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Marketing for Apple’s network of stores and services — a case study

Apple technology is one of the most competitive topics in the product niche. There are more than 1000 Apple stores in Ukraine alone, and what can we say about competing with large marketplaces?

This is a story about how we did not get confused and developed a new positioning for the offline network, online store, and Apple service centers to separate ourselves from competitors. In this case study, we will also tell you how and what results our outsourced marketing department achieved.

Here’s a brief summary of our results in four months:

The CMO of the project is Serhii Soloviov.

Our service is an outsourced marketing department: website and social media audit, development of advertising creatives and texts, set up, and launching of Facebook & Google ADS.

Сase study navigation:

  1. Our customer
  2. Stage one. Identification of needs
  3. Stage two. Research
  4. Our team
  5. Our workflow
  6. Results

Approximate time to read the case study — 8 minutes

Our customer

SWIPE is an offline network, an online store of Apple equipment and service centers.

Features of our customer:

Stage one. Identification of needs

We held a consultation with our customer and identified the following need: the customer was looking for specialists who would take responsibility for the integrated marketing of the entire network. 

Stage two. Research and strategy development

The second step of the project is market research. Thanks to it, we can find answers to the following questions:

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The result of the research. We have identified the following problem: everything related to Apple technology is highly competitive.

It is especially difficult to compete with market giants. After all, they sell large volumes of goods at lower prices because they have favorable conditions from suppliers. 

The solution to the problem. We proposed to develop a comprehensive strategy for promoting equipment and service centers in a highly competitive environment: 

  • develop a new positioning to evoke a unique association among consumers and thus differentiate themselves from competitors;
  • create and implement promotions to increase customer loyalty and sales of each of the SWIPE stores;
  • conduct an audit of the website and social networks, provide recommendations for their optimization;
  • set up lead generation using Facebook ADS and Google ADS tools.

Our team

After consulting with the customer and conducting research, we form a team of specialists who will be able to fulfill all the tasks.

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After completing all the preparatory stages, we started working on the implementation of our strategy.

1. Development of positioning

Market situation. There are a lot of stores on the market that sell new Apple technology. And among them, there are already leaders who are associated with this product at the level of a particular region and the whole country. But so far in Ukraine, there is no brand that comes to mind first when looking for used equipment. That’s why consumers often have to buy it on bulletin boards, which are not always reliable and safe.

Our proposal. We offered the customer to develop and implement the company’s positioning in the market as a reliable seller of used Apple equipment.

Explanation. Why did we choose the phrase “used device” rather than “second-hand”? Because consumers associate the second one with something of poor quality. And only used cars, “with mileage”, do not cause negative associations. This is where the phrase “The first used Apple devices” came from.

2. Social media analysis

After analyzing the company’s Instagram and Facebook pages, we found the following features:

  • Facebook had an old logo and a different company name – Apple Room;
  • Instagram had many pages created separately for each store and city.

Our proposal. We proposed to merge all the pages to get more coverage at a lower cost. It’s also convenient because targeted ads can be run from one ad account.

3. Create a product catalog (feed)

For online stores, advertising that takes into account whether the product is in stock, how much it currently costs, and whether its current photos work well. In order for this information to automatically get into advertising accounts, you need to set up a product catalog (feed).

A product feed is a special XML file that contains data about the products on your website. Have you seen ads on Google Shopping? It works because of product feed:

Why is product feed necessary for the promotion of online stores?

  • The availability of goods and their prices are automatically updated;
  • It is convenient to add additional product characteristics;
  • you can quickly add and edit ads for a large number of products;
  • the ability to use dynamic remarketing and dynamic display ads;
  • division of goods by different criteria.

Tasks. The SWIPE store is powered by the Horoshop platform, which can automatically generate product feeds. But first, you need to properly configure the categories and product descriptions on the site.

What we did. We provided the following recommendations:

  • how to fill in product categories;
  • what format and size of images to upload;
  • how to create descriptions correctly.

After that, we set up a product feed that will work effectively in advertising campaigns.

4. Creating and implementing promotions

To increase customer loyalty and sales of each of the SWIPE stores, we have designed a calendar with promotional events.

How does it work? In order to purchase a product under the promotion, you need to specify a promotional code. You can use it to track the effectiveness of advertising for offline stores.

Examples of creatives for promotional advertising:

5. Setting up a Facebook ADS campaign

Throughout the entire period of work, we took the following steps.

Step 1. We developed a strategy for launching advertising campaigns, taking into account the updated positioning of the company.

Step 2. We created a dynamic catalog of used equipment and divided it into 3 categories: iPhone, watch, macbook. This provided a quick start to Facebook advertising.

Step 3. We created creatives for the Valentine’s Day and March 8 campaigns.

Step 4. We tested different offers and creatives:

  • a loan at 0%;
  • installments without a down payment;
  • up to 70% discount on selected equipment.

For example, in the screenshot below, you can see an order for an instant purchase, without credit and installments.

Step 5. We launched remarketing through category advertising in two languages at once — Ukrainian and Russian.

What is the difference between category advertising and a dynamic catalog?

Category advertising is search advertising that leads to a product category.

A dynamic catalog is for a specific product.

When we run ads through a dynamic catalog, we rely entirely on Facebook’s algorithms. That is, a person will see only those products from the catalog that the algorithm has selected, taking into account the behavioral profile of the Facebook user.

And Google’s search algorithm works in such a way that the user sees a specific product from our catalog that he or she is looking for.

Facebook ADS results:

Results based on Google Analytics:

6. Setting up Google ADS

Here, we also first launched a dynamic catalog, then categorical advertising in all priority areas: iPhone, Macbook, and Watch.

And in early April, we started working in the area of Apple equipment repair. We have determined that the following factors should be taken into account to optimize advertising:

  • the equipment should be divided into new and used;
  • both the sale of equipment and repair services should be promoted;
  • advertising should be divided into local and regional;
  • the budget should be optimized, taking into account the previous 3 factors.

Google ADS results:

Results for 3 weeks, according to Google Analytics:

Results for 3 weeks, according to Google Analytics

Results of our work

We worked hard and achieved good results for four months. 

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