In 2003, Munk Store started as a physical retailer for clothes and sneakers, covering a wide range of Danish and international brands. Their value proposition revolved around the social aspect of shopping, by cultivating a strong relationship with their customers. They actively encourage employees to show their own personalities and engage with visitors beyond “shop talk”, thus emphasizing the people behind the company.
By 2011, they embraced the online revolution and built their own webshop. While this enabled them to grow beyond their physical locations, it also raised a big issue—the social values at the core of their brand were based on employees’ interactions with customers, which couldn’t be replicated within an online store.
To ensure the online experience provided the same value as the in-store one, Munk Store had to build a deeply personal online presence. Doing this required adopting channels beyond their own platform, with social media playing a key role in their strategy. So again, they encouraged employees to showcase themselves and their personalities through these new channels.
The following image was part of a Christmas delivery announcement from Munk Store’s Instagram page, featuring the employee in charge of sending out the packages:
While the online store was active, Munk Store discovered something fascinating–their online presence was actually bringing more people into their physical stores. Andreas Lodahl, their E-Commerce Manager, told me that “shopping online is growing rapidly, but people still prefer to hold a product in their hands before buying it. So if they see something interesting online, they will come to the store to try it on.”
To take full advantage of this discovery, they expanded their social media presence through Snapchat. Their goal on the platform was simple: “We wanted to make sure that if someone followed us on Snapchat, they would know our employees’ names within a week,” Andreas told me. To support this, Munk Store’semployees have been posting on Snapchat daily, with the following posts being their latest ones as of writing:
Aside from humanizing the store in the online medium, this approach allowed Munk Store to diversify their promotional messages. They could change the traditional “Check Out This New Collection!” with “Check Out Mikkel’s Favourite Sweater!” attaching personal value to the products.
Munk Store wanted Snapchat to be their most personal social media platform. To do so, they had to make sure their followers were interested in the store–otherwise the daily posts might have been seen as annoying. So they focused on their website’s visitors, who had proven their interest in the company simply by being on the site. Andreas targeted them through the following SleekBox:
While the correlation between Snapchat and in-store traffic was difficult to measure, the employees asked customers where they first saw the product they were buying. And “Snapchat” was the answer more often than expected, assuring Munk Store that their strategy was working.
“Snapchat is always generating traffic to our store. And by letting people know a new product arrived or that a product is someone’s favorite, it also leads to more sales. ”
Outside of social media, email marketing was also a growing platform for Munk Store. While being a relatively new addition compared to the rest of their sales channels, it already accounted for 6% of their sales in 2018.
Due to their focus on personalized customer interactions, they avoid the standard newsletter format sent out to entire mailing lists. Instead, they opt for personalized email flows.
The most obvious way they segment their mailing list is by gender as visitors sign up to the newsletter. Certain behaviors, such as leaving the website with items in the cart also trigger special mail flows, reminding the user to complete their order.
“Sleeknote has been the foundation of our lead generation.”
While Munk Store connects with its customers more than most stores, they are not immune to the issue many online retailers face–the dreaded cart abandonment. With an average of 74.2% of online shopping carts being abandoned, Andreas knew they needed a way to convince potential customers to complete their orders.
His solution to this issue was simple, yet very effective. Using the Exit Intent trigger, he offered visitors about to leave their carts a discount on their purchase, through the following SleekBox:
According to Andreas, when presented with this offer, 50% of visitors completed their purchase on the spot. Those who signed up and left anyway went through a personalized email flow, which reminded them of the items left in their cart while also presenting alternative products that might suit their needs better. The exact results of the email flows were not registered, but they certainly added to the already impressive 50% completion rate.
“Our exit-intent campaigns drive a lot of revenue to our stores that would have otherwise been lost!”
Snapchat makes it difficult to accurately assess the size of one’s following. However, Munk Store estimates 5-6,000 followers, which bring additional traffic and contribute to sales in their physical stores. In terms of email marketing leads, roughly 69.5% of their mailing list was signed up through a Sleeknote campaign, with the list contributing to overall sales by 6%. Additionally, they managed to considerably reduce cart abandonment on their website.
Building an online platform represents a paradigm shift for any retailer, affecting everything from the supply chain all the way to customer interactions. If the brand is built around the products, preserving its identity in the online medium is quite straightforward–you simply have to adapt the same image and messages to a new platform. As Munk Store’s identity is linked to in-store interactions with employees, this change of platform was a lot more complicated.
By aligning their online communication channels and content in a way that promoted the people behind the company, Munk Store managed to stay true to its core values and as Andreas put it, “attach some faces to the company.” The strategy that has worked so well for them in physical stores has been paying off in the online medium as well, with the company having registered a revenue growth of 25% in 2018. They even took it further, by leveraging their new social media presence to increase foot traffic and sales in their physical stores.
Most companies try to diversify their values and chase multiple ideals, but only as they suit their situation. While this could work in the short term, Munk Store’s case is a perfect example of what can be accomplished when a company aligns itself with a value and upholds it regardless of obstacles.