As consumers make their final holiday purchases, the data is clear: eCommerce continues to reign supreme, with no signs of slowing down, and marketplaces are the preferred medium for purchasing. According to a recent Prosper Insights and Analytics, nearly half of consumers (45%) plan to continue the shopping behavior they have adopted during the pandemic well after it is over, relying on the convenience of checkout and variety of options that eCommerce and marketplaces provide.
I recently had the pleasure of speaking with Sebastian Rymarz, Founder and CEO of Heyday, the leading platform for marketplace-native brand building, to dig into the data and to hear where he sees the global marketplace economy headed in 2022.
Gary Drenik: To start, can you tell me a bit about Heyday and what you do?
Sebastian Rymarz: Heyday is a next-generation consumer products company, pioneering a marketplace-first approach to brand building. Heyday acquires and incubates marketplace-native brands through innovative partnerships with e-commerce entrepreneurs. Once a part of the Heyday platform, brands tap into technology, data, supply chain, and growth capabilities designed to help them expand their product offering, scale omni-channel presence, and build brand equity.
Drenik: Can you tell me more about how Heyday is different from the many other competitors in the space?
Rymarz: Brand incubation and acceleration are two cornerstones of Heyday’s approach to building the next-generation consumer products company. Rather than buying as many brands as possible, a popular approach with competitors, Heyday incubates a handful of brands with the goal of growing them 10x. We do this by helping brands go omnichannel to increase distribution, building brand equity to garner name brand recognition, and expanding their overall product offering to reach more people with the products that they reach for every single day.
Drenik: How do you evaluate the brands that you are considering investing in? Will you acquire/incubate brands that have a strong fundamental product but branding that is not where it needs to be?
Rymarz: We are extremely selective with the entrepreneurs and brands that Heyday partners with. Every brand must meet specific criteria, including generating a significant base level of revenue threshold that excites us and possessing durable value. When selecting a brand to invest in, we look at its potential, its defensibility, and the value Heyday can bring. A digital brand is worth more inside of Heyday than outside of Heyday, and once on the platform, brands are tapped into marketplace-native technology, data, and operational capabilities designed to produce exponential growth. Ultimately, if a brand has a strong fundamental product but the branding can be improved, we see that as an opportunity where Heyday can add value and can create a unique voice in the market to build brand equity.
Drenik: Why do you feel the future of brand building is taking place in online marketplaces?
Rymarz: One-third of all US businesses now flow through eCommerce, and 63% of that is through marketplaces. (Forrester). Based on these findings, we believe strongly that the future of brand building is happening in the online marketplace, to provide consumers the convenience, quality, and innovation that they are looking for. These findings are also supported by data from Prosper Insights & Analytics, which found that 45% of Americans age 18+ believe that changes they made to their shopping behavior will continue after the pandemic is over. This preference was even more pronounced when looking at Amazon Prime subscribers, of which 51% of respondents will maintain the same shopping behavior. Consumer preference for online marketplaces will drive continued innovation and brand equity.
Drenik: How do you see the global marketplace economy evolving in the next 5-10 years?
Rymarz: The past two years of exponential growth in the global marketplace economy will inform the next 5-10 years, and we believe that the eCommerce adoption we have seen will only increase if not accelerate even faster. Consumers’ preference for checking out through the marketplace will lead the vertical to command an even larger share of eCommerce. With this continued influx of capital, marketplace-native brands will be driven to innovate and will develop new products and launch them both efficiently and seamlessly into a digitally native marketplace. And brands backed by companies like Heyday will be increasingly more successful, as our tech-informed platform has the tools to support innovation that traditional CPG companies do not.
Drenik: Thanks Sebastian for taking the time to connect and share your insights on the global marketplace economy and your predictions for 2022.