Learn from Fast Growing 7-8 Figure Online Retailers and eCommerce Experts

EPISODE 253 82 mins

Unbound Merino’s Product Centric DTC Growth Story

About the guests

Dan Demsky

Kunle Campbell

Dan never followed the traditional career path. He has been a serial entrepreneur running a successful video production agency for the bulk of his self made career.
The urge to run a business that had customers - and not clients - fueled Dan’s desire to start a different kind of business. Unbound Merino was born.
The unending Shopify sales notifications within the first months of launching had Dan (and his partners) convinced that this was an incredible opportunity.

On today’s episode Kunle interviews Dan Demsky, one of the co-founders of Unbound Merino, a luxury men’s apparel brand that only uses Australian merino wool. Apparel from Unbound Merino is simple yet stylish and can be worn for weeks or even months without ever needing to be washed that often!

If you are an avid traveller, you probably must have realized that clothes made out of cotton or synthetic material can get quite sticky. This is a problem that Unbound Merino solves.

The focus of our conversation is their journey to direct consumer ecommerce, how they use performance marketing, SEO and word of mouth to continue to tell their story and some of their challenges.

Time Stamps

03:39 – What to expect from this episode

06:08 – Easily Grow Your Business With A Powerful Marketing Automation Platform! Check out Klaviyo and open a free account now!

07:01 – Get the easiest way to backup your Shopify or BigCommerce store and undo unwanted changes with Rewind.io… If you mention that you were referred by 2x eCommerce Podcast, you qualify for a 30 days free trial instead of the usual 7 days!

09:18 – Introducing Dan Demsky of Unbound Merino

11:42 – Dan’s thoughts on Coronavirus and Direct-to-Consumer eCommerce (DTC)

  • Some businesses have absolutely exploded, some businesses have completely imploded.
  • eCommerce is a lifeline for a lot of people through this pandemic because it’s the way people are consuming anything and buying all of their goods.
  • The challenge for Unbound Merino is that the business was built on the back of being a travel product.

13:05 – How Unbound Merino has pivoted due to the pandemic

  • Their messaging
  • Their marketing
  • Their website copy

15:20 – Unbound Merino’s revenue figures

15:31 – Unbound Merino’s growth pathway from zero to 5 million over the last three and a half years

  • Crowdfunding campaign trying to get $30,000 in pre sales. They did $400,000 in pre-sale revenue.
  • Launched their website in December 2016
  • Focused their energy on one marketing channel – Facebook ads
  • How they tackled the inventory problem encountered

24:40 – Details about Merino, the material

27:36 – How crowdfunding campaigns work

28:50 – Why Unbound Merino’s crowdfunding campaign was immensely successful

  • No stone was left unturned during the planning process
  • Involving friends and family
  • Partnering with Indiegogo to get featured on their newsletter
  • Getting a little bit of press afterwards

38:46 – Easily Grow Your Business With A Powerful Marketing

  • Automation Platform! Check out Klaviyo and open a free account now!

41:23 – The Facebook Ads strategy that got Unbound Merino going up to the point that they were seven figures in 12 months.
Hired a Facebook ads consultant (Rob Green) that came highly recommended

52:35 – Pillars for the success in the return of a Facebook or an

  • Instagram ad
  • Consider what the cost of acquiring a customer is and how that fits into the math of what your cost of goods sold are.

56:06 – What Unbound Merino is doing on the email front

  • It is the best thing that they have
  • They use Klaviyo to manage a list of over 50,000 subscribers, majority of whom are customers
  • Email marketing has come in handy ever since the pandemic hit.

01:02:57 – Unbound Merino’s SEO strategy

  • Hired an SEO expert even though they know it would take some time to see the results
  • Find the guy who is a good investment and give it time.

01:04:45 – Indispensable technology solutions used to run unbound

  • Merino
  • Shopify
  • Klaviyo
  • Indiegogo

Key Takeaways

  • To convert on Facebook with a lower price point product can seam easy, but it’s still not easy. You might be spending $10 to acquire a new customer for a $10 product and that’s a losing proposition.
  • What matters is the quality of your product and your ability to market it.
  • Sometimes people get so wrapped up with the mechanics of running a business, they forget that all that matters is what’s going on in between the ears of the customer.
  • Don’t be obsessed with the apps used to run a business. Focus on solving an existing problem first.

Lightning Round

Q – What advice would you give yourself five years ago?

  • Never get comfortable because comfort is laziness.

Q – What’s your daily morning routine?

  • I wake up, I sit on my pillow. I meditate for 20 minutes, I have a thing called the Five Minute Journal, to the gratitude thing. I fill that out. So I start my day with 20 minutes of calm stillness and a little bit of gratitude. And then I make my bed like the way that it would be made in a five star hotel.

Q – Two things can’t you live without?

  • My dog
  • Good quality food

Q – What book are you currently reading?

  • Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity by David Allen

Tweetable Quotes:

“The most important thing is the quality of the product because that’s returning customers is how you’re going to build a sustainable business and word of mouth.”

“People will buy your stuff and then the product speaks for itself. That’s very important.”

Facebook Group • Continue the Conversation

The eCommerce GrowthAccelerator Mastermind Facebook Group has just launched.
It is a community…

✔️ for founders and experts passionately involved in eCommerce
✔️ for the truly ambitious wanting to make an impact in the markets they serve
✔️ for those willing and open to help and share with other members

Here is where to apply to join the Facebook group



This episode is brought to you by:


This episode is brought to you by Klaviyo – a growth marketing platform that powers over 25,000 online businesses.
Direct-to-Consumer brands like ColourPop, Huckberry, and Custom Ink rely on Klaviyo.

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Find out more on klaviyo.com/2x.




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About the host:

Kunle Campbell

An ecommerce advisor to ambitious, agile online retailers and funded ecommerce startups seeking exponentially sales growth through scalable customer acquisition, retention, conversion optimisation, product/market fit optimisation and customer referrals.

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