dark·​room | \ ˈdärk-ˌrüm  , -ˌru̇m \

noun

 

: A darkroom refers to a space where art and science come together to create something complete before premiering to the public. It’s where process and creativity combine to form a final product.

 

This is why we’ve chosen it as our name.

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Maaji

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Background

The private-equity-backed swimwear brand Maaji tapped Darkroom to grow international revenue 16x during our multi-year engagement.

 

Inspired by the Mahi-Mahi—a vibrant, subtropical dolphinfish— Maaji was created by sisters Amalia and Manuela Sierra in Columbia and sells swimwear that is sleek, stylish and sustainable.
Maaji approached Darkroom with the challenge of helping them scale internationally and had ambitious growth goals for their expansion into the United States market. But in the beginning, Maaji had a modest international advertising budget, and needed to validate their entry into new markets before investing more. Darkroom delivered an end-to-end digital acquisition strategy for Maaji’s e-commerce operations, resulting in 10x the return on investment.

Outcomes

16%

Scaled Paid Social Adspend

700x

Increase in Paid Social ROAS

Maaji approached Darkroom with the challenge of helping them scale internationally and had ambitious growth goals for their expansion into the United States market. But in the beginning, Maaji had a modest international advertising budget, and needed to validate their entry into new markets before investing more. Darkroom delivered an end-to-end digital acquisition strategy for Maaji’s e-commerce operations, resulting in 10x the return on investment.

Outcomes
  • Total advertising ROI of 10x
  • Scaled paid social ad spend by 16x and increased ROAS by 700%
  • Reduced time between 1st and 2nd orders from 65 days to 12 days
  • Increased retention revenue by 126%
  • Boosted customer LTV by 37%
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Scaling Paid Ads

We started by rethinking Maaji’s paid advertising on Facebook and Google, testing both design and strategy in order to maximize visibility and conversion. This resulted in the development of a new creative direction for the brand as well as the production of standalone, social media creative. The success of these efforts led Maaji to increase their paid social ad spend by 16x.

 

Intelligent Email Flows

Next, we tested email templates to identify high-performance copy and creative, tested different send-times, and implemented lead nurture flow (30-day) where warm leads are revisited. We also optimized for the seasonality of the swimwear market and notified prospective customers of seasonal sales and price drops. These changes helped Maaji reduce the average time between first and second orders from 65 days to 12 days.

MA _ 5.30 _ MEMORIAL SALE 50_ off + Extra 10_ the entire site w_ coupon code 8AM -8PM
MA _ 6.23 _ Thursday Drop

Retaining Repeat Customers

By focusing on repeat customer retention, we were able to help Maaji measurably increase customer lifetime value and improve revenue margins. We restructured Maaji’s landing pages and interfaces, optimizing click-through rates and boosting conversion for this valuable cohort. These changes helped Maaji increase retention revenue by 126% and improve customer LTV by 37%.

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Results

Darkroom helped Maaji scale internationally and grow into a multi-million dollar e-commerce business over our 2+ year partnership. The brand is now sold in over 50 countries and is the single largest swimwear company worldwide.

Takeaways
  • Creative is King: When creative direction stagnates, so does the brand—that’s why it’s vital to revitalize key visual elements continuously. This includes the integration of platform-native content and UGC with more editorial, polished content.
  • Seasonality: Fashion and apparel messaging needs to be tied back to season and context.
  • Send Times: When messaging is delivered at the right time, it makes a world of difference. For Maaji, 21:00 EST was ideal; when users were in a relaxed, wind-down state their purchase intent was higher.

Necessaire

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Background

We launched a category-leading campaign that allowed Necessaire to aggressively break goals for the critical holiday season.
Since 2018, Necessaire has been reimagining body care with effective, environmentally responsible products sold online and at retailers like Nordstrom and Sephora. They approached Darkroom in the latter half of 2021 for help revitalizing their paid media strategy post-iOS 14, and needed to implement changes quickly and in time for the critical end-of-year sales season.

Outcomes

Top 1%

Performed in the top 1% of all 2021 BFCM Facebook Campaigns

43%

Overall Q4 Revenue Increase YoY

14%

Below CPA goal on Paid Social

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Capture New
Interest Efficiently

Video Views Funnel

With the introduction of the new iOS 14 in the spring of 2021, Paid Social efficiency and accuracy took a severe hit. So Darkroom chose to implement a new top-of-funnel strategy for Necessaire called Closed Loop Video View, which bypasses the pixel tracking that most advertisers rely on for attribution.

