Welcome to the e-commerce marketing podcast, everyone, I am your host, Arlen Robinson, and today we have a very special guest, Toccara Karizma (Yes, that really is her name!) is a highly sought-after digital marketing consultant and online business growth expert.

In addition to creating Social Savvy, a digital course designed to help business owners accelerate the learning curve to quickly generate revenue from profitable Facebook ads, she is also the owner of Karizma Marketing, a full-service digital marketing agency dedicated to growing 7-figure plus eCommerce brands online through various marketing channels, including paid ads, email marketing, SEO, and more. 

She has dominated the digital space since 2007, when she launched her own successful eCommerce business, and now helps her clients serve over 30 million customers through high-level digital marketing strategies. Her out-of-the-box, omni-channel approach to digital marketing and expertise in the online business growth space is why we’ve asked her to join us today.

Welcome to the podcast.

Thank you so much, Arlen. I’m so excited to be here.

No problem. And thank you for joining us. I’m really excited to talk to you. You definitely have a wealth of knowledge I know you can share with our listeners. And I’m super excited to dig deep into that because today’s topic is really a hot topic I’ve touched on before and some other episodes. But, you know, it keeps coming up with customers that I’m dealing with here across our affiliate software. And just in general, over the past few years, social media marketing and specifically paid ads on Facebook and Instagram.

Everybody’s trying to figure it out and trying to see how they can win big on those platforms. And you’re going to enlighten us a little bit on how to do that. But before we do that, what did to tell us a little bit more about your background and specifically how you got into what you’re doing today?

Well, first, thank you for that amazing introduction. No problem. I started like many others, actually. I started back in 2007 when I actually first had my kid. I had my own my first child and my own e-commerce story. This is before Shopify existed, before drop shipping really was a term. Facebook only had 20 million users at that time. And I had built an international brand. And I learned the power of making money while you sleep during that period.

And so fast forward from twenty seven to today and twenty twenty one. And I loved the marketing side. I fell in love with e-commerce and I realized fulfilling orders, ordering inventory, dealing with shipping, having to be stuck in one location wasn’t for me in terms of that side of e-commerce, but I loved growing brands. I loved building successful businesses. And so today we support a lot of e-commerce, seven, eight, nine figure brands and help them through an omni channel approach are mostly known for Facebook and Instagram ads, of course, but we are Clavier Gold Master.

So we do a lot of email marketing as well as SEO and website conversion rate optimization and so much more, because I am a believer that all these tools need to work together in order to grow your business. So that’s my jam.

I said gotcha. That’s awesome. Thank you for sharing that. And what you mentioned at the very end there is really the key thing and it is making all of these different platforms work together, talk to each other, effectively, do that. I had someone that I spoke with yesterday. I was actually on another podcast, on somebody else’s podcast, actually. And we talked a little bit about how things these days are a lot easier than it was back in the early 2000s, which is when I started the business.

As far as when you were looking to tie apps together, get data to talk to each other, it was it is easy. It is today you had to do a lot of custom development coding to have different applications, talk to each other. But these days, fortunately, most of these app vendors and these social platforms have created plug ins and different tools, APIs and things to allow you to easily integrate one with another. And that’s really the power of, I think, where we’re at today.

And it’s an awesome thing that you’re able to get on top of that and help other businesses manage that type of thing.

Exactly. It’s like expanding your workforce. Everything’s on automation and it’s free. It’s great when you do something automation, you’re not manually sitting and paying someone to do that. That’s happening in the background.

Yeah, yeah, definitely. Definitely. We have good stuff. As I mentioned at the top of the episode, of course, today we’re going to be talking about social media marketing, specifically Facebook and Instagram. Now, one of the biggest questions that I want to start off with, which is something that I think always comes up when I’m talking to businesses, because everyone kind of hears the the success stories of. How many businesses are using, like, Facebook ads, it’s almost like an ATM and getting just cash daily from it from Facebook and getting sales from it, and everybody wants to be a part of it.

So the biggest question I always did is really is social media marketing paid ads on Facebook and Instagram. Is it right for every e-commerce business?

Yes, I love that. And if it was truly like an ATM, everyone would be doing it. I though it doesn’t quite work that way. I in all transparency say no, it absolutely is not for every business. And here’s and just hear me out. It’s a place to get to once we have our foundation set. And what I mean by that is do we have a website that converts? That’s a big deal. Do we have our unique selling proposition really nailed down and a product to market fit that there actually is a demand for this product?

