Natalie Staub

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Epi 30: Leverage Storytelling Using This E-Commerce Software – Natalie Staub, Co-Founder and CMO of radd.

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JC: Welcome everybody to another episode of The Future of Biz Tech. I’m your host, JC Granger. I have with me here, the Co-Founder and CMO of radd., Natalie Staub. Natalie, thank you so much for coming on the show. Why don’t you tell the audience a little bit about yourself and what you do?

Natalie: Okay, thank you so much JC, it’s a pleasure to be here. So as you mentioned, I’m Natalie Staub, Co-Founder and CMO of radd. Before joining, rather than starting up radd., I’m a consultant in the field of e-commerce digital marketing and a senior lecturer in the UK, in London, in the field of e-commerce digital social for more than 15 years.

So really been in the industry for a very long time. And yeah, it’s just been an exciting journey.

JC: That’s awesome. So tell us a little bit about rad. What does radd. do? Who do they help? You know, what is it? Tell us about the platform.

Natalie: Okay. So to keep it simple, radd. is an e-commerce software. We boost the power of influencers and customers through embedding their stories, right at the point of purchase. The stories are smart, they’re personalized, and they drive traffic straight to the product page. So I’ll give you a little bit of a background or you are maybe just like me on Instagram, on TikTok. And we see a lot of user-generated content stories, videos created by customers created by influencers, all about the products and the services that they purchase.

And well, we thought to ourselves. This has beautiful social proof that has an immense impact on purchase intention on conversion. Why are we just dumping it? Why are brands just dumping it on social platforms? Why not embedded right at the critical point where consumers are deciding whether I add this item in the shopping basket checkout or not.

So we are placing social proof at the most critical element of the marketing funnel.

JC: That’s really interesting. So for me to visualize this, let’s say I get on an Instagram ad, and I got to tell you, I feel like Instagram, like has me dialed in because I mean, I buy so much stuff from Instagram ads. It’s ridiculous.

I mean, they, they got me down. They know exactly what I want.

Natalie: Yeah. It’s the personalization. Absolutely.

JC: Exactly. So let’s say I swipe up, you know, I go to the page, I’m on my mobile phone and I’m looking at it and it’s talking about that product. So what you’re saying is that when I get to decide, if I want to add that product to my cart, there is a social post there like, you know, maybe so like an influencer said something or posted, but it’s like right there in the description. I’m trying to take a picture.

Natalie: Exactly yeah. So imagine you’re landing on a website and you’re about to make a purchase. Let’s say, whatever brand it is. What, what do you like to shop online?

JC: So I’m a tech guy, pretty much anything tech nerd. If it’s like, I got this new little Bluetooth speaker, you know, cause it’s smaller and it’s got great sound. I mean, I’m always going to do that. That’s me. 

Natalie: Okay, awesome. Yeah, that makes sense. So I love tech, but I just have a confession. I hope my husband doesn’t watch it, but I love online shopping.

I mean, I can spend hours browsing buying makeup, clothing, shoes, whatever it is, I’m on it. So imagine you’re going to one of your favorite Tech brands and you are reading the product description. Now, instead of going up and looking at YouTube reviews, looking at Instagram father stories, you’ve got it right there at the point of purchase on the product page or even in the shopping basket.

And you can look at the product photography product videography. But there’s nothing more useful than hearing from other customers that are like minded. And to some extent it goes beyond reviews. It goes beyond user generated content. It’s about brands being able to create a social community, brand affinity, customers that love the brand and wants to share the brand experience and be part of the brand story.

JC: So I’m very familiar with them as a marketing guy. You know, this, we were talking before the show I have my own agency for 11 years. Right. So I’m very familiar with influencer marketing and the platforms, you know, that companies can go and, and hire them and whatnot. So I guess my question is this, is your platform, a place where the customer is taking their own content or they hiring an influencer who says, who’s, you know, who’s had the product and did a review for example. And then one, they do that and they submit it. Then they can embed that like an embed code on that page.

Natalie: Exactly. Yup.

JC: Right. So okay. That I love, so let me ask you a question then the followup is this. What kind of increase in conversion rates have you seen as a result? Because I imagine that this is designed to help prevent bounce rates right?

Natalie: Absolutely or cart abandonment, yeah absolutely.

JC: Yeah I mean out of a hundred people that go to that product description. And let’s say typically, let’s see you had a client come in and typically 20 would click to add to cart.

On average, where are you seeing that boost? If it was 20 before they used your platform, what kind of average are you seeing after..

Natalie: Perfect. So with our clients? They had a product page conversion of between 12 to 14%. And once we have embedded the user-generated content, the radd. stories in the product page and the shopping basket, they’ve got a conversion of product page conversion, or between 22 to 24%.

