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The Challenge

At Chicago-based Threadless, a company that offers a catalog and marketplace platform on which artists and designers create UGC-driven online shops to sell their apparel, the team requires the resources to handle data for what can be millions of creative designs. “We’ve got just under 40 people total,” said Elizabeth Schmidt, its Digital Marketing Director. “My team is the creative team and marketing team, and we have one graphic designer and one art director and one photographer. So it’s not like we have a lot to work with, and we’re all human, and we can only do so much.”

Across all those instances, they do have a notable advantage.

The Solution

“All the artist-shop data, sales data — all marketplace sales data and all Threadless catalog sales data over the last two years — we’re constantly looking at that data, and it’s generating recommendations of what we should do and where the opportunities exist,” Schmidt said. “So it’s basically been our playbook for what we need to do and what things we need to launch.”

The process that Schmidt is referring to there is what we at Cohley call the feedback loop. The feedback loop is the ongoing process that our most successful clients follow and it bears a striking (and intentional) resemblance to the Scientific Method. For us, it looks a little something like this:

  1. Generate content

  2. Activate that content across digital channels

  3. Measure results

  4. Use insights acquired from the measurement stage to inform ongoing content decisions

  5. Rinse & repeat


Elizabeth Schmidt
Digital Marketing Director

"We’re constantly looking at that data, and it’s generating recommendations of what we should do and where the opportunities exist."

The Results

This data-driven strategy is so ingrained into the small team culture at Threadless that it weaves into their content strategy as well. They are deploying outsize campaign content and need access to the details and insights that only their analytics can provide to ensure they are generating and activating data-driven content.

Talk to us about how you can build a data-driven content strategy for your brand!