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Digital Transformation

e.l.f. Beauty’s Execs Share Top Tips for Digital Success

In our four-part video series Simply Put, the executives of e.l.f. Beauty share how they build their brand.

Executives of e.l.f. Beauty on the Simply Put video series

As AdAge’s number seven marketer of 2020, e.l.f. Beauty has mastered running a digital business. This includes their leadership and their ecommerce site and the benefits realized by personalizing and unifying the customer journey across marketing, commerce, sales, and service.

We recently welcomed key executives from e.l.f. Beauty for Salesforce’s Simply Put, a new digital series hosted by former NFL player and New York Times bestselling author, Emmanuel Acho. The four-part digital series reveals actionable tips and clear solutions for complex digital business challenges — all in under five minute videos.

Together, we uncovered tips around switching to digital first and the challenges faced while adapting to quickly changing consumer expectations.

Get ready to dig into highlights from each episode of Simply Put:

Episode 1: Making the switch to digital-first

In 2019, e.l.f. Beauty recharged multiple areas of their business – from brand, to product, to digital – and heightened their focus on digital-first strategies. While the pandemic greatly accelerated the shift to digital, e.l.f. had recognized the need for a quick technology solution as rapid as their product innovation to deliver digital-first experiences. 

“My challenge to everyone who is thinking about digital transformation is get ready to take some risks,” said e.l.f. Beauty chief digital officer Ekta Chopra. “You’re going to be moving at a different pace than you ever did before.” 

Chopra offers three top tips to achieve digital success:

  1. Unify data to drive business forward.
  2. Invest in a future-proof ecommerce platform.
  3. Keep customers at the enter.

Learn how Chopra creates digital happiness in episode 1 of Simply Put.

Episode 2: Use data to drive decision making  

To build long-term brand loyalty and keep up with ever-changing customer behavior, e.l.f. turned its focus to unified customer data that offers insights about personalized experiences, helped through Salesforce Customer 360.

“The relationship between marketing and commerce is the courtship before the commitment,” said e.l.f. Beauty chief marketing officer and president of skincare brand Keys Soulcare Kory Marchisotto. “Marketing is the courtship so that you can get to the commerce, which is the commitment to a longer term relationship.”

To better serve her customers, Marchisotto reads a minimum of 2,000 comments per week. This allows her team to tailor marketing to each customer’s needs, and ensure every eye, lip, and face receives personalized care. Having accessible data in one place helps instill trust in e.l.f.’s digital journey. 

 How do you make data work for you? Marchisotto says to:

  1. Bring all of your data into a single source of truth.
  2. Personalize content through connected journeys.
  3. Optimize by analyzing your performance in real time.

Dive deeper in learning how to drive business decisions through customer insights in episode 2 of Simply Put.

Episode 3: Creating a future-proof business

The online shopping experience has been morphing for a while, but with COVID, e.l.f. transformed five years worth of development into a matter of months. As a result, e.l.f. could better track add-to-cart rates, conversion rates, and traffic sources to meet the customer where they are through available analytics and data. Consumers’ needs and wants evolve fast, requiring brands to move at unprecedented speed. 

“Being future proof means being ready for the unexpected,” said Molly Dufner, e.l.f. Beauty vice president of ecommerce and customer experience. “That means making sure your foundation for digital commerce and CRM is solid and prepared to change at any moment.” 

Data and analytics allow e.l.f. to accurately forecast the future and respond to consumer needs with speed and agility. “For me, data is like being in a candy store,” Dufner added. “I’ve been in ecommerce for 20 years, and this [past year has been] like landing on the moon.”

Dufner says to build ecommerce that stands the test of time, you should::

  1. Meet shoppers where they are.
  2. Grow loyalty with connected experiences.
  3. Build on a scalable and flexible platform.

Learn how to become future-proof in episode 3 of Simply Put.

Episode 4: Building a beloved brand experience

e.l.f. Beauty is known for its online presence and personalized experiences. They were early adopters of customer focus to address inequalities during the COVID-19 pandemic. And with Salesforce Digital 360, the brand has frequently extended messages of racial and gender solidarity with its community by sharing educational resources and tools.

e.l.f. continues to extend its brand beyond beauty by creating viral global music videos, developing partnerships in gaming, and dominating TikTok. Their connected digital ecosystem has helped them stay in tune with consumers’ needs, wants, and desires.

“e.l.f. is by the people, for the people, of the people. It is no longer enough to just have a good product or a good service,” said e.l.f. Beauty vice president of brand Gayitri Budhraja. “Consumers expect brands to stand for something.”  

Budhraja says to create an unmatched brand identity, you need to:

  1. Actively break the mold.
  2. Activate your community.
  3. Extend your platform with partners.

Learn how to innovate around the customer in episode 4 of Simply Put.

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