And then once we get them to our website, are they going to convert? Do we have some type of system where we can capture their email and market to them off the platform so that we can continue that conversation and nurture them? And so what I find is I see a lot of the time small business owners saying Facebook, that didn’t work for me, I’m done. Well, running Facebook ads is like flying a 747, you know, so we don’t ask someone to fly that jet for us without having a pilot’s license and a quick truth.

So why do we think of small business owners that we can just go into this console, that is, and understand how that works without years of experience and without building up a backup plan to make all of that converts? So what I say is, let’s first focus on that foundation. Let’s make sure that we have all these pieces in place. And if that all sounds good, then great. Great. Then our next step is let’s go into the Facebook ads piece.

And I would always start very small and then kind of go from there. And there’s a lot of research that goes into it as well to make sure what we’re doing is is stacked in our favor and so that we understand how to get these to actually convert and reach our end goals.

Yeah, makes sense. And I’m glad you’ve really stated that, because a lot of times every business these days kind of almost thinks that because there’s so many other businesses that are on the platforms doing ads and being successful, they think they really just need to jump there on there. But it may not be right for them. There’s a lot of these days, you know, there’s a million and one marketing channels, so you don’t necessarily have to go that route.

You can be successful in certain businesses, but not every business can be successful with it.

Exactly. And the disclaimer that the beauty of Facebook ads is you can compete with the Nike’s and the Coca-Cola of the world. You can spend a dollar a day and get distribution and at least get brand awareness. So I do want to put that out there. But we do have to align our goals with Facebook ads with a realistic where are we in our business. So let me kind of put that little disclaimer in that they are a way to get awareness and have you.

That’s very true. Yeah. Your business can if you’re looking to just get awareness, if your main goal may not necessarily be to drive sales conversions and that type of thing, but just some brand awareness. Yeah, definitely vehicle for pretty much for almost any business to get some awareness for at least a subset of your demographic is on these platforms. And yeah, it makes sense. And these days, who’s not on social media. So nine times out of ten it is.

I think one of the reasons why you mentioned earlier, a lot of times people just go on there. They think they can get on, click on the council and get going all on their own without really necessarily having any expertize or anything. And I love that comparison of being a pilot for a 747. You wouldn’t ask just anybody flying coach to try to fly the plane. That doesn’t work. You ask somebody to fly the plane. And part of it is because Facebook, they have to make it easy for people and it’s easy to just get in there, creates your profile and your credit card and, you know, anyone can really do it.

And so they’re just trying to maximize their profits. And so there’s no fault on them. But yes, you do need some proper consultation and guidance before you really dig deep in there.

Yeah, and a strategy. So the reason why a lot of those facts don’t work for small businesses is we come out, we say buy me, buy me, find my stuff. I’m so great. I’m the best. But that’s not the natural relationship we built up as humans with people and people these days more than ever want to align with the values of a company and their mission and what they’re all about. And you have to form that natural relationship with your customer base and you’re following.

So most of the time, the reasons also why those small business kind of ads don’t work is because they don’t have that sales funnel or that roadmap ahead of them to guide a customer on that journey, to get to the final decision of trusting the company enough to make that purchase.

Now, I think the one of the main questions once somebody does get in the route of. Creating campaigns via Facebook, Instagram, they say they got the proper consultation. I think the main thing is kind of gets the heart of everything is the messaging and what are some really effective ways to come up with the right messaging to target the right demographics on social media? Because I’ve dealt with a lot of business owners that struggle with coming up with that.

Yes, I actually call this the cow method, the customer’s own words. There’s a few things we do in our agency. It’s one of the ones we use kind of in social savvy. But I love doing customer research. I think a lot of business owners skip this step. And what we do in the agency is a lot of different steps of research. One is pulling out customer’s own words. So let’s say we have a branch that’s big enough that they have tons of reviews that we want to first pull all of those reviews out for our particular brand and our client.

Because when we can spit out the exact words of customers using about what they love or where their frustration points are, we can build a very effective ad. So that’s something really big. If your brand is not big enough, what you do is go to a place like Amazon, the gorilla of e commerce and a lot of ways. And so you can put in very similar products. I always like to use the example of headphones like earphones or earbuds, because a lot of the times you can see what people you can pull up your phones and you can see this is my five star reviews and these are like my two star reviews.

