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How to Combine E-Commerce and Social Media Platforms

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Foot traffic in physical stores is expected to decline by 2030, with consumers instead opting to shop online-only for convenience. Moving ahead, e-commerce and social platforms will not only take up a larger share of purchases, but they will also eliminate an emotional touchpoint for consumers in physical stores with their audiences.

As a result, social and e-commerce platforms for brands will need to work together as the center of the consumer experience, replacing traditional brick-and-mortar retail.  It’s time for more fashion companies to hire a chief digital officer, who can manage the integration of social media techniques and e-commerce platforms and learn from each other. The term “social media” is often used to describe platforms that focus on interaction, while the phrase “e-commerce” refers to channels that prioritize sales. We need to correct that. Branded manufacturers must broaden their scope of measurement beyond the financial return on investment and beyond sales alone.

Customers should be inspired to build, cross-channel marketing strategies.

On the back of Asos’s “Ay Sauce” Tiktok campaign explains that social campaigns bring together creators and a community who’ll “hack” and “repurpose” it to make it more relevant for their own audience.

Asos focuses on platforms that facilitate the discovery of other people’s content. Mooney says Tiktok’s strength is in how campaigns may organically develop as users generate content that fits their own personal preferences. The campaign has also influenced the Asos team to embrace the platform’s culture in order to be relevant, according to him. “It’s up to companies and creators to stay on top of trends and adapt and improve every single day. That is a challenge we are eager to accept, and it will be one of our main focuses in the future.”

The audience participation that is associated with social media platforms can become an e-commerce tool, but businesses must ensure that engagement-first features are not just found in social media campaigns but also throughout online stores.

On-site personalization, for example, includes learning from social media and audience participation. Interactivity has been tested by digitally agile companies such as Ganni with its wholesale purchasers. The Ganni website, created during the epidemic by Dept for Ganni in just six weeks, puts storytelling at the heart of the purchasing experience.

Buyers may customize Ganni girls’ clothes on dolls and create wish lists comprised of a variety of visual assets, all designed to their liking. Buyers may then purchase items based on their own designs.

Andrea Baldo, the CEO of Ganni, is enthusiastic about how the concept may develop in the future. “We’ve just unlocked a slew of new possibilities for arranging the collection. We’ll be developing a 2:0 version next season, as well as incorporating some of its features into our e-commerce shops.”

Purpose-led eCommerce creates a sense of community.

Patagonia’s e-commerce site is referred to as “online real estate” by Nina Hajikhanian, EMEA e-commerce director of the brand. This is the phrase that describes how to justify things like pictures and designs on its online flagpole. Hajikhanian thinks that Rather than focusing on the act of selling clothes, “solution-oriented activism” is a top priority for the brand’s e-commerce platform. Patagonia Action Works, which is located on the Patagonia website, is a mechanism for connecting global visitors with volunteer experiences and grassroots community activities.

Whether you’re volunteering, learning how to repair your own clothes, or competing in a hashtag challenge on Tiktok, audience participation and challenge-style gamification helps to create stickiness, emotional resonance, and a bond with the community.

Don’t let the “disappointed switch” turn on in your mind.

Social media traffic drives e-commerce sites, therefore the e-commerce experience must be in sync with the interesting social media marketing campaigns that customers have just viewed. Otherwise, consumers who come expecting rich, engaging material similar to that on social media may be disappointed when they proceed to the e-commerce site.

The Ganni girls avoid this problem by keeping their community concepts. Sales assistants, or the consumer themselves, may exist in reality but are personalisation engines that digitally migrate audiences across platforms from social to commercial. Ganni’s Instagram stories and live videos frequently produce comments on the company’s social media platforms, usually prompting people to contact them after seeing their purchases. Customer emails are also more likely to be opened if the message includes images of team members in their favorite pieces from the new collection.“We get a lot of calls in-store from customers telling us how great they think we look. It’s not a marketing stunt. It’s real people,” she adds.

