The Intersection of Commerce and Video Games

How Bungie Launched a New DTC Storefront for Digital and Physical Goods

Nov 15, 2021 1:30 pm2:30 PM EST

Summary

Gaming experiences present the opportunity to create a brand new reality for the player. For video game maker Bungie, connecting that digital reality with physical goods is the next frontier for deepening their relationship with a passionate user base.

In this fireside chat, we’ll unpack how Adobe helped power Bungie’s eCommerce aspirations, and how the digital and the physical universes are colliding in a new Direct to Consumer eCommerce experience, powered by Adobe Commerce Cloud and Rightpoint's Amplify Accelerator.

BWG Connect & Adobe invite you to participate in an interactive discussion with your peers.

As always, there will be no sales pitches and there is no cost to join.

Discussion Topics

  • Migration to Adobe Commerce: We’ll discuss why Bungie chose Adobe for this experience
  • Bungie Rewards: How do Bungie rewards create a better player experience for users
  • Discuss how Adobe Commerce helped enable the largest sales day in history of Bungie Store within first few weeks of new storefront launch

Event Partners

Guest Speaker

Phillip Jackson

Chief Commerce Officer at Rightpoint

Phillip Jackson is the Chief Commerce Officer at Rightpoint, an IT service management company. Phillip serves as the head of strategy, partnerships, and evangelism. He helps brands define commerce goals, create digital strategies, and align tactics that drive results. With over 15 years of experience creating unique online customer experiences, he has both built and managed eCommerce for some of the world’s most recognizable brands. Phillip also hosts the podcasts MageTalk, Future Commerce, and Merchant to Merchant.

Katie Lennox

Director of Consumer Products at Bungie

Katie Lennox is the Director of Consumer Products at Bungie, an independent video game development studio. Leading the team that creates and sells merchandise to fans, Katie looks for ways to connect players’ in-game achievements with real-world products. With licensing partnerships and a strong eCommerce channel, they are consistently growing their fandom, engagement, and sales. Before joining Bungie, Katie was an Account Manager for Sunrise Identity and a Sales and Marketing Specialist for Blink Product Design.

Event Moderator

Aaron Conant

Co-Founder & Managing Director at BWG Connect

BWG Connect provides executive strategy & networking sessions that help brands from any industry with their overall business planning and execution. BWG has built an exclusive network of 125,000+ senior professionals and hosts over 2,000 virtual and in-person networking events on an annual basis.

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Event Information

Nov 15, 2021 1:30 pm - 2:30 PM EST

Event format

Roundtable Layout
Featuring 20+ executives, where everyone can contribute, ask questions and learn from peers
On-Topic Discussions
Q&A format, moderated by BWG Connect with group interaction throughout
Make Connections
Opportunities to network before and after

BRINGING TOGETHER INFLUENTIAL EXECUTIVES AND SENIOR PROFESSIONALS

What is BWG Connect?

BWG Connect provides executive strategy & networking sessions that help brands from any industry with their overall business planning and execution. BWG has built an exclusive network of 125,000+ senior professionals and hosts over 2,000 virtual and in-person networking events on an annual basis.

Key Discussion Takeaways

Developing a strong eCommerce strategy has never been so crucial. How can you adapt your physical products for a stellar online experience and vice versa?

Every company does it differently. For example, Bungie, the video game developer, offers physical merchandise that is only available for players who reach certain achievements within the game they’re playing. Each product also comes with a digital emblem that players can upload to their account for display. This way, the online and offline products constantly feed each other.

In this virtual event, Aaron Conant is joined by Phillip Jackson, Chief Commerce Officer at Rightpoint, and Katie Lennox, Director of Consumer Products at Bungie, to discuss how to intersect your consumers’ online and offline experiences. They talk about how Bungie revamped their eCommerce strategy, why they chose Adobe Commerce over Shopify, and the differences between the two platforms.

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

  • Katie Lennox dives into how Bungie has connected with consumers by offering exclusive merchandise
  • How Bungie revamped their eCommerce strategy
  • Why did Bungie choose Adobe Commerce over Shopify?
  • The Bungie cycle: the online purchases feed offline purchase and vice versa
  • Phillip Jackson discusses the benefits of developing an entertaining virtual queue for consumers
  • What’s next for Bungie?
  • Phillip and Katie talk about the pros and cons between different eCommerce platforms
  • Advice for teams thinking of making the switch from one platform to another
  • Tips for developing your company’s eCommerce strategy

Discussion Transcription

Aaron Conant 11:42

My name is Aaron Conant. I'm the co founder and managing director of BWG Connect. We're a networking and knowledge sharing group with 1000s of brands who do exactly that we network and knowledge share together to stay on top of the newest trends strategies, pain points, news developments, whatever it might be across the digital landscape as a whole. I talk with 25 to 35 brands a week just to stay on top of those. And when the same topics come up over and over again. We host event like this so quick note as we get started here at any point in time if you have questions drop into the chat drop into the question the q&a section there or you can always email them to me Aaron A A R O N at BWGconnect.com we want to get as many questions answered today as possible. And we're gonna do that real time as they pop up, just drop them in. And we'll we'll get those questions answered. The other thing is, you know, we're starting in about four minutes after the hour, and we're going to try to wrap up with at least four minutes to go on the hour as well. We want to give you plenty of time to go on to the next meeting without being late. So just know if you're looking at your watch, we'll wrap up and give you plenty of time for that. So that I'm going to kind of kick this off. You know, if you look at this space as a whole, a lot of questions popping up in not just DTC but also in the digital as well as physical good space. You see these announcements were now what is you know, meta right I think of like the artist formerly known as Facebook. Now Mehta dumping $10 billion into it, there's going to be a huge push into the digital space in pairing that with the physical space as well and so we got some great friends partners supporters, the network over at right point is well as Bungie games and so we're gonna kind of kick this off brief intro on yourself and the company and what you guys do that would be awesome. You know, Katie, I'll take it to you first, then we'll kick it over to Phil. We'll kind of you know, kick off the conversation something.