This strategy gave Necessaire a much larger (and cheaper) audience to retarget, and increased the likelihood of repurchase over the next few touchpoints.

 

Paid Social

We also rethought Necessaire’s paid social strategy in order to maximize visibility and conversion. This included the development of a new brand art direction and standalone, paid social performance creative.

 

Influencer Whitelisting

Darkroom tapped into Necessaire’s robust influencer network and found audiences that already engage with Necessaire and other trending beauty brands. Then we worked with influencers to serve whitelisted videos to that pre-primed audience, which increased revenue by 46% percent when compared to the next best-performing audience.

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New Acquisition and Shopping Campaigns

 

We also saw an opportunity to build remarketing audiences and drive one-click purchases by targeting highly interested, top and middle of funnel traffic. This led to an increase in new customers, while also creating a new starting point in the buyer’s journey for audiences that purchased through lower-funnel campaigns.

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Re-engage users at the right time, with the right product

Dynamic Ads

 

At the bottom of the funnel, we employed Dynamic Ads using the most popular and highest average order value (AOV) products, targeting individuals who added these products to their cart.

 

Messaging was essential here; the communication we chose to use for these Dynamic Ads was a carefully curated collection of testimonials and customer reviews, highlighting the value props of the brand. This amplified the effectiveness of these campaigns.

Convert users to
loyal customers

Social Proof

 

At the top to mid-funnel, we capitalized on videos made by social media influencers,emphasizing the luxury and efficacy of Necessaire products. Mid to bottom-funnel content relied on gushing reviews and publication quotes speaking to the positive changes users experienced while using the product; this sped up and optimized conversion.

 

Darkroom was able to quickly and efficiently implement solutions throughout Necessaire’s marketing funnel in time for the critical holiday sales season. These changes resulted in a paid social CPA 14% below target, a paid media revenue increase of 118%, and an overall revenue increase of 43% in Q4 YoY.

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Olipop

Background

We worked closely with Olipop’s creative team to develop a full-fledged advertising campaign, helping the company grow by expanding its brand identity to appeal to new demographics.

 

The ultimate good-for-you carbonated drink, Olipop debuted in 2019 as a “soda that serves a purpose,” intending to disrupt a $38 billion U.S. soft drink industry. And it’s off to a great start. Olipop created a niche in the soda market around health and functionality that it now dominates, commanding two-thirds of the market share in the space.

The Challenge

Olipop came to Darkroom as they were closing a star-studded $30M Series B, with the goal of accelerating growth and maximizing revenue year-over-year. To do this, it needed to maintain its current consumer base while expanding into new, uncharted territory.

 

From the beginning, Olipop’s bright, elevated aesthetic made it popular amongst young mothers and health-conscious women at retailers like Wholefoods. But to grow, its brand identity needed to accommodate a more national footprint at retailers like Walmart and Krogers, and to expand its appeal into the fridges and hearts of American men.

Reimagining the Brand

Darkroom helped Olipop reimagine its brand identity, creating a fully-fledged advertising campaign to reach these new target demographics. We worked closely with Olipop’s creative team to develop and produce a full-range of creative assets aimed at allowing the company to grow beyond its core female-focused audience.

 

“Living with Lily” (2022) was a campaign and advertisement inspired by Olipop’s playful, vibrant nature. It introduces us to a man who recently moved in with his partner, Lily, and is now going through the motions of living alongside her—and her plants, her questionable-looking dog, and her annoying brother.

 

On the bright side, however, she introduced him to Olipop: a drink both good for her, and good for you too. The narrative is designed to appeal to both men and women in a single swoop, and it did so successfully. “Living with Lily” has been running since early 2022.

What we did
  • Creative strategy and ad conceptualization
  • Video production
  • Performance creative editing and asset cut down

Joybird

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Background

Joybird is a DTC home furniture brand selling custom, mid-century modern upholstered furniture. Founded in 2014 by Alex Del Toro, Andres Hinostroza, Joshua Stellin and Christopher Stormer, the La-z-Boy sub brand was acquired in 2019, and has a core customer base of primarily millennial and Gen X consumers.

 

When Joybird approached Darkroom in 2021, its messaging and advertising had stagnated. Joybird was in need of more than a visual identity lift, they needed a messaging revamp that would generate substantial ad recall and brand awareness.

