Q&A: Mark Shimahara, Online Marketing Manager, Patagonia

Written on 06 March, 2013 by Karen Lim-Sam
Categories E-commerceEventsMarketingTags e-commerceevent

Mark Shimahara, is the Online Marketing Manager at Patagonia - a retailer and manufacturer of quality outdoor products with a focus on environmental and social responsibility.  Shimahara is a key speaker at the eCommerce Conference & Expo in Melbourne, below we ask him a few questions about the eCommerce industry.

What will be the main challenge in the e-commerce world in 2013?

Initially the beauty of the web was the ease in creating a word class presence, then it was about serving unique and dynamic content.  Now the challenge is to serve personalised and engaging content to the customer.

What e-commerce trends will be big in 2013?

There are 3 things:

  1. Social Media Integration - It is important that social media be integrated into your website
  2. Paid / Natural Search Evaluation - These should be evaluated as a whole instead of siloed entities
  3. Internationalisation - Identifying the most effective way to expand your global online presence

Who do you see as doing e-commerce well and why?

  • Amazon - They are one of the early adopters and the biggest.  No matter who you are, they are a legitimate competitor in your marketplace.
  • eBay - Continually redefining the bounds of traditional commerce and making retailers rethink how to approach it
  • Backcountry.com - Both a competitor and customer of Patagonia, this company has highly innovative in house solutions for such things as reviews and loyalty, which challenge us to be more competitive in the market place.

What will you be talking about at eCommerce Conference & Expo Melbourne?

At the event I will talk about how loyal customers can be your company’s greatest resource. How you can harness the power of your fans to celebrate your brand; what database analysis revealed about Patagonia’s customers, who we identified as our fans, and how we communicate to spread our brand message.

How did you get into e-commerce and get to where you are now?

Before I worked in Internet Marketing  I was in banking.  My banking client called me out of the blue to tell me he was surprised my first Google result was a testimonial I did for “sensual massage oils”.  I race bikes and in fact wrote a testimonial on behalf of one of my bike sponsors who made sports massage oils. I was so upset by the whole incident I promised myself I would learn as much as I could about search engine marketing.

Name your top three practical tips for someone looking to boost their e-commerce business

  1. Listen and understand your customers.  Always.
  2. Be authentic.  It will help you be heard and have a unique voice.
  3. Personalise and engage messages to your customers.

To hear more from Mark Shimahara, attend the eCommerce Conference & Expo in Melbourne, 17-18 April 2013.  With a conference stream and workshops that include topics; eCommerce Essential, SEO & SEM and Web Design & Usability.  Each part of the conference and event is designed to help you find customers, increase loyalty and increase profits.

Get your early bird tickets if you book before 20th March 2013.  Invest in the future of your business and reap the rewards of being the best.

Also come and say hi to the Netregistry team at stand #2010. We really look forward to seeing you at eCommerce Conference & Expo Melbourne 2013.