"We really think hard about each product for the sake of getting bloggers to write about us because we don’t have Ralph Lauren’s marketing budget."
The online fashion label Betabrand wants to have conversation worthy products. The founders focus on self-designed products creative and unique enough to guarantee a viral resonance:
With the Disco Open-Source Project, the raw, disco-inspired glitter material used in popular Betabrand products are on sale to do-it-yourselfers.
Customers can use the material to create their own disco accessories and clothes, which they then photograph and upload to Betabrand using their Model Citizen App. This sharing with the community is a part of the product.
To get a good look into the ideas and strategy from Betabrand, see the article in the New York Times:
"TO understand the thinking behind Chris Lindland’s company,Betabrand, you need to keep three seemingly disparate ideas in your head at the same time: 1) It’s a challenge for Web-only businesses to sell clothing. 2) Most people want to be witty. 3) Some shoppers go crazy for limited-edition goods. (Think Beanie Babies.)
Mr. Lindland, who says his goal is “not to try to create the coolest, most cohesive line of clothing, but to create the most conversation-worthy line of clothing,” strives to keep Betabrand stocked with products that will generate “new, fun, cult-y talk.
Each week, the company introduces a new item in limited quantities. But this approach isn’t merely a lark, he says — it is a necessary strategy for an Internet retailer that needs to break through the clutter."
Betabrand depends on a strong community presence for Model Citizens. To motivate new users, Betabrand offers a 10% rebate on the next order within 24 hours of the first uploaded photo. Virality is of upmost focus:
"