The reason I chose Modcloth is because of how much they rock the social media game. Any social media marketer new to the game should study them like a textbook. Modcloth is an online lifestyle brand that has become successful largely due to social media. The brand implements a strong integrated marketing campaign through their multiple social media channels. They have all the major players: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, and the not to be forgotten Pinterest.
Modcloth saw the opportunity that social media can give them from the very beginning. After starting their company in a college dorm room, co-founders and adorable couple Susan Koger and Eric Koger found that social media offered a unique experience for online shopping. In an interview in Forbes about their success they state, “Shopping has always been a social experience. What’s changed is that, when online, customers are able to come together as a community and heavily influence each other and brands.” Social media offers a sense of community that Modcltoh has taken full advantage of in the best way possible
That sense of community has always been something that Modcloth has marketed off of. The recently made headlines for no longer calling their Plus size label, Plus size. They believe the plus size label that creates exclusivity within fashion. Once they saw a need to feel the growing desire for fashion dedicated to curvier woman they jumped at the chance. They are a brand that listens to their clientele. Thy are able to fulfill the desires of a growing market because they have an established connection through social media.
It is clear from Modcloth’s success that they are a social media powerhouse. They clearly understand how to establish themselves as a brand that listen’s to their community. So let’s talk about what makes them successful as brand.
Brands the Name, Marketing’s the Game
First up they have a consistent message and imagery across their multiple social media campaigns. It is hard to really describe the Modcloth brand in a few words, but I will give it a shot. To me it is a mix of modern day hipster meets 1950’s house wife with a dash of punk rock revolution. With so many themes how could they encapsulate this in one brand? Somehow they do by having a consistent aesthetic that is purely Modcloth.
That aesthetic is best expressed on their Instagram feed, Twitter Account, and Pinterest page. We can see consistency in their brand message through all these channels.
Keep it Current
Next, their content is current with every day events. I think they best speak to their consumers through their Twitter account.
I love this post they made about the upcoming season of Broad City. It shows they understand the mindset of their consumer and try to engage with them through social media. They take on the role of as just another girlfriend, but one with really cute clothes.
Plus, it is just plain funny.
Did I mention Hashtags?
As any social media empire knows, hastags will make you or break you. What I like about Modcloth is they create their own hashtags to further fortify their brand. For instance, they have a growing wedding dress line for alternative brides. They created the hashtag #marriedinmodcloth to showcase this.
Let’s Talk About Google+ Baby
Last and increasingly the least important social media channel is the companies Google+ page. While the brand does have their own Google+ page, the last post I saw on their account was dated September 10, 2013. That might as well be a decade old in social media years. I believe this is more of a matter of Modcloth phasing out this account, rather then them misusing it.
Bring it on Home
It is also important to note that they link all of their social media channels back to their website. This is a consistent theme I am finding with most successful brands. They also frequently post content onto their other social media channels. Their Twitter feed will often share posts from their Instagram account and vice versa. What I would like to see, however, is them promoting their social media channels more on their website. While they have links to them on their website, I rarely see them promoting their social media campaigns on the site. The website seems to largely be the base that they sell products, which makes sense considering they are an online shopping site. That’s great, but adding more social media cohesion to the website might bolster more user drive. Other than these few critiques, I believe Modcloth is an example of a brand implementing social media channels to their full potential.
I wanted to find a local success story for my next company. Artifact Uprising is a Denver based company that I have followed for a couple of years. The company makes products from digital photos. You can now fulfill a millennial dream by making wine coasters from your Instagram posts. One of the unique aspects about them is that they owe a lot of their success to Pinterest. This particular social media platform is known to be a struggle for some companies to use as a marketing channel. For Artifact Uprising, they were able to launch into a nearly over night success when one of their Pinterest’s pins took off.
Since then the company has realized the potential social media gives them to market their brand. They implement Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to communicate the company’s message. They also use VSCO photography app that is steadily growing in popularity in the tech world. With these social media channels they have established a strong integrated marketing campaign in their approach.
The Young and the Branded
Being that Artifact Uprising is a company that is dependent on photography, imagery is used consistently throughout all of their social media channels. Maybe it is due to the nature of their company, Instagram is where they shine brightest. Their photos are the envy of every Instagramer.
Their branding also shows an understanding of who their consumer is. Photographers, designers, travelers, and just people who appreciate beautiful photographs. Their Bucket List Board on their Pinterest Account is a great example of this.
The brand will post up to date content on an almost weekly basis. They keep up with what is currently happening around us. However, I do not see them playing with pop culture in the same way I do other brands in social media. I think this is largely due to not wanting to isolate certain clientele. Artifact Uprising is a brand that is popular both multi-generationally and multi-culturally. They keep their post pretty non-controversial as a result. Maybe this is less fun from a consumer view point, but it is consistent with their brand. They mostly just post about events that relate back to their photography. Check out their post on Chinese New Year on Twitter.
Hashtags Where Art Thou?
For a brand that is heavily dependent on Instagram and Twitter, I have not seen them using hashtags as much as I would like to. While I believe it is great for established brands to keep the hashtags minimal, not using them wastes an opportunity to market yourself. #Travel #Beauty #Love are all major tags that they could be taking advantage of to increase their followers.
Will You Follow me?
From what I can see, Artifact Uprising drives users to other channels by mentioning social media campaigns on their website. You will see similar content on all of their channels. Their Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest page will frequently use the same photographs in each post. While this is wonderful for branding, it makes me wonder why a consumer would want to follow all of their pages if there is little difference between them. I think establishing a different tone with each channel will help them along the way.
Up and Coming
When I went to the Artifact Uprising website, I noticed they linked the VSCO app amongst their social media channels. As someone who loves to edit photos checking out new editing apps is always fun.
The VSCO app is great if you want to have more refined, clear imagery in your photographs. It also pairs well with Instagram. As the app is still growing in popularity, I am not sure that it is their best marketing tool for Artifact Uprising. I do think though that they app is a great way to touch base with the companies roots in photography.
I am a creature of comfort and there is nothing more comfortable to me then a great pair of underwear. I first heard about MeUndies when they were advertised on a podcast I listen to. After wearing them the first time, I absolutely fell in love with the brand. It is now hard for me to go back to wearing other brands of underwear. People do not typically equate underwear with social media. That’s why I think it is great that brands from across the board are able to market something that originally appeared to have no place in the tech arena. MeUndies have cut out the middle man by selling directly to consumers. They use social media on an integrated marketing platform to sell their products.
They recently were interviewed in TechCrunch about the rise in so called tech fashion. Brian Lalezarian, the CEO of MeUndies, says social media is changing the game for so many traditional products. He says here, “If you think about the tools that we have today with social media — Instagram, Snapchat, obviously Facebook and Twitter — there are a lot of unique ways we can connect directly to customers to deliver our message, tell our story, and sell our brand, and those didn’t exist 20 years ago when companies like Gap and Victoria’s Secret got started.” They are able to change the way people think about a product that previously thought to be unadaptable.
Like with any good brand, MeUndies wants to sell more than just underwear, they want to sell you a lifestyle. This is not an easy feat for something that goes on underneath your clothes. They have somehow managed this, however, by sending the message that comfort is key to setting us free. On their about page they say, “MeUndies was created for you because we truly believe a pair of underwear will change you life, make you bolder, and save you time and money.” It is clear this message that they want to have a personal connection to their consumers. That personal touch is seen throughout their social marketing channels.
For instance, check out this post on their Instagram page. The caption reads, “Today is Me Day.”
On their Twitter feed you will often see them re-post tweets from consumers. This makes consumers see the brand as more than a corporation. MeUndies markets themselves by speaking directly to the consumer. They try to have as little of a barrier between their social media campaigns and their consumers. Further proving, the MeUndies brand is all about the Me.
Another way for brands to relate their clientele is keeping your social content up to date with today’s world. Or as one of my mother’s favorite songs go, “What’s new pussycat, whoah, whoah, whoah.” Song lyrics by Tom Jones aside, displaying a pop-culture savy is what has made MeUndies stand out from other brands. Sometimes this means posting social content that, while does not directly address your brand, it still stays in tune with the mindset of your consumer. MeUndies have tones of post that have nothing to do with underwear, but do have everything to do with the lifestyle they cater to. One of my favorites is their Mustaches for the Win Pinterest Board.
They also often post articles on their Facebook page that relate back to the brand. I loved this article they posted from Buzzed on 19 Things You Would Buy If money were No Object.
I also think that MeUndies is great at driving users to other channels. As with most companies, their social channels will link directly to the website. They also repost and mention other social channels in their posts. They often tweet about their growing snapchat channel on their twitter page. I also see them posting on Instagram and Facebook about upcoming shoots, products, and articles. I think of all the companies I spoke about today, they are the best at driving users to other channels.
As I have spoke about before, hashtags are a great way to promote content in a social media outlet. One of the greatest ways to use hashtags to their full potential is to invent a hashtag that is specific to a brand. MeUndies has done with the the #MeUndiesFam. While it is pretty self explanatory, this is a hashtags that tags people as being a part of the MeUndies family. They will often posts celebrity and fan endorsements under the #MeUndiesFam. This works as a form of self promotion while simultaneously creating brand loyalty. MeUndies seeks to be not just a brand, but a family.