Ah, Black Friday.
It’s not a surprise that the official kick-off day for the holiday shopping season is accountable for a massive annual surge in customer costs, reaching $8.9 billion in the United States alone in 2021. However while this is a yearly slam-dunk for big box merchants, Black Friday can bring more difficulties than benefits for small businesses.
Slashing prices to make sales cuts directly into their bottom line– and with minimal marketing budget plans and resources, competing with big brand names takes nerve, insight, and creativity. That’s why the small companies that stick out throughout the holiday are the ones that get in touch with the distinct wants and requires of their consumers, get strong with their marketing methods, and develop thumb-stopping content that makes sure to get people talking.
Last year, UK-based sustainable underclothing brand and Best SMM Panel consumer Pantee won Black Friday with a project that broke convention and raised awareness of unsustainable impulse buying. We spoke with Pantee’s creators, sis Amanda and Katie McCourt, to find out how they did it, what the outcomes were, and what they have actually discovered for future projects.
What is Pantee?
Pantee is an underwear brand name making a difference: their products are made using “deadstock” materials, or unsold inventory that would otherwise end up in garbage dumps. Developed by women, for females and the planet, Pantee’s products are developed with convenience and style in mind, while helping prevent unused garments from going to waste.
@pantee_uk We released a company in lockdown! Here’s how we did it #smallbusinesslaunch #howtostartabusiness #smallbusinesscheck #whatididduringlockdown Bubble– Official Noise Studio
For Pantee, sustainability isn’t a buzzword or pattern to get on; the brand name was founded with this function at its core. The concept came to life in a thrift shop in 2019, when Amanda was searching second-hand clothing stores in London and was blown away by the number of new t-shirts lining the shelves, tags still on them.
“It was insane to me the number of individuals had actually handed out clothes prior to even wearing them as soon as,” states Amanda. “It got me thinking: If this is the number of discarded clothes we can see, just how much exists that we can’t see? When I began researching, I knew that we might make a difference. It’s really challenging to get purchasing best in the fashion business with patterns and shopping cycles altering so often, and as an outcome, many business overproduce. I became fixated on the concept of what we might do with deadstock clothing.”
The short response to Amanda’s question on just how much waste we can’t see: a lot. The fashion industry produces an approximated 92 million tonnes of textile waste each year, and around 30% of clothing made are never ever even offered.
With a vibrant enthusiasm to make a distinction for our world– and after recognizing that the soft cotton t-shirt material everybody loves would lend itself well to underwear and cordless bras– Amanda and Katie named the business Pantee (an abridged variation of “pants made from deadstock tees”) and got to work bringing the idea to life.
@pantee_uk Upcycling never ever felt so good link in bio to read more about how we make sustainable underwear! #sustainablefashion #smallbusinesslove #fyp #comfort #recycledfashion luxurious– milo
Given that initially releasing their Kickstarter in November 2020 (where they raised ₤ 11,000) and Shopify website in February 2021, Pantee has actually become an effective sustainable start-up– upcycling more than 1,500 kgs of deadstock fabric in its first 1.5 years alone. Pantee likewise plants one tree for every single order put (resulting in over 1,500 trees planted!) and is a proud member of 1% For the World.
Turning the script with a ‘Blackout Friday’ project
Leading up to the Black Friday pandemonium in 2021, Amanda and Katie had something on their minds: overconsumption. Already a concern in the fashion business throughout the regular season, Black Friday made sure to encourage customers to make unneeded purchases– a number of which would go unused and wind up back on shelves or, even worse, in garbage dumps.
So, while lots of small companies come to grips with whether to run sales and promos, Pantee asked a various concern: how could they produce an effective campaign while staying true to their mission?
- The option: Reclaim Black Friday by rebranding it “Blackout Friday,” an initiative motivating customers to rethink their purchases and prevent impulse buying.
- The message: Stop and believe prior to you buy. Is it something you like? Is it something you need? If so, go ahead– buy and enjoy your new purchase. However if you weren’t already going to make that purchase, consider going without.
“Black Friday is the most significant impulse buying day of the year, and individuals get easily sucked into sales,” states Katie. “But the mentality should be: Is it really a bargain if you weren’t going to spend the money initially? Our project position was not to encourage impulse purchasing, and we saw a lot of engagement since of the shared worths and commonalities it established with our audience.”
“There is a lot overconsumption on Black Friday,” adds Amanda. “Our stance wasn’t always do not buy, however if you’re going to, purchase something you’ve desired for a truly long period of time.”
Pantee didn’t stop there. To bring the project to life and put their words into action, the merchant shut off their website to all but their engaged consumers, who were only able to access the website through a code they sent out to their existing mailing list.
The project was an overwhelming success, leading to a substantial increase in sales, social engagement and reach, brand name awareness and brand-new consumer acquisition.
- Engagement on social media doubled throughout the project (from 4 to 8%), and natural social impressions reached over 4x the overall followers at the time.
- The campaign organically increased web traffic by 122% month-over-month in November 2021 without any supported paid spend.
- Pantee’s newsletter grew by 33% in the week leading up to Black Friday.
- The success of the social project extended far beyond Pantee’s Buy Instagram Verification, with the effort featured in top-tier press consisting of The Observer, Drapers, Reuters, The Daily Mail, and more.
“While we didn’t run a sale or any promotions in 2015, Black Friday was the biggest sales day of the year,” says Katie. “By just deciding and leveraging social to get our message out, we drove a month’s worth of web traffic in a matter of hours and had loads of people registering for our email list. We saw a ton of new, first-time customers just because they valued what we were doing.”
“Brands often think that you can have values, but they will not transform to sales,” includes Amanda. “However we think that’s changing– and this project is a fantastic example of that.”
Pantee is now releasing the campaign for the 2nd year and anticipating much more outstanding outcomes.
4 lessons learned from one non-traditional project
Whether you’re conceptualizing future creative projects, constructing out next quarter’s social marketing strategy or already starting on preparing for next year’s holiday season, Pantee’s Blackout Friday campaign holds fantastic lessons that every online marketer ought to keep top of mind. We asked Amanda and Katie for their top 4 recommendations– here’s what they stated.
1. Hone in on your function
“We talk a lot about our worths as a brand name,” says Katie. “And time and time again, we’ve seen that if we discuss an issue, our values, or something with substance behind it, our engagement is a lot greater. That’s what people want to see: something that gets them believing.”
Amanda includes: “I believe at one point, we lost our method a bit and became more item and sales heavy on our social channels, and we saw that we weren’t getting the same reach. Pushing item overcomes email marketing and other locations of the business, however with social, we’ve seen a bigger opportunity to inform our audience and share helpful info that they can walk away with.”
2. An engaged neighborhood is whatever
“There’s a substantial difference between growing a following and growing a following that likewise has engagement,” explains Katie.” When it concerns social, what we’ve discovered is that individuals who engaged with us early on have ended up being supporters for our brand name. We see a lot worth in neighborhood and engaging with our clients beyond getting the sale. Numerous brand names see social as a platform to get their message out, however for us, it’s a two-way street.”
3. Don’t be afraid to be strong
“We discovered rather early with our social that the greatest peaks of engagement took place when we decided for something,” states Katie. “We’ve always been quite mission driven, but we like to have a good time with it and not be too preachy. When we’ve launched projects with our sustainability mission at the forefront, the engagement has actually been through the roof.”
4. Keep in mind that there’s more to social than what you’re publishing
“Social media isn’t just about what you publish, it has to do with how you engage with other accounts and make people feel,” discusses Amanda. “Hanging out on your social platforms connecting with others, constructing relationships and developing an engaged neighborhood is indispensable. We use our social channels for two-way discussions with both consumers and our community– there is a lot you can learn when you talk with them instead of at them.”
If there’s one takeaway that rises above all the others, it’s that social is among the most powerful tools that brands can use to ignite their organization, turning onlookers into loyal brand name advocates, awareness into sales, and your mission into favorable, concrete change. Simply ask Pantee.
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