What we did

Darkroom reimagined the Joybird aesthetic and brand narrative — bringing them to life with the “Joy to the Bird” campaign in 2021. The campaign’s hero video emphasized the variety and practicality of shopping with Joybird, and became the brand’s first nationally televised ad, running on ESPN and a variety of other recognizable channels. The campaign was featured in several publications including PR Newswire, Business Wire, and Yahoo Entertainment, and successfully raised Joybird’s market awareness nationwide.

“Joybird’s commercial ‘Joy to the Bird’ highlights the brand’s fun and colorful styles that ensure consumers can truly make their space their own.”

– Business Wire

 

“Joybird is changing the way you buy furniture.”

– Yahoo Entertainment

 

VYBES

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Background

We helped VYBES grow by re-engineering their digital experience and increasing online-store conversion by 40%.

 

VYBES is a Los Angeles based beverage brand dedicated to improving their customers’ health and wellbeing through natural plant derivatives. The company sells Hemp CBD beverages and has expanded into candles and apparel – evolving into a cohesive lifestyle brand dedicated to health and wellness. VYBES’ bold, colorful packaging makes it one of the most Instagrammable products in the market.

Outcomes

40%

increase in online-store conversion

56%

Increase in attributable email
revenue within 90-days

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“We hired Darkroom to help us grow our online sales and the changes they recommended and instituted have helped us increase online store conversion by almost 40%.”
Jonathan Eppers, Founder VYBES avatar
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Customer Retention

VYBES’ loyal customer base eagerly anticipates new brand developments and collaborations, making Email and SMS essential mediums for communication. Darkroom put into motion robust retention campaigns for VYBES, and continues to manage their strategy and implementation.

 

Email Performance

Email campaigns and automations boast some of the highest success metrics in the e-commerce food and beverage space. Darkroom helped implement new email campaigns that resulted in a 56% increase in attributable email revenue within 90-days.

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Technology

Darkroom also helped re-engineer the VYBES digital experience to bring customers new functionality – including robust subscription features and a cleaner user interface that lets the VYBES brand shine. These changes all with a view toward compounding user retention. The result was a 40% increase in online-store conversion.

 

Intelligent Email Flows

Next, we tested email templates to identify high-performance copy and creative, tested different send-times, and implemented lead nurture flow (30-day) where warm leads are revisited. We also optimized for the seasonality of the swimwear market and notified prospective customers of seasonal sales and price drops. These changes helped Maaji reduce the average time between first and second orders from 65 days to 12 days.

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“I would highly, highly recommend Darkroom to any brand who is looking for easy and smart strategies that grow their customer base, improve online conversion and build stronger relationships with their customers.”
Jonathan Eppers, Founder VYBES avatar
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What we did

Technology

  • E-Commerce Strategy
  • Web Development
  • Ongoing Web Support
  • QA & Implementation

 

 

Design

  • Editorial Content
  • E-commerce Content

 

 

Growth Marketing

  • Paid Social Ads
  • Email & SMS Marketing

Everytable

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Background

Everytable is redefining America’s food landscape with nutritious, fresh, made-from-scratch food available at reasonable prices. Founded by Sam Polk in Southern California, the brand aims to bring nutritious, affordable food to every table in the country, with no one left out.

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Boosting Retention

Everytable came to Darkroom at a critical turning point – they were looking to open new retail locations, expand their B2B footprint, and take direct-to-consumer (DTC) sales to the next level. Darkroom helped them refine their DTC communication, boost retention and ignite their performance campaigns by taking over Email and SMS operations. The result was the best-performing email months in Everytable’s history, and an overall increase in retention signup revenue of 400% in just three months.

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Catalyzing Growth

We continued to work with Everytable to build sophisticated email flows and segmentation, improve retention, and boost revenue – allowing them to close a $16 million Series B in 2020. Everytable continues to grow, expanding to the East Coast in 2022 and opening its first locations in New York City.

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“The Darkroom team has been instrumental in helping us grow for the past few months, they’ve more than 4x’d our email + SMS subscription sign ups since coming on board.”
– Chad Massura, Head of Growth, Everytable avatar
What we did

Retention Marketing

  • Email and SMS Management
  • Campaign development and execution
  • Elevated conversion, subscription, and open-rates

 

 

Outcomes

  • Measurably increased DTC revenue in the first three months
  • Developed and improved retention for their existing consumer-base
  • Closed multi-million dollar deals as a result of refined communication
  • Expanded local retail capacities