How to use New Content Development Tactics to Boost eCom Sales & Conversion Rate

Jun 29, 2021 3:00 pm4:00 PM EST

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Key Discussion Takeaways

While eCommerce has only grown recently, its greatest weakness continues to be presentation. The inability to physically touch and see a product leaves some customers hesitant. While a picture slideshow is a great start, consumer expectations are quickly outgrowing the basics. Digital content strategy is becoming a necessity for eCommerce brands. For Threekit, they believe interactive content is the best way to meet those heightened expectations.

Threekit is a 3D product configuration platform, giving online shoppers a complete view of the product. They apply their Hollywood CGI knowledge towards sleek and comprehensive presentations. For leading brands such as HP and TaylorMade, this interactive content has translated to better customer experiences. But is this content the right fit for your business?

Aaron Conant hosts Ben Whitmer, Account Executive at Threekit, to field common questions about interactive content. He covers concerns like “Is 3D content valuable for my industry?” and “How does it work with my eCommerce platform?” They go over digital strategy and how to take your presentation to the next level. Ben also highlights existing customer storefronts to show what Threekit’s content looks like in action.

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

 

  • Ben Whitmer of Threekit explains how to make an engaging digital product experience
  • How have customer expectations for online content changed over the years?
  • What makes interactive content so valuable for consumers?
  • How digital content works in different eCommerce industries
  • The power of personalization in products
  • How long does it take to implement interactive content?
  • The way Threekit works with eCommerce platforms
  • The differences between B2B and retail digital content
  • How to start developing a digital product strategy
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Event Partners

Guest Speakers

Aaron Conant

Co-Founder & Managing Director at BWG Connect

Aaron Conant is Co-Founder and Chief Digital Strategist at BWG Connect, a networking and knowledge sharing group of thousands of brands who collectively grow their digital knowledge base and collaborate on partner selection. Speaking 1x1 with over 1200 brands a year and hosting over 250 in-person and virtual events, he has a real time pulse on the newest trends, strategies and partners shaping growth in the digital space.

Ben Whitmer

Account Executive at Threekit

Ben Whitmer is the Regional Vice President of Sales at Threekit. He has over a decade of experience working in the eCommerce space, helping brands evolve and build long-lasting relationships with consumers. Ben is passionate about aligning core competencies to help brands scale their market strategies.

Event Moderator

Aaron Conant

Co-Founder & Managing Director at BWG Connect

Aaron Conant is Co-Founder and Chief Digital Strategist at BWG Connect, a networking and knowledge sharing group of thousands of brands who collectively grow their digital knowledge base and collaborate on partner selection. Speaking 1x1 with over 1200 brands a year and hosting over 250 in-person and virtual events, he has a real time pulse on the newest trends, strategies and partners shaping growth in the digital space.

Ben Whitmer

Account Executive at Threekit

Ben Whitmer is the Regional Vice President of Sales at Threekit. He has over a decade of experience working in the eCommerce space, helping brands evolve and build long-lasting relationships with consumers. Ben is passionate about aligning core competencies to help brands scale their market strategies.

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Discussion Transcription

Aaron Conant 0:18

Happy Tuesday everybody. My name is Aaron Conant, Co-founder and Managing Director here at BWG Connect. We're a networking knowledge sharing group of 1000s of brands, who do exactly that we network and knowledge share together to stay on top of the newest trends, strategies, pain points, newest happenings across the board, anything that shaped in the digital space as a whole. Love to have a conversation with anybody on the line today. I talk with about 30 to 40 brands a week to stay on top of those Digital Trends and more than happy to share across the board what we're seeing. But also we'd love to hear from you on Hey, what would you like to have a future event on as well, we're getting back to in person events here in the next few months. So if you're in tier one city, look for those, send us a note you'd like to be considered. You know, it's basically if we show up and it's the right topic, we'd love to have you there. A couple of housekeeping items. As we kick this off, we're starting three to four minutes after the hour, just a heads up, we're going to wrap this up with three to four minutes to go as well. So you plenty of time to be on to your next meeting without being late. The other thing is we want to get as many questions answered as possible at any point in time. If you have questions, drop them into the question section there, you know, drop into the chat or email them directly to me, Aaron aaron@bwgconnect.com. And we will tackle questions that way for sure. So I want to I want to go ahead and kick this off. You know, the idea of content is just I should say the idea that this focus on content is just taken hold over the past 12 months here is more content is consumed at a more rapid pace across the digital landscape, different platforms, you know, ramping up, ramping up requiring additional content, that's everything from your direct to consumer set to a to Amazon to other marketplaces, maybe it's your social media feeds, whatever it is content and the requirements that you're required as a brand to have. And produce is just gone through the roof, and in the quality of it as well. And so we've got some great friends, great partners of the network over a Threekit. They're supporters of a lot of brands in the network come highly recommended across the board. And they're just great, great friendly people and really knowledgeable. So ask Ben, if you jump on today, and kind of give us some insights as to what's happening across the industry, their leaders in this space, what they see happening, obviously, how they're helping brands out because they've come so highly recommended. And then obviously answer any questions that we have for them as a whole. So I'm going to you know, I'll kick it over to you, Ben, if you want to do a brief intro on yourself and on three kids, that'd be awesome. And then we can kind of jump into the conversation as a whole sound good.

