Storytelling Weekly – #009 Stanley 1913

In a previous case study, I talked about how my wife loves camping.

Well, here’s a pro camping tip:

  • Buy a bag of ice cubes.
  • Dump them into a stainless steel vacuum bottle.
  • Lock the lid tight.
  • And it’s almost as good as a refrigerator.

It’s convenient…

…and way more cheaper!

Now, if you want my recommended bottle – 

Stanley 1913, all the way.

Recap of Storytelling Weekly

Before diving in, here’s a quick recap for newcomers just tuning in to my One Story A Week Series. 

  • Once a week, I’ll find an interesting brand to study.
  • I’ll break down what I like about their storytelling techniques.
  • Then, I’ll show you how to utilize these techniques in email.
Full Disclaimer

I don’t have any insider info or access to their account. So, I’m writing based on studying their website, interviews, and emails. However, I don’t have proof of earning claims or results of specific campaigns.

Now, there won’t be any “hard selling” in this series, but – 

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Brand Introduction

Ecommerce Email Marketing - Stanley Logo

Stanley has been around for over 110 years, becoming the pronoun for quality water bottles.

But I’m not here to discuss the “boring” origin story.

I want to point you to some very recent news –

Terence Reilly, the President since 2020, took the company from $70MM/year to over $750MM/year in a short 48 months!

Now, that is a story worth digging.

Storytelling Tactics

Let’s be clear.

A growth like this is never the result of one factor. According to this article and this podcast interview 👇

It involved:

  • Embracing the latest social media platform
  • Collaborating with celebrities & influencers
  • Leveraging user-generated content
  • Promoting scarcity with limited editions
  • Focusing on DTC sales

But most importantly…

It’s about identifying and expanding into a new target market.

Turning stories from:

“Oh, my dad had a Stanley. My grandpa had a Stanley.”

Into:

“I have a Stanley. My sister has a Stanley.”

The goal?

Transform Stanley from a “middle age” thermos company into a hip and stylish water bottle brand for a younger generation.

Now, the million-dollar question is: how?

A tried and true strategy:

Turn your product into a status, and give your target market an identity.

In short, people like us buy things like these.

It’s the same strategy used by:

And it works.

Because people love to buy products that align with the identity they desire.

It’s why Apple fans will fight to the death to claim that iPhones are superior. 

And it’s also the reason why luxuries like Chanel, Armani, and Hermès can charge a fortune.

It’s never about the “function.”

It’s about how you want the world to see YOU.

Email Tip of The Week

Now, it’s easy to say:

“I want to make my product a status symbol.”

But in reality, it’s a lot more complicated. Because why should anyone believe you?

And this is where email shines as a marketing channel.

Look, Rome wasn’t built in a day.

If you want to cultivate fans, establish identity, and create a status for your product… you have to show up consistently to build relationships with your prospects.

And email is THE most effective method.

Because you can reach your audience with a click… without relying on the mercy of social media algorithms.

Not to mention 99% of people check their emails daily… with some individuals checking up to 20 times a day.

But how do you show up in your prospects’ inbox without annoying them?

The easiest way – entertainment.

Tell a story.

Make people laugh.

And become the highlight of your prospect’s day.

Like the Netflix show they’re eagerly waiting to watch.

If I can only give you one email advice, it’s this:

“People will sign up for your newsletter for the value, but they’ll only stay if it’s fun.” (giving credit: Daniel Throssell goes into much deeper detail about this concept in his AiC paid newsletter.)

To Recap

One of the most powerful marketing strategies is:

Turn your product into a status symbol, creating an identity for your target market.

This will rocket fuel your company by expanding into a much more loyal (and larger) market – 10x your revenue without going into a price war with your competitors.

And when it comes to this strategy…

Email marketing is your best friend.