Cyclone Taylor Sports (CTS) is a family-owned brand sports equipment retailer known for its longstanding local presence and vast selection of sports gear. Steeped in hockey tradition, CTS roots began in 1907, when Fred “Cyclone” Taylor played in the NHL for Ottawa and Vancouver. Today, CTS is one of Western Canada’s largest independent retailers.
CTS had lagged behind its competitors in terms of their online presence. As such, they were losing out on tremendous opportunities to increase brand awareness and customer engagement. Our goal was to help CTS surpass its rivals by upgrading their website, building a social media presence, and increasing their email subscription base, to ultimately drive more sales. Understanding CTS’s historical connection to hockey in Western Canada, we focused on strengthening CTS’s connection with the local hockey community, while making all of CTS’s social media more engaging, informative, and dynamic. We reached out to various hockey leagues, players, and manufacturers for media content, engaged the players on Twitter, and developed campaigns across various social media channels.
CTS had a website which was built in the late 90’s, during which time they were considered to be one of North America’s leaders in the online e-commerce space. However over time, their website became antiquated and as a result, they noticed a significant drop in their online sales, especially as their competitors rolled out nicer and more interactive websites. As their website was hardcoded in HTML, it also became increasingly difficult and expensive for them to manage their website content and build upon it to add features. Below is a screenshot of their old website:
We designed and developed a new website for them. It was built on Magento’s powerful e-commerce platform and designed as a responsive website which is compatible on all screen sizes and mobile devices. Their new website is scalable, easily updatable, and they now have a website which rivals their best competitors.
Click here to see their new website
We focused on getting local hockey players to follow us and encouraged fans to follow CTS through contests and giveaways. Buzz about our contests from professional hockey publications led to dramatic increases in their number of followers and mentions.
– 400 to over 2,200+ followers in three months
– Contest campaigns averaged between 45-60 retweets per day, collectively reaching over 27,000 people with each tweet.
With relentless customer engagement, strategic ad placement, interactive polls, targeted media content, and inventive seasonal contests, we wanted demonstrate CTS’s connection with hockey enthusiasts locally and throughout Western Canada. We built custom landing pages, set up their historical timeline, and email collection forms on their Facebook page.
– CTS received over 4 million new impressions, with an average of 100 user engagements per day.
– We recieved 78 submissions for our trivia contest, allowing us to identify CTS’s core fan base.
– Our photo contest’s winning entry received 687 votes, while growing the fan base by nearly 900 fans (over 25%) within 1 month
We collected e-mails to identify CTS’s biggest supporters and to provide a channel for CTS to engage fans regularly. To do so, we added a subscribe tab to the CTS website, added an email collection form on their Facebook page, added iPad kiosks with an e-mail collection form at each CTS retail location. We also developed a professional new e-mail template for their monthly newsletter, which was deeply integrated with their social media initiatives.
– CTS’s e-mail subscription base doubled during our campaign. The subscription base continues to grow at a rate of roughly 500 emails per month.
– CTS currently has e-mail open and click rates of 38% and 18%, respectively, far greater than the retail industry average of open/click rates of 18% and 3%. (Source: MailChimp)
The goal of the YouTube account was to promote CTS’s hockey expertise. Several in-store how-to-purchase and product videos (like this one) were produced to give special insight into CTS, its knowledgeable staff and newest hockey products. Product videos were tied in to specific contests. Featured products were given away as prizes in several campaigns. This generated even more views and buzz for the videos.
– By November there was a total of 2754 views, an average growth rate of 130% per month supported by use of organic SEO and social media promotion.
The CTS blog was created at the beginning of the campaign. We developed content aimed at further promoting CTS’s hockey expertise. Through junior hockey player interviews, strength and conditioning hockey tips, contests, NHL-related news and highlights, we’ve been able to see dramatic month-over-month increases in blog traffic.
– Our new blog averages 1000+ visits each month, with much of the traffic coming from major search engines.
– Our “Stick 2 Win” contest garnered 984 visits (a 41% increase over August)
Foursquare and Mobile
A mobile strategy was put in place as we began using Foursquare to connect with mobile customers with check-ins rewarding store visitors. A loyalty program was created that rewarded repeat customers with store swag and merchandise.
– 206 users checked 358+ times
– Richmond location experienced a 700% increase in new mobile users during the month of October.
Our work has placed CTS’s online presence far ahead of its competitors. CTS’s own goal of doubling its e-mail subscription base has been reached, and their social media following and engagement far exceeds that of their nearest local competitors.