Ben Whitmer 2:58

Yeah, it sounds great. Aaron, thanks so much. And everybody who's joining in here today, I appreciate you spending an hour here with us. As Aaron mentioned, my name is Ben Whitmer. And I'm an Account Executive here with Threekit. I've been at Threekit for going on about three years now. But I come from a pretty robust background in just digital experience in general. And, you know, just by way of maybe some background on Threekit, and we can get into this a little bit more in depth here during the presentation. But Threekit is a 3D and augmented reality software provider. So as we start talking about content and content strategies, there's been a lot of that happened in the market. And that's some of the things that we're we're here to talk to you about today. But over the course of the presentation, these are some of the themes that we were planning to hit on. And we'll make sure that my screen is accelerating here, we're planning to hit on maybe some industry trends, to qualify some of those industry trends with just Threekit's background in general. And then maybe walk through a bunch of examples together of how people are developing content that's really driving buyers to one visit their sites and then to actually convert into meaningful customers at higher average order value and so forth. So maybe with that said, just just to dive in, I always tried to boil things down into you know that the highest overreaching categories that I possibly can, in regardless of the companies that we're talking to and the companies that we're working with, whether it's jewelry or its apparel, or its sporting goods, I mean, you name it. These kinds of three themes are all fitting into folks go to market approach. Every company that we're talking to, is actively developing a mindset for the first customer interactions and it's all rooted in how do we make a more engaging digital product experience. The thing that's kind of been really interesting is that most of the industries that we're talking to are a different maturity levels. But regardless of the industries that we're talking to all of them are thinking through that mindset of saying, Hey, we need to prioritize how our customers engaging with us online with our content, before we ever have the opportunity to engage with them person to person. And so the big themes that we keep coming through and seeing is that these interactive product experiences, these interactive content experiences are directly facilitating higher conversion rates, increased customer satisfaction, higher average order value, reduced returns, but the even just customer loyalty in general, if you've given them engaging content experience, people are coming back, they're coming back for more, and they're willing to be brand loyalty. And so, you know, there's a lot of research that's out there in the market today. And I'm sure everyone who's on the call, has seen some of it or maybe even experienced it themselves, but the market is really gearing up big time. For this type of engaging interactive experience. If you're seeing any of the research out there, buyers are kicking in doors, saying we want this we're willing to pay more for it. conversion rates are through the roof. A lot of people are even abandoning brands that they've historically purchased from, because they don't have content geared towards what the customers interested in. Today, in 2021. It's a much different world today than it was even just two years ago for what people's expectations are for how they engage with content online. And so where this is really being driven out of I'm sure you've seen this, but the leading marketplaces have all started redesigning their footprint to be able to facilitate more engaging interactive experiences. the Apple's of the world, the Google's Samsung's the Shopify, these marketplaces are all saying, hey, well, the market is telling us that they want more interactive content. So if we can't facilitate and make our platforms capable of handling this interactive content, then we're gonna miss the boat in a big way. And the big gap for most companies out there is saying, Well, here are these tools. And here are these platforms that allow us to serve up this really meaningful, engaging content. But we don't have the tools to create that content. So you know, how we view Threekit here is just for everybody is we kind of view our technology is that nexus between creative and commercial, the whole idea saying people more than ever want to engage with lots and lots and lots of content. And they want to be able to personalize and they want to be able to customize and they want to be able to interact with these things before you know making any type of buying decision. And so if you have a technology that can help you launch that it becomes a lot easier to achieve that type of scale. Maybe just by way of some some background here into you know, the the qualified opinion that started at the beginning of the presentation here, Threekit. It's it's start actually in Hollywood. So how we ended up in this cloud software space specifically designed for, you know, companies to launch these experiences, we kind of stumbled into it. So if anyone has seen like the Avenger films, or the Harry Potter's or the Twilight's, I mean, the list is kind of endless. You've actually already seen some of the core underpinning technology of Threekit at work, our founder was was big in the Hollywood CGI scene. And what became really interesting is that, you know, when companies when, when the employees at these companies were looking at these movies, and they were watching the Iron Man, you know, fly around on the screen, they're saying, Well, why can't we create these types of engaging experiences with our content for how consumers are engaging with our products. And so we started getting approached by a lot of, you know, manufacturers, a lot of retailers saying, We've got to find a better way, because this is the expectations our buyers have. And, you know, a short, five years later, Threekit's kind of the de facto solution, when we start talking about a lot of these eCommerce tools is, hey, the the core underlying platform itself to facilitate an eCommerce transaction is typically you know, one of these tools that there's a variety of tools in the market. However, the content that we're creating to fill up those tools, we need a way to really weaponize how we're achieving that scale. And that's exactly what what we're doing here