JC: Geez. So you’re, you’re seeing, you’re seeing 10% bumps and conversion just from adding that.

Natalie: Absolutely

JC: That’s amazing and on scale I mean, that’s huge, obviously.

Natalie: It’s huge. And it’s also worthwhile adding something you mentioned about, well, is it customers or is it influencer content that we generate? Our software allows brands to generate both because influencer content and customer content is very powerful, but it plays a slightly different role in purchase decision-making in my nature, I’m a researcher and I’ve carried out and implemented huge amount of research. Qualitative research to identify the role that influencer content and user-generated content created by customers specifically, what impact does it have on interest and conversion?

And what we’ve seen is that influencer content is great at raising awareness because of their mass social following, in addition to creating interests, because they’re very good at creating beautiful content. But then once the customer is further down the marketing funnel, this is where they want to see a little bit more authenticity

And this is where they want to see content created by other customers. And also it heightens the element of social community. I mean, look at this guy who, you know, he’s, he seems really cool and he loves the product. There’s an element of connection and you know what? Everybody wants to connect the bottom line. I want to connect with others. I want to feel a sense of community with both the customers of the brand in addition to the brand itself.

And that is the way that we can play both with customers and influences, but a different aspect. And so how do we play differently within the marketing funnel? Well, the minute that the customer lands on the website, some brands have decided, let me place the influence of content there because influence tend to have a greater element of familiarity or yeah I recognize this influence I’m on the homepage, right? I have the trust in the brand credibility. And now as I’m going further down the marketing funnel and exploring the pages, and I’m looking at particular products, this is where I want to put the customer content and it works really well together.

JC: That’s amazing. So let me ask you this then. I mean, how are you going out and finding the businesses to use your software and what kind of marketing articles are you using? What’s working what didn’t work?

Natalie: Yeah, that’s a very good question. And it depends on your budget and it depends on the stage of the business that you’re at.

So I’d be happy to take it back to basics for anyone out there. Who’s interested in starting on business and identifying the best sales strategy. For us, the key was to work with key clients that have enough industry exposure, expertise, and traction. And we generated four key clients, both in Europe, in the US and the Middle East.

And we worked very well. We still do. We work very closely with them. And at that stage we had no emphasis on further sales because it was about perfectly meeting those client’s needs. So we’re able to continuously develop a product with a perfect market fit. The minute that we got to a good enough stage to be able to now sell the product widely. We found that the best way to do so is through network, through exhibitions, expos, conferences, speaking, and networking. We also have a team of sales individuals whose strategy works through in fact the same mechanism. So putting customers in tends to be the best way. I mean, I know that so many people also sitting down on LinkedIn and reaching out, and this is really very time consuming and quite ineffective.

So exhausting your personal circles, your network is key.

JC: And that’s good advice, but let me ask you this. I mean, with COVID, I mean, half of the things you listed have not existed last year and a half. 

Natalie: Absolutely

JC: So how did you pivot? How did you go from, from attracting new clients and customers through those, you know, those things you talked about, you know, the in-person conferences, how did you pivot? What did you do?

Natalie: Look, the truth is we have been able to engage with a lot more meetings, conferences and expos online. So, right on the other hand, where I had to travel an hour down the tube to meet someone in central London, and that would take half a day, I can now quickly jump online, half an hour done, and I can have a higher turn over of calls.

Most of the conferences and the expos still took place online, but you’ve got to remember that because of COVID, the sale cycle is a lot shorter rather than just stand, I mean, they always knew, but now with greater pressure that the time is now for e-commerce and if I don’t step up and really push the customer experience, then I’m going to miss out.

And so, we found that brands are a lot more open to starting and trialing new software, especially where we’re able to bring the numbers through our core collaborators and partners that we’ve been working with for the last year and a half, two years.

JC: So, let me ask you a question, how does your pricing work? And you don’t have to give pricing now just cause, you know, depending when someone listens to the podcast could be outdated, but you know, is it a sales process? If someone, you know, heard about you and went to the website, can they just sign up right away? Do they have to talk to someone because it’s more customized?

Just, you know, what does that experience look like? If somebody wants to actually use and purchase your software or subscription?

Natalie: Okay. So within the next couple of weeks, we are launching a Shopify app and obviously within Shopify, there’s going to be standardized pricing for specific packages. And so we’ve got a more simplified version of the product, which will work really well for the smaller stores that have less traction and less need for an extensive product range and then smaller budgets as well of course.

