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Overstock CMO on using first-party data, brand ambassadors to reach home shoppers

Last year, streamlined its business and focused solely on home furnishings and furniture.

“The home customer has a higher repeat visit rate, better loyalty, and a higher basket size than shoppers of non-home categories,” said Angela Hsu, Overstock’s CMO.

To court a more targeted audience, Overstock refocused its marketing strategy to showcase the brand’s ability to provide consumers with high-quality products at a reasonable price. The brand did this in two ways:

1. Leaning on first-party data

Overstock is investing heavily in its first-party data strategy to execute more personalized, relevant ad campaigns, said Hsu.

“More than ever, we’re challenging ourselves to improve the relevance of what we’re communicating and how,” she said.

Overstock also uses first-party data to determine what kinds of benefits matter most to its customers, which the brand can then offer through its loyalty program or its two co-branded credit cards.

“We know that if we listen to the signals our customers are giving us, add benefits that matter to them, and keep serving up the perfect items, it will keep them coming back and staying with us longer—it’s a virtuous circle,” said Hsu.

2. Brand ambassadors and influencers

To get the message out on social media, Overstock partnered with six brand ambassadors (with a combined reach of over 20 million followers) with expertise in interior design, home renovation, remodeling, and decorating.

“They helped create content for us that highlighted home furnishing options at different price points, showing consumers they can create their dream home with any budget,” said Hsu.

A central part of Overstock’s brand ambassadorship program is incorporating the ambassadors into the entire marketing process, including through the company’s website, PR, and social media. Brand ambassadors can even come to the Overstock photo studios to develop content together.

In addition, the ambassadors also integrate Overstock into their existing projects on social media based on the brand’s marketing and promotional calendar, said Hsu. For example, the brand partnered with @apieceofmyglamhome last year to promote Overstock Day, its annual sales event.

Overstock also has partnerships with mid-tier and micro-influencers, which usually focus on product placements and major sales events.

“Our influencers have diversified design tastes, just like our customers,” said Hsu. “We have thousands of influencers in our network that can activate content depending on campaign objectives and budget.”

Angela Hsu will be speaking about shifting marketing mix in response to measurement and targeting challenges at this year’s CommerceNext event. Learn more here.


This was originally featured in the Retail Daily newsletter. For more retail insights, statistics, and trends, subscribe here.