Combo was engaged by 1stDibs to help reestablish leadership through advanced audience understanding. The Combo strategy team conducted immersive research design and execution married to cross-functional contextualization of findings and insights to drive business and brand strategic development.

1st Dibs Thumbnail 05 COMBO
Uncovering the New Definition of Luxury

1stDibs’ True Identity Was Obscured

For 20 years 1stDibs has been the preeminent online marketplace for the world’s most exquisite objects with little competition or threats to its business. With recent changes to revenue models and the emergence of nascent competitors, the company was cognizant of its leadership position needing to be reaffirmed. As a data-led business, 1stDibs recognized the most immediate need was to build a strong understanding of current and prospective buyers and trade audiences to ensure that a revitalizing brand and business strategy would be centered on clients’ needs.

1st Dibs Image 01 COMBO
1stDibs started initially as a service for Paris Flea Market dealers to list their wares for sale, with 1stDibs charging an advertising fee for listings.

Gathering Good Data

Working in close partnership with the 1stDibs Research and Analytics teams, Combo strategists built the data models to segment the most valuable current and prospective 1stDibs audiences utilizing proprietary data. Heavy emphasis was placed on ensuring strong data hygiene to build a high level of confidence around the segments for primary research and the resulting output.

© The luxury secondhand market is growing four times faster than the primary luxury market, at 12% per year versus 3%. Luxury resale already represents a $34 billion market today. Figures below reflected in billions and USD.

Research Designed to Embrace Complexity

Recognizing that no one methodology yields sufficient insights, Combo strategists developed a multifaceted primary research design layering quantitative and qualitative methodologies in sequential structures to ensure every step of the process informed the next. To account for opportunistic variables, Combo strategists also ensured a flexible component to the design to mitigate missed opportunities.

1st Dibs Image 03 COMBO
© Image sourced from 1st Dibs
1stDibs has done a great job aggregating the world of antiques.
Gary Friedman, CEO of Restoration Hardware

Creating Cross-Functional Impact

While much of the focus of the work was in shaping a new brand strategy, Combo’s charter was to ensure that the learnings were translated to all aspects of the business based on relevancy and potential impact. To that end, strategists worked across all divisions from product and sales to customer service, HR and the CEO’s office in order to translate the work into the most salient learnings and potential impacts for each area of the organization. In partnership with the ELT, a core set of impact statements and high-order insights were developed and adopted across teams, helping re-prioritize workstreams and inform funding allocations.

1stDibs calculates it holds nearly $11 billion in available stock.

Articulating Insights into Actionable Strategy

As internal teams adopted the guiding insights, Combo partnered with the Chief Marketing Officer in articulating the new brand role for 1stDibs and translating this through a brand framework, from positioning and brand pillars to its overall corporate mission and vision.

1st Dibs Image 02 COMBO
Masthead photograph provided by Poritz & Studio.

New business: Connect with a partner.

Job inquires: View our handbook.

Newsletter©: Sign up.

167 Canal St., 3rd Floor
NYC, 10013

Social Media
Instagram, Behance, LinkedIn

View our show reel:
Watch video

General inquiries:

Media inquires:

Privacy Policy