“Just about every guest I’ve interviewed so far for the Channel Mastery Podcast has told me that we are onto something great.”
– Kristen Carpenter-Ogden
Kristin Carpenter-Ogden here, founder of Verde Strategy and host of the Channel Mastery Podcast. I wanted to post about the show’s trajectory, some news and a brand-new monthly offering, Channel Mastery Cliffs Notes! Let’s dive in…
It’s funny. … Just about every guest I’ve interviewed so far for the Channel Mastery Podcast has told me that we are onto something great. While that’s certainly nice to hear, what really motivates me is finding solutions for business leaders duking it out day after day to be exceptional on their commerce and engagement channels.
I’ve worked with over 200 brands in the past 17 years as the founder of Verde. I have to be honest. … Verde’s clients are 110% in my frame of reference as I plan themes, guests and the editorial calendar for the Channel Mastery Podcast. I know what they’re struggling with and I am literally out there finding and delivering solutions tailored just for passion brands.
Ironically, as I build this out for operations, sales, product and marketing leaders within passion industries, I realize some of you are too busy to consume the podcast. Keep in mind that transcripts are available for each episode at Verdestrategy.co, just in case you are a reader more so than a listener. I’m also going to be starting a Live Show on Verde Strategy’s Facebook page in early October, 2017. Okay, I’ve officially committed!
I realize that I need to consider my busy leaders and their lack of time, which is why I’m taking content delivery one step further today by offering you a new monthly digest, or Cliffs Notes of sorts.
The goal with the Cliffs Notes offering is to bring you an easily consumable overview of the episodes, ideally sparking direction you can grab and take into your next steps.
With that in mind, here’s the quick hit list of all the interviews I’ve done so far.
Matt Powell with the NPD Group is a trusted resource for brand leaders as they understand how to move forward in our quickly changing distribution landscape. I’m proud that Matt was the first guest ever on Channel Mastery. He brings a strong digest of trends to date in 2017, and while his input must be digested through the lens of what a Nike or Adidas could glean, versus what brands with a different approach could glean, it’s GREAT beta: Listen to Matt Powell, Episode 2.
No matter what your channel – commerce or engagement – providing a fantastic consumer experience is key to long-term success for any brand or retailer. Tapping into the end consumer’s emotions, and ultimately, identity is the key to long-term success for brands. Before you listen to this episode, know that you MUST implement what you’ve learned to actually affect change within your organization – I’ve brought in Tom Asacker, author of six books, including the Business of Belief, for Episode 3:
Listen to Tom Asacker, Episode 3. You know that scene in that movie, The Shining, where the hallway seems to expand to go for miles? Is that how you see the “Last Mile” for your target end consumer as they finally convert to buy? If you’re a passion brand or retailer, and want to better understand how to position yourself to win during the absolutely CRITICAL window of the “Last Mile,” join Mike Massey of Massey’s Outfitters and co-founder of Locally.com for our most popular episode to date. Listen to Mike Massey, Episode 4.
It’s not everyday that we hear from a venture capitalist who’s bullish on changing how he and his colleagues establish a value on a brand during this time of monumental change…. That’s Richard Kestenbaum for you – a founder in Triangle Capital Partners, and a visionary journalist writing on sports and outdoor, fashion, beauty and other passion industries for Forbes. The interview I did with Richard is one you cannot miss! He gives candid, and implementable insights for organizational leaders who want to know what’s driving consumer awareness and engagement today, and who are struggling with legacy budgets, chains of command, and operations, as they strive to pivot to the future. Listen to Richard Kestenbaum, Episode 5.
Are you wondering if, and how, you should position your brand on Amazon? Who isn’t? I tracked down Elaine Kwon, co-founder of Kwontified.com, after reading multiple articles on Nike’s decision to sell online at Amazon. Let’s be clear – Nike chose to sell as a brand on Amazon.com, instead of a Marketplace page – this is a really important distinction that you will learn a lot about on this episode in terms of best practices today for the fast-growing channel that is Amazon. Elaine is an ex-Amazonian who founded an agency committed to enabling brands to win on the Amazon channel – Kwontified.com. Learn what’s working today for brands to show up on search on Amazon, and how to deliver a consistent ‘on-brand’ experience on the Amazon.com channel. Listen to Elaine Kwon, Episode 6.
We hear a LOT about building platforms, don’t we? And, we also hear a lot about making content work for your business and how to “niche to win.” I chose to bring Amy Hatch, founder of GarageGrownGear.com, onto the Channel Mastery podcast for three reasons…. She’s built a business by focusing on Community, Content and Commerce – the BIG three C’s. Amy and I also talk (at length) about how to get super close to your consumer through crowdfunding. This is a very important episode about how to commit to and build out a consumer-centric brand marketing approach from the ground up. Listen to Amy Hatch, Episode 7.
