Hard work and thought-out strategy are necessary for business success


Online sales are quickly gaining importance and share percentages. In 2017, up to 13% of all sales in the US happened over the Internet, which is 1.4% more than the year before. Companies are still not sufficiently aware of the importance of this sales channel, and don’t have the knowledge to obtain and exploit the valuable user information offered by the internet. At the workshop, led by Damir Butkovič and Tea Maherl who have been leading Ibiza Digital Agency for a number of years, we found out how to plan and manage Facebook ads using the Facebook tracking pixel, which information Google Analytics is giving us, and how to connect these two platforms in the Google Tag Manager with the goal of leading effective online campaigns. 

You first need to know the stage in the customer’s journey 
In the sales process, the customer goes through different stages (so-called Customer Journey). The stages follow each other, and each demands an adapted approach. For marketing professionals, it is important to know the individual stages and adapt communication depending on the stage in which the customer is. The picture below shows the customer journey.


“Marketing always starts with informing people. If someone doesn’t know your product, they won’t buy it. They also won’t buy it if they’re not aware of their problem. Such a person first needs to be educated,” says Damir, talking about the customer journey. Once a person realizes they have a problem, we need to take a different approach than we would for someone who isn’t aware of it yet. Once they get to know you and see that you are one of the providers of the product/service, you need to once again know how to communicate your differentiating factors. He mentioned the iPhone as a good example of brand awareness. We all know it’s a phone. But we don’t all know what we can do with it. How to use all its functions. That is why the company is investing a lot of energy into making people more familiar with all its functionalities and learn about the use value that the phone offers to them.

“Only once we know the stage of our potential customer can we set up the right marketing strategy,” concludes Damir.

You need to create a connected system 
Damir entrusted the key component of successful online sales. It’s a connected system where we, in one place, measure the activity on our website, effectiveness of Google AdWords ads and Facebook campaigns. All of this is enabled by Tag Manager, which represents a system for managing tags on your website. At the workshop, Damir took us through its installation step by step and showed us how to insert code for connecting platforms. With this tool, we save a lot of time, because managing it doesn’t require developers who would insert code on the website. “If we wished to include all the code from various platforms on our website, this would mean quite a lot of work. Not to mention waiting for programmers. Tag Manager enables us to integrate one code for the website and it can be used by anyone, without the additional knowledge,” he adds.

The workshop was full of practical advice with help of which owners of online stores can improve the effectiveness of their online sales. To summarize the most important points: 
  1. Make a plan for the customer journey stages and communication for each individual stage.
  2. Based on numbers from tests, systematically change individual elements of communications for individual stages.
  3. Make use of online tools such as, Facebook Pixel Helper, Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager and others.
  4. Regularly monitor trends and novelties in the field of digital marketing. 

After the workshop, the activities moved to KID Kibla, where we carried out the second edition of Startup stories of our town. Our guests couldn’t have been more different regarding their field of work, years in entrepreneurship and their experience. That is why Start:up Müsli was permeated by various flavours, as is only right for true muesli. Joining us were Uroš Požgan, founder of Kokica, Maja Mrevlje, founder of the Perfect Body center, and Helena Krech Zorec, CEO leading Neonart together with her husband.

Even though it first seemed that Neonart is the only family business story of this Müsli, the discussion quickly revealed that family ties are all too present in Kokica and Perfect Body as well. 

Hard work is hiding behind every product, no matter how simple
The Kokica team also recently took a deep breath by moving its production facilities to Maribor. The advantage of bigger facilities is mostly that they can now produce two flavours of popcorn at once. Before, they needed to separate dishes for preparing salty and sweet popcorn, and clean everything twice, which was time-consuming and hard.

“We don’t only put popcorn into the machine and Pokica falls out. We air-pop the corn and sift through it. Once it’s sifted, we do sweet flavours in one machine and salty flavours in the other. We pour over the popcorn or salt it, depending on the flavour we’re preparing. Then we sift it once again and manually package it,” is the secret of Pokica, where you will be hard-pressed to find any “gravel” in the bags. Uroš also admitted that these six steps are quite difficult for only three team members.

Helena Krevh Zorec painted a picture of what hides behind a seemingly simple neon sign: “From printing on tarp, plexiglass and foil to remaking plexiglass … all of this is usually necessary for us to come to one product. For one ad, we need a bunch of machines supported by the latest technology. You don’t even detect this when looking up to the roof, façade. It is all somehow self-evident.”

Constantly introducing novelties and an overly extensive offer can cost you a lot 
“At the beginning, when I started employing, we had our regular offer but we were also introducing novelties. We were partially adapting to customers and partially tried out all novelties by ourselves. We quickly started connecting with experts from various fields whom we hosted for a certain service. These novelties, which we were constantly introducing, cost us the most energy, time and money,” realizes Maja Mrevlje after a decade of experience.
Consequently, they were offering an overly extensive collection of services and Maja noticed that she is doing more and more work that is not making her too happy and less and less of what she is really good at. Besides this, she realized that all the machines, body design methods, food and exercise in combination really help, but they don’t bring progress if the woman has a bad self-image. That is why they started moving away from the desires of customers and trends, and added psychologist consultations to their services and finally started taking over the work of external contractors by themselves. Maja said that they learned from others for years and years because they had the feeling that others know more. But now they’ve gained confidence and can treat the customer comprehensively by themselves.

A crisis is also a learning opportunity
“Adaptability is something you can’t do without in entrepreneurship. Ups and downs are constantly present, and that shouldn’t bring you down. You always need to learn something new from something negative. That’s when you get a kick and you need to think whether you need to change the product, put a new one on the market, or look towards a new market. The environment is changing. The buying habits of people today are completely different from what they used to be. If you are not in the stream of events here, it’s very difficult. For us, the crisis of 2010 encouraged us to add an online store where we placed certain products,” is what Helena Krevh Zorec says about Neonart’s defiance of the crisis. She adds that your eyes need to stay open, you need to keep track of what customers are looking for, what the needs on the market are, and you need to find new customer segments.

Are you interested in the whole content? Listen to the recording of the talk below.

Author: Start:up Maribor , 31.12.2018


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