Some of the best brands start out with the simplest products.
And it’s certainly true for this epic brand.
Pura Vida Bracelets was started by 2 college friends from South California, Griffin Thall, and Paul Goodman, who were on a trip to Costa Rica.
They discovered these incredible local artisans that were producing hand-woven bracelets. The artisans were struggling to make a living so the two friends decided to buy 400 bracelets and sell them in boutiques and surf shops in California.
When they came back home the bracelets sold out immediately, so they bought some more and the rest is history.
Pura Vida was bootstrapped and has a small marketing team with a huge impact. Their revenue has been up 125% year after year, and they’ve donated over $3.5 million to different causes around the world.
The brand was recently sold to Vera Bradley, Inc., a leading American bag and luggage company for a whopping $130 million.
3 strategies that led to Pura Vida’s success:
- The company was profitable from day 1 😲
- Focusing on tasks instead of hours worked, and finishing all tasks for that week with no spillover ✔️
- Huge focus on social media marketing and expanding to every channel possible (omnichannel, Amazon, etc) 💸
In this case study, we want to focus on one marketing channel that Paul and Griffin absolutely nailed and that is - push notifications.
Push notifications are one of those obscure marketing channels that most brands trample on. These notifications look too direct and too disruptive for the user, and most UX designers shun them.
But on the flip side, they convert really well and make tons of money.
1. Interactive notifications
56% of the revenue they generated was from regular push notifications or broadcasts. They sent out sales events, holiday promotions, new product announcements, and quality content (gift guides).
Pura Vida included a lot of interactive elements - GIFs, images, and even countdown timers.
Here’s an example of a countdown timer with a button that copies the code for the user.
These notifications led to over 12,697 orders, generating $526,648 in revenue.
But that’s not all.
The majority of the revenue came from automation.
2. Cart abandonment push flows
Cart abandonment is the lowest-hanging fruit in the eCommerce world. With email, this flow can take hours to build. That’s why Pura Vida Bracelets opted for a simpler version using push notifications.
They created a flow of 3 push notifications with a simple heading, product description, and a CTA.
This flow was a huge success. Here are the stats:
- 44% of the revenue generated by the brand came from this flow
- The average clickthrough rate was 5.9%
- The conversion rate of those clicked was 21.9%
- Over 12,110 orders or $546,121 in revenue
In total, Pura Vida built a subscriber base of 296,722, generating $1,483,116 in sales with a 10X ROI.
Ok, not every brand is going to get these amazing results. But there are quite a lot of things that Pura Vida did right to get there.
Here they are.
3. Stay 100% customer-centric
Pura Vida did a great job of focusing on its ideal customer persona from day 1. And they weave in that personalization throughout the customer journey.
Here are a few different ways that Pura Vida went above and beyond to engage its customers:
- They send out happy birthday emails to their customers, with special promotions.
- They’ve worked really hard on crafting a consistent brand voice.
- They have a robust referral program through Refersion and UGC galleries through Yotpo.
There are over 300,000 posts with the hashtag #puravidabracelets today, like this one:
4. Summarize your brand in 1 line
The famous Wharton business school professor Noah Berger in his book Contagious underscores the importance of having a brand draw out emotion from its customers. That’s the secret behind brands like Coke, Nike, and Gatorade.
“Rather than harping on features or facts, we need to focus on feeling the underlying emotions that motivate people to action” - Noah Berger
If you scroll down on one of the emails from Pura Vida you notice a quick statement that summarizes the brand 👇.
Imagine how a customer feels when the entire brand voice speaks of “living life to the fullest” and “not taking anything for granted”. Gratitude, hope, joy - these are all positive feelings that stay with the customer throughout their journey.
But that’s not all.
These emotions led to something bigger.
5. Inspire your customers to participate in your cause
Like Noah Berger said above, the main goal of focusing on the underlying emotions is to motivate customer actions.
Pura Vida did this in a brilliant way by encouraging customers to become fundraisers and create products that support their personal causes.
The fundraising program led to thousands of orders and millions of dollars in revenue.
Most importantly, it got inspired customers to take action.
6. Co-creating products with customers
Speaking of inspired customers, one of the greatest ways to get customers engaged is co-creation.
Co-creation is the process of collaborative development of concepts, products, or prototypes together with experts, stakeholders, or customers. It’s the entire idea behind the open source movement in tech.
“The more customers realize their vendor is committed to listening, embracing and delivering their precise requirements, the more they want to be involved in that organization. “— Christine Crandell
Large brands like Lego have tried it and saw amazing results. Lego has actually crowdsourced and co-created products with fans for 10+ years. Their program grew to 10 members, 26,000 product ideas submitted and 23 official LEGO sets.
Pura Vida tried this on a much smaller scale but in a very creative way.
They decided to use the comment section of their pages for this.
Instead of the boring “leave a comment” header they renamed the section to “What bracelet should we make next”?
The engagement statement along with all of their omnichannel strategies resulted in tens of thousands of comments.
Want to grow your own brand? Need a comprehensive marketing strategy? Get started with Mayple today!
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