Say It With Beer: The Manflower Co Story | #212

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Emma talks gift giving for those hard to buy for guys.

ep 212
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Nathan Bush is a director at eCommerce talent agency, eSuite. He has led eCommerce for businesses with revenue $100m+ and has been recognised as one of Australia’s Top 50 People in eCommerce four years in a row. You can contact Nathan on LinkedIn, Twitter or via email.


Founder of two e-commerce businesses in the gifting vertical after leaving her career in IT with previous experience at global IT company, Cisco and local unicorn, Afterpay. Emma has built a men's gifting company, Manflower Co from the ground up by offering a unique solution to simplify men’s gifting which has recently scaled significantly experiencing on average 250% year on year growth. Emma is Agile certified and leverages this methodology to scale her businesses.

In this episode of Add To Cart, we are joined by Emma Mazur, founder of gift giving businesses Manflower Co and After Hours. Emma started Manflower back in 2017 when she saw the gap in the market for males in online giving. It’s fair, we’re always forgotten  about. Emma has grown this idea from a single page website with a single product to leading a category with over 200 gift giving options available. Even better, she has now opened her second brand, After Hours for women who are looking for gifts that are a little different to the usual flowers. In this chat we discuss the secrets to how to create a standout gifting experience. We dive into how to box up products for ultimate wow factor, how to encourage reviews with incentives and how she uses out of the box functionality and apps to deliver what looks like a custom experience. 

“That’s the most critical data that I can use to keep growing my business, it’s like a gold mine of information.

Emma Mazur

Proof of concept

At the time, my neighbour worked in marketing, and I went knocking on her door, and I said, “Look, I’ve got this concept, I’ve got this idea, but I need other people to know about it.” And she had a connection with someone at Urban List. And so she gave me an intro. I then said to Urban List, “I want to be on your Valentine’s Day gift guide. How do I do it?” They said, “You need really good, high-res imagery.” 

I then rang my friend who was a photographer and we shot some really great images in his kitchen. I sent them across to Urban List. They loved them and used them as their headline shot of their gift guide. And we sold a hundred boxes for Valentine’s Day.

So that was the beginning of Manflower Co. And I think the feedback we got from that point on really showed that I wasn’t the only one struggling to send gifts to a guy. And I wanted something that looked really sleek and that would be a bit of a show-stopper when it arrived at the office.”

Two customers

“Understanding you’re delivering two things: a service, so you’re delivering the gift on behalf of someone else; and then secondly, you’re delivering a product, which is the gift itself. And with that in mind, you’ve got two customers. You’ve got the person who’s sending the gift, and then you’ve got the person receiving the gift. And understanding how you’re going to service both of them is really critical to this whole equation. 

So I think when you understand the psychology behind it and that you’ve got two different people in play, and that the person you’re actually sending the gift, they need convenience, they need a smooth service, really, if they literally can put in a gift message and not have to think twice and just trust that you’re going to get it. So it’s online customer experience 101, right? Just making sure that you are delivering on what you say you’re going to do.”

Making out-of-the-box  work

“We’re really lucky that they’ve got a huge Shopify app network where any functionality that doesn’t live within Shopify natively, you typically can find an app for. And whilst sometimes that means your flow isn’t as seamless, it just means that you have to take time to understand how Shopify works and then work my process around that a little bit so that I can get the best of both worlds, right? 

Because an out-of-the-box website is really cost-effective. And you can still deliver a great solution for your customers with some of those apps.  So we’ve got our Create Your Own Gift, which is an app from the Shopify Store. Then we use an app that allows us to collect gift messages. You can also configure delivery dates. We don’t have that switched on at the minute, but there’s a whole raft of things that you can do with more or less a click of a button.”

Questions answered in this episode include
  • What’s the secret to a good gifting experience?
  • How do you organise customer data to differentiate between the giftees and gifters?
  • Can you share the tools and processes you use to generate reviews? 

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