Matt Herbert from Tracksuit: Running The Brand Marathon | #309

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Matt runs through the power of brand

Matt Herbert from Tracksuit

Matt co-founded Tracksuit in 2021 and his steady but fast-paced approach to growth has infused itself in the Tracksuit culture. Under his leadership, the team has gone from strength to strength, bootstrapping Tracksuit from $0 to $3M ARR in less than 19 months.

With eight years of experience developing young tech companies, Matt helped launch Uber into Christchurch in 2016 and went on to lead the business development of Mish Guru across APAC.

In this episode of Add To Cart, we are joined by Matt Herbert, co founder and co CEO of Tracksuit

Tracksuit is a B2B SAAS marketing platform delivering affordable market research and brand tracking to help consumer brands answer the question, “Is what we’re doing working?”.  With over 1300 brands tracked including Heaps Normal, Culture Kings, Bondi Sands and Guzman y Gomez, Tracksuit raised $6.8m AUD at the start of the year and is expanding into the US.  Matt shares how Tracksuit gathers quality insights about your brand, the calculator that allocates budget to maximum effect and how best to survive the downturn.

“What are they talking about when you’re not in the room?”

Matt Herbert

What gets measured, gets managed

“Two years ago, we came together as we were founding Tracksuit just to say, why are consumer brands going on this rapid growth and plateauing? And this challenge of building brands sustainably over the long term and a challenge that we saw time and time again with cost of acquisition increasing with growth slowing down and came back to the concept of what gets measured, gets managed. 

And the understanding or the insight that we’re doing a fantastic job at being able to understand bottom of the funnel conversions, click through rates, impressions, fails. But there was no easy and affordable way to understand how well we are bringing people in at the top of the funnel? How are we building our brands, making more people aware of us, making more people consider us? Why would they be doing that? 

And so that was the challenge that we were looking to solve, to take traditional market research that had been prohibitively expensive for growing consumer brands to say, let’s take the same standards, best in class market research and brand strategy and turn Tracksuit into a measurement and a platform and an affordable tool to sit alongside performance metrics, but really own the way that brand is measured, communicated, and understood.”

Don’t turn off during a downturn

“The research continues to show that in periods of downturns and economic instability, those brands that stay online with their brand building activities, keep consistent and keep in the minds and top of minds for consumers, they come out the best at the back end of a recession. For example, if you turn off and go dark, In another couple of years, you’re going to have to rebuild all those efforts. 

And so what we’re working with on our customers and brands that we’re supporting is to essentially ‘Warren Buffett’ your brands, spread your investment out across 12 months, stay online, stay consistent, and then continue to day trade your performance marketing. 

And that’s going to be putting brands and especially e-commerce and retailers in a strong position to survive the next couple of years or however this long is. And also take market share, while a lot of competitors will be turning off and cutting marketing budgets.”

The 60–40 rule

“The calculator is sitting on our website. The calculator gives brand and brand leaders an effective way of understanding how we should best be allocating budget, going back to the fundamentals of brand building and our philosophy around building future demands, long-term brand building efforts, as well as sales activations. 

The last 10 or so years, we’ve seen this over indulgence in performance marketing, taking up 90% of budgets in a lot of cases. And that’s because it’s been easy to communicate back throughout stakeholders to say, we put a dollar in, we get a dollar 50 out. And also why we’ve gone down that track in terms of performance and sales activations, allocating 90% of budgets that way is that it has allowed us and marketers to go to our stakeholders and talk about marketing and impressions and dollars and cents in numbers that accountants and finance teams and boards get.  But what we see now is that performance marketing sales activations by itself, brands are now starting to see increases in cost of acquisition, smaller than expected customer bases and growth that’s slowing. 

And so our calculator is looking at what’s the best way of allocating that budget, bringing that balance back to brand building and sales activations. The calculator takes the work done by Peter Field and Liz Burnett. around the long and the short of it, which some listeners may be familiar with the 60-40. 60%, the most effective brand building effort, 60% built on brand, allocated to brands, 40% on sales activations.”

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