Katie Lennox 14:37

Sounds great. Thanks so much, Erin. Hey, everybody, I'm Katie Lennox, I'm the director of consumer products at Bungie ing we broaden franchise engagement for our games drive revenue through product offerings that reward in our in delight our fans. And I think you'll hear today us talk a little bit about how we do that. And I'll kick it off to Philip to introduce himself.

Phillip Jackson 15:03

Yeah, thanks, Katie. And thanks, Aaron and MB, WG for having us say, I'm Philip Jackson. And I'm the chief commerce officer at Rightpoint. And we create experiences that people use both online and off, to be able to engage in commerce. And we firmly believe that either every company is an experience company today or is going to have to transform to become one tomorrow. And so as part of that thesis, you know, we believe that we're creating the commerce experiences of tomorrow, to help everyone to transact in a more equitable way, or to become more immersive and, and get deeper into the whole experience of actually being a consumer and beyond just like consuming but actually being part of what it means to like, take hold of that, that future experience of being in the brand. And we were able to partner with bungee to help do that. So yeah, we're just delighted to be here today. Just making sure you can see my screen we actually set out Katie together on this journey before COVID It's been a little while and when we first when right point first sat down and we first met with Bungie, we heard about this amazing story about how you have this huge fandom and and these these players who are just like so deep and immersed is part of their not just their their hobby or their pastime but you know really part of both their online and offline identity is wrapped up in some of the properties that Bungie has created what tell us about Bungie for those that may not be already, you know, acquainted with the brand?

Katie Lennox 16:43

Absolutely. So Bungie is a video game developer. We are over here in Bellevue, Washington, which is just outside of Seattle. Bungie marked its 30 year anniversary this year in 2021. And so Bungie has been creating games that fans and players love to play with their family and friends, since 1991, including franchises like myth, Marathon, Halo, and our most recent universe, which is destiny, that game came out in 2014. So a lot of what you'll hear today is how Bungie store supports the Fandom of destiny, as well as other games down the road.

Phillip Jackson 17:20

And I if others watching this today are like me, you'll remember some of those experiences and some of those properties. As you know, formatives is part of my, my social interaction of me growing up, you know, in college and, or in bands with buddies of mine and we're playing Halo I'll never forget the first time that you know, we got on the back of a ward hog and we were you know, cruising around in Halo, it's it's amazing that even today, people are having those experiences even right now. It's it's it's not gaming, just one to one anymore. It's 24/7. And this is like a live online universe that is always operational. And that gaming experience really creates this opportunity to create a new reality for the player. And so how does that intersect with the real world? And what opportunity does the Bungie store represent here? And and what brings us all together today?

Katie Lennox 18:14

Yeah, I think the Bungie store is really interesting because it is one of the only ways to engage with the hobby of bungees games out of the game itself, right? We are creating all of the physical merchandise and collectibles and apparel and T shirts and rewards that players can find and engage with outside of when they're playing their favorite games from Bungie. And so, you know, again, we're we're a small and mighty team within a very large, you know, gaming development studio. But we've quickly realized the power behind you know, capturing the passions around these hobbies and creating this experience and bringing it to life for fans.

Phillip Jackson 19:03

And today, you know, we have this opportunity to talk about this new launch but eCommerce is not new to Bungie, you've been doing this for a long time. In some ways. You know, Bungie really set the stage for what everyone else has been doing in in gaming for some time and connecting those digital universes to physical products. How long has Bungie been engaged in eCommerce?

Katie Lennox 19:27

Yeah, I think Bungie has TierPoint a very long history of consumer products and eCommerce certainly even before my time I came on board to the company in 2015. And at that time, Destiny hub was just coming out it came out in 2014. And our Bungie store had just recently launched officially on Shopify, which was our former commerce platform. And I think very quickly we realized what a massive opportunity we had to bring the game And the stories and the universe to life for players. There's a, there's an anecdote or a story where we had a charity initiative for the Nepal earthquakes. And we, you know, launched a t shirt, which had this great design on it. And we were going to donate the profits to this initiative. And I mean, it was such a massive success, we realized very quickly, like, how many players were willing to really like, like, like, spend their time and attention not only in the game, but also wanting to wear that and reward and celebrate themselves and also support other initiatives. And so I think, from our kind of humble beginnings on Shopify, you know, we were able to reach our fans, and provide these merchandising opportunities. But we realized, as we went along that there were some opportunities that kind of could connect the physical merchandise to the end game space.

Phillip Jackson 20:58

And and, you know, that's, we've said Shopify a couple times here, you know, we were Shopify partners at right point, we're also Adobe, Platinum partners. And when we, you know, when we first came together, and we first sat down to have a conversation, I think the conversation really was centered not around just the platform and what you needed to do with the platform, the shortcomings of your existing eCommerce experience, but also about the future and like, what are all the things you want to do going forward? And and so what what brought you to a decision that you really needed to make a change in, in your digital commerce, property investment? And? And ultimately, how did we all kind of decide that Adobe was the way to go?

