Brandshare’s Specialty Is Gifts For E-Commerce Customers

By Diane Mastrull
The Philadelphia Inquirer

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) “BrandShare”, based in Berwyn, Pa., is believed to be the world’s first and largest media and e-commerce sampling company, providing 74 million “value-add product inserts” a month.

The Philadelphia Inquirer

Mott’s Fruity Rolls. Tide detergent pods. Art of the Shave razors.

These are just some of the surprises e-commerce shoppers have found when their packages arrived – tucked, for example, inside the children’s pajamas from Zulily, the sheets from Bed Bath & Beyond or the men’s shirts from Brooks Brothers.

The retail world no longer guarantees face-to-face opportunities to pitch new products to consumers, a taste test in a supermarket aisle, an impulse-purchase display at the checkout counter, because shoppers no longer have to leave home to buy. So the in-package free sample has become a key marketing and customer-loyalty-building tool in online commerce because of its seemingly undeniable popularity.

“Who doesn’t like free? Especially when something has real value,” said Craig Kapilow, senior director of brand partnerships and integrated marketing at Rue La La, an invitation-only online shop offering short-lived deals on brand-name merchandise.

The answer: No one doesn’t like free, apparently, and that’s meant enormous success for a Philadelphia-area family-run business founded before e-commerce was a thing.

BrandShare, based in Berwyn, Pa., is believed to be the world’s first and largest media and e-commerce sampling company, providing 74 million “value-add product inserts” a month and expected to reach between $40 million and $50 million in revenue this year.

Triple-digit growth since 2013 earned the company, created in 1984 by Dick Guyer and one of his nine children, Doug, a spot on the Inc. 5000 this year.

E-commerce is projected to reach $700 billion in the United States by year-end, and brand spending on product sampling is expected to total $34.12 billion this year, according to the Path to Purchase Institute in Chicago. The Guyer family’s decision to redirect its focus to the online shopping world seems genius.

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