Instagram is used by Patagonia to generate visitors to its e-commerce site through storytelling, which should be carried over to the online store. “Stories allow us to go beyond simply conveying knowledge to sharing principles and sentiments,” according to Hajikhanian. The Patagonia website presently has a short docu-film called They/Them about a transgender mountaineer. The film embraces Patagonia’s social media personalities and their unique forms of self-expression and individualism.

Ensure that your first-party data is protected.

The intersections of e-commerce and social media might be beneficial, according to Patagonia’s Hajikhanian. We must consider how we can benefit from and take advantage of any crossings to make an experience as smooth as possible.

However, relying on external companies to manage e-commerce operations restricts marketers’ chances of gaining insight into how consumers move between social and e-commerce channels. “It’s difficult to construct a group around you as a brand if you don’t have the proper information, it’s even more difficult to link social media with your store, and vice versa. You are not receiving a full perspective of your consumer.” says Bonacic. “There are several insights that aren’t included. It’s tough to create and maintain loyalty without having consumers build profiles with you directly.”

Provide unique social significance to the offer

Customers must be delighted upon finding your products, not only on social media but also during their purchasing journey at a digital business. It’s critical to make customers feel incentivized to visit a digital flagship immediately to discover unique items, collaborations, and drops, according to Department’s Bonacic. “Ganni is excellent at creating pop-up moments. They generate a lot of pop-up events, which makes the consumer feel special.”

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How social media influencers are Controlling public opinion

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Influencer marketing has seen an amazing rise in popularity in recent years, with entire industries being developed for big-name personalities who are paid to promote brand sponsorships with their millions of followers.

Although influencers with substantial audiences have been the focus of many marketers, savvy marketers have started targeting lesser-known influencers who aren’t nearly as well-known as their big-name peers, which has prompted fresh interest in less formal outreach.

The influencer’s market is being invaded by Nano Influencers, which could change the game.

According to the most recent data from Wowzi, a company that offers brand and business-level influencer marketing tools, this trend is shifting.

While the most popular accounts appear to have the broadest reach, smaller accounts with sizes of micro or nano-influencers frequently outrank their big-name counterparts.

With some influencers having millions of followers, getting an endorsement from one may appear to be a very effective marketing tool for a company.

However, the tide is turning, and numerous companies are recognizing the advantages of working with micro or nano-influencers, proving that it’s feasible to collaborate with your beloved brands even if you only have a few hundred followers.

Small businesses are increasingly aligning their marketing efforts to target nano content producers seeking to profit from their social media accounts and create long-term sources of income outside of traditional or formal employment.

The messenger matters a lot in emerging markets because of the low level of trust. An online endorsement from someone you know is far more effective than a celebrity recommendation, for example. As a result, nano influencers with smaller, more personalized followers are able to provide better-qualified sales leads. Everyone has influence.

The term “nano-influencer” refers to social media users with 250 to 5,000 followers. Engagement on content by nano-influencers is almost three times higher than that of celebrity personalities.

A good example is Linda Okero, who works full-time and creates content on the side. She has less than 2,000 Instagram followers and is a micro-influencer in the truest sense of the word.

She advertises company-sponsored social media content on her sites, such as Facebook and Instagram posts sponsored by East Africa Breweries Ltd (EABL), Coca-Cola, Netflix, and charges.

For years, we’ve thought that for companies to create a community, it must be driven by influencers with hundreds of thousands of followers on social media. We’re showing marketers that genuine influence is about authenticity, and I believe this is why they’re paying attention to nano-influencers.

When it comes to influencing, most people think of the big celebrity figures and forget the local nano-influencers who connect with their target audiences, particularly those outside cities.

Because they share the same beliefs and culture as potential target customers, these influencers live among them, speak their language, and participate in their activities, raising the probability of conversion. In order to realize our growth goals through this channel, we must also work together with the private and public sectors to establish beneficial relationships.

It’s critical to find a balance between old and new media in order to reach a varied audience via the media they consume.

