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Kilkenny Design Case Study

By David Brett,

Kilkenny Design’s key objective for 2023 was to grow revenue to €1.8M on Google Ads. With this increase in growth, it was important to do so while remaining as profitable as possible and so working with the brand we agreed to achieve this growth with a defined ROAS of 11 domestically as the primary target, 5 in the UK and 4.5 in the USA.

The above ROAS target took into account a mix of domestic, UK and USA activity, each of which required their own targets, strategies and approaches.

Kilkenny Design provides a wide range of products across Fashion, Homeware, Jewelry, Crystal, and more.

Understanding the existing demographic of our main target audience, Women 35-65 years old, we leveraged 1st party data audiences to reach those who had previously engaged with the website, be it purchasers or non-purchasers. We also utilised available in-market, affinity, detailed demographics and custom audiences to reach new users and grow new customer acquisition. Given the wide range of brands and categories on the site, we focused on building out a depth of custom audiences to give us more flexibility to respond to changes in demand for this target audience at any given point in the year.

The foundation of our strategy was the use of a full-funnel approach to take advantage of all the campaign types available to have presence at as many touchpoints as possible, serving people ads throughout their purchasing journey with tailored messaging and creatives.

The second aspect which strengthened this approach was having an approach that was complimentary to our other marketing channels by utilising cross-platform collaboration. For specific events, our activity was congruent with Social by running remarketing ads after a period of prospecting and awareness by Social.

Additionally, heavy use of first-party data was essentially to our strategy for retargeting to our email database based on the extensive segmentation done by the Email marketing team. This allowed us to target based on email subscribers, previous customers and also customers which purchased particular high-value brands and product categories. Using the linking feature to connect to our CRM database, we were able to set up these audiences and have them automatically refresh with any new additions.

Messaging was a key aspect to the implementation of our strategy. Beyond reaching audiences with messaging with a variety of our website USPs, exposure to our product catalogue and promotions being run, we also utilised the taglines and creatives of our brick-and-mortar stores adapted for an online environment to take advantage of our strong brand identity and to have a consistent message across offline and online channels. This was particularly the case with creatives used on Demand Gen and Video ads.

A big challenge of our previous year was a large website migration that took place across all 3 sites which also involved a change of CMS. There were a number of unforeseen difficulties throughout the process that involved the final migration date changing a several times. To mitigate any difficulties, we had a plan in place with our SEO team to limit any URL issues post-migration, as well as a migration budget plan to adjust our campaign budgets during website downtime, and to scale activity back up after.

As well as the migration, we also had a soft rebrand of client from Kilkenny Shop to Kilkenny Design. This required us to work closely with the client to advise on new creatives, messaging pre- and post-brand change, and to have a process in place for managing the change in Brand searches between the new and old brand.

Another challenge was the fact that we had 3 unique sites running for Domestic/EU markets, UK and USA. This required us to adapt our targeting and messaging for each market as well as working with our client to help advise on events and promotions that fit with the varied holiday calendars between markets and the differences in purchasing behaviour.

Ultimately, we had a successful year despite all of our foreseen and unforeseen challenges. We had an Ads revenue target of €1.8m and we hit €1.97m, 9% above target. The overall revenue target was €4.1m which was achieved with €4,116,442 in overall revenue.

In terms of our ad efficiency, we had a ROAS target of 11 for our Irish ads as the primary driver of revenue (more than 80%), which we achieved with a ROAS of 11.7. For the US market, we initially set a ROAS target of 4.5 and reached a result of 3.97 on Ads. For the UK market, our ROAS target was all but reached at 4.96 from a targeted return of 5. Despite the higher return for the UK, ultimately spend was focused more on the USA due to the margin and profitability achieved by the client.

We had an ambitious revenue target, which we hit. Despite needing to redirect spend from the domestic market to lower ROAS (but higher profitable) international markets, we still reached the overall revenue goal set out at the beginning of the year.

During the year, we had to manage 3 websites with 3 varied strategies.

Despite this, we successfully executed the various key events throughout the promotional calendar growing revenue and setting us up for a very successful 2024 post-migration and post-brand change.

Beyond the targets set which had to be managed across multiple sites, we also had to navigate a length website migration process and a new Brand launch which had speedbumps for the momentum we had developed at various points of the year, and required a consistent flexibility and need to adapt based on a changing environment.

About the author

David Brett is Digital Marketing Consultant with over 12 years experience working in the digital industry. Co founder and director of Core Optimisation Ltd where we work with our clients to deliver digital growth through a combination of Digital Marketing and Conversion Optimisation Strategies.