And then we’ve also got a more complex product that fits well, the larger stores that have the need for it. And of course, the capabilities of paying more to be able to support the service that they require. So feel free to check us out on Shopify once we’re live in a couple of weeks and yeah.

And have a look at the pricing range. Of course, with the larger clients, it does recall for us to chat and to talk about what functionalities are you looking for? What level of implementation are you really desiring? And for that, we were able to tailor suit the right package for the needs of the client.

JC: Well, that’s great. And obviously for anyone listening, we’re actually recording this by a couple of months before it even comes out. So by the time we would already go see it.

Natalie: Uh hmm, it should be there, and it should be thriving. Exactly. 

JC: So let me ask you a question here about the future of your industry. So where do you see you know, platforms that offer, you know, influencer marketing style things, you know, you guys have a different take on it. Yours goes mostly with e-commerce, but just where do you see the influencer marketing platform and software industry being in, you know, five years or so?

I mean, where do you see that future?

Natalie: Yeah. Perfect question. Look, we’ve been talking about influencer marketing, nearly four decades. You know, the whole element of the macro influencers, then the importance of the micro influencers. Now the emphasis is on the nano influencers because brands are seeking influencers that have greater element of authenticity. We know the larger influences will customers recognize them to be heavily monetized and therefore their element of authenticity or credibility is diminished to some extent. The nano influencers have got very high, usually engagement rate with their followings, they’ve got a more niche mark, and then they’re able to really gain the trust of their followers.

And that’s what brands are after then to answer your question, what we are hundred percent believe will happen is the diminish of influencer marketing, where the power will go back to the people. Where every person is going to be unenthusiastic and content creation, content sharing, and everyone will be an influencer to some extent.

So we will probably have less differentiation or distinguishing between customers and influencers. It’s going to be content creators, and that’s going to be the mass. And you can realize that, you know, a 13 year old, a 15, 16 year old girl creating a TikTok, sharing it. Right. I mean, it’s going to be second nature. Everyone’s going to be you know, capturing sharing and that’s going to be instant. And so I think there’s going to be less space for influencers. Of course, we always want to have opinion leaders. We always want to have experts. We always want to have fewer number of people that we can look up to.

We’re able to then save information and it helps us save time, but it’s going to be in different mechanisms that we know it now.

JC: So I liked that too. The, you know, information leaders and thought leaders. So knowing though that, or these believing that in the next step, five-year mark, that it’s going to be more granular, right.? As far as influence goes. So then what are you guys doing about that? Right. My audience..

Natalie: We’re in it. We’re really JC..

JC: Hold on but specifically because again, The Future of BizTech, right? My audience wants to hear the scoop before it happens. So let me ask you a very specific question here, because what you’re talking about, essentially, it becomes from a software standpoint, right? What it means is that you could have people with far less followings, right?

Let’s say a thousand or 2 thousand, right? Those nano influencers signing on to some platform, maybe it’s yours in the future. Maybe you guys might not do it now, but you might have some sort of thing in the future..

Natalie: We’ve done it, we’ve done it yeah..

JC: Great so then how does that, like, what does that look like? To, you know, how does, does a nano influencer, you know, uh, is it the same model? Do companies head hunt them or do they go and they search for projects and they, you know, and then what’s the pay. Like, you know, they’re making $10 for a post 20, is it a different strategy where you say, hey, don’t post the link, just talk about it. You know what I mean? Like, you know, where do you guys doing to realize and capture where you see it going?

Natalie: Perfect. So we’re already doing it because we’ve already seen that shift from the brands. And this is what the brands have already been demanding. This is where the market is already heading. Look, brands have a major pain point with dealing with influences. The big pain point is we never have enough resources, financial resources to pay, to negotiate, to deal with the agents, to tell them what type of content we look for, then to gather this content then to sit it on our social platforms.

JC: That’s very structured. It’s very rigid and it.

Natalie: Very structured, very rigid and it’s extremely time consuming. It’s very resource intensive. And even the biggest brands that we’re working with always have a pain point of resourcing this process. And they always said, you know, if our content is content. If I can show a customer applying this, this foundation to show how this foundation is, looks like on somebody within a certain complexion.

If I can show a customer putting on a red lipstick, I don’t care where this content comes from, get me this content. I just need content and content can come from anyone. And so our software is open for content uploads from influencers and brands can search up influencers with the right fit for them. In addition to requesting content post-purchase, “guys did  you like the purchase? Would you like to share your story and be part of the brand?”

JC: Yeah I like the follow-up. That’s good.. like videos of like unboxing it or whatever. Right. 

Natalie: Everything. Absolutely. Everything and what is happening is that customers love the fact that their face and their content is on their favorite web, the favorite brand’s website that they screen grab it, and they share it on social media with great pride.

