Ah, Black Friday.
It’s no surprise that the main kick-off day for the vacation shopping season is responsible for a massive annual surge in customer costs, reaching $8.9 billion in the United States alone in 2021. But while this is a yearly slam-dunk for huge box retailers, 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, competing with big brands takes courage, insight, and imagination. That’s why the small businesses that stand apart throughout the holiday season are the ones that connect with the distinct desires and needs of their clients, get bold with their marketing strategies, and create thumb-stopping material that makes certain to get people talking.
Last year, UK-based sustainable underclothing brand name and Best SMM Panel customer Pantee won Black Friday with a campaign that broke convention and raised awareness of unsustainable impulse purchasing. We spoke with Pantee’s creators, siblings Amanda and Katie McCourt, to find out how they did it, what the results were, and what they’ve learned for future projects.
What is Pantee?
Pantee is an underclothing brand making a distinction: their items are used “deadstock” materials, or unsold inventory that would otherwise wind up in land fills. Designed by ladies, for females and the planet, Pantee’s products are produced with comfort and design in mind, while helping 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– Official Sound Studio
For Pantee, sustainability isn’t a buzzword or pattern to jump on; the brand name was founded with this function at its core. The concept came to life in a thrift store in 2019, when Amanda was searching second-hand clothing shops in London and was blown away by the number of brand-new t-shirts lining the racks, tags still on them.
“It was insane to me how many individuals had given away clothes before even using them as soon as,” states Amanda. “It got me thinking: If this is how many discarded clothes we can see, just how much is there that we can’t see? When I began researching, I understood that we might make a difference. It’s very challenging to get buying ideal in the fashion business with trends and shopping cycles changing so frequently, and as a result, lots of business overproduce. I became focused on the idea of what we could do with deadstock clothing.”
The short response to Amanda’s concern on how much waste we can’t see: a lot. The fashion business produces an approximated 92 million tonnes of textile waste each year, and around 30% of clothes made are never even offered.
With a strong enthusiasm to make a difference for our world– and after recognizing that the soft cotton t-shirt fabric everyone likes would lend itself well to underwear and wireless bras– Amanda and Katie named business Pantee (an abridged variation of “trousers made from deadstock tees”) and got to work bringing the concept to life.
@pantee_uk Upcycling never ever felt so great link in bio to find out more about how we make sustainable underclothing! #sustainablefashion #smallbusinesslove #fyp #comfort #recycledfashion luxurious– milo
Given 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 a successful sustainable startup– upcycling more than 1,500 kgs of deadstock material in its first 1.5 years alone. Pantee likewise plants one tree for each order positioned (leading to over 1,500 trees planted!) and is a proud member of 1% For the Planet.
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 consumers to make unnecessary purchases– a lot of which would go unused and wind up back on racks or, even worse, in landfills.
So, while numerous small businesses come to grips with whether to run sales and promotions, Pantee asked a various concern: how could they produce a successful project while staying true to their mission?
- The solution: Reclaim Black Friday by rebranding it “Blackout Friday,” an initiative motivating consumers to reconsider their purchases and avoid impulse buying.
- The message: Stop and believe before you buy. Is it something you like? Is it something you need? If so, go on– buy and enjoy your brand-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 individuals get quickly sucked into sales,” states Katie. “But the mindset should be: Is it actually a bargain if you weren’t going to invest the cash initially? Our project position was not to motivate impulse buying, and we saw a lot 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 always don’t purchase, however if you’re going to, buy something you have actually wanted for a truly long period of time.”
Pantee didn’t stop there. To bring the campaign to life and put their words into action, the seller switched off their website to all however their engaged customers, who were just able to access the website through a code they sent to their existing newsletter.
The project was an overwhelming success, causing a significant boost in sales, social engagement and reach, brand awareness and brand-new consumer acquisition.
- Engagement on social media 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 with no supported paid spend.
- 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 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 promotions last year, Black Friday was the biggest sales day of the year,” says 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 registering for our email list. We saw a lots of new, newbie clients just because they valued what we were doing.”
“Brands frequently think that you can have worths, but they will not transform to sales,” adds Amanda. “But we think that’s changing– and this campaign is an excellent example of that.”
Pantee is now launching the project for the second year and anticipating even more remarkable results.
4 lessons gained from one non-traditional campaign
Whether you’re brainstorming future creative campaigns, building out next quarter’s social marketing strategy or currently getting going on preparing for next year’s holiday season, Pantee’s Blackout Friday project holds fantastic lessons that every marketer need to keep top of mind. We asked Amanda and Katie for their leading four recommendations– here’s what they stated.
1. Focus on your function
“We yap about our worths as a brand,” says Katie. “And time and time again, we have actually seen that if we talk about a concern, our worths, or something with substance behind it, our engagement is so much higher. That’s what people wish to see: something that gets them believing.”
Amanda adds: “I believe at one point, we lost our way a bit and became more product and sales heavy on our social channels, and we discovered that we weren’t getting the very same reach. Pressing product resolves e-mail marketing and other areas of the business, however with social, we have actually seen a bigger opportunity to inform our audience and share useful details that they can leave with.”
2. An engaged community is everything
“There’s a big difference between growing a following and growing a following that also has engagement,” discusses Katie.” When it concerns social, what we’ve found is that people who engaged with us early on have actually ended up being advocates for our brand name. We see so much worth in neighborhood and engaging with our clients beyond getting the sale. Numerous brands see social as a platform to get their message out, however for us, it’s a two-way street.”
3. Do not hesitate to be strong
“We learned quite early with our social that the greatest peaks of engagement happened when we took a stand for something,” says Katie. “We have actually constantly been rather 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 media isn’t practically 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, building relationships and developing an engaged community is invaluable. We use our social channels for two-way conversations with both clients and our community– there is so much you can find out 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 one of the most effective tools that brands can utilize to ignite their business, turning spectators into faithful brand name advocates, awareness into sales, and your mission into positive, tangible modification. Simply ask Pantee.
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