How This Underclothing Brand Won with an Anti-Black-Friday Social Project

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Ah, Black Friday.

It’s not a surprise that the main kick-off day for the vacation shopping season is responsible for an enormous yearly rise in customer costs, reaching $8.9 billion in the United States alone in 2021. However while this is an annual slam-dunk for huge box sellers, Black Friday can bring more difficulties than benefits for small companies.

Slashing prices to make sales cuts directly into their bottom line– and with restricted marketing budgets and resources, taking on big brands takes guts, insight, and imagination. That’s why the small businesses that stand out throughout the holiday are the ones that connect with the special wants and needs of their customers, get bold with their marketing strategies, and produce thumb-stopping material that’s sure to get individuals talking.

In 2015, UK-based sustainable underwear brand and Best SMM Panel consumer Pantee won Black Friday with a campaign that broke convention and raised awareness of unsustainable impulse purchasing. We talked to Pantee’s creators, siblings Amanda and Katie McCourt, to discover how they did it, what the outcomes were, and what they’ve learned for future projects.

What is Pantee?

Pantee is an underclothing brand making a difference: their products are used “deadstock” materials, or unsold inventory that would otherwise end up in garbage dumps. Designed by ladies, for women and the world, Pantee’s products are produced with comfort and design in mind, while helping avoid unused garments from going to waste.

@pantee_uk We introduced a company in lockdown! Here’s how we did it #smallbusinesslaunch #howtostartabusiness #smallbusinesscheck #whatididduringlockdown Bubble– Authorities Sound Studio

For Pantee, sustainability isn’t a buzzword or trend to get on; the brand was founded with this function at its core. The idea came to life in a thrift shop in 2019, when Amanda was searching pre-owned clothes stores in London and was blown away by the variety of new tee shirts lining the shelves, tags still on them.

“It was crazy to me the number of people had actually distributed clothing prior to even wearing them when,” says Amanda. “It got me thinking: If this is how many disposed of clothes we can see, just how much is there that we can’t see? When I began looking into, I understood that we might make a difference. It’s very difficult to get buying right in the fashion business with patterns and shopping cycles changing so often, and as an outcome, lots of business overproduce. I ended up being fixated on the idea of what we could do with deadstock clothes.”

The brief response to Amanda’s question on just how much waste we can’t see: a lot. The fashion business produces an estimated 92 million tonnes of fabric waste each year, and approximately 30% of clothing made are never ever even sold.

With a bold enthusiasm to make a distinction for our world– and after understanding that the soft cotton tee shirt material everybody loves 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 idea to life.

@pantee_uk Upcycling never ever felt so good link in bio for more information about how we make sustainable underwear! #sustainablefashion #smallbusinesslove #fyp #comfort #recycledfashion glamorous– milo

Considering that at first releasing their Kickstarter in November 2020 (where they raised ₤ 11,000) and Shopify site in February 2021, Pantee has actually turned into an effective sustainable start-up– upcycling more than 1,500 kgs of deadstock material in its first 1.5 years alone. Pantee likewise plants one tree for each order placed (leading to over 1,500 trees planted!) and is a proud 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 something on their minds: overconsumption. Currently an issue in the fashion business throughout the routine season, Black Friday was sure to encourage customers to make unneeded purchases– much of which would go unused and wind up back on shelves or, worse, in land fills.

So, while numerous small companies faced whether or not to run sales and promotions, Pantee asked a different concern: how could they create an effective campaign while remaining true to their mission?

  • The option: Reclaim Black Friday by rebranding it “Blackout Friday,” an initiative encouraging consumers to reconsider their purchases and avoid impulse purchasing.
  • The message: Stop and think prior to you buy. Is it something you like? Is it something you require? If so, go on– buy and enjoy your new purchase. However if you weren’t already going to make that purchase, consider going without.

“Black Friday is the biggest impulse buying day of the year, and individuals get easily sucked into sales,” says Katie. “But the mindset should be: Is it truly 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 due to the fact that of the shared worths and commonalities it developed with our audience.”

“There is so much overconsumption on Black Friday,” adds Amanda. “Our stance wasn’t necessarily do not purchase, but if you’re going to, purchase something you have actually desired for an actually very long time.”

Pantee didn’t stop there. To bring the campaign to life and put their words into action, the retailer switched off their site to all but their engaged consumers, who were just able to access the site through a code they sent to their existing subscriber list.

The outcomes

The campaign was an overwhelming success, resulting in a substantial increase in sales, social engagement and reach, brand name awareness and brand-new consumer acquisition.

  • Engagement on social networks doubled throughout the campaign (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 mailing 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 Verification, with the effort included in top-tier press including 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 just 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 people registering for our email list. We saw a lots of brand-new, first-time customers just because they valued what we were doing.”

“Brands typically think that you can have values, however they won’t transform to sales,” includes Amanda. “However we think that’s changing– and this campaign is a great example of that.”

Pantee is now introducing the project for the 2nd year and anticipating even more remarkable outcomes.

4 lessons learned from one unconventional campaign

Whether you’re brainstorming future innovative campaigns, constructing out next quarter’s social marketing method or currently getting started 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 four recommendations– here’s what they said.

1. Hone in on your function

“We yap about our values as a brand,” says Katie. “And time and time once again, we’ve seen that if we discuss a concern, our worths, or something with substance behind it, our engagement is a lot higher. That’s what individuals want to see: something that gets them believing.”

Amanda adds: “I think at one point, we lost our method a bit and ended up being more product and sales heavy on our social channels, and we discovered that we weren’t getting the exact same reach. Pressing product resolves e-mail marketing and other locations of the business, but with social, we have actually seen a bigger chance to educate our audience and share helpful details that they can win.”

2. An engaged neighborhood is whatever

“There’s a big distinction between growing a following and growing a following that also has engagement,” discusses Katie.” When it pertains to social, what we have actually discovered is that people who engaged with us early on have ended up being advocates for our brand name. We see a lot worth in neighborhood and engaging with our consumers beyond getting the sale. Many 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 vibrant

“We discovered rather early with our social that the greatest peaks of engagement happened when we decided for something,” says Katie. “We have actually always been quite objective driven, however we like to have a good time with it and not be too preachy. When we’ve introduced projects with our sustainability objective at the leading edge, the engagement has actually been through the roof.”

4. Bear in mind that there’s more to social than what you’re posting

“Social network isn’t almost what you post, it’s about how you engage with other accounts and make people feel,” describes Amanda. “Hanging out on your social platforms connecting with others, building relationships and developing an engaged neighborhood is invaluable. We utilize our social channels for two-way conversations with both clients and our community– there is so much 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 brand names can use to ignite their company, turning onlookers into loyal brand name advocates, awareness into sales, and your objective into positive, tangible modification. Just ask Pantee.

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