John McCoy is a leader you’ll be hearing more from Verde Strategy and the Channel Mastery podcast. Why? Well, he falls into the incredibly important category of ‘experienced leaders who come from the passion industries, who are now employed in a much broader-reaching organization.’ In John’s case, he went from leading the digital business of The Sports Authority to SAP/Hybris. What I love most about these two interviews is the fact that John talks about how to keep your authenticity and soul as you expand your organization’s multichannel approach. Just know that all you need to know is what your target end consumer wants. Listen to John McCoy, Episode 8 and Episode 9.
Episode 10 is our first workshop-style episode. It is very important to cover shoppable social media as it brings together a customer experience combining content and commerce. Commerce-enabled social media is very important to consider in any multichannel mix for 2018. Join Jeff Sieh, the podcaster behind The Manly Pinterest Tips Show, and a regular contributor to Social Media Examiner, and I as we discuss Amazon’s new influencer program, and new emerging social platform offering, SPARK, as well as Pinterest. We also touch on Instagram and email marketing at the close of Jeff’s segment. I love Jeff’s approach because he doesn’t just talk about the virtues and vices of social media; he’s down in the trenches walking the walk every day. Listen to Jeff Sieh on Episode 10.
Episode 11 offers a deep dive into one of Verde’s founding, and key, passion markets, bike! Cyclists expect seamless, frictionless access to goods and services. But they also want the BEST in terms of products, experiences, service and support. This consumer expects access to goods and services where they want, when they want and how they want. Today’s episode is how two businesses are working independently – and together – to provide just that. This episode is a perfect example of not only how to expand channels, but also why a multi-channel retail business is mandatory for survival today. Listen to Ian Christie and Pete Buhl on the Beeline Bikes platform, Episode 11.
Rich Hill is President of Grassroots Outdoor Alliance, a national network of independent retailers working together for the health and growth of specialty outdoor retail. Hill is a self-described “product of the outdoor industry,” blending a passion for outdoor experiences with a lengthy career of distinct roles at each level of the retail supply chain. Rich definitely brought his A-Game to this episode. We cover how to be channel agnostic, and the proven success of partnership with specialty retail. You may want to listen to this one more than once – it yields incredible multichannel insights that power success at specialty brick and mortar stores. Listen to Rich Hill of the Grassroots Outdoor Alliance, Episode 12.
Adam Bridegan is the SVP of advertising, digital and commerce at Rhone.com, a three-year-old, premium activewear line for men. Rhone.com started selling online and is expanding thoughtfully to multichannel – as only a successful start up that’s 150% focused on its absolute target consumer can. This guy’s not afraid of steering his approach in data, nor is he afraid to try and fail. Rhone.com has built incredible traction in just three short years, and Adam’s here to share some of his most compelling insights and learnings. Listen to Adam Bridegan of Rhone.com, Episode 13.
It’s not that common for me to find an executive who has spent a solid 15-years on the brand/vendor side before going in house at a company that’s solely focused on bringing success to brands on the Amazon.com channel. Episode 14 features Ryan Riggs, formerly of KEEN Footwear and many of the Columbia brands, and now the Director of Sports and Outdoor with NetRush.com, a company that strives to be the leading third-party seller of premium products on the Amazon marketplace. Ryan and I talk about the Amazon.com channel, and challenges common perceptions and assumptions so many brands have when it comes to assortment, brand presence and pricing. Listen to Ryan Riggs of Netrush.com, Episode 14 of the Channel Mastery podcast.
Verde Strategy produces the Channel Mastery Podcast as a weekly content and resource offering what works for the most successful multichannel businesses today. I do the research, bird dogging, and reporting to enable you to drive change within your organization. I also chase down experts from outside of our markets and then make their incredible insights relevant to my passion business leaders. And, I am SUPER fired up to keep the momentum rolling!
Also, please know that Verde Strategy is taking new clients. We provide strategic consulting engagements to brands and retailers committed to multichannel mastery. If you’re ready to learn more about how Verde Strategy can help you build and optimize your multichannel business, email me at email@example.com, or Chas Fisher, my co-leader at Verde Strategy, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Be on the lookout for new resources and trainings from Verde Strategy in Q4, 2017, by joining our community here. You’ll also be the first to get updates on the podcast and our new Playbooks – our free resources that show how to implement what you’re learning on the Channel Mastery podcast. We’re researching and publishing new Playbooks each month.
Thank you for being part of the Verde family. I hope the Channel Mastery podcast is serving you well. Please know that I want to hear from you if you are in need of resources or if you have a great idea for a show. Just email me at email@example.com. And, as always, I welcome your feedback.
Thanks so much for listening!
Founder, Verde Strategy / Podcaster, Channel Mastery