Katie Lennox 21:41

Yeah, thank you. So it all started with a T shirt. That's how we'd like to kind of describe it. So a couple years into the Shopify store front, we had just like many of you probably have these, you know, kind of brainstorming sessions with your teams and things come up where it's like, Wouldn't it be great if, or what if we, you know, and what that led to was, the, what's happening in game, right, looking at what the players are doing in the game, and what that experience looks like. And in Destiny players are, you know, playing activities, they're, they're raiding, they're, they're achieving different triumphs. And so there was an event called moments of triumph, which is kind of an annual tradition within the Destiny Universe. And we said, Wouldn't it be so cool if we could take a t shirt and actually, like, tie that to the player achievement in games, so that the player has to achieve their moments of triumph in order to unlock the ability to purchase the shirt? And we said, Yeah, that sounds amazing. And what if, on top of that, what if we could actually customize the t shirt with a player gamer tag on the sleeve, you know, of course, upping the ante every time as we do. And so again, our team so fortunate to be, you know, in a company that really emphasizes collaboration and trying new things, and like testing the boundaries? Well, we certainly tested the boundaries, with Shopify with that program. So in 2016, we were selling T shirts that had to be unlocked through this activity in the game called moments of triumph. We're selling 10s and 1000s of shirts, I mean, over the course of like six weeks, and realized very quickly that we were on to something really valuable for our fans and players, they really wanted, they felt like that was a valuable product offering because it supported their hobby, but it also was a reward for themselves. They could celebrate their achievements by wearing this t shirt. And then if you were to see, you know, other players within the real world, you know, you could like have that head nod like moment where Oh, yeah, well, there's that person who, who was wearing that T shirt. And I know, the only way they got that T shirt is because they, they really did this thing in game that was super hard and you know, challenging. And so from there, we're like, well, that's a really great success. Like, that's really cool. What other products can we tie to in game activities. And so that was the start of a program called bungee rewards, which exists today, and has really grown and been kind of a focal point of our eCommerce experience. And so with that innovative program, a platform like Shopify, you know, is a great fit for most right. But when you start when we started to really need to customize, and really need to, you know, create a better experience for our customers and our players. We realized quickly that okay, we might need to look at some other other alternative options here. We had like a 12 step process for a player to place an order and I think everybody here knows like, that's not ideal. We, we wanted to make it a lot easier. And to do that we thought well, Bungie has its own proprietary player API that can be accessed with the right platform partner in a secure manner. So that, instead of having separate kind of siloed sites, a player could actually log in to fungie store via their player account via their Xbox or Playstation or Steam account or Twitch account. And so that was like the moment we were like, Okay, let's create our brief about what we want to do here. And let's start looking at what our options are.

Phillip Jackson 25:23

I think that's like such an interesting that that first need to say, Okay, we're going to take the experience to the next level, which is centered, not just around convenience, but almost sort of around like identity. It's, it's like who I am as a player is also tied intrinsically to how I access that that means of community. And, and so that is the first step to say, Okay, well, we need something else. But I think you're also hinting at the fact that there's a lot of nuance here in the way that you merchandise the store, specifically around like who that player is and the kinds of things that they achieve in game. And and I think that that that comes back to what you were saying before is it's it was it's more than just purchasing products. And this is more than just a hobby, right?

Katie Lennox 26:10

Yeah, absolutely. I mean, I think, again, like for us, like we need to be always focused on important goals, you know, being authentic and providing authentic experiences, making the overall like experience for Destiny players, as smooth and seamless as can be. But also surprising and delighting in providing opportunities for fans to reward themselves. We do that with physical goods, like the t shirt I described, but also finding opportunities to like kind of link back to the in game experience. And so we have, for a long time been selling products with a free gift with purchase, which is a digital emblem that then can be loaded up into a player account and can be it's a nameplate, a custom nameplate that can be collected and then shown in the in the game itself. And so I think to like when, you know, when when you're shopping on Bungie store, there is this sort of mix of the digital with the physical, and it's, it works out really well, there's so much we can do from there. And again, back to like the evaluation process of, you know, Adobe and sort of the transition away from Shopify. I mean, we embarked on quite a journey, in the beginning of the pandemic, with right point, and as well as other commerce providers, and other agencies. And I think, you know, for anyone going through that evaluation process, I mean, I can relate on how challenging that can be, because there are not only the commerce providers, there might be a handful you're looking at, but then they all have the agencies that are going to help you implement them. And then those inputs coming in. And everybody has a great idea about how to do this. But I think what was really important for us during that process was like, what are our goals? What are we doing again, like, what why are we on this? Is it to rebrand our storefront? No, not necessarily. It's really to provide this in game connection to the API. And so again, keeping our focus on that, and which commerce provider could provide that to us, it became clear that Adobe commerce at the time Magento was the best solution for us. And then with right point, I mean, right point team was able to, you know, find ways to architect this that met our needs. And it was just it became very clear, once you start to like, realize, like, okay, let's focus on those goals. Let's not, you know, get distracted by all the other things that you can do down the road with the platform.

Phillip Jackson 28:41

You had kind of alluded there to, well, it's, it's yes, like, we have a storefront. But there's these, what you called, before we started this you called intrinsic motivation, motivations and extrinsic motivations, like there's a cyclical nature, to the way that the the store actually helps develop your your, your identity as a player. And in this fandom, there's this opportunity for Bungie rewards actually create that cycle where the online feeds the offline and vice versa. So maybe you could talk a little bit about how that experience is better today than it used to be.