One star I kind of skipped because no matter what, they’re just angry. You know, I never get a lot of value out of the one stars, but, you know, the two to three stars and you start actually seeing there’s online tools. Even Amazon does it. You can put in these reviews and you can see what words keep coming up over and over again. So I’ll give you a perfect example. I have a we have a client for three plus years now with hair loss products.

While I never use the word we started pulling out our content matrix. We never use the word hairline in any of our ads. But what I realized when I pulled all these reviews together and I started running them through tools online to see what words were coming up over and over again, hairline was one of the biggest words that their customers were using. So I know I need to use that in my ad copy or my email marketing, for example.

So that’s just one way in which we can look at that. There’s also a great ad library on Facebook. I love it so much. So you can go to I believe it’s business conference. That’s Facebook for its ads library or something like that, library slash ads. You can also Google it. And what you can do is, again, look at your competitors ads. Everything’s free and transparent so you can see what are they doing and be inspired.

And then finally, another resource I love, love, love is milled dotcom. That’s for email marketing. But let’s say you have a brand because we do a lot of email marketing to and you can figure out if it’s a big brand. Again, just like Amazon, if you don’t have enough reviews or you don’t have a strong email marketing system in place, look at what these other established brands are doing in their email marketing and be inspired and start having in getting ideas from yourself because you know that they’re spending hundreds of thousands of millions on their marketing.

They’re probably doing things right so you can rely on their expertize to help guide you if you’re a smaller brand.

Definitely, yeah. Great advice there. It’s difficult, but I love that suggestion of actually looking at the reviews. I don’t know if anybody I’ve ever had somebody tell me to look at the reviews, but yeah, that’s a great way to get ideas around your particular niche and your brand. What are people saying about this particular product line? And if you’re in the same space, yeah, you can really see what are the conversations people are having? What are they?

Are there certain features? People are mentioning earbuds. The ear buds are a great example is I remember a couple of years ago before I bought my first Apple earbuds, I was mad. I was searching for a million different. I was trying to make the right decision. I’m an Apple guy. And then I also always use Apple products. And I was looking I mean, wow, there are so many types of different wireless headphones. It’s unbelievable.

So I was I was looking through reviews and like you said, you learn a lot from those two star reviews as opposed to the one star review. You can kind of really understand what a really people really saying around this product. And I think you can use that around any niche, any particular product line.

Yeah, exactly. Another way, with that anti hair loss client, for example, I never knew how important smell was to people. So if you sell a commodity like hair products, beauty products, skincare products, scent is a big deal and you can’t have someone smell these days, maybe in 30 years will have a scent come through the computer or phone. But these days you can’t no one knows what that perfume you’re trying to sell or body smells like or shampoo.

So no one going through those reviews and seeing constantly people saying it has a light, fresh citrus or smell or that is important information for you to make sure that you’re kind of adding because they can’t actually physically smell it. So we’re kind of. Getting to all of their senses, yeah, definitely, yeah, so the customer feedback there is that is key and that’s where you can kind of pull a lot of your your messaging. Now, thinking about Facebook, of course, one of the things that’s really exploded over the years is Facebook groups.

And so that’s another route you can go. And it doesn’t cost anything to create a Facebook group these days. I’m starting to see, of course, a lot more Facebook groups, a lot more companies that are creating them because they’re really huge these days. You get free promotion. But what does an average e-commerce business create a group around? And that really makes sense, because I think that’s one of the things that I think people struggle with when I go to I could create a group, but what’s going to make sense for my audience?

Yeah, and I love that question. And we get it so often. And we have to remember that building a brand is also about building community. Right. And making someone feel like a part of a community. And so when we build a group and we have clients of like ninety thousand members that we built in their Facebook group, and it’s just design killing it for them when we built a group, it’s always about solving a problem. It’s never really about the product.

So how do you relate your product to a group and create community around that? I’ll give you two examples. One is a swimwear brand that we represent and the Swimwear Brands Mission is that everybody is like, perfectly imperfect. Right. And to love the skin you’re in. And so the group is about empowering women. And the owner, the CEO of this company is just a genius. She realizes when a woman puts on their bikinis, it’s not about the bikini.

It’s about the way the bikini makes that woman feel. And so the group is all about female support and empowerment, and it just creates such a strong community around the brand. And then they do lives in there and they do special promotions and they do sales. And it just becomes this. It’s out of control. It’s crazy to wear the group of like four hundred five remembers the day. And the other example I have is not e-commerce, but a fast company with over 30 million customers.

