Marketing Automation with Bed Bath & Beyond (Case Study)

Check out how Bed Bath and Beyond tackles digital customer experience.

Marketing Automation with Bed Bath & Beyond (Case Study)


  • The use case is that I’m looking for a calf and foot massager and Bed Bath & Beyond is the few places that sell those machine
  • In the period of between Black Friday and Boxing Day (Canadian version of Black Friday), I am looking to get deep discount on these machines; however, there was none during the Black Friday, Cyber Monday and including Boxing Day periods
  • Then, I saw this newsletter signup from the company which offers 20% discount if you sign up for anything; then I realized that I can use this one-time discount to the foot and calf massager
  • That is how this Marketing Automation Journey begins:
    1. I went to the website and added the product I want into the Shopping Cart and after idling (since I’m waiting for the discount code), I received the Abandoned Cart Journey
    2. In parallel, I initiated the 20% Discount Welcome Email and they work along together
    3. It is also a great example of Omni-channel sales process where I start the shopping from online/digital channel and end up making the purchase in-store with all the promises from the digital side
There are 2 Automated Marketing Journeys in this experience

Welcome Email Journey with Discount Code

There are 5 main steps for this first - Welcome Email Journey with Discount Code

It starts when the user signs up for the newsletter.

One of the drivers to increase revenue is to acquire customers. One of the best ways to acquire digital customer is to provide discounts in exchange of their permission to market them digitally.

In my case, I was looking for deals and I already had in mind what I was looking for so the extra discount is the incentive to push me from the consideration stage to purchase.

My purchase experience fits nicely into the basic 4 Ps of Marketing (Positioning, Product, Price and Promotion).

In summary, the Bed Bath and Beyond positioning is unique from the massage products because they tend to carry products and brands that are not available that easily even at Amazon. From Product, I was looking for Calf and Foot massager since I do a lot of weight lifting with my legs, it is nice to have one of those machines (I bought one already to my mom).  From promotion perspective, I passed the Awareness and Consideration stage. Finally, I only needed a nudge to fulfill the purchase stage with an extra discount.

Once the user signs up for the 20% discount offering to sign up for the newsletter, the user will kick off the Welcoming Email Journey

Then, the user immediately receives a Thank you email for the sign up with the discount promise.

The first email that the user receives just after 1 minute, it’s the Thanks for Signing Up email. It mentions explicitly that I will receive the discount after 24 hours. The user experience is kind of annoying because I wanted to purchase the product as soon as possible.

After 24 hours, the user receives the promised discount code.

After 24 hours, I received the actual email that generates the code; so the Brand keeps its promise to the customer.

Then the user needs to click the email (for tracking and code generation purposes).

When clicking the discount code link, it takes me to a landing page where I can print the unique discount code.

And the customer (myself) can see the unique discount code that I can use within 2 days.

The Discount Code is unique to me and it explicitly mentions the limitations of the deal. In my case, I’m using the code to purchase in-store; I made reservation online to pick-up the product.

That's a very interesting experience since I can use the code for both online and offline. Also, it also shows that they have some way to enforce the discount code in the POS (Point of Sales) system - which can be a challenge if the POS system does not get integrated with the Discount and the Marketing Automation systems.

Abandoned Cart Journey

The Abandoned Cart Journey is present in almost digitally savvy e-commerce experience.

Everything starts from the home page.

It shows the message about the sign-up with 20% discount on your first purchased item.In general, the website makes it very clear the value proposition of what is offering beyond the product selection.

It shows the free shipping conditions, as well as its omni-channel shopping experience of in-store purchase through reservation and the newsletter sign-up.

Since I know what kind of product and brand I was looking for, I search the product brand and I found in the first result the product I’d like to purchase.

To make the experience faster, it has the “Add to Cart” button so I just clicked it immediately without having to go to the Product Page and have extra clicks, that decreases the attrition from digital perspective.

Imagine going to a department store and have to find a sales representative, that extra step can frustrate a customer and they just change their mind, that equivalent of the extra clicks and loading pages that a customer has to go through when shopping online.

I added the product immediately from the search page.

Adding to car it’s easy and it shows you the options to choose to ship the product or having it picked-up in-store. 

Then, after 24 hours, I receive the abandoned cart email showing the product that I added on the cart and also other related products.

There may be many customers in the situation where they just simply forget what to buy and the company just need to give an extra nudge to finalize the purchase.


  • At the end, current retail companies are levering Marketing Automation to capture customers coming from online channels and also sealing the purchasing via in-store
  • Customers are shopping cross-channel and the companies that can tackle that opportunity and offer them a digitally friendly experience can definitely drive up revenue
  • The experience from the customer perspective may seem smooth, but it requires a lot of behind the scene work such as IT, Marketing, Sales, Merchandising, Designers, etc. It requires a cross-functional team to put these kind of experience into play

Happy Holidays!!! Sign up for more emails like this.

[Main image is not related to this post!]

Subscribe to Chim Kan - Startups, Fintech, Digital Transformation and Products

Don’t miss out on the latest issues. Sign up now to get access to the library of members-only issues.