How I'd grow Spark

August 5, 2020

Spark is a new type of a tech-powered charcoal grill that ignites with the turn of a switch and uses a series of stoking and cooling fans for temperature control.

The grill also has an accompanying mobile app that monitors the temperature of your grill and your food.

How I’d position a product like Spark: convenience and ease of use! Prepare exquisite grilled dishes without the hassle. Solves loading, lighting, and cleaning up.

Their homepage should focus on this. Precision alone isn’t a good enough reason to buy it if you’re not a pro.

“Spark combines the artisanship of the pre-gas era with the technology of today to give cooks the authenticity, taste and character of charcoal without all the hassle.”

This’d sound better on the above-the-fold part of the homepage. Right now, it’s on their Career page.

The site looks great from a design perspective. But from a conversion perspective, a high-ticket item like this one ($1000) needs more depth.

People need more info before committing to big purchases. A long-form video on the product page could help!

High-ticket items have multiple customer touch points. One of them is searching for reviews. Google will never rank their website for that term, so they need to do the legwork.

They should find high-DA websites, and contact them for a review. The goal is to get at least 5.

Pro tip: Do you monitor results for [your product name]+reviews? Very few businesses do, and customers are looking it up.

If your product is new and the query doesn’t return results, you’ve got a great opportunity to get it right from the start. Get at least 1 good review.

Monetization is where things get interesting. Spark recommends a proprietary fuel called “Briqs” - charcoal discs.

People don’t buy a grill every year, but they do buy charcoal. Adding repeat Briqs purchases to the mix allows Spark to double (or triple) their customer LTV.

Their app is key. They should push as many Spark customers as they can to install it, and then regularly remind them of all the Briqs benefits.

They could add a community part with gamification - a grill leaderboard with special prizes to push app adoption and usage.

High LTV means being able to use paid ads for customer acquisition. I’d start with Google Ads, targeting high-intent keywords (e.g. “Buy + [competitor name]”).

If they have the resources, they should set up a dedicated landing page for each campaign. It’ll convert more.

With Google Ads, Spark can intercept people actively looking for a grill, but what about the vast majority that isn’t? That’s where FB and IG ads come into play.

The goal is to stop the scroll, and get completely unaware people curious enough to click through.

Spark is doing it right. They’re creating multiple creatives that hit different angles.

Reason 1: Creative fatigue is a thing. After a while, the same ad stops being effective.

Reason 2: Everyone is different. Different messages resonate with different people.

Like I said before, people rarely buy these items at first touch, so retargeting is necessary.

It appears Spark set up some ads with that goal. I like how they are leveraging a 60-day free return offer to counter possible objections and tempt people to buy.

Spark isn’t currently using organic search, but they should prioritize it. Their PR is getting them a lot of good links from high-DA domains.

Keyword research shows a lot of potential, and they could really build a traffic machine around educational content.

They need a grilling content hub: a pillar page targeting the main topic, and multiple pages targeting related long-tail KWs.

Internal links connect the pages. Each long-tail page links back to the pillar and vice versa, with anchor texts to increase topical authority.

Looking at their social media, their IG is on point. I feel like they’re missing out on Twitter.

Twitter might not seem like the best network for a food company, but there are profiles like Wendy's that are fun and entertaining, and use Twitter to improve brand awareness.

Learn marketing from case studies

Every month I pick a new website and write a marketing case study explaining exactly how I’d grow it