are three kit and why I mentioned this whole idea of Nexus is you know, working taking the commercial inputs or taking these creative inputs. And one of the core challenges of creating content is not only just creating at one time Creating it at scale in a variety different ways. So our technology empowers you to be able to combine the creative and commercial inputs to create a lot of different types of experiences, you know, whether it's interactive 3d, whether it's augmented reality, whether it's lifestyle imagery, and ultimately plugged this into a lot of different types of endpoints. And so a lot of the times, we're talking to companies that are saying, Hey, we want to take our marquee product, and we feel that, you know, being able to offer it in 140 different colors is going to be impactful. We need a way to show that online. Well, how many colors are you showing right now? Five, okay, well, we can help you create that type of experience. And now all of a sudden, we're driving additional conversion rates in your very interesting Ladybug, you know, themed material for whatever it is you sell. Or maybe it's a brush nickel, or maybe it's a copper, you name it. And so I thought maybe it would be kind of interesting for everyone joining the call today, when we start talking about this idea of interactive content. A lot of interactive content is also rooted in some core themes that we're seeing in the market. So some of those themes are things like, hey, personalization, and customization are really important to buyers, they're willing to spend more money to get there. They're willing to invest dollars to make it their own, but how can we unlock those types of experiences for our customers to capture those dollars. And so, you know, this is a great example here of saying, Hey, here's interactive content that allows people to upload custom images or custom logos, in order to facilitate some type of purchase decision. You know, I'm from Chicago, I'm a huge Bulls fan, it's been a very painful NBA playoff experience with with the Bull's not participating. But you know, I could upload a Bull's logo, for lack of a better word on to this hat and make a purchase decision, I can customize all the colors and really understand the product I'm going to buy before I'm gonna buy it. And same holds true with the idea of personalizing for, you know, different types of text inputs. So if you know your fiance is named Stacy, and it's really important in, you know, your anniversary gift that her name is written in there. Well, you can do that all in real time and your buyer has a lot of confidence with the content that they're engaging with is a proper representation of the product, they're ultimately going to be purchasing. The other ideas that kind of fit into this theme and I kid you it's it's really wide reaching there, I kid you not, it's it's really wide reaching with all the different ways that you can look to create this type of interactive content for your buyers. So this is an example where sizing is incredibly important for the buyer, you can stretch grow, shrink the the product that's ultimately being purchased. And I always like to flash an example like this up when we're talking about content with folks, because oftentimes, we're talking to a diverse set of customers diverse set of prospects. And what we hear all the time from b2b companies is, well, we don't really need to show a customer anything before they're buying it, who needs to see what an exact, you know, balcony is going to look like on on on some commercial building. Turns out every engineer who's going to buy a balcony needs to see what it's going to look like. And so rather than engaging back and forth, with the business for six weeks to put together a mock up of what that could look like. Now, an engineer can just go directly to a site and see what that looks like. So again, just trying to show a lot of different examples here to get everyone thinking about different types of interactive content, because when you can deliver on these types of customer experiences, it has a direct impact with them, ultimately making a purchase decision. So this is a great example of more interactive content, right, these custom animations gives that same experience to the buyer that they would get if they were in store evaluating the safe, you can click a button to unlock the safe itself. And you can see even how to turn the handle turns. If you want to zoom in and be able to understand the interior workings and fabric, you could do all those things in a way that really kind of unlocks that that engaging customer experience. And oftentimes, a lot of companies are looking for ways to express content in in terms of dimensions. So being able to say, Hey, we have this virtual representation, how would this fit in concert with the place where my refrigerator is designed to be? Other ways that people are creating, you know, this, this type of interactive content can be for product education. So oftentimes, we can be engaging with potential buyers that want to embed certain types of videos or certain types of help icons to really help us Establish the value proposition of whatever it is that you're selling, even if it might not be fully visual in those elements. By creating this engaging asset, it's encouraging the person to stick around longer and learn more about the product that they're interested in. And maybe this last example here, before we get into some customer examples, just outright is even this idea of creating interactive assets that are, you know, engaging in a drag and drop type of way. It is very exciting. You know, this is an example, that I would say is less exciting, I should probably show some customer examples here that are a little bit more enticing, but this is a customer example, that is for the dentistry world. So Brasseler, hands down. If anyone's ever been to a dentist, you actually know who Brasseler is because their products have been in the in your mouth. But one thing that's really important to a dentist as they're looking to buy certain types of tools is that they're organized in the appropriate way for how they're going to be engaging with their patients. So ultimately, all the equipment that is used in your mouth also needs to be sent out and cleaned. And so these things are all laser engraved in a dentist can see in real time exactly what their name personalized into this drill bit will look like as they're as they're going through and checking out.

