Before the webinar on September 29, titled Enhancing Your E-comm, I had the opportunity to learn more about Greg Wight, founder and CEO of levelfour. Based in Toronto and internationally recognized, levelfour specializes in Shopper Design research which helps Brands and Retailers optimize communications to drive purchase and equity metrics. Greg’s work has been recognized with multiple Vendor of the Year Awards at leading Retailers for design work as well as winning the J&J North American and Global Shopper Awards three times.
Greg shared his insights on:
- Why he started levelfour
- What a typical ‘day in the life’ looks like as the CEO of levelfour
- How COVID-19 has impacted E-commerce
- How businesses can develop a winning E-commerce communication strategy
Tell me a little about yourself and why you started levelfour?
My passion away from work is coaching minor hockey, where I have coached all three of my kids since 2004. I played baseball at the National Team level in junior and was not the most gifted athlete – I really studied the mental side of the game to compete. When I was exposed to Shopper behaviour while at P&G, and saw the impact it had on the business, I was really drawn to it. Every business I have worked on, getting the Shopper Design fundamentals right builds the business. When I started my own company, I wanted to provide a Shopper Design solution for companies that helped them win, without investing in an entire Shopper Design department.
As the founder and CEO of levelfour, what does a day in your life look like? Or, is it possible to have a typical day in your role?
A typical day will look like optimizing Shopper Design presence (via simulation research) with a client Brand, talking to new clients about what Shopper Design is and how it fits into a Go-to-Market strategy, and working with my team on our current project list. Our capabilities include in-depth Shopper Simulation research, Claims research, E-Comm optimization, and we do some retained work with larger clients, so each day is always unique.
Looking back, how has COVID-19 impacted E-Commerce? Do you have any advice for businesses to adapt to this?
COVID has permanently impacted so much of our lives – different work environments and a rapid development of E-Comm are two changes that are top of mind. With respect to E-Comm advice I would say this – there are a lot of great new tools and capabilities to win in E-Comm, but make sure you pay attention to the base fundamentals of how Shoppers shop and make decisions. Learned shapes and colour, education which addresses the purchase barrier, and consistency of communication across mediums are critical for any business, including on E-Comm.
Looking forward, what is needed for businesses to develop a winning communication strategy in the E-Comm world?
- Resource it properly. Strategy defines structure, so I would ask yourself, “are we prepared & staffed to win in E-comm?”
- Less is more when it comes to content
- Developing the right Claim for your product or service is a secret weapon that few businesses leverage. Check out L’Oreal or Colgate as best in class examples of how to leverage Claims to drive Brand Choice vs. a competitor.
Finally, tell us something about you such as your current or all-time favourite book, podcast, blog, conference, etc.?
My favourite book is Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett – most people I recommend this to say the same thing once they’ve read it. And I listen to Spittin’ Chicklets when I’m in the car for a long drive, which seems to be far less often than what it was like before COVID.
Highlights From The Webinar
During the one-hour webinar, Greg led us through shopper design and the keys for winning in the e-comm world. Ultimately, his five key recommendations for e-comm success were:
- Develop a Brand Audit slide for your business and asses how it looks- this is Shoppers Design at a basic level!
- Be choiceful on what you communicate. Don’t go more than 3 pieces of information on a page and use visuals wherever you can for those 3 pieces (visuals + text = 3).
- Ensure you understand your Consumer’s known Brand and/or category visuals- These are things we have anchored and learned in our mind and can leverage as a business.
- Balance the beauty of Graphic Design with functional messaging that addresses the barrier to purchase- Always try to combine these two pieces.
- Strive for unify messaging across E-comm, Bricks & Mortar, Digital communications.
Greg emphasized the importance of understanding that our brains are wired the way they are wired. Whether it was 20,000 years ago or now where e- comm is rapidly growing, our brains don’t work differently based on which forms of shopping we are doing, including on a tablet, phone, laptop or standing in front of a shelf. The goal is to leverage these to drive your business in all aspects.
About the Author
Kyla Mackie is a recent graduate from Mount Royal University, where she obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration, with a major in Marketing and minor in International Business and Economics. During her time at University, she was the Co-President of Enactus, a non-profit organization that helps create positive sustainable change through economic, social, and environmental projects. Now, she is currently working at the Calgary Marketing Association as the Communications Coordinator.