Monday, February 15th, 2010
Follow Andrew Sirotnik at twitter.com/asirotnik
Fluid (@Fluid) launched a fan-only pop-up store on facebook for Rachel Roy last week. The insider shopping event gave the brand’s facebook fans early access to Rachel Roy’s new jewelry line collaboration with British r&b artist Estelle.
The pop-up store was live for 5 days only delivering fans a uniquely branded shopping experience around the limited edition jewelry collaboration plus one facebook-only exclusive item which sold out within the first 12 hours (all the items sold out completely before the 5 days were up). The insider event was a marketing success as well, increasing Rachel Roy’s fan base by 25% in the first day alone.
We had a fun time designing this: great brand + great clients + thoughtful use of social media = meaningful customer experience that delivers real value, makes them want to buy and love the brand more as a result.
Here are some thoughts from the strategy & design team on why it worked…
- Differentiated brand + shopping experience. There have been some research reports circulating lately that show consumers want to be able to shop on social channels. Importantly though, consumers do not want your ecommerce site pasted into facebook. They want a layered experience that blends a differentiated brand experience with awesome content (like the shareable photo & video gallery) with a great product experience.
- Not an “e-commerce” template. Fluid’s launch for Rachel Roy is built on a productized software-as-a-service solution (Fluid Social) but consumers would never know it. The technology is designed from the ground up to be easily customized and uniquely branded (proof coming in 2 weeks when we launch another one – stay tuned . Consumers and retailers hate templates and for good reason: nobody wants to shop someone who is indistinguishable from their competition. When you look at some of the templated “facebook lookbooks” out there that deliver an identical experience for athletic footwear as they do for womens fashion, it’s an easy prediction that consumers will devalue those brands that embrace generic sameness, especially in social media.
- Authentically social. We were surprised to see so many self-described “social shopping” implementations out there that completely lacked basic social functionality. Fluid integrated standard facebook “like” and “share” functionality throughout the entire experience, delivering users the social elements they expect. It makes for a great shopping experience to see that 90 other people “liked” the Petal Ring – far more meaningful in this context than product reviews.
- Limited to fans only. It’s impossible to overestimate how much consumers value insider status and benefits. As long as you are serving up real value – and avoiding exclusivity for exclusivity’s sake – your consumers will appreciate it, share more and have a stronger urge to buy.