Aaron Conant 16:22

Yeah, I want to I want to jump in real quick, is that a question that come in, and then a couple over email. And just reminder, if others if you have questions, you know, this is applied across various product categories from is away from dentistry to fashion. And furniture, obviously, across the board, but you know, how will this technology work on quote unquote, fluid products? And I don't think it means like liquid but, you know, changing one's like floral arrangements?

Ben Whitmer 16:55

Yeah, no? Great question. So whoever whoever asked that out there, that's actually a perfect representation. Because when you think about the flower itself, there's a lot that goes in to fundamentally taking a picture of a flower, right? It's a real life product. If you don't take, if you don't get your flowers delivered to your photography studio at the right time, then they're going to be wilting or they're not going to be in full bloom. The great thing about a digital flower is it actually lasts forever, you can show it fully wilted, or you can show it pre bloom, or you can show it at a full bloom. But what's great is each of these individual unique flowers that you could be selling can be arranged in any variety of ways to portray those to a customer. So if you wanted to give your customer the ability to configure their own bouquet, you absolutely could, if you just wanted to show a floral or floral arrangement, a variety different ways, you know, lilies versus roses, you could do that as well. So you know, lots of different actually applications for how you could leverage this and in that type of use case, but you know, that's specifically floral arrangements. The whole idea, though, is, once you've digitized your product, you can recycle that in a variety of different ways. So when we start talking about content, whether we're looking at an interactive experience on the screen, or an augmented reality experience, or we're just rendering this out into pictures, you can use that one asset in a variety different ways. Now, Aaron, hopefully that that addressed the question, I can't see all the q&a.

Aaron Conant 18:28

No, sorry. Yeah, it does. The next one is around how does it handle fabric? Right? So a lot of apparel on the line didn't want to get into metallics and stuff like that, because I think this stuff is great. But if it can't actually render it as realistic as possible, then there's some questions out there, how does it handle fabric? And then how does it handle metallics? And then the next one, you know, goes to the next one is, you know, jewelry or something like that?

Ben Whitmer 18:55

Yeah. And I'm just writing down some quick notes here. So that I can address all those things. So when we think about, you know, fabric, and upholstery and apparel, this is actually like a perfect segue into like, maybe showing off some different types of customer examples here. You know, a lot of companies are thinking about how do we create this content at scale? There's, there's some companies that are really excelling here in some some big ways. So Crate and Barrel is a great example of that. You know, they're creating content to engage customers to say, Hey, we're going to do photorealistic rendering to do complete photography replacement. So somebody has a direct physical representation of what a product should look like. Even the tweed that goes into, you know, the stitching of the products, right, to give that photorealistic semblance that somebody is looking at a real product. So when you ask the question, you know, how does this work for apparel or for fabric or upholstery, all the images that you're seeing there on the right, were actually rendered directly through Threekit's platform. Crate and Barrel's big problem was Well, we sell not only a wide variety of products, but all of those products that we sell, come in lots of different upholstered items, whether it's you know, fabric, whether it's leather, like you name it, there's a lot of different even finishes that are associated with like their woodgrains, on legs and things like that. So being able to leverage Threekit's to create all those different permutations was like their core use case for first engaging with our team. But what was really cool behind that, and you know, Aaron, to your point, right, once you have your good looking asset inside the system, you can then look to use it in a variety different ways. So we have the photorealistic stuff on the right, but what was also really important to their customers is the idea of saying, does it fit my space? So this little iPhone that you're seeing here, they were able to take those assets, and now they're deploying those assets into an augmented reality experience. So a customer can say, Well, what does it look like? Now? Does it fit my space? And that's really kind of using content and weaponizing content to drive people towards the buying decision that you'd want them to make when when engaging with the product online.

Aaron Conant 21:10

So whether it sort of are you seeing then people use this to create additional content for? Because this is that's creating a static image? Right? Are you seeing them create this for other digital campaigns as well?

Ben Whitmer 21:26

Yeah, oh, without a doubt, I mean, I don't have any examples up here as a part of the presentation. But we've seen a lot of our customers creating, like representative walkthroughs. They're using this to render off content that they're using across platforms like Instagram or Facebook. You know, the need for content is not slowing down anytime soon. I'm preaching to the choir and the audience that we're talking to here. So being able to say, hey, well, can we render off a specific image in a specific iteration in context, so that we can post in, you know, three Instagram posts per day, makes this incredibly easy to be able to create and leverage and kind of syndicate this content in a variety different platforms?

Aaron Conant 22:11

Awesome, I love it. I think that's something that's incredibly meaningful. You know, rather than having to shoot send out to for an additional photo shoot or anything like this, there's no way that people can Crate and Barrel could capture every one of those images. Awesome. Anyways, keep going. And everybody you have additional questions, drop in the question section, keep emailing them to me, and we'll keep getting them answered.

