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Be Willing to Question Everything – Even Your Essentials

Be Willing to Question Everything – Even Your Essentials

One of the things I really enjoyed about presenting “Decoding Your Data” at JCK Las Vegas was the opportunity to tell my favorite story about Victoria’s Secret. It’s a powerful tale for business owners that illustrates that you have to be willing to examine every aspect of your operation – even those things that could be considered defining aspects of your brand. And of course, it’s a story about the power of data.

[Tweet “The insights necessary to provide customers with what they truly want are there to be discovered.”]

Let me set the scene here. For years – decades, even – Victoria’s Secret sold their products via direct mail. Their catalog was famous and became an American cultural touchstone for anyone who appreciated scantily clad women appearing in their mailbox on a regular basis. At its peak, in 1997, Victoria’s Secret was sending 450 million catalogs out.

Sears, once the leader in the direct mail game, stopped sending catalogs out in 1993. J.C. Penney took their place and held the top spot for about eight years. In 2011, they gave up, leaving Victoria’s Secret the largest catalog retailer in the nation.

But Stuart Burgdoerfer, CFO of Victoria’s Secret’s parent company, wasn’t sure that made sense for his company anymore. He decided to put the value of the catalog to the test. For this kind of test, it’s important to have all of the right data tracking tools in place and to understand what you want to know. Burgdoerfer had both, and went forward with an exceptionally bold test: he reduced the number of catalogs being mailed by 40%.

The result? Sales increased 15%.

A clearer answer would be hard to find. Once Victoria’s Secret leadership considered the cost of producing the catalog, the negligible impact the catalog had on sales during the testing phase, and the criticism the brand had gotten for the environmental impact associated with creating and distributing 450 million catalogs, they knew what they needed to do. The iconic Victoria’s Secret catalog would be no more.

This was in 2016. Today, Victoria’s Secret is hanging in there – pricey lingerie is a textbook example of the type of item people don’t purchase during tough economic times – and the brand’s leadership is looking to find their best way forward. We have no doubt that the proven formula they used to achieve meaningful sales growth before – examine operations and test aspects to be sure they’re delivering the best possible results – will work again. Data doesn’t lie. The insights necessary to provide today’s customer with what they truly want are there to be discovered. That was Victoria’s Secret, and now it’s yours.

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Creative Director/Senior Designer

Tom DiGrazia

With over a decade and a half of professional design experience, Tom brings his knowledge of design principles and focus on user experience to every aspect of his contribution to TTG. Paying special attention to each client’s brand, personalized needs and individual interests, he strives to create compelling concepts utilizing intuitive and highly-refined design solutions. In addition to traditional and digital design work and oversight at TTG, Tom also boasts a wide portfolio of web development projects with the company, allowing him to stretch his CSS and HTML skills across multiple platforms and disciplines. He feels that being a designer in the digital landscape of websites, eCommerce solutions, email marketing platforms and social media, it is important to understand the code that goes into these areas as it assists his ability to tailor designs specifically targeted to achieve the best end result and further builds understanding and communication with backend development teams.

In his off hours, Tom is an avid pop culture enthusiast, staying up to date on the latest shows, films, comics and games. He can also typically be found taking part in a whole host of artistic activities that help him further stretch his creative legs. Regardless of the activity, Tom is always accompanied by his dog, Eli, and his cat, Tib.

Design, Photography, Illustration, Digital Imagery Manipulation, Wesbite Development

Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Lightroom, HTML/CSS, Wordpress


Courtney Dumont

As Senior Marketing Strategist & Analyst at Technology Therapy Group, Courtney is energized by the ability to flex both her left and right brain daily. Courtney discovered her passion for Marketing at Bryant University, where she spearheaded research on students’ perceptions of Social Media Marketing for her Honors Capstone Project. After graduating Bryant in 2012, she joined the Technology Therapy team, where she’s honed her skills in social media, search and social advertising, email marketing, SEO, and more.

Since joining the team, Courtney has created digital marketing strategies and managed campaigns for clients across the country, ranging from plastic surgery centers, to jewelry stores, to construction companies. With a cohesive, cross-channel approach and a focus on data-driven decision making, she has increased their leads by up to 217%. But Courtney doesn’t leave her zeal for social media at the office; she also runs a local foodie Instagram account with her husband to document their meals across Rhode Island and beyond. Check them out: @hoppilyfed.

Marketing Strategy, Data Analysis, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Social Media

Google Analytics, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Facebook Creator Studio, Instagram, Klaviyo, Mailchimp, Emma Mail, Google Data Studio, WordPress, YouTube, LinkedIn, Facebook, Microsoft Office