This post was originally posted on Forbes.com on SEP 12, 2017. You can access the original post here.
What do Farmville and face creams have in common from a marketing perspective? Plenty, according to Dermstore President, Cathy Beaupain. While not an obvious connection to most, Beaupain’s also not your traditional retail exec. She didn’t climb the corporate ladder as a buyer or through the marketing side of the business. Beaupaintuned her marketing chops running product at gaming company Zynga. From there she joined Dermstore, the multi-brand beauty retailer owned by Target.
Cathy Beaupain is President of Dermstore
Zynga taught Beaupain some invaluable lessons she carried into her retail career: (a) how to be very customer (or “guest”) centric and (b) to use data and testing to understand customer needs. It’s these data-driven, customer-centric principles that enabled Beaupain to double the average annual sales per Dermstore customer within 18 months.
Here’s some of the learnings from Zynga that Beaupainused to drive Dermstore’s growth:
Veronika Sonsev: What are the most valuable skills you learned at Zynga that have benefited you at Dermstore?
Cathy Beaupain: At Zynga, the mission was to connect the world through games. We did this by creating compelling experiences that captured the attention of millions of people globally. Creating these experiences didn’t happen in the dark. We used technology and data to discover what motivated our guests and leveraged those insights to impact product design. Being a customer and data-centric organization required intellectual curiosity, analytical horsepower, and technological innovations. And, sometimes it yielded unexpected results.
For example, at Dermstore we ran an A/B test for an incentive placed close to our add-to-cart button. The hypothesis was the incentive message right next to add-to-cart button would drive increased conversion. But, it didn’t move conversion rate at all.