Ben Whitmer 22:34

Yeah, and and great questions for everyone. That's it's asking, again, more, more, the merrier here. Maybe another customer example that's out there, you know, creating this content is our customer TaylorMade, right? And any fans of golf, the Sim2 product line has made a lot of noise. A lot of people are really excited about it, they've got some pretty amazing technology going into their golf clubs. But one of the things that was really interesting about TaylorMade, and I'm probably not shocking anybody, when I say this, if you're in the market for a $550 driver, you are definitely in the market for a $650 driver, you know, they know something about their buyer. And so sure, you can buy something off the shelf. But if you're going to be already investing that type of money, why not make it your own, especially when your competitors aren't capable of giving this type of personalization experience. So just by creating this type of interactive content, they've inherently added $100 to every single transaction that's going through this personalization experience, versus the off the shelf stuff. You know, these once you start down the personalization path, these drivers can actually range up to two grand with all the personalization items that they're driving. But the whole idea was, well, you know, we want to make a big splash. And we want to really unlock this type of buying experience. And with people not going to the stores, let's empower them, to engage with this content, learn about these things, make it their own. If you are planning to visit TaylorMade site, I highly encourage you to do so you'll notice that there's now a banner across the top that says these are the longest lead times they've ever had, because people are buying personalized clubs out the wazoo. And the whole idea is, Hey, you know, let's make it easy for people to get what they want. They're already in the market for it, and they're willing to pay it spend a premium to get the product that they that intrigues the most. Maybe just another example here again, I'm trying to show some real world examples because I think a lot of the times when we start talking about content, content for content sake is valuable, right? Being able to have something that somebody looks at and says okay, cool. This is a good reminder is great. But when you're using content in In a way that helps answer a lot of the buying questions that goes into the product that you sell. That's where there becomes this really exciting end state, for whatever it is you're doing, because a customer doesn't need to engage with other people, a customer only needs to engage with the content to be in a position to make a buying decision. So Lovesac is is a customer of ours. And if you're not familiar with Lovesac, where they got their start, they were kind of a luxury beanbag. And they're fantastic. If you've never had the chance to sit in one, I highly encourage it, it's it's like you're laying inside of a big pillow. It's amazing. But they've since diversified in a pretty big way with their product offering and in their their fastest growing product. The thing that's a massive revenue driver for them is their idea of their modular sectional. So it's not a sectional, it's a sectional. But you can configure these products in any which way. I mean, if you want to make a modular sofa with 136 different places to sit down, you could do it. And, you know, a lot of the company customers that they're selling to have very unique configurations in their homes. So they wanted to empower their customers to be able to build whatever type of sectional experience makes sense for their home with the, you know, upholstery and fabric that makes sense for for their decor. So they decided to create this interactive content that allows people to maybe change the floors to get a semblance of how would certain fabrics look. But then a customer has complete autonomy and control to build out the exact sectional that is right for them. And since launch, I mean, it's been pretty, they've been very ecstatic about it, right? They've seen pretty massive increases to digital conversion, their average order value is higher, because a lot of people are buying the additional accessories. And they're also any the content people that are also thinking, how do we use this in store, they've been posting their highest in store conversion rates ever since launching this, because their sales team is using their online content to sell more effectively, and consultatively in store.

Aaron Conant 27:10

So a couple questions that come in. One is like how long does it take to implement? You know, to what is the uplift, everything comes with the cost? Right? And so what is the uplift, you know, conversion? And maybe you hit that in the beginning? You know, if, if it's implemented, what do you see as an increase in sales, you know, to justify, you know, the return on investment that comes along with it. So a couple of things there, you know, how long does it take? You know, and then what do you see as a typical ROI or a timeframe on on, you know, putting something like this into place, then additional more functional questions, they come over after that I want to get, I want to make sure we capture two, which is around you know, what, what type of files are needed ahead of time? You know, there's a, there's a few other functional things that I want to get into, as far as questions go, if others have questions, email them to me, Aaron aaron@bwgconnect.com or just drop in the question section here. So how long does it take to implement? I guess is the first one.

Ben Whitmer 28:16

Yeah, so I wrote down timeline ROI and then file. So I'll start with timeline. timeline is it's it's wide open. And I don't say that invasively at all, we can launch as quickly as you know, 48 hours, depending on what we're doing. We can also have deployments that stretch as long as six months. I mean, candidly, if it was ever going to be a project that was going to take longer than six months, we would probably be talking to, you know, any buyer prospective buyer about saying, hey, let's think a little bit differently on how we would do what we do or start with a different subset or functions that we're aiming to address. Because we can achieve ROI much faster with with that type of focused launch. But yeah, I would kind of say, hey, if we're just looking to launch something, that you have a 3D thing, and you want it to spin around on the screen, I mean, that that's an incredibly fast process to stand those things up. Yeah, the right files is inputs. So I'll get to that files point here in a second. Um, ROI, right? That is we're always aiming for ROI to drive value in the ways that make sense for our customers, and they go to market models. So if you sell directly online, in a commerce platform, you're probably going to be focused on engagement, how long people are standing on stay on the site, you know, average order value conversion rates, reduced returns, right? All of those things we see direct ties to when it comes to the results that Threekit offers a our customers. Things like augmented reality have made a huge impact to conversion rates. Things work a little bit differently in the in the b2b space right? The value drivers that we're aiming for here are things like, you know, how many leads? Are we actually creating for our business? How many touch points? Are we ultimately reducing in the sales cycle time? What how are we shortening that sales cycle time? Just in general as a business? Are we growing the you know, the overall footprint of the transactions that that result in some like formal quote down the road for whoever we're selling to? And, you know, across the board, we're seeing that this might actually lend itself well, and to, to that conversation point. So Lindsey Scoggins is a customer of us their jewelry company, if anyone has, you know, tried to buy jewelry online, one of the things that you understand is man, that's that's a big transaction. It's a big transaction to go online sight unseen, and Lindsey Scoggins understands that completely, they understand that there's going to be more engagement, whether that's engagement over the phone, or like you name it, there's going to be a little bit more personalized touch, they wanted to use content to go through and really hit on that type of personalized approach that you would get if you were sitting down with a jeweler sketching out exactly what ring, your ring would look like. So a customer would go through this type of, you know, interactive experience, they would get multiple, you know, visual representations in a render picture state. And ultimately, this has led to a reduction in the number of touch points for their business by about 20%. Which is really exciting when you start thinking about, you know, that type of transaction process. So, you know, Aaron, maybe to address the ROI question. I mean, there's ROI across the board, wherever we're going. That's it's more of a question of, when is the right time to do this for the organization? And like, How quickly can we get there? Because you can just put on your own consumer hat, and start asking yourself the question, what would you sooner engage with a picture that asks, you know, answers, no questions, or something that's interactive, that addresses all the questions you'd have about the product you're about to buy?