Katie Lennox 29:20

Yes. So again, you know, number of clicks to place a purchase aside. I think that like now, if a player is on our main company or game website, they're logged in as a player and that's how they, you know, kind of see all their stats and the rewards and that's really how you're engaging as a player and a fan of the games. And now it's a simple click of a button to get to Bungie store and have an ability to log in as that player as well. And so from there, I think that's where we have our Bungie rewards landing page, and that's what we didn't really have. Previously, we never really had the ability to have this like landing homepage that could show you at a glance Bunji Bunji store comm backslash rewards that you can see exactly what you've unlocked through your in game player achievements. And so I think that's the bit that was the biggest like shift for us, when we launched the new site in July 2021. It just became this hub for players to be able to, like, see and share their experiences in game, see what they've unlocked, see what they can do to reward themselves. And not everything is actually something that you have to purchase, or is available to purchase. A lot of what we offer can be, you know, free emblems or free in game incentives. We've done free ebooks, from our popular Grimoire series, which is books you see here on the screen. And I think that's what you know, kind of the surprise and delight thing is to, you know, whether it's a PDF that you can print out at home and kind of fabricate and fold and you know, kind of play with at home and it becomes a destiny character you can put on your desktop table, like we tried to provide those things seasonally. And I think that, you know, again, kind of brings players back to the store, but also knowing that there's things that I might not want to place a purchase today, but I've unlocked this thing and I think it's really cool. So I'm going to put it in my game, or I'm gonna print it out at home and you know, be able to display it and celebrate.

Phillip Jackson 31:23

You have what I would say is sort of a non traditional eCommerce business where eCommerce is elevating, you know, it's just one part of the experience and it's elevating the other experiences and and really meaningful way. But hey, it's eCommerce so it's all quantifiable. At the end of the day, Someone's probably gonna say, Well, how do you measure success? Like what was success? And I would also be remiss, you know, for the we have a very smart audience that's paying attention right now. Someone's probably thinking to themselves well, gaming probably had this all these huge tailwinds during you know, lockdowns this launched, you know, in the middle of the year. Yeah, it could it possibly be that maybe, you know, Bungie missed this prime opportunity to capture people when they were stuck at home where they could have been playing the game and engaging in commerce. So I'm curious how you would say all this is how we're measuring success for Bungie store?

Katie Lennox 32:17

Well, it, I think it was less than a month after we've launched on the new site. We were part of a marketing campaign. With our marketing team, they put out a destiny showcase video in anticipation and reveal of our latest expansion that's happening on February 2022. And so that actually became our biggest sales day of all time for the history of Bungie store. And that was less than a month after the launch on Adobe commerce. And so I think, again, like, yes, in terms of measurement, and like, you know, what were we looking for at that time, we really wanted to see, obviously a clear uptick on the customers who were able to migrate their accounts, and link their accounts through this new process. Work out the bugs, you know, prior to this August reveal date. But also, you know, we had some products to sell. We were launching on August 24th. We launched the collector's edition for the witch Queen expansion, and that's traditionally a big event. For the consumer products team at Bungie reveal days are a big event for any video game company. And we really brought it on August 24. There was a YouTube showcase video that I think was watched over by like over 1.5 million people in 24 hours. And we had set up the store with our partners at right point to ensure that we had a virtual waiting room experience ready for that day. And I think that was a very wise choice. Because of the sheer amount of traffic that was heading our way after this video was watched when we revealed our Collector's Edition, which is this item you see on the screen. I think there were over the course of the day 365,000 sessions. I mean, these are big numbers for us. But I think just generally that's a very large day almost like a flash sale spike phenomenon. And so you have this virtual waiting room. This was something we had never done before. We never really had this ability to do and what we really liked about the idea of this, I'm just going to go on about it for a second because you know our team as a consumer products group and in video gaming, you know, we're very much used to going to those in person shows, you know, pre pandemic like going to the comic cons of the world and packs and E three and, you know, having a merchandise booth and having that engagement interaction with fans and giving fans exclusives that they could only get their limited edition items. And we realize that like You know, it's collector's edition is that, you know, you can only get it for, you know, a limited amount of time because there's a limited supply, it's in high demand. So the virtual waiting room almost created that experience that would normally happen at an in person event and bring it to the virtual world. And so what happened was, there were like times during that day where like, there might have been 30,000 people waiting in line. But everyone was there for this thing, everyone was there for a single thing, the Collector's Edition, making sure they had their chance. And so we were like, really seeing great conversion with that. But then people were also feeling good players felt good about, okay, I know where I stand in line, you know, the site's not having any issues. You know, I can kind of come in and feel good about this and talk about it, you know, and I think it became part of the conversation around the social media, you know, that day of like, not only what's happening with destiny in the game, but also like, Oh, are you in line to get your, you know, Collector's Edition today? Like, what's happening? Where are you in line? And so I think it just overall, like was a was a good move that I think right point you recommended to us. And I'm so glad because I think that's something we'll continue to leverage as we move forward.

Phillip Jackson 36:07

There's this phenomenon that I think we've all witnessed, especially if you've paid attention at all to in the last 10 years in streetwear. And then in these, you know, more drop centered eCommerce models, the Nikes of the world certainly have adopted and now we see it with digital goods within fts. There's a lot of marketing built up in anticipation to a launch day. And you know, five years ago, or even a little bit longer ago, you would have these issues where you couldn't reach really that internet scale and that instant gratification, because you just couldn't predict the demand. And inevitably, your site goes down. It's really interesting phenomena to watch how the digital world has adopted physical world, you know, analogues to be able to create rather than what would probably be sort of a frustrating or like, a boring experience to kind of like sit in a virtual queue and wait online actually becomes a communal experience of a shared experience that we're all here together in anticipation of this thing that's happening. In some ways, I think that that is, is a lost opportunity, a missed opportunity for a lot of brands to be able to communicate, media and culture. I had this a very similar we have a question in the chat that we'll probably get to in a minute, around NF T's and transacting digital goods and and, you know, I, I was an early adopter of NBA Top Shot. And one of the the best things about NBA Top Shot is when I'm sitting in the virtual queue, and I'm waiting for an hour and a half. They have like the best podcast and the best like video show happening alongside that and actually makes it quite entertaining. And it's something I probably wouldn't have made time for outside of my normal busy schedule. So it's such an interesting way that we're sort of the consumer is changing their expectations, away from instant gratification to more immersive and, and quality experiences. It's just one way that I see bungees is helping fulfill that. I'm curious, you know, if so you have this amazing sales event. This this great thing that was aligned with that August 24. Launch, what what might be, you know, the future for Bungie, what's what's next? How does how does the store play a role in, in, you know, bungees evolution to the next level?

