medium for their efforts.

Rob Shutz, co-founder and chief revenue officer startup of Roman, notes that “companies are looking for ways to fill the funnel to get people in a retargeting bucket. Especially with TV– you see a lot of brands on the direct-response side spending more money there because it’s an effective channel. It’s being treated similarly to a digital channel.”

A big reason for this is the principles of DRTV and digital have many commonalities. However, don’t be mistaken. When moving from digital into DRTV, it’s really important that marketers take a different approach. While they may share pieces in common, these two mediums are not to be handled the same.

Here are a few thoughts on making the leap from digital to DRTV.

1. DRTV takes specialized skills and mindset. Go beyond an in-house team or a digital AOR. Talk with an expert who can help you properly structure a test.

2. If you have existing creative assets, have your DRTV agency provide an assessment of its potential for television. Often some or all of the footage can be put to use – saving you additional production costs.

3. Use the learnings you’ve gathered with your digital campaigns to inform your TV creative. What messages got the most clicks? What didn’t? And so on.

4. Don’t forget, how consumers respond online is not exactly the same as how they will respond on TV. Think about the bigger purchase funnel and know that last touch attribution will not provide the clearest picture for an integrated TV/Digital program.

5. Make sure your TV partner has the experience and resources to utilize multi-touch attribution to measure and optimize the full DTC effort.

DTC brands should continue to find Facebook a good product-launching platform. It’s targeted. It requires little out-of-pocket expense. And its measurability is immediate. DRTV offers very similar advantages. So as DTC brands look to expand or simply diversify, DRTV can help meet their ROI requirements while delivering greater reach and overall growth.

For more information on making the move from digital to TV, reach out to Eicoff’s Rob Schmidt here: rob.schmidt@eicoff.com or give a call 312.527.7185.