Aaron Conant 32:11

Is there any question that comes in? Is there an impact and overall site speed? You know, a lot of concerns with that. How do you address that?

Ben Whitmer 32:21

Yeah. So when it comes to us loading Threekit's player in for like an interactive 3D state, there isn't a huge, you know, impact to site speed one way or the next augmented reality has really no bearing on on site speed. And obviously, if we're just doing a bunch of picture rendering, it be the equivalent of loading up a just a picture on your site. The bigger question is, you know, what are the site speeds goals that you kind of have? And what's important to your team? And what is that? for lack of a better word trade off? I mean, there isn't a huge impact to site speed. However, if you think that the amount of content that you're pumping into a 3D experience would have that type of impact, well, are there things that we can do to revise or, you know, built into our technologies, the concept of like lazy loading, so it only will show a small subset of the thing until you start engaging with the asset that loads in the rest of the experience? So I know a lot of people are laser focused on that for for SEO and, you know, well, the controls within our technology are purpose built to be able to address speed.

Aaron Conant 32:35

Awesome. Is it possible for a user to upload their own picture, for example, upload your own picture to see how a pair of earrings look on you?

Ben Whitmer 33:48

Yeah, totally. Without a doubt, so he there's two ways of answering this question. I'll try both. So one, Threekit's technology 100% 100% supports image upload. So the same way that we could do an upload of a logo that we can seen earlier, ie in the presentation, you can upload a photo, to be the backdrop of whatever we're engaging with here. And you could drag and drop, you know, the the assets onto somebody's ears, if that's important. You know, we have a customer use case that they're dragging, and it's somebody configuring a door, and then they're dropping that door onto a picture of their house. Because they want to see what a red door might look like, as opposed to their existing front door. Great question. Yeah.

Aaron Conant 34:41

Also, is there any issue? Are you directly integrated with all the major eCommerce platforms is the next question that comes in?

Ben Whitmer 34:51

Without a doubt, I think a different way of thinking about it though. So yes, we have connections with all of those things, but Threekit's actually it's a headless platforms. We can plug into anything. You know, we deal with a lot of companies that they may have a custom developed eCommerce stack, they may be using a headless eCommerce stack themselves, it could be all homegrown, it's all of that's fine. You know, our, our embed process is incredibly easy to put our player into any webpage. And then it really just kind of becomes a data mapping exercise once we're there, you know, whatever commerce tool that we're engaging with, ultimately has product data, and probably product variant information. And we just simply mapped those things to the Three kit inputs.

Aaron Conant 35:41

Awesome.

Ben Whitmer 35:42

So I tried to be thorough there, I doubted that. I couldn't.

Aaron Conant 35:45

That's where I think I like to get into the nitty gritty a little bit. And just a reminder, if others have questions, drop them in to the q&a section there, we'll make sure that we get them answered.

Ben Whitmer 35:57

Yeah, and then one other question that I wrote down here was for just the files themselves outright, you know, we're dealing with a pretty diverse set of customers, when it comes to content needs. I mean, some folks have all of the inputs required to just launch this thing, you know, say, Hey, we have our existing files, we're gonna load them into Threekit, map them and launch, that's great. You know, typically, if you have those files, they're probably 3D files that we're we're pulling into Threekit's, you don't have those, and you need them to be created. You know, our team can create them. If you have resources on your team to create them as part of the project. Great, we can do that. We also have a pretty extensive partner ecosystem. If you need 3D content to be created as a part of this use case, to then take those raw inputs and scale them out in a variety different ways.

Aaron Conant 36:50

Awesome.

Ben Whitmer 36:51

But yeah, maybe With that said, I thought that I would kind of take some time to address any other questions that were out there. And maybe while we're doing that, if if everyone on the phone has the opportunity, I'm sure everyone after the past 18 months is very familiar with QR codes. But in case you're not, you can open up your camera. And if you scan this QR code, you could actually try augmented reality for yourself, if you haven't had the chance to do so. And, you know, have some fun with that. I think there's a few different assets in there. And you can kind of place them on on the desk in front of you.

Aaron Conant 37:33

Yeah, love it. The next question that comes in. Yeah, so everybody tried, it's super neat here. The the Do you have any clients that use this tool to sell to wholesale accounts or distributors, as opposed to an end consumer, more like a line sheet, you know, tool for a virtual market week, or, you know, as opposed to a full retail experience? So just seeing that on the b2b side, I think as well, but also from a part I know, this has caught before a Parts Catalog side, but do you ever have people using this tool rather than you know, you know, you know, there's a lot of you know, I know, the market weeks and, you know, are all coming back, but they're they're virtual for a while you see people using this as a virtual catalog or a b2b side?

Ben Whitmer 38:18

Without a doubt, yes. And, you know, we deal with a lot of companies that have kind of two tier distribution systems too. So they have a different experience for, you know, the casual visitor to their site. And then behind a firewall or a login, they have a different set of things that certain types of distributors are allowed to see access and sell against. And so a lot of folks are saying, Okay, well, our distribution network, or the, you know, the the folks that we're selling to probably have some unique requirements, and we want the ability to make it easy for, you know, to engage with those folks to but we want to be a little bit more exclusive with, with the information that we're showing them very common. In our go to market.

Aaron Conant 39:06

Awesome. Yeah. What can you are there any product category? Next question, are there any product categories that you know, you find this not as well suited for? So I can put that and I can say, Hey, where do you see this the most often used? Is it apparel. Is it furniture? Is it home goods, is it everywhere?

Ben Whitmer 39:30

Yeah, well, I actually have a really easy answer the first way. So if you're a software company, this is a bad tool for you. Typically, your baseline requirement, oftentimes for the companies that we're talking to about creating mass content, they sell a physical product. So we'll start there, and then you know, really, is it a good fit kind of comes down to a few different things. And generally there's a pretty good litmus test is, do you if you were a buyer of the product? Could you see it being valuable to your purchase decision to be able to see it from all the different angles, see it and all the different variations that it comes in? Being able to see it in context? If you can answer those questions, yes, then there's a really good fit for using content in this way. So, you know, whether it is consumer goods, whether it's sporting goods, I mean, I kid you not, we have customers that are using this to sell urinals in a b2b space, we also have this being used by high end luxury designers. To sell apparel, it's kind of all different stretches of people, the thing that every single one of our customers has in common is one, they need to create a lot of content to, they want the ability to have that content be meaningful to some type of buying decision. So in a b2c use case, you know, visual quality is really important, oftentimes, or that idea of personalization or customization. On the b2b side, if it's a product that has some type of configuration change, that would be important, as a part of the functional use of the b2b product. You know, all of those are applicable. And hopefully, that that was a good way of saying it, as long as you have a physical product, you'd typically be in pretty good spot to get value out of. Yeah,

Aaron Conant 41:31

I mean, the next question that comes in is just Can you address kind of the business model as a whole? Is it? You know, is it is it cost based? is a SaaS based platform? Or is it a cost based on number of renderings?

Ben Whitmer 41:44

Yeah, so we are a cloud based software solution. So there's an annual subscription. And then for customers that are starting off, you know, our technology is designed to be self service. However, that initial implementation, typically, we have kind of a teach you to fish type of implementation approach, you know, teaching your team how to get assets inside of the system, and how to weaponize them for your business, as you look to expand across a broader, wider breadth of products.

Aaron Conant 42:19

Awesome, love it. See here. Next question that comes in is how time is so kind of similar? How time consuming? Is it to initially put together for a shop? would you suggest a trial on individuals use or across the site?

Ben Whitmer 42:43

So typically, what we find to be impactful is understanding what the business priority is, and the need. So if, you know, the idea saying, Hey, we're we're launching, you know, an augmented reality experience across all products, okay, well, then let's drive a consistent experience across those products. That's great. Sometimes we're working with customers that are saying, hey, well, we want to dip our toes into what personalization and customization could look like to our business. So we want to deploy one to start and learn just operationally as a business with some of the considerations that just go into being able to sell and manufacturer to a customized product as opposed to an off the shelf product. So generally, what we would recommend is talk through the use case with a member of our team and kind of put your heads together on where could be a valuable place to start to drive the type of content and consumer experience, you know, customer experience the dream before.

Aaron Conant 43:39

Yeah, I think that's it, I think it's Is it an all or nothing? Or is it a trial? And you kind of roll it out in land and expand?

Ben Whitmer 43:48

Yeah. And yes, is the answer to that question. I mean, it could be start small and grow. It's very common for a lot of the companies that we work with, I would say companies that are on the more mature side of their digital journey, they're in a position to do a big bang, because they're kind of further along with, you know, what the steps that would be involved in doing a universal rollout.

Aaron Conant 44:15

Yeah. So the next question that comes in, and this is fun, it's awesome to everybody. Either emailing them in or driving the q&a there. This is in we sit, I think we addressed this a little bit. This is support photography of actual items for these for, you know, digital file CAD renderings only.

Ben Whitmer 44:34

So these would be 3D renders exclusively so we aren't taking pictures with our technology. You can upload photos to Threekit and use them as part of the experience, but there is no physical photography that's happening here. Because ultimately, when we have an asset inside of the system, because it's a digital asset, we can then put our customers in a position to use it in all the different ways that they would want to. Versus, you know, a lot of times when you have a picture, unless you're taking this into Photoshop and doing some extensive work in there it is exclusively always a picture. versus when we're starting kind of in this digital state, it can be an interactive 3D asset, it could be an augmented reality asset, or it could be that same photo that you'd snap with a phone.

Aaron Conant 45:29

Awesome. Yeah, I love it. Is there other other things that come up routinely? You know, that that you thought might have gotten brought up today? I mean, we've covered a broad breadth of stuff. But is there things that come up routinely that you thought might come up today that haven't come up? You get asked routinely?

Ben Whitmer 45:49

Yeah, you know, typically, a lot of folks will say to me, Well, when I, when I bring up that, that industry trends of what we're saying some people get a little bit nervous about that, because they're saying, well, we don't have a digital product strategy yet. And, you know, they there's kind of that look in the mirror moment. And that's okay. I think the big thing that, you know, those questions is, how do we get started? And, you know, what's that right? right way to kind of springboard into learning the things that you need to as an organization. Typically, you know, that that's where we go with that type of, you know, dip your toes in type of experience, where, you know, start with one and go through that deployment, start measuring those results, you know, start working down that path of creating the infrastructure, to support mass content generation, I'm confident that everyone on this phone call is likely getting lots of emails from their bosses and their colleagues saying, hey, I need a picture of this, hey, I need something that does this, hey, I need more content to go here. The need for content is not going away. And so, you know, kind of shifting the approach, how you create content. It's Yeah, I kind of like to use that Henry Ford quote, he, you know, it's, we're not trying to design a faster horse using legacy tools. We're trying to create an automobile that allows you to create a lot more value a lot more content, and it requires a new way of thinking about it. And I think that's where it becomes really exciting for a lot of folks, but starting maybe with one is is a really good spot. Aaron, I don't know if that's maybe useful context. To address that, that. That's a question that typically comes up.

Aaron Conant 47:40

No, I mean, there's just been a ton of great questions that come through. And I was wondering, yeah, and I didn't have any more, you know, come through as they've been kind of rapid fire here for the past 15 minutes. But that was just one like, you know, sometimes you know, that you guys field so many questions, you're dealing with so many different people at any point in time, that sometimes you guys get answered, you know, or asked a question routinely that, you know, like that case that, you know, it's just great. And for people who are taking notes to kind of know, because I think you're right, the rate at which people need content and need to develop it and the cost of creating it has gone through the roof. And, you know, do you need tools at this time to help you maximize the content creation capabilities, because you can't, you can't keep sending it out for another photoshoot. Those are expensive, you can't just keep having your art department redo it over and over and over again, and keep throwing people at it, they might not have the exact field. But so it's just in, like you said, as well as there's demand for it. Now. People want the interaction. Right. They they want, it also increases SEO, because they're dwelling on your pages longer. You're they're becoming more involved with the product as a whole. It's just No, it's it's an incredibly interesting space. And now you guys get to deal with it every day. You know, as we get to kind of the last, I would say, you know, two or three minutes here. You know, I'll kind of kick it over to you for key takeaways, but I'll say thanks to everybody who dialed in. Thanks for everybody for sending over the great questions. You know, look for a follow up email from us. I'd love to have a conversation with you on the digital space and you know, what's working and what's not. And the next topics for calls, you know, and 100% were the follow up conversation with Ben and the team at Threekit. They're all around fantastic people, they're crushing in this space and all around digital leaders as a whole. So worth the conversation there. But Ben, you want to kind of wrap us up with with key takeaways here as we we get to the last few minutes of the call.

Ben Whitmer 49:41

Yeah, I can definitely do that. And then I'll echo Aaron, your sentiment here, everybody. Thanks so much for for joining in. I'm glad that we had the chance to maybe walk through some of these content concepts. You know, when we start looking at this and really saying hey, new new content development tax decks to boost eCommerce conversions and just sales in general light, I think maybe the takeaways to leave you with is, you know, one, the need for content isn't going away. And I would challenge everybody on this call to maybe start thinking through some of the things that we looked at and how that could work for your business. Because the big thing that we're seeing is, how do you drive? How do you use content to create engaging experiences? Right? How do you use content to create interactive experiences with your products? And, you know, ultimately, you know, how do you start unlocking that ability to do things like customization and personalization, to surround a customer's buying experience? And you can start thinking about ways that that can be applied to your business, you're well on your way to that digital product strategy that, you know, is maybe a key theme that the most of the companies we're talking to are, are really honed in on.

Aaron Conant 50:56

Awesome. Well love it. Well, once again, you know, thanks, everybody who dialed in, thanks for the great questions. Ben, thanks for your time today. Thanks for letting us you know, kind of pick your brain for the past hour. You know, and, as always, thanks for being such great, great friends and partners and supporters of the network. Once again, encourage anybody to get a chance have a follow up conversation with a team or Threekit. They're doing some pretty amazing things. It's worth putting 30 minutes on the calendar and kind of see it, what does it look like? What's the impact they can have as everybody's trying to figure out a What does digital look like in the coming months as a whole? So with that, we're gonna wrap it up. hope everybody has a fantastic Tuesday. Everybody, take care, Everybody stay safe, looking forward to have you in a future event. We've actually, you know, this week. I think it's actually tomorrow. We've got a half day virtual forum. If anybody wants more information, just ping us afterwards, we can shoot over an invite to that. With that, we're going to wrap it up, everybody, take care, stay safe and look forward to having you on a future event. Thanks. Ben. Thanks again. Back. We'll see you, already, bye.

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