Ecom We Do

Away generated $125M by offering more than just a product

As we’ve discussed at length before, Away is the essentially the byproduct of co-founder Jen Rubio’s frustrating experience with an overly-expensive and not-so-durable piece of luggage.

While it would be easy enough for her and partner Steph Korey to simply develop a more sturdy and affordable alternative product to base their new company around, they realized this alone wouldn’t be enough to get their foot in the door in an already saturated market.

Instead, they positioned Away not as just a luggage company, but as a brand focused on all things travel.

Essentially, their reasoning came down to the fact that luggage is more of a means to an end than an end in itself.

As Rubio explains,

“Even before we were like ‘let’s choose luggage,’ we were talking about editorial content and all we can do in the travel space. We see the long-term potential for Away to be much, much more than just selling luggage.”

This outlook led to a number of content-related opportunities for the team at Away. Instead of creating content centered around luggage (which, let’s be serious, probably wouldn’t be all that engaging), they created blog posts, podcasts, and even a physical magazine focused on the lifestyle behind luggage and travel.

This enabled the company to stand out in a crowded market, and provide value to their target audience in a way no other luggage brand does. This, in turn, led to massive engagement—and absolutely massive growth for the company, as well.

Take home message

The take home message here touches on the point we mentioned earlier when discussing Amerisleep’s shift in copywriting strategies:

It’s not about what your product is, so much as what it allows your customers to do, that makes them value your brand.

Rubio and Korey took this idea and ran with it, creating a variety of content to help their audience get more value out of their travel experiences across the board. For them, it’s more important to promote the lifestyle their product is a part of—not just promoting the product itself.

Do you want your target consumers to purchase your products? Of course. But, as Away proves, this can be done in a way so that your promotional materials actually provide value to your audience—and don’t come off as “salesy.”

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