E-commerce marketing and insights platform MikMak has raised $10 million in Series A funding, which it plans to use to expand the company across the U.S. and beyond. It has sights set on international territory as it looks to capitalize on the exponential growth it has seen during the coronavirus pandemic, Rachel Tipograph, founder and CEO, told Cheddar.

"COVID has accelerated e-commerce demand by five years. So, where we all thought the industry was going to be in the year 2025, it arrived on the week of March 9th," she said.

MikMak works with brands like Nestle and L'Oreal to create captivating digital ad campaigns and links them to retailers with major online presences, including Target, Walmart, and Sephora. 

While many businesses have failed to keep their online operations up to speed, Tipograph said it is necessary in order to run a thriving business today.

"E-commerce has become the way these Fortune 1000 consumer brands have to go to market. Brick-and-mortar is now secondary," she noted.

The retail industry has suffered tremendously amid the coronavirus pandemic, but for MikMak and Tipograph, selling essentials has allowed shops to keep their doors open.

"We don't focus on apparel and footwear. Our clients are personal care, home care, beauty, food, beverage, alcohol. They're actually the pantry staple items," she explained.

While traditionally major brands tended to target everyday Americans on a broad scale, hoping to reach a large group and find a few potential customers within it, Tipograph said success in online sales is due to carefully curated marketing for a specific target consumer.

"You actually have to go really narrow and really niche," she said. "Let's find people online who suffer from acne or rosacea and live in the Chicago metro area."

With research, according to Tipograph, companies may find that target groups they least expect to consume their products, particularly amid the pandemic, are actually driving sales.

"Brands want more data and we've got it," she said. "The fastest growing demographic in terms of shift during COVID has actually been people that are over 60 years old," noting that older people turned to online shopping during the pandemic and speculating that they will continue to use it once the health crisis has subsided.

Tipograph provided a nugget of advice for companies currently figuring out their marketing strategies, saying a "shift in mindset" and abandoning old approaches to selling an item is how they will see success in their businesses.

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