Aloha, an up-and-coming plant-based food brand, has seen a meteoric rise in recent years as it expands from a line of protein powders and snack bars to flavored protein beverages. ALOHA plant-based protein bars are better for a reason — USDA organic, no artificial ingredients, and completely vegan.
We sat down with Bobby Macauley, Director of Performance Marketing at Aloha, to learn more about how Aloha strikes a delicate balance between:
Average Order Value (AOV) — the average dollar amount spent each time a customer orders from the company website.
Lifetime Value (LTV) — the overall revenue that a customer will offer the company during their lifespan as a customer.
Experimenting with Sample Packs
Historically, Aloha sold its protein bars and drinks by flavor. However, in the last year, the team started experimenting with bundling different flavors together to expose their customers to new and exciting flavors, but also to drive lifetime value of each Aloha fan. Through some experimentation, Aloha found its sweet spot.
For Aloha, it’s all been about experimenting with different packaging methods to try and understand what would best serve customer interests. It’s important to strike a balance between Average Order Value and Lifetime Value, but sometimes it’s not exactly clear how to prioritize both of these performance indicators simultaneously.
At first Aloha changed the price point around by a few dollars to test out customer purchasing activity. While a low price point led to more purchases, the discounts didn’t encourage increased customer lifetime value. Bobby described, “If you say, ‘this is free or discounted’, the product may just target those who are interested in discounts. But that’s not the same person who’s willing to spend more money on a 12-pack of protein bars.” The most important factor for the brand has been making sure that they’re targeting a customer who’s willing to pay for the product, while also offering a package that encourages customers to keep coming back.
Finding the Sweet Spot
Aloha soon learned that newcomers to the brand preferred to try all the different flavors the first time around, without having to commit to just one. A sampler pack turned out to be a great solution: a low-pressure way to educate their customer base about their product line in a creative, inviting way.
Starting with the sample pack concept, Aloha continued reiterating packaging quantities and price points, and learned lessons from each iteration. If a sample pack was too small, those purchasing customers had a lower likelihood of making continued purchases. If a sample pack was too pricey, there turned out to be a higher barrier to entry. Even though the order value on the first purchase was higher and the lifetime value of that cohort of customers was higher, it created a relatively small cohort size with a high cost per acquisition.
“When we experimented with a 4 bar sampler pack and our “just pay for shipping” promotions, they had awful lifetime value, but with the higher priced one that includes more bars we think we've found the sweet spot of bringing in a high value customer who has a high propensity to reorder.”
Bobby Macauley, Director of Performance Marketing @ Aloha
Along with these calculated iterations, Aloha partnered with Kendall Toole, a Peloton instructor and Instagram influencer, to create customizable bundles called Kendall Toolekits. These kits mixed together the most popular Aloha bar flavors at a discount. This method of creative storytelling, tying together fitness, health, and value, was a winning combination for customers.
It may be hard to encourage people to try out new consumer packaged goods. If we can learn anything from Aloha’s success, it’s that sample packs and personalized bundles can be a great way to get new customers over the fence, introduce existing customers to new products, and keep your business metrics healthy!