Katie Lennox 38:30

Yeah, I mean, there's like a vision, certainly for Destiny, about creating a shared ecosystem, and at the heart of that is really experiences for players to continue engaging their fandom. And so bungee stores are going to be a big part of that, I think we're really scratching the surface of what our eCommerce, like tools can do, now that we have them in our arsenal is full now. It's like now what are we going to be doing as we move forward? We've got a great roadmap ahead for the store. And I think that, you know, it's really exciting to see some of these things really coming into place. It's a it's a big journey to get to migrating a storefront, you know, of any size, but certainly from a site or provider like Shopify to an Adobe commerce. But I think, you know, looking at things like, Okay, this is their print on demand that we can do in light of today's you know, global supply chain disruption. I mean, there's things that are feeding like, like, very fluid, and I think that there's things that a lot of us are dealing with that, you know, you sort of look at and say, Okay, well, the world is a different place, not only because of the pandemic, but sort of the, the kind of snowballing effect of the pandemic that's having that the global supply chains having, it's like, well, how can we how can we, you know, still provide great experiences for our for our customers and our players? And, you know, like, provide these different things to do and I think, you know, again, with our bungee rewards program, we can start to look at Print on Demand. You know, we want to provide more personalized experiences. So that perhaps down the road, like maybe your experience, one person's experience on bungee store is slightly different from another person's experience. And it's more tailored to your, you know, preferences and game or your preferred character, or any of the things that you've selected to share with us. And so, I think, you know, those are just a couple of things on our roadmap that we'd like to explore.

Phillip Jackson 40:25

That's, that's a, as you know, partners at right point, we're also very excited about it. I think there's this other opportunity to, when you look at how traditional eCommerce and you know, a platform like Adobe actually might give you some cues and like a playbook for growth. There's certainly a whole whole lot there at your fingertips, there's so much that you could do. You know, give us a little bit of sense of from your mind, how you're thinking about what's best for Bungie as opposed to just executing an eCommerce playbook. And I'll put you on the spot to kind of help you center the question. Are you a gamer yourself as like, is it driving the store? You know, do you have a guardian? Are you playing? Are you playing Destiny? Are you in there? And like and kind of thinking to yourself as as an eCommerce and digital marketer? How does this fit in the Bungie world as opposed to we're just executing an eCommerce playbook?

Katie Lennox 41:20

Totally. Yeah, I mean, I think full disclosure, like don't ask my light level because it's shockingly low. But the beauty of what I do here is that I have a team and surrounded by people who are fans and love and you know, engage and play with the game on their off hours. You know, I think that Bungie is this kind of culture where people who work at Bungie are also huge fans of the games that they create. And so I think really enabling my team to make sure that they, you know, have what they need in order to create these really innovative programs or merchandise offerings. Again, we're a small team, but work with a lot of external parties to make this all come to life. I think, you know, a lot of people are like that. I mean, at the end of the day, Bungie is a video game developer, we are the physical merchandise and digital merchandise eCommerce side of the house. But we need a wider broader team like Ray point, or like our other eCommerce partners to make that happen. And I think, you know, hey, we're here to to help again, expand that fandom and create those engagement points with players that then again, like lead them back into the game, and we're here to, you know, provide ways for them to celebrate.

Phillip Jackson 42:37

That's awesome. I just, my mind kind of goes 100 miles an hour thinking about all the things you could do. I just finished watching the Apple TV Plus series mythic quest. And I think to myself, like in that universe, like if you could buy the shovel that's in that pilot episode, it's like, how cool is that? You know, someone who's a fan, to be able to actually bring something from from your digital world into the real world. You guys are actually doing that. How cool is that? What a cool thing. Thanks so much Katie for sharing part of that story. Is there anything else? Maybe we missed? And where can where can people go play Destiny?

Katie Lennox 43:14

Almost anywhere? Um, you know, I think you can pick up destiny, there's actually a there's a free to play entry point. You can play Xbox, PlayStation, stadia steam, there's plenty of opportunity, but definitely go to bungie.net to learn more about the games and go to Bungie. store.com, to learn more about our store. Fantastic. Yeah.

Aaron Conant 43:38

Just a couple questions that come in and fill by I have some for I think both of you. And, Phil, you mentioned this one that come over from Robert, but another one it came in is Katie is around, you know the time to transition. Right? How long was that? replatforming from Shopify over to Adobe. And then the next one, I want to get into like a digital 2.0 kind of conversation. But you know, to kick that over to you.

Katie Lennox 44:00

Sure. Yeah. So we, me in 2020, we received like the green light to go ahead and let's get let's get the migration evaluation started. And so we kicked off a big endeavor and strategic initiative to do that. And that was probably March, I think it was like March q1, definitely. 2020. Right, the beginning of the pandemic, and then the site migrated in went live officially on Adobe Commerce on July 20 2021. So a little over a year, you know, from start to finish. I think that the you know, technical migration itself was obviously much shorter because our evaluation process I think, due to like remote working and everything else just took longer than anyone had expected. I mean, rightly so. So yeah, I would say just a little over a year, but I think that could definitely be shortened, you know, under better circumstances or more normal

Aaron Conant 44:52

or Yeah, less complicated, right. But I think the reality this is where, okay, where do you feel this what I'm seeing and just talking to you 2530 brands a week is we're hitting Digital 2.0. We got there fast and we thought the content that's needed the plugins, the AI in the backend, what's driving decisions, the complexity now of, hey, there's going to be digital, you know, and physical goods to be sold interactive experience, I completely agree with you like, the immersive side of this, like people are getting worn out just flipping and scrolling. They want personalized, they want immersive experiences and to be entertained, even if they're waiting for something like you are like, right? You want to be entertained along the way. And with something that's relevant to you, do you see that? Because I run into this quite a bit, is it on the Shopify side, which is a great platform? Not for everybody, but a great platform? Do you see like this switch over to like something a little bit more robust, like an Adobe, you know, a little bit more flexible, customizable, like, does that?

