Wayfair, the online retailer, has yielded numerous advantages – from boosting efficiency to reducing costs – through enhancing its in-house marketing capabilities.

Ed Macri, Wayfair’s chief product and marketing officer, discussed this subject during a session at AdExchanger’s Industry Preview 2020.

“After working with agencies on TV and media for a couple of years, we took the work inside,” he said. (For more, read WARC’s in-depth report: How data – not agencies – drives Wayfair’s $1-billion marketing program.)

“To our surprise, we had the awesome insight that, by working directly [with the broadcast media], we were able to find a lot of opportunities to do integrations into shows and just be more innovative.”

Elaborating on this theme, he added, “It wasn’t just about getting cost-per-impression down, it had benefits on multiple dimensions. It was partly a cost saver and partly an efficiency driver.”

Wayfair, in fact, puts data at the very core of its advertising strategy, Macri explained. “The marketing team sits down with our creative team and says, ‘Hey, here’s what we ran. Here’s what performed well. Here’s all the ‘data.’

“The creative folks love it, because it connects their work to business impact and the customers very clearly. And then, as a group, the team looks for trends.”

A reluctance to outsource to agencies is rarely about removing costs from the system, Macri maintained. Instead, it involves understanding where brand custodians are best placed to make decisions.

“It’s really about, ‘Where is your brand not shining through? If you take that in-house, can you do a better job?’” Macri said.

“Because we’ve taken most platforms in-house, we’re able to create a pretty consistent experience for customers both off-site and on-site.”

Wayfair does have “a few partners we work with collectively”, its marketing chief added. “So, we don’t blindly build everything.”

But the brand also ensures it has in-house expertise in the important areas. Continued Macri: “A key part of our marketing philosophy is that our team has to be very technologically fluent.

“We need a team that understands how cookies work at a detailed level, and that understands measurement – what’s possible, what’s not possible, how can we think ahead to what measurement might be like in a cookie-less world.”

Sourced from WARC