And that helps drive even more traffic. It makes sense. It makes sense now in terms of incentivization and how do we give rewards for influencers and customers and in the future, we see it as just one body. Well, listen, every brand and it’s very important that we leave it up to the brands, can set the commission that they’d like to pay, or the type of incentives that they’d like to set.

Some of the brands we work for lack to offer food products and both by offering free products, they’re further promoting more content and encouraging more content. Some brands like to give money off for the next purchase. Some brands like to give commission of sales. So there is an element of flick flexibility to work with a brand strategy.

There is also simplicity in it as well, and it, and it works for the different strategies that we’ve been working with across different sectors. 

JC: Now it’s also worth mentioning that this software many are saying, well, I can see it work really well for makeup, really well for cosmetics, beauty, for clothing and the truth is we’re getting so much interest from many sectors. The main differentiating factor are those brands and companies that understand the importance of social strategy, user generated content. That’s when they very quickly understand the value of radd.. So, let me ask you this question then.

If you, if you don’t do it now, is it something you guys are going to consider doing later? What about service companies? Right? What about adopting this, you know, for services, right? We’re influencers can, you know, celebrity, you’ve got things like cameo, for example, right? You’ve got the app cameo where someone can say, Hey to the celebrity or, you know, A-list, B-list, C-list, D-list celebrity, you know, say something nice about my company kind of thing, right? 

It’s just, you know, just, just like a sponsored promotional, whatever, but, and I really liked your follow-up part about it too. So my point is, what about regular people? Not necessarily celebrities. Who could use a service and maybe that company, you know, gives it to them for free for a month or something, they use it. So what about like the service based? Not product-based?

Natalie: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, we call it social influence at the point of experience. Imagine you wanting to go on holiday, see particular hotels, stay at a resort. You’ve got people’s stories, showing their experience. We also have livestream. I forgot to mention that, sorry I got so excited getting into influence.

JC: That’s alright. 

Natalie: Yeah, we do livestream shopping sprees. And this is where an influencer can invite their social followers and say, guys, join me on, let’s say Nike 8:00 PM. Friday night. I want to show you the latest trainers that I’ve got to get, and there is a live chat – the consumers can engage with the influence side creates a very exciting, um, uh, shopping experience.

But of course it also brings in high-quality traffic. They’re able to push promotion throughout the live stream. And by minimizing the screen, they users can shop the site alongside their influencer and engage and talk about the product. So, yeah, it’s awesome

JC: Now that’s really good – the livestream and that’s good because I also know that, you know, the platforms of which that do the livestream they give priority and there are algorithms to showing that at the top of everyone’s newsfeed. So live streams get way more attention just in general. All right.

So you’re obviously a very intelligent woman. You’ve been doing this awhile, you know, your stuff. So let me ask you this with all your experience before and during this particular company, what is the best advice either you’ve been given business advice or the best piece of advice that you can give to the audience?

Natalie: The best advice that I can give to someone who is, well, you know, any business owner, whether it’s a brand, whether it’s someone selling product services or software is to stay humble, to take your ego and opinions out of the equation. Listen and observe because that’s where the answers will come from.

If you take yourself out of the equation, your opinions, your thoughts, your ego plays a big part in decision-making and fighting for certain decisions. You lower yourself and you listen, you listen to what customers want. You watch where the market is going. You’ll be able to continuously provide value.

And that has to be the core of the business. How can I love and serve my customers? How can I continuously give them value beyond their expectations? Don’t ask anything in return. Just give once you’ve given value, you’re able to then. Create a product with a perfect market fit and you’re able to create a success out of it.

JC:  I love that. Thank you so much. And listen, I want to thank you for being on the show here. How can people reach you personally, if they want to reach out for any kind of a high-level deals, how do they reach your company? Yeah. What kind of contact information can you give everyone?

Natalie: Thank you. So if you guys are interested out there, visit us at There is an inquiry button there and feel free to send us a message and we’ll get right back to you, and we can set up a demo, a meeting and we can identify the synergy that we can offer your website. And it’s radd. with two DS, correct? Yes. radd. R-A-D-D And do you ever check your LinkedIn if somebody wanted to reach out to you directly?

Yeah. Yes, of course, absolutely. Find me Natalie Staub on LinkedIn with absolute pleasure.

JC: Wonderful Natalie, thanks again so much for being on the show and I look forward to speaking to you soon.

Natalie: Thank you. Thank you for having me, take care. Bye.

infinityadminEpi 30: Leverage Storytelling Using This E-Commerce Software – Natalie Staub, Co-Founder and CMO of radd.