Ben Panzarino wasn’t looking to make a quick buck when he bought Condomania at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a digital marketing expert turned entrepreneur, he bought the company, which is one of the largest condom retailers in the United States, as a passionate project. No pun intended.
His goal was to continue to build a great brand and take Condomania on the long road to becoming the number one in its industry. While some have said buying a business during a global pandemic is foolishness, Panzarino has found that it’s not so bad if you’re willing to give it all you’ve got.
Tip # 1: get into a serious relationship
The first thing Panzarino learned is that you shouldn’t buy a business if you’re not ready to commit. To own a business is to have a special relationship with that business. It is not a casual relationship. You must be his turn or die.
No matter what business it is, whether it’s a 100% online store like Condomania or a more traditional brick and mortar store, for it to be successful it has to be an integral part of your life. You have to be prepared to change some of the things that you are doing now. You will definitely need to change your schedule. You will likely need to change your mindset.
Typically, businesses do not grow on their own. You have to put the resources there. If you really want this to be successful, be prepared to go all out. You have to love it.
Tip # 2: spice it up
Condomania was doing well when Panzarino bought it, but he thought he could do better. He saw an opportunity early on and he still sees a huge opportunity to take a brand that needed a little love and give it a little of that love. So he took steps to boost the business.
One of the things Panzarino decided to do was spice up the customer experience. This included a few simple steps like sending more consistent and engaging email messages to Condomania customers. After filling an order, they follow it up a few days later with an email with advice on the correct way to put on a condom or the types of lubricants they recommend.
Most importantly, Panzarino has taken steps to ensure that its customers have a great experience when they open their order. He explored what he could do to take unboxing to the next level. Now when people receive their articles, they find stickers, brochures, and word searches, making it a more exciting tactile experience.
Panzarino tries to put himself in the shoes of the consumer. He wonders, “What would be really exciting for me to step into this box?” If that makes him horny, I hope it turns other people on and they keep coming back.
When deciding what this looks like for your business, consider your personality. Panzarino has a quirky personality and he tries to put everything Condomania does. Don’t worry about copying your competition. Add your own fun style to the experience.
While efforts like these take time, energy, and resources, it communicates to your customers that you care more than just a sale; he says you want to have a long term relationship with them.
Tip # 3: Familiarize Yourself with Your Product
In business, Panzarino wants to know how everything works. He thinks it’s essential to understand how things have been done in the past and what changes need to happen in order for things to be optimized. While you can’t always be the one running everything, until you get involved and figure out how to do things, you won’t be able to know who the best people are to fill in the blanks when you have to move on. to another part of the Company. Don’t overlook any detail.
One thing he did at Condomania was move their warehouse into the house. Many e-commerce brands have warehouse providers, which means boxing is completely out of their hands. At Condomania, they had a lot of shipping problems in the first year. They responded by taking this aspect of the business internally.
Once they brought the inventory in-house, everything just became so much easier for Panzarino and his team to visualize. They knew what inventory they had. They knew what it looked like. They knew the difference between an eight ounce tube and a twelve ounce tube. They could hold a product in their hands and get a feel for the quality. If it looked like the quality was poor, they could cut it in place and avoid complaints and returns.
The change wasn’t just about being able to physically touch products, see what they look like, and see how customers would feel. It was also about making sure the company shipped products the same day they were ordered, accurately and packaged in a way that gave customers an exceptional unboxing experience.
Managing the packaging and shipping in-house was a much better experience for Condomania than with a third-party shipping company when the items were literally out of their hands. You can have a really cool original branding experience and a fun website, but at the heart of it, people want to get their products and they want to get them fast. This is the heart of Panzarino’s business and he has ensured that part of his business is optimized.
Overall, you need to stay focused on the idea that the business is your baby. You need to commit to it, know it well, and help your customers experience it. If you don’t like your business, why would someone else?
Posted on December 4, 2021