Ah, Black Friday.
It’s no surprise that the main kick-off day for the holiday shopping season is accountable for a huge annual rise in customer costs, reaching $8.9 billion in the United States alone in 2021. But while this is a yearly slam-dunk for big box sellers, Black Friday can bring more obstacles than advantages for small companies.
Slashing prices to make sales cuts straight into their bottom line– and with minimal marketing budgets and resources, taking on big brand names takes courage, insight, and imagination. That’s why the small businesses that stand out throughout the holiday are the ones that connect with the unique desires and requires of their clients, get bold with their marketing techniques, and produce thumb-stopping material that makes sure to get individuals talking.
Last year, UK-based sustainable underwear brand name and Best SMM Panel consumer Pantee won Black Friday with a project that broke convention and raised awareness of unsustainable impulse buying. We talked to Pantee’s founders, sisters Amanda and Katie McCourt, to learn how they did it, what the outcomes were, and what they have actually learned for future campaigns.
What is Pantee?
Pantee is an underwear brand making a difference: their items are used “deadstock” fabrics, or unsold inventory that would otherwise wind up in land fills. Developed by ladies, for females and the world, Pantee’s products are produced with comfort and style in mind, while assisting avoid unused garments from going to waste.
@pantee_uk We launched a company in lockdown! Here’s how we did it #smallbusinesslaunch #howtostartabusiness #smallbusinesscheck #whatididduringlockdown Bubble– Authorities Noise Studio
For Pantee, sustainability isn’t a buzzword or trend to get on; the brand name was founded with this function at its core. The idea came to life in a thrift shop in 2019, when Amanda was browsing pre-owned clothes stores in London and was blown away by the number of new t-shirts lining the racks, tags still on them.
“It was crazy to me how many individuals had actually handed out clothing before even wearing them when,” says Amanda. “It got me thinking: If this is how many discarded clothing we can see, how much exists that we can’t see? Once I started looking into, I understood that we could make a difference. It’s very challenging to get buying best in the fashion industry with patterns and shopping cycles altering so often, and as an outcome, many companies overproduce. I ended up being fixated on the idea of what we could do with deadstock clothing.”
The short answer to Amanda’s question on how much waste we can’t see: a lot. The fashion industry produces an estimated 92 million tonnes of fabric waste each year, and roughly 30% of clothes made are never ever even offered.
With a strong passion to make a distinction for our world– and after recognizing that the soft cotton t-shirt fabric everybody loves would lend itself well to underwear and cordless bras– Amanda and Katie named business Pantee (an abridged variation of “trousers made from deadstock tees”) and got to work bringing the principle to life.
@pantee_uk Upcycling never ever felt so good link in bio to read more about how we make sustainable underclothing! #sustainablefashion #smallbusinesslove #fyp #comfort #recycledfashion elegant– milo
Since at first launching their Kickstarter in November 2020 (where they raised ₤ 11,000) and Shopify site in February 2021, Pantee has turned into a successful sustainable startup– upcycling more than 1,500 kgs of deadstock fabric in its first 1.5 years alone. Pantee also plants one tree for each order positioned (resulting in over 1,500 trees planted!) and is a happy member of 1% For the World.
Flipping the script with a ‘Blackout Friday’ campaign
Leading up to the Black Friday pandemonium in 2021, Amanda and Katie had one thing on their minds: overconsumption. Currently a problem in the fashion business throughout the routine season, Black Friday made certain to motivate consumers to make unnecessary purchases– many of which would go unused and wind up back on racks or, worse, in garbage dumps.
So, while many small companies grappled with whether to run sales and promotions, Pantee asked a different question: how could they create a successful campaign while remaining real to their mission?
- The option: Reclaim Black Friday by rebranding it “Blackout Friday,” an effort encouraging customers to reconsider their purchases and avoid impulse purchasing.
- The message: Stop and think prior to you purchase. Is it something you love? Is it something you need? If so, go ahead– buy and enjoy your new purchase. But if you weren’t already going to make that purchase, consider going without.
“Black Friday is the greatest impulse buying day of the year, and people get easily sucked into sales,” states Katie. “But the mindset should be: Is it really a bargain if you weren’t going to spend the cash originally? Our project stance was not to encourage impulse purchasing, and we saw a great deal of engagement since of the shared values and commonalities it established with our audience.”
“There is a lot overconsumption on Black Friday,” adds Amanda. “Our position wasn’t necessarily do not buy, but if you’re going to, buy something you have actually desired for an actually long period of time.”
Pantee didn’t stop there. To bring the campaign to life and put their words into action, the merchant turned off their site to all however their engaged customers, who were just able to access the site through a code they sent to their existing newsletter.
The campaign was a frustrating success, leading to a substantial boost in sales, social engagement and reach, brand name awareness and brand-new consumer acquisition.
- Engagement on social media doubled throughout the campaign (from 4 to 8%), and organic social impressions reached over 4x the total fans at the time.
- The project naturally increased web traffic by 122% month-over-month in November 2021 without any supported paid invest.
- Pantee’s subscriber list grew by 33% in the week leading up to Black Friday.
- The success of the social campaign extended far beyond Pantee’s Buy Instagram Verified, with the initiative included 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,” states Katie. “By simply 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 individuals signing up for our e-mail list. We saw a ton of brand-new, first-time customers even if they valued what we were doing.”
“Brand names frequently think that you can have values, but they won’t transform to sales,” includes Amanda. “But we believe that’s changing– and this project is a fantastic example of that.”
Pantee is now launching the campaign for the second year and anticipating much more remarkable results.
4 lessons learned from one unconventional campaign
Whether you’re brainstorming future imaginative projects, building out next quarter’s social marketing method or currently beginning on preparing for next year’s holiday, Pantee’s Blackout Friday campaign holds great lessons that every marketer need to keep top of mind. We asked Amanda and Katie for their top four suggestions– here’s what they said.
1. Hone in on your purpose
“We talk a lot about our worths as a brand,” says Katie. “And time and time again, we have actually seen that if we speak about an issue, our worths, or something with substance behind it, our engagement is a lot greater. That’s what people want to see: something that gets them thinking.”
Amanda includes: “I think at one point, we lost our way a bit and became more item and sales heavy on our social channels, and we discovered that we weren’t getting the very same reach. Pushing product overcomes e-mail marketing and other locations of the business, but with social, we’ve seen a bigger chance to inform our audience and share beneficial information that they can leave with.”
2. An engaged community is everything
“There’s a big distinction between growing a following and growing a following that likewise has engagement,” describes Katie.” When it comes to social, what we have actually discovered is that individuals who engaged with us early on have actually become supporters for our brand. We see so much value in community and engaging with our clients beyond getting the sale. Many brand names see social as a platform to get their message out, but for us, it’s a two-way street.”
3. Do not be afraid to be strong
“We found out rather early on with our social that the greatest peaks of engagement occurred when we took a stand for something,” states Katie. “We have actually always been quite objective driven, but we like to have fun with it and not be too preachy. When we have actually introduced campaigns with our sustainability objective at the leading edge, the engagement has actually been through the roofing system.”
4. Remember that there’s more to social than what you’re posting
“Social network isn’t almost what you post, it has to do with how you engage with other accounts and make individuals feel,” discusses Amanda. “Spending time on your social platforms getting in touch with others, constructing relationships and developing an engaged neighborhood is vital. We use our social channels for two-way discussions with both clients and our neighborhood– there is so much you can find out when you talk with them instead of at them.”
If there’s one takeaway that increases above all the others, it’s that social is one of the most powerful tools that brands can use to ignite their company, turning spectators into loyal brand advocates, awareness into sales, and your mission into favorable, tangible modification. Just ask Pantee.
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