Digital Dynamo and Strategical Savvy: Samantha’s Leadership in Action

Published on

February 27, 2024

Voices of the industry

The new interview in our Pixyle AI “Vices of the Industry” blog series is here! This time we sat down with Samantha Doctora, a powerhouse with a diverse background across industries like sustainability, fashion, and FMCG. Samantha's journey is filled with standout campaigns and impactful projects, from launching groundbreaking middleware like DotApparel to optimizing websites and integrating complex systems. 

Read on to find out Samantha’s insights, strategies, and experiences,  and how her core values of simplification, efficiency, and results-driven focus drive her towards excellence.

Bridging Systems with DotApparel Middleware

With your diverse background in strategic marketing, digital projects, and campaign management across various industries, including sustainability, fashion, and FMCG, can you share a standout campaign or project that you found particularly rewarding or challenging? What were the key strategies that contributed to its success?

Samantha: One of the most rewarding projects I've been involved in was the rollout of our middleware, DotApparel. It's truly fulfilling to witness our product bridging the gap between two different systems that would not have synced otherwise. The pivotal strategies behind this successful rollout include meticulous project scheduling and the implementation of clear testing procedures. Over time, our team honed the rollout process to perfection, reaching a level where, as acknowledged by one of our merchants, we could "test and go live with our eyes closed." As it stands, our middleware has synchronised over +10 million online orders across over 100 online stores. It’s a rewarding project to be a part of as it contributes to the ongoing success of many fashion brands online.

Crafting User-Centric Retention Strategies with DotApparel

As a multidisciplinary creative, you've worked on optimizing over 12 websites. How do you approach building retention strategies that drive ongoing conversion, and what role do user-centric principles play in your day-to-day work as a Product Manager for DotApparel?

Establishing a consistent user experience across both online and offline platforms is paramount in building retention strategies that drive continuous conversion. Additionally, ensuring that the content remains on-brand and resonates with each stage of the marketing funnel is crucial. This is why a fully functional tech stack is important; it enables an omnichannel experience that bridges online and offline together, eliminating silos between channels.

At DotApparel, we strengthen our retention strategy by nurturing our relationships with merchants and collaborating with them so that they eventually become advocates for our app, thereby extending our reach to even more potential merchants. In my role as a Product Manager, I work closely with fashion eCommerce Managers daily to understand how they’re utilizing our middleware to enhance their fashion business. By offering a middleware, we are, in turn, assisting eCommerce Managers in driving more success with their consumer-facing retention strategy.

Driving Success Through Cross-Functional Collaboration

Your technical skills span project management, digital marketing, SEO, digital design, and more. How do you leverage this diverse skill set to lead cross-functional teams and collaborate on projects? Can you share an example where this multidisciplinary approach resulted in a successful outcome?

My experiences at Bellroy, YETI, and now DotCollective have all benefited from my exposure across multiple disciplines, allowing me to connect with specialists in a much more productive way. This not only drives efficiency but also helps achieve better outcomes. For instance, implementing strategies to promote our product externally through organic reach, stronger marketing collateral, and streamlining internal workflows by adopting project management tools for improved collaboration among all stakeholders. With more transparency and clear communication, it’s proven that individuals from all disciplines are more empowered to propel the project forward and advocate for a successful outcome when they understand the “why” behind it all.

Streamlining Retail Operations for Effortless Business Growth

As the Product Manager for DotApparel, you play a crucial role in integrating Apparel21 with Shopify. Can you elaborate on the challenges and benefits of creating a middleware that seamlessly syncs data across different platforms? How does DotApparel contribute to retail transformation for businesses?

Many retailers, especially those operating for over 5+ years, face the challenge of outdated systems that struggle to keep up with modern technology and necessary integrations. Fashion retailers ahead of the curve are acknowledging the importance of enriching products so they are more discoverable beyond their website (like third-party search engines, for example). Based on this, there's a growing need for the best tech, among them Pixyle, which, as many of you know, is helping enrich products with descriptive garment details that go beyond basic enrichment.

Our DotApparel middleware, on the other hand, contributes to the tech stack significantly by bridging this gap through automatic synchronization of data between online and their ERP system. Operating discreetly in the background and requiring minimal maintenance, our middleware enables retailers to focus solely on optimizing their online stores without the hassle of backend integration.

Ultimately, this is what technology should do - make the lives of eCommerce Managers easier by driving efficiency.

The Guiding Principles: Simplify, Strategize, Succeed

Your core values include "Simplify and go," "Work smarter, not harder," and "Focus on results." How do these values shape your approach to problem-solving and decision-making in your role? Can you share an instance where adhering to these principles led to a positive outcome for a project or initiative you were involved in?

Samantha: My commitment to these core values significantly influences my problem-solving and decision-making processes. With many fashion merchants utilizing our middleware, it's imperative to adopt a merchant-centric mindset by prioritizing app features that offer the greatest collective benefit. Often, we opt for implementing Minimum Viable Products (MVPs) and refine them post-deployment based on initial user feedback. This approach allows us to deliver substantial value promptly, ensuring our merchants remain satisfied with immediate solutions—a strategy we deem as "quick wins.”

A Thank You Note by Pixyle AI

In wrapping up, Samantha Doctora's journey showcases the power of simplicity, efficiency, and getting results in the ever-changing world of marketing and digital innovation. Her insights shed light on how blending various skills and putting the customer first can drive real change in businesses.

A big thanks to Samantha for sharing her expertise, this was an insightful deep dive into how a strategic mind thinks. With her guidance, we're reminded that keeping things simple, being efficient, and staying focused on achieving real outcomes are the keys to success. Let's stick to these principles as we strive for success