Vitamins and supplements is one of the industries best suited to selling directly to consumers. Taking a certain dosage, a certain amount of times per day, or per week, means that businesses can extremely accurately predict when customers will run out, and make sure their next instalment is ready. Care/of are one of the brands that are taking advantage of this, and here we speak to Craig Elbert (pictured below), co-founder & CEO, Care/of, to discuss how his business has grown to date, and how they will use personalisation and social to continue this momentum.
Can you explain Care/of‘s growth journey to date, in terms of funding, customer acquisition and product growth?
We launched Care/of in December of 2016 and saw some quick traction in the first few months, so we raised our series A funding in early 2017. We used that to fuel growth via marketing and then raised our series B in the middle of 2018 to develop new products. Our growth in 2018 was about five times that of 2017, and we’re excited that over two million people have taken our quiz to date.
Care/of is a classic DTC brand – what are the advantages of the DTC model in your eyes? Would you consider launching a store?
As a DTC brand, we get to provide our customers with guidance directly and evolve with them, knowing what’s working and what isn’t. We have a much tighter feedback loop with customers and are constantly tailoring our approach so it’s as seamless and delightful of an experience as possible. The DTC model also helps us from a pricing perspective, since there are no additional markups and we can offer high-quality products at a competitive price.
Care/of relies on personalisation tools to improve the customer experience. Can you explain why this technology is so key to you, and how you use it?
Personalisation helps make it easier for us to provide what’s right for you. Our quiz helps us learn about you, and then provide guidance that’s tailored to you. Personalisation also means you don’t have to deal with an overwhelming amount of information that doesn’t really apply to you, and our technology helps increase the likelihood that what you’re doing is actually effective for you.
Social is another vital tool for you guys. Why is this? As the business continues to grow, do you think social will remain pivotal, or will you look to other avenues, such as TV and OOH?
Social is similar to word of mouth. It’s a platform that people tend to trust. Ideally, you create a product that people are excited to share and talk about, which lends itself really naturally to social. If it works well, it can also help decrease your reliance on paid marketing spend. In general, we’re always testing different channels. We’ve done some TV and OOH, but neither have been a large part of our mix to date.
What does the future hold for Care/of?
On top of new physical products that we have slated for later this year, we’re excited about building a digital experience, and having that integrate with Apple watch so we can track trends and give even more tailored recommendations.