Phillip Jackson 45:56

I mean, do I see it more than a year ago? I'm paid to say, Yes, I see it. So if I were to answer if I were to answer it, truthfully, I do think that there's a there's a lot of room to grow. For, you know, a brand who's looking for who's not looking to be a technology company, or to have technology at the center of the experience, in some ways you kind of have to solve certain problems with with a more open platform, it's it's the only way to do it. And there are certain problems. And in this particular case, Bungie outlines the exact kind of use case that a more robust platform more open platform would provide you. Certainly there's a lot of options in marketplace today. But if you're just looking at software as a service, you know, there's there's, there's limitations. And I would say that the market has actually thrived. And we have more eCommerce today and certainly more entrepreneurship today as a result of software as a service. But I think there's a convergence happening. There's certainly a number of brands who are outgrowing the bounds of that platform and want something more. And let's face it to your you know, I think people thrive in limitations. And so sometimes, having an incredibly capable tech stack can actually hinder you because you as I hinted at it earlier with Katie, it's like, you can do anything. So where do you even begin, and there's a million things you could do. And so having having a little bit some walls in the garden is not a bad thing. I do think that we're, in order to stand out because of the wealth of eCommerce brands. And the options that we have online and highly capitalized brands are spending a ton on digital marketing, you're going to have to be incredibly experiential, to be differentiated. And so I think that, you know, whether that comes through stellar front end design or true end to end, you know, immersive experiences, I think you're gonna have to differentiate one way or another. We've tend to believe that it's immersive experience that will actually make the difference for a brand. And you can do that in all kinds of ways. It doesn't just have to be technology. It could be, you know, partnerships, it could be affiliations, it can be just in storytelling, incredible merchandising, there's a bunch of ways to do it. And we're doing that, you know, every day with companies that aren't Bungie and I would say to on the not to suck up all the rest of the air here, Aaron, I'm long winded. But the the technology implementation was actually quite accelerated because we use a process accelerator here at right point. It's an accredited Adobe accelerator that we use, you know, in our, in our world with codenamed Jupiter. It's called AMPLIFi on the Adobe side, and it's not just technology, it's not just hey, we're going to launch an Adobe commerce site in you know, three to four months or six months or what have you. It's actually incredibly process driven so that a company like Bungie and a professional like Katie can can truly say to themselves, have we considered everything here. We don't want to have missed anything. We don't want any surprises, especially around budget, and especially around launch date. Those are things that we we pride ourselves on, you know, having being able to deliver for companies at the highest level. So I don't know if that answered the question, but certainly was a bunch of tangents that hopefully, you know, made you think I answered the question.

Aaron Conant 49:19

No, no, no, it was so good. I mean, it's Bertie, like Robert has done a question here really quick. And then I want to go back to the original one that came in. Which would you say it's an inevitable part of the process to start with a simpler platform like Shopify before graduating to more customizable platforms as a whole?

Phillip Jackson 49:37

I'm not sure who that's for Katie lived it. So I'll let Katie have a stab at it first.

Katie Lennox 49:42

Well, I think it depends probably on like where you're at with your like eCommerce journey because like for us, I think there was no other way to do it. Like I think we wouldn't have had the ability to be nimble and get greenlight to even launch an eCommerce Store. If we didn't have something that was sort of plug and play like Shopify, for us, like right in our beginning states, and then we realized as we started sort of to learn more about our customers and about the players of the game, or the customers, we began to realize like what it was that they really gravitated toward. And that's, again, what shaped some of the programs that we ended up launching several years down the road like bungee rewards. And we wouldn't have known that like day one, necessarily. It's a pretty unique program, that not everybody else is really I don't, I've never seen anybody else do it to the extent we do it. Because again, we're not like, providing rewards for free, it's more of a, hey, like, you've done this thing now celebrate it, you know, with this offering. But again, like we wouldn't have known that early on. And so I think Shopify was so important for us as kind of that more basic platform. And then once we realized what we actually needed, like what we really wanted to do, that's when we knew we needed to switch. But like, there's lots of things I miss about Shopify. But you know, I think, again, going back to like your, again, the key critical goals of like, what you set out to do, make sure those are solved by the new platform that, you know, maybe we're limited by earlier on. And then you can kind of address those other things as you grow. And as you start to, like, create that roadmap.

Phillip Jackson 51:23

I'm well known for having that analogy. So I'll offer one up. It's sort of my internet personality. I, you know, I bought a house with my wife a few years after we got married. And we bought that house with an FHA loan, as many people do for their first house. And it was cute, and it was a 1600 square foot house was beautiful. And then we had two kids and two dogs. And we're like, holy cow, we just outgrew this thing really fast. And within three years, we were like, Okay, we need something else. Like we can't even add on to this place. The it's like, it's, it's not, it's not suitable for us anymore. We know how to be homeowners now, like, we had replaced the air conditioner, we had done a bunch of plumbing work, like, you know, we painted the place like we we redid all the we did the lawn and put in a sprinkler system like we we fixed up the place, put a lot of money into it. And we proved that we could be homeowners, but one day, we realized that we had outgrown it. And I think a lot of companies, you know, we realized we reached a point in maturity in our in our life, that it was time for something new, that would better suit our condition. I think a lot of digital teams at even at prestigious organizations may not have the maturity to operate, you know, a full functional digital experience platform, because Adobe commerce is not just an eCommerce platform, it is part of a digital commerce digital experience suite. And you you know when you're ready for that, and I think if you're if you're, you know, young in your journey, and you have a team that is early in its maturity curve, certainly, I think buying into a big DX offering like Adobe, could it actually represent a lot of challenges for you just in the same way that buying a really big home as a new homeowner could be kind of daunting as well.

Aaron Conant 53:09

Yeah, I mean, at the end of the day, right? It's the requirements document that you get to execute on, right. And if you you know, if you only know that three things are available, you only write in three things you don't know the other seven things, if there's 10 available to put in the requirements Doc as a whole? Like, are you seeing that happen a lot, like filled? Like, people know, they've outgrown it, but they don't know, all the options that are out there? Like, I only think that they can do

Phillip Jackson 53:34

Oh, for sure. But I do you think that there's a phenomena that I've witnessed, and you know, a lot of my job is reviewing RFPs. So, you know, send condolences, but the, the the exercise of, you know, there's an exercise that you go through in evaluating a platform where you start thinking about the future more than you do on a regular basis. And I think that many companies look at that as more of a menu, right? Where they're, they're kind of looking at a menu of items saying what could we choose? I like to think of us as sort of Somalis. And to some degree is like, we're helping you make that decision that's best paired with what were your businesses and where you want to go. As opposed to the totality of like, literally anything you could order, anything that you can build. Why don't we actually have, you know, a more deliberate conversation about it? A lot of the RFPs today, Aaron, just frankly, are just focused around, you know, how do I get most bang for my buck? I'll tell you most eCommerce platform features go to waste for most companies. Bungie I don't think is using a wedding registry anytime soon, maybe one day, maybe on the roadmap, but not today. And and you know, they've gotten requests we

Katie Lennox 54:52

have gotten requests, I'm sure and we How cool would that be

Phillip Jackson 54:55

to by the way? But yeah, I think that when you're just evaluating on feature, you know, Sometimes, you know, you can sort of say, oh, yeah, add that to the pile, that sounds like a thing we might do in the future, and you kind of start to stop it, it becomes less purposeful and meaningful for the company. I hope that we can help solve that. Right? Go ahead, Katie.

Katie Lennox 55:16

I also think that like, not everything has to happen on day one. Like, I think there's like this thing, where it's like, oh, we need all of this. And it has to all go live on the first day. It's like, Well, really, like, I don't know, like, if you if you really have that, that key thing that you need to have switched on or turned on? Like, yes. Do it make sure that that's the thing that you're measuring yourself against? But like, does the whole brand redesign have to happen on day one? Like, probably not? Like, you know, I, I think we had to come to terms with a lot of those things as we went through the process, because you just can't do it. All right, you just can't do it all. It's either too expensive, something's prohibitive. You don't have the resources, nor the time, and I think it's okay, like we will get there. And again, you start to build that roadmap, let's put it on the backlog, let's like start to think about when we want to roll this out. And then every year, it's kind of a fresh start, because you can start to like, you know, plan again of like, okay, this is what we didn't get to, but we want to really do, we've learned so much. Let's put that learning into practice as we move forward.

Aaron Conant 56:12

Awesome. So I want to make sure that we get into this one that came in early on, I was hoping to gain some insights, more insights and how to develop a cohesive commerce experience across the storefront while we're in physical goods, exclusive option, higher end physical goods. So basically, the cohesive including digital goods, you know, such as NF T's, I mean, we're finally connecting digital and the physical and sure,

Phillip Jackson 56:37

if I could preempt, taking a stab at this real quick, NF T's are certainly part of a broader conversation that a lot of people are having right now. I my my challenge in in that space is that it is evolving incredibly rapidly. There is a dowel that was launched on Thursday, a this decentralized autonomous organization, which you know, is, you know, creating fractional ownership, and they're gonna attempt to buy a copy of the Constitution and raise $3 million so far, like these things are, and that didn't exist until Thursday. It's Monday afternoon. Like when you think about the rate of change and the pace of innovation in that space. I think it's just moving at such a clip that it's really hard to say, Well, do you have a strategy for XY or Z today? I think most brands are aiming to be culturally relevant, certainly like a Nike, certainly trying to take a stab in the culture, but to say it's part of like a cohesive strategy is the thing that I'm we're tracking very closely. So web three and FTS, Dallas, crypto tokens. They're all things that we look at very, very closely. What I do think is important, though, is that at the end of the day, we're we're trying to create experiences, right? And, and, and part of experiences like that firsthand ownership that firsthand, you know, knowledge that you like you were there for something when it happened. And so just having that aside, Metaverse will shake out NF T's will shake out the way that we transact in commerce and exchange that happens, that that's something I think it's quite enduring. And that's the thing that we can deliver here today that has, you know, a whole set of best practices and a whole set of guidelines that we know that works and engaging equitably with the consumer. There's my comms training for you. i How's Katie, I'm curious if you have to take on this one, too.

Katie Lennox 58:37

Yeah, I mean, I think that as these new things come to light, right, like, we're in tech, we're an entertainment, we're in video games. So we sort of are, you know, our minds are kind of wrapping our, the wrapping themselves around these, these new things and these new spaces. And at the end of the day, you know, there are going to be people, whether it's in your organization or within your team, you know, who who may not be fans of certain aspects of, you know, there's an ecological impact that's just going to be a, you know, a showstopper or something else. And it's like, Well, okay, I think you just have to think about like, what does that even hit your goals for what you're trying to achieve? As, you know, a team or an eCommerce site? Like, is this? Is this gonna support that? Or is that going to not support it? Kind of keep your eye on it? And also, like, well, what is your company's version of that like, and I think like, for us, it's like, well, what is the Bungie Store version of that, like, we do have our toe in digital collectibles, like with our emblems and the things that we do? Now, that's certainly not an NF T, nor do we have any, you know, intention of like turning anything into an NFT. But like, I it's just something that you kind of have to keep, you know, researching and being on top of and do your 40 hours and kind of like if that's something that a space that you want to be in, like, make sure that you do have the knowledge and make sure you do what's right for your company and that it, you know, supports the goals that you've already set up to do. You know, I don't know where that's going to take us but it's certainly exciting and, you know, keeping eyes on For sure.

Phillip Jackson 1:00:00

Do you think that there's something to be said to around who things are built for right like we in the audience they serve. One thing that's been so exciting to learn about in this process and working with Bungie is how deep the fandom is and how how. Just amazing the lore really is that there's a there's an entire you know, there's an entire universe that's already been created. Talk about the metaverse, I feel like you know, Bungie is at the forefront of actually building another reality for years and years now, amongst its players. My best friend, and in the world, a guy I've, you know, played in bands with 20 years ago, you know, he and his brothers get together to three times a week in Destiny just to hang out. It's not about playing a game, it's like for them that might as well be Skype. And so I do think that like this, this already exists to some degree whether or not a company is labeled it as the future or not, people are already doing this. So I'm very bullish on it. And I think that Roberts really on to something here. Yeah.

Aaron Conant 1:01:07

Awesome. So we're almost at the end here. But there's another one that what was the learning curve for you, Katie to jump over? I mean, that's another concern that people have, right, as a whole was the learning curve to jump over to

Katie Lennox 1:01:21

Adobe? Yeah, I mean, for me, personally, quite a learning curve. But, you know, having folks on my team like Christopher chelski, shout out, you know, who have experienced with, like, Magento product or Adobe commerce product, I think has been key, having the right partners, like the right implementation agency, I think is so key. Because at the end of the day, you can it, you can learn it, right, I think everyone can learn. And I think if you know, Shopify, you can, there's a lot of commonalities in terms of how these things get pushed out, and like the back end of things, but I think it's again, surrounding yourself with the right partners or teammates who can make it work, and then learning what you need to learn in order to make it happen. But not going like past past the reef, so to speak, if you don't need to.

Aaron Conant 1:02:10

Awesome. Now, um, you know, as we kind of get, you know, really close, maybe like two and a half minutes left here before wrap up, you know, kind of to key takeaways, you know, Katie, I'll kick it over to you. First, you know, things that people should be thinking about or know or you'd like them to know, we'd love to hear and then we'll kick it over to Phil.

Katie Lennox 1:02:31

Yeah, I think I think I said it a little bit earlier. But like, I wish I knew, I wish I had this, like, conversation for myself and my team before we stepped into the evaluation process and the migration process, because what I learned was, again, like, keep focused on what is the thing that's limiting you today? What do you need to do to fix that, and like, everything else will sort of fall into place, as long as you can, like, identify those couple things that you know, you're going to need, and you know, that like, you know, commerce platform, a isn't going to do for you or B isn't going to do for you, then you can sort of shape and like sort of narrow it down. And there's so many inputs coming in through all the partners that you're evaluating and the the the commerce platforms that you're, you know, identifying and you're doing your research. But if you can just like hone in keep focused on a couple key areas. I think that sort of then it like it really it really helped us. And I imagine it could help others too.

Aaron Conant 1:03:29

Awesome. Yeah, I feel like you get over to you.

Phillip Jackson 1:03:32

Yeah, I mean, there's so much more to say and very little time to say it. I think being just being really transparent here. I think a lot of companies or a lot of folks in the agency space like we are sort of stressed the importance of strategy. For Bungie, our approach and as it is for many companies like strategy's really just having a plan. And and you really, your partner, your partner can't impose a plan on you, I think a plan is something that we all have to set out to, to set out and define for ourselves. And for our business. That means that theoretically, you know, it's and this is certainly the case for Bungie, if you look at what they're doing, the traditional eCommerce model doesn't just work out of the box for them, the thing that they're doing is fundamentally different. And if we all work to understand that actually, all of our businesses are fundamentally different to another that we forging our own path and finding our own strategy for our own company and for our fandom or for our customers, if you will, is is the thing that is the skill that you need to acquire not implementing some playbook or some you know, some best practice or copying or parroting what another brand did. But finding that path together I think that's the the path to digital maturity and then just staying true to it. And like Katie said kind of knocking knocking you know, item by item off and and you know just kind of crushing through some of the art stuff and you'll find success on the other side of it. And, yeah, we found that to be true here. I think it's an exaggerated example. But I think it's true for every single brand. There is no, there is no like one best practice. There is no, you know, one right way to engage in eCommerce, especially experiential commerce.

Aaron Conant 1:05:19

I love it. Well, you know, as we kind of get to the end here again, Katie, thanks so much for your time today, Philip, you as well, I mean, if anybody wants a follow up connection to either Katie or feel 100% worth putting some time on the calendar with with either of them for sure. You know, we're networking knowledge sharing group. And, you know, the team over right point is helping a ton of people out in brands out across the network as a whole. You know, I put some time on the calendar, just pick their brains see what's going on in the space. Obviously, if you're looking to implement it, or you're in the RFP stage, put some time on Katie's calendar to probably iron out some wrinkles at a time. But with that, I want to say again, a quick thank you, Katie for thanks for being such great friends partner support as the network and thanks to everybody who dialed in today, the great questions that came in. Hope everybody has a fantastic Monday, a great rest of the week, everybody stay safe. Take care and looking forward to having you at a future event already. Thanks, everybody. Thanks already, already. Yeah. Thank you. Thanks, everybody.

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