And before they had started the group and we run it for them, our pitch was, hey, this is a way for you to be able to nurture your customers and keep them in, because a big thing with SAS, as you know, Arlen, is is the churn rate. Right. So, yeah. And so this is actually kind of taken from kallick funnels or kallick funnels would do certain things where they would basically help on board and keep this is one of the strategies they kind of use, not a group, but in essence education and keeping someone in because at first 30 days is so critical for someone to understand your product.

So for them, they had some low customer service review rates. They had a little bit of a higher rate than they wanted. Cool. Let’s invite people into this community. Let’s get their customer service needs answered in this community. Let’s give them support and strategies on how they use this tool and how to grow their business through the Sasseville. So these are ways in which we can build groups in which they’re not directly about the product, but they’re offering a solution to a problem.

And that’s how you build the group. So what I would then go back to our listeners today is what’s the problem or solving how can we help support our community and provide community around that? And that’s what our group should be about.

Yeah, makes a lot of sense. And I think the attractiveness to these groups, you know, when people are associating and joining these groups that are part of brands is that it’s kind of like this is kind of a safe space because they know, of course, the brands ultimately you don’t want to grow their business. If there’s new products coming out, they may announce it on the groups and things like that. But the groups are really more, like you said, for answering solving problems and really helping the customer, not necessarily just utilizing their products or services, but, you know, helping them get something done.

And I think with this Facebook groups, it’s a little different than the standard customer service support channels because you have access to everybody. There are other people that are in the group, other customers. You can see what other customers are saying. You can bounce ideas off of them and form relationships with other customers that use the product. And so, yeah, it really creates an awesome pool for this really engagement that can help empower your customer base for sure.

Exactly. And if you we have a lot of clients who own e-commerce brands that are also influencers. And so to build that intimate relationship with your customer base, to really let them see inside your life a little bit, get in there, get a lot of it’s a big deal, you know. So that’s another way in which you can, especially if you are the face of your business, get in and make a further deeper connection to your customers.

Yeah, I can definitely see that. That’s great advice. And it’s not like I said before we started recording, we’ve got several different groups that we started and. Yeah, you’ve got some of my wheels churning in my head. We could do worse as business and customer churn is something that we battle with day in, day out. It’s tough to keep people as customers without opting out and getting distracted with other things and getting too busy to get into your product.

So, yeah, I’ve got my my wheels churning for sure. Well, you know, as you get ready to wrap things up, I wanted to see if you could highlight and mention a few business examples of companies that you’re familiar with that you guys have either worked with or just in general that you’re familiar with that have really been successful with social media ads, whether it’s Facebook, Instagram and any other platform. And what specifically did they do that really kind of knocked it out of the park?

Yeah, yeah. So some of the ways in which we’ve kind of built these brands and really built an experience around the brands, which I think is kind of key here, how can someone have an experience with your brand is through kind of like the give away strategy, which let me say that with a little disclaimer. You can also get a lot of very unqualified leads who are just interested in something for free. However, it’s an easy way to grow your Instagram following, to grow your email list.

And I always say always attach it to email. You know, social followings don’t pay the bills, the emails. You can actually start nurturing them off the platform. So you’re not building your castle on someone else’s foundation. But giveaways can be super helpful in building those groups emails, social followings. And another one is to actually look into your analytics. So a lot of companies don’t do this. If I talk to a business owner, they’ll kind of know, you know, and I’ll I’ll actually ask them because I can see how other and also, this is your top selling product here.

This is what’s converting. Well, hey, this we need to move. It’s been on our shelves. It’s not selling well. So what we can do is do things like bundling. Right. And look at our analytics and drive ads or sales or emails around either top converting products, at least as the entry point into the brand or bundled together products that tend to sell well together and kind of increase our average order value and also get rid of possibly some of those products that aren’t moving as well.

The best strategy probably and every branch to introduce it to it always becomes a top selling product, especially if you have a lot of female customers, is we are not like the surprise products. And for me, it’s funny because for me, I wouldn’t buy something where I kind of don’t know what I’m buying. But it’s a thing. It’s like a thing, you know, it’s like the fashion boxes every month that come and you don’t know what’s going to come.

It’s like a Christmas present. Well, it’s the same. So what we do is it’s a really easy offer to make with a light savings and it every single brand you’ve introduced it to. And these are multimillion dollar brands. It’s their top selling product. So where we offer some sort of surprise and it’s an easy yes, but they get a slight discount and it’s an easy way to get someone into your brand, especially at top of funnel, where they haven’t quite made a purchase yet or might not know who you are.

So these are some strategies we’ve implemented that have worked really well with our brands. And I’d love to see those get tested with some of our listeners and see how they go.

Yeah, that’s great advice there. You know, one of the things that you mentioned that’s really key in this week applied to various aspects of the business is you mentioned that some of those brands you’re working with, you didn’t do anything until you looked at their analytics. So essentially you were making data driven decisions on those particular marketing tactics that you were doing. And I think that’s really where sometimes businesses feel, where they just kind of jump right into these things and maybe they look at some of their competitors, what their competitors are doing.

But, you know, the competitors are different. You can’t necessarily clone everything your competitors are doing, even if they’re successful. You got to look at your own stuff. You’ve got to look at your own stats and what would make sense based on the analytics. You have to click through that. You’re getting your opt in rates. What messaging is resonating with people? So, yeah, very key. I think that’s kind of the top piece of advice for me.


I agree. And if your agency is not asking you those questions, that’s a big red flag. And and as an agency, we like to also ask questions if a male dominant brand is saying, I want to get on to Pinterest and I know that Pinterest is seventy seven percent female users and they have a 70 percent male customer base. It’s my job to say, hey, look, the analytics, the data doesn’t necessarily support that strategy. It might not be someone who want to put all of our eggs in that basket.

But for me, I think these days businesses have the tendency to fall in the trap of the whole foulmouthed syndrome, the fear of missing out because they see other brands. And but, you know, just like you said in that example for Pinterest, for a male brand, and it just may not be the right match for them. So it’s stuff we’ll talk about. It’s been awesome talking to you. Like I said, I learned a lot. I’ve got.

A few takeaways, some buy in for sure, a lot of takeaways. I’ve got things churning in my background that I’m going to definitely talk to my team about and hopefully our listeners have some great takeaways as well. So we appreciate you coming on. And lastly, before we let you go, I always like to switch gears here and ask one final question just so our audience can get to know you a little bit better if you don’t mind sharing one closing fun fact about yourself that you think we’d be interested to know.

Yeah, well, because it comes up with my name a lot. I’ll share the fun fact that actually didn’t have a name for two years and to car Chris Maturi is my name Takizawa Lauren Drucker. And that’s because my parents used to call me either oh my baby say baby number three or they say Karisma on them because I guess as a baby, even then I had Prisma. So I don’t even know what time I was born because there is no birth certificate.

Everything was delayed because my mom left the hospital without naming me. So that’s always a fun fact.

That’s definitely a fun fact. Very interesting to life without having a name. Very interesting because your parents thought behind it they wanted to put more time and to figure out more of where your personality was going to go before they named you that.

Yes, exactly. And by the way, I have three sisters and they all have the same story. So so I just wanted to get to know us a little better and figure out our personalities. And if I told you their names, you would laugh as well.

That’s very interesting. I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone say that. You know, usually parents are directing their brain when the woman is one month pregnant. They’re trying to figure out a name. But yeah, it makes sense. Yeah. You really don’t know. You don’t become your own really until a few years. You then you the child starts to develop and you can kind of see where they are. But yeah, that’s interesting. I like that.

Thank you for saying that. Fun fact.

She’s always a fun one.

Definitely. And lastly, before we let you go, if any of our listeners want to reach out to you and pick your brain any more about social media ads, Facebook, Instagram or any other digital marketing topic, what’s the best way for them to reach you?

Yeah, so they can find me everywhere at Toccara Charisma. And it’s such a difficult spelling. It’s t o a r a k a r. I am a website, YouTube, Instagram, Facebook. My agency is XMA marketing so they can always check out all of our digital marketing services by looking at.

OK, great. Thank you for sharing that. Definitely encourage people to check you out and check out all of what you have to offer for businesses for sure. And thank you, of course, for joining us today. The e-commerce marketing progresses. Thank you so much for having me, Arlen. I had so much fun with you.

Likewise. Thank you.

Thank you for listening to the e-commerce marketing podcast, 

Podcast Guest Info

Toccara Karizma
Founder and CEO of Karizma Marketing