We’re thrilled to introduce you to Wowzi, an innovative new marketing platform that has already secured 60,000 influencers in East Africa through word of mouth and has handled over 150 campaigns for over 100 customers.

After successfully delivering 150,000 paid employment opportunities in 2021, the business has announced plans to provide one million gig job opportunities for African youth by 2022 through its online marketplace.

Mobile use has become a key element of commerce in African markets, and it’s where young people already spend their time. Young people may simply learn the fundamental concepts of sharing brand messages using a lightweight remote training, so anyone with a phone can now influence their peers through social media.

According to the Hootsuite Digital 2021 Data Report, 20 million people in East Africa use social media.

Kenya has the most people on social media, with 11 million users, followed by Tanzania (5.4 million users), which is 8.9 percent of the population; and Uganda has about 3.4 million social media users, or 7.3 percent of the population.

In September 2021, Safaricom engaged a small “army” of influencers to create TikTok videos about a new product. With thousands of user-generated comments, the challenge was rapidly seen by millions of people. Within a week, the hashtag had 8 million views.

 

These are campaign outcomes that would not have been feasible previously because Safaricom could simply engage a dozen influencers one-on-one for the same campaign.

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Fast fashion & looking towards a sustainable future

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Fast-fashion clothing production generates a lot of textile waste and significant environmental problems.

Many companies are beginning to address sustainability in fashion, as many have moved away from fast-fashion manufacturing processes. Fast-fashion companies have been criticized for their actions due to environmental and ethical issues such as textile waste and unequal labor regulations and wages. Some clients, as well as other members of the business, believe that something should be done. 

Fast-fashion consumers are among the most difficult to persuade because they’re among the highest spenders on fast fashion. Because of their high costs, students who attend college are some of the most significant purchasers of fast fashion. Popular sustainable labels such as Reformation have price ranges from $100 to $200 for a single shirt.

However, many individuals are under the impression that there are few options to high-priced long-lasting fashion labels — they are also better for the environment.

Rebecca Turner, senior apparel, merchandising, design and textiles major, said that there are two ways to purchase clothes more sustainably.

One of the most effective strategies to promote sustainability is secondhand shopping, because you’re not buying something new; instead, you’re purchasing something used, which can continue through its life cycle and result in no additional goods being created.

In terms of sustainability, junior apparel, merchandise development, design and textiles major Olivia Lewis is optimistic that it may be achieved by college students. She does not doubt that it presents a challenge, but she thinks it is possible.

“I feel like it’s all about finding balance, especially for college students,” Lewis said. In a decade, it’s quite probable that brands will be completely sustainable. In the meantime, students have an important long-term interest in holding the fashion industry and fast-fashion firms to account for their poor practices.

Trends are influenced by consumers and teenagers. We choose what’s trendy, what’s out of style, and what the next greatest things are. We utilize social media to express our own personalities. This gives Instagram and TikTok influencers power to influence the industry’s course. This may also add to overconsumption, if you’re an influencer receiving a product you’ll only use once or a consumer who is influenced to buy unnecessary things.

Huge clothing hauls from influencers are increasingly popular on social media sites. According to Lewis, when viewers see individuals doing Shein hauls of around 30 items for $100 on TikTok, they may be tempted to over-consume on websites like Shein and Zaful.

Overindulgence in charming and fashionable tops, on the other hand, doesn’t consider the influence of supporting businesses that mistreat their employees.When we acquire from fast-fashion businesses, we are essentially telling them that we condone their unethical methods.

It’s critical to learn about how our clothes are manufactured and the working conditions of those who make them. Fortunately, there are tools available to assist consumers in determining whether their favorite companies are ethical.The app “Good on You” assesses companies in three categories: labor, the environment, and animal testing or utilization.

Students do not need to replace their entire wardrobe with environmentally friendly brands in order to be more sustainable.If you want to refresh your wardrobe or try clothing swapping with your buddies, there are several options. The easiest approach to be more long-lasting in terms of style is to utilize what we already have in our closets and seek for improvement, not perfection.

We, as customers, have the ability to push for more sustainable and ethical practices from the fashion business. It’s critical that we become informed about the drawbacks of fast fashion so that we can make more educated decisions about where to spend our money. We can build a more sustainable future for us and future generations if we start supporting companies that are environmentally responsible and treat their workers fairly.

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Celebrity Cruises has announced that children 5 years old and above must be fully Vaccinated

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In a statement to travel agents, Celebrity Cruises Senior Vice President of Sales and Trade Dondra Ritzenthaler announced the new policy change that will affect passengers aged 5 to 12.

From February 1, 2022, all passengers aged 5 years or older must be vaccinated fully. Unvaccinated children between the ages of two and four will be compelled to present a negative Antigen or PCR test obtained within three days of boarding any of the Celebrity cruises.

Previously, children between the ages of two and eleven were required to submit a negative Antigen or PCR test conducted within three days of boarding. There has been no change in Royal Caribbean International’s vaccination policy.

“The COVID-19 worldwide epidemic has not only altered how we do business, it has also changed safety standards and operating procedures in nearly every area of the travel industry,” according to Ms. Ritzenthaler.

“Since the start of this crisis, Celebrity Cruises has prioritized one goal above all else: to provide the safest cruise vacations available in the business. That’s why we enlisted a board of specialists to assist us in revising our already outstanding health and safety measures to new industry-leading levels. That is why we continue to update our procedures in order to stay ahead of global events. It’s all part of our leadership in safety, which is committed to ensuring that your clients and guests enjoy their bucket list excursion with no concerns. We’ve safely carried hundreds of thousands of guests all around the world with these enhanced protocols.”

Starting on January 13, 2022, children under the age of five who have not been fully vaccinated are not permitted to board Disney Cruise Line vessels.

Celebrity Cruises had already mandated that 95% of its passengers be fully immunized in order to sail, which was a step above Royal Caribbean’s previous requirement.

Because not many people were required to be vaccinated by Royal Caribbean in order for families to travel with them, there was no need for other companies to follow suit.

The CDC gave cruise lines two options in April 2021: skip test cruises if 98 percent of crew and 95 percent of passengers are fully vaccinated, or do simulated sailings first.

The simulated sailings were chosen by Royal Caribbean because it is dedicated to the family experience.

“Once there were two distinct options, 95 percent or less than that, it wasn’t even a question,” says Mark Tamis, senior vice president of Hotel Operations for Royal Caribbean International.

“We’re the world’s largest family cruise company,” boasts Tamis, who claims that more than 1 million youngsters travel on Royal Caribbean vessels every year. “It was obvious to go down this route,” she adds.

Will Royal Caribbean’s vaccine requirements change?

There has been no change in Royal Caribbean International’s policy on vaccines for children.

According to Royal Caribbean, as of now, only those 12 years old and older must show proof of COVID-19 vaccination; the last dose of their immunization was given at least 14 days before boarding. Children aged 5 to 11 who have been vaccinated may present proof of full protection and follow the established procedures for vaccinated guests.

Depending on the length and departure port of their cruise, guests under the age of 12 who have not been vaccinated will need to complete additional COVID-19 testing requirements.

During a question and answer session two weeks ago, Royal Caribbean International President and CEO Michael Bayley was questioned about a policy change.

“The plan is to release updates when and if we do make the changes. As a result, when we announce our plans, people get plenty of notice.”

“We do know that for ages 12 to 17, in the United States, where we state that everyone must be vaccinated, just 48 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds have been immunized.”

“Right now, from 5 to 12, we believe that just 35% of parents will get their five- to-12-year-olds vaccinated in the future. We feel that this is going to change. So we’d want to go up from there. We’re merely looking at the data and will probably continue analyzing it for a little while longer before making a decision.”

“We’re monitoring it, and as soon as we think we’ve found a reasonable solution, we’ll undoubtedly notify everyone. We’ll give everyone time to react.”

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