Ah, Black Friday.
It’s not a surprise that the official kick-off day for the vacation shopping season is responsible for a massive yearly surge in consumer spending, reaching $8.9 billion in the United States alone in 2021. But while this is a yearly slam-dunk for huge box merchants, Black Friday can bring more challenges than advantages for small businesses.
Slashing prices to make sales cuts directly into their bottom line– and with limited marketing spending plans and resources, taking on big brand names takes courage, insight, and creativity. That’s why the small businesses that stick out during the holiday season are the ones that connect with the distinct wants and needs of their customers, get vibrant with their marketing techniques, and produce thumb-stopping material that makes certain to get people talking.
In 2015, 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, siblings Amanda and Katie McCourt, to learn how they did it, what the outcomes were, and what they’ve discovered for future projects.
What is Pantee?
Pantee is an underclothing brand name making a distinction: their items are used “deadstock” materials, or unsold stock that would otherwise end up in landfills. Created by ladies, for women and the world, Pantee’s items are created with comfort and style in mind, while assisting avoid unused garments from going to waste.
@pantee_uk We introduced an organization in lockdown! Here’s how we did it #smallbusinesslaunch #howtostartabusiness #smallbusinesscheck #whatididduringlockdown Bubble– Authorities Noise Studio
For Pantee, sustainability isn’t a buzzword or pattern to jump on; the brand was established 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 variety of brand-new tee shirts lining the shelves, tags still on them.
“It was insane to me the number of people had actually handed out clothes prior to even using them once,” says Amanda. “It got me thinking: If this is how many disposed of clothes we can see, how much is there that we can’t see? When I started investigating, I understood that we might make a distinction. It’s very challenging to get purchasing best in the fashion industry with patterns and shopping cycles changing so frequently, and as a result, lots of business overproduce. I became fixated on the idea of what we could do with deadstock clothing.”
The brief response to Amanda’s concern 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 clothes made are never ever even offered.
With a bold passion to make a distinction for our planet– and after realizing that the soft cotton tee shirt fabric everybody enjoys would lend itself well to underwear and cordless bras– Amanda and Katie called business Pantee (an abridged version of “pants made from deadstock tees”) and got to work bringing the concept to life.
@pantee_uk Upcycling never felt so great link in bio to learn more about how we make sustainable underclothing! #sustainablefashion #smallbusinesslove #fyp #comfort #recycledfashion elegant– milo
Given that initially launching their Kickstarter in November 2020 (where they raised ₤ 11,000) and Shopify website in February 2021, Pantee has actually become a successful sustainable start-up– upcycling more than 1,500 kgs of deadstock fabric in its very first 1.5 years alone. Pantee likewise plants one tree for each order put (leading to over 1,500 trees planted!) and is a happy member of 1% For the Planet.
Turning 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 an issue in the fashion industry throughout the routine season, Black Friday was sure to motivate customers to make unnecessary purchases– much of which would go unused and end up back on racks or, worse, in landfills.
So, while numerous small businesses come to grips with whether to run sales and promos, Pantee asked a various question: how could they develop a successful project while remaining real to their mission?
- The service: Recover Black Friday by rebranding it “Blackout Friday,” an effort encouraging customers to reconsider their purchases and prevent impulse purchasing.
- The message: Stop and think before you buy. Is it something you love? Is it something you require? If so, proceed– purchase and enjoy your new purchase. But if you weren’t currently going to make that purchase, consider going without.
“Black Friday is the most significant impulse purchasing day of the year, and individuals get quickly drawn into sales,” says Katie. “However the mindset should be: Is it truly a bargain if you weren’t going to spend the cash originally? Our campaign position was not to motivate impulse purchasing, and we saw a great deal of engagement due to the fact that of the shared worths and common ground it established with our audience.”
“There is so much overconsumption on Black Friday,” adds Amanda. “Our stance wasn’t always do not purchase, however if you’re going to, purchase something you have actually wanted for a really very long time.”
Pantee didn’t stop there. To bring the project to life and put their words into action, the seller switched off their website to all however their engaged customers, who were only able to access the website through a code they sent to their existing subscriber list.
The project was a frustrating success, causing a considerable boost in sales, social engagement and reach, brand name awareness and new consumer acquisition.
- Engagement on social networks doubled throughout the project (from 4 to 8%), and organic social impressions reached over 4x the overall fans at the time.
- The campaign naturally increased web traffic by 122% month-over-month in November 2021 with no supported paid invest.
- 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 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 promos last year, Black Friday was the biggest sales day of the year,” states Katie. “By simply taking a stand 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 email list. We saw a ton of brand-new, first-time clients even if they valued what we were doing.”
“Brands typically believe that you can have worths, but they will not transform to sales,” adds Amanda. “But we believe that’s changing– and this project is a fantastic example of that.”
Pantee is now releasing the project for the 2nd year and looking forward to even more outstanding outcomes.
4 lessons learned from one non-traditional campaign
Whether you’re brainstorming future creative campaigns, developing out next quarter’s social marketing technique or currently getting started on planning for next year’s holiday, Pantee’s Blackout Friday campaign holds excellent lessons that every marketer should keep top of mind. We asked Amanda and Katie for their leading four suggestions– here’s what they said.
1. Focus on your purpose
“We talk a lot about our values as a brand name,” states Katie. “And time and time again, we have actually seen that if we discuss an issue, our values, or something with compound behind it, our engagement is a lot greater. That’s what individuals wish to see: something that gets them believing.”
Amanda includes: “I believe at one point, we lost our way a bit and became more item and sales heavy on our social channels, and we observed that we weren’t getting the very same reach. Pushing item works through email marketing and other areas of the business, but with social, we have actually seen a larger chance to educate our audience and share helpful info that they can win.”
2. An engaged neighborhood is whatever
“There’s a big distinction between growing a following and growing a following that likewise has engagement,” explains Katie.” When it concerns social, what we have actually found is that people who engaged with us early on have actually become advocates for our brand. We see a lot value in community and engaging with our clients beyond getting the sale. Many brands see social as a platform to get their message out, however for us, it’s a two-way street.”
3. Don’t hesitate to be strong
“We learned rather early with our social that the highest peaks of engagement happened when we decided for something,” says Katie. “We’ve always been rather mission driven, but we like to have a good time with it and not be too preachy. When we’ve released projects with our sustainability mission at the leading edge, the engagement has been through the roofing.”
4. Remember that there’s more to social than what you’re publishing
“Social network isn’t almost what you publish, it’s about how you engage with other accounts and make people feel,” explains Amanda. “Hanging out on your social platforms connecting with others, developing relationships and developing an engaged community is indispensable. We use our social channels for two-way conversations with both clients and our neighborhood– there is a lot you can discover when you talk with them rather of at them.”
If there’s one takeaway that increases above all the others, it’s that social is among the most powerful tools that brands can utilize to ignite their service, turning bystanders into devoted brand advocates, awareness into sales, and your objective into favorable, tangible modification. Just ask Pantee.
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