2016, by most accounts, was a hard year for the apparel & footwear market as it struggled to harness massive growth exhibited by other retail industries. Depending on which report you look at growth was anywhere from 1 - 3%. In fact, any growth that was seen was driven mostly by the advent of athleisure clothing (items that look like they’re for the gym, but are just as well utilized for sipping mimosas at brunch) with the sports-inspired wear growing 6% above the average growth rate for the apparel industry. Footwear, driven by excitement in casual sneakers, saw a 10% growth in 2016.¹
The good news - 2017 has shown glimmers of recovery and stabilization, with sales estimated to increase 3-4% from 2016.² In these more turbulent times, it’s imperative for apparel and footwear retailers and brands to capitalize on loyal customers and capture new customers in order to stay relevant and profitable. The more a retailer can personalize the experience for each and every customer, the more likely, they are to weather the storm as consumers move from purchasing goods to purchasing experiences.³ Here are 3 campaigns retailers and brands can implement on social media to drive sales and customer lifetime value, while attracting new visitors and shoppers.
Most retailers know who their best customers are, or at least, demographically can describe the age range, gender, and interests. An effective and simple way to make sure your brand is getting in front of the right eyes is to create a lookalike campaign based on your best customer segment and deploy brand ads on Facebook, Instagram, and Facebook Audience Networks.
Marketers can take this even further by creating lookalike campaigns from the following segments:
- Best customers who have purchased a particular product line
- Use carousel ads to show off your show stopping collections to interested parties
- Best customers segmented on predicted gender
- If you’re a retailer who sells both men’s and women’s clothing, you can segment your best customer list by predicted gender and create ad campaigns designed for each audience
02. PRODUCT RELEASES
Hone in on customers who have purchased certain styles or categories from you in the past and showcase your new product line. A few thoughts:
- Try doing this by season, i.e. find anyone who purchased from you during last year’s winter line release and target them for this year’s release.
- Similarly, you can try and convert particular season shoppers to new seasons, i.e. convert your Spring shoppers to Fall shoppers, make a believer in Winter clothing out of your Summer shoppers
- Segment on category or style to help drive sales. For example, you’re promoting your new line of winter wedged booties. Target customers who purchased wedged espadrilles over the summer.
- Experiment with geolocation. Sure you have a new winter line, but chance are you don’t need to spend money targeting customers living in Hawaii with your Goose-Down Parka.
03. PRODUCT RECOMMENDATIONS
If you have access to your product data - you can easily tell which products are considered best sellers. Use this information to create a campaign around product recommendations for your best sellers. We provide our clients with a list of top products, top categories, and fastest rising products. For example, let’s say I buy a new knit sweater for Fall. Target me with ads showing 5 ways to wear this item featuring pieces I can purchase to finish my outfit. Create this type of campaign for your top 5 products and help your customers envision ways to enjoy your products over and over again.
Apparel and footwear retailers and brands have the burden of turning consumers’ mindsets from thinking of clothing as a nice to have to a need to have. The more relevant and personalized your advertising and marketing campaigns can be, the greater your chances of creating a lasting impression, gaining trust, and growing your customer base.
Facebook Custom Audiences for Apparel & Footwear Retailers
Windsor Circle’s Facebook Custom Audiences solution allows retailers to seamlessly integrate with Facebook to automatically push complex segments based on product, purchase, customer data, and predictive data sets to Facebook Ads Manager. Ready within Facebook in 15-30 minutes and updated on a nightly basis, retailers are uniquely positioned to create relevant, timely ads on Facebook, Instagram, and Facebook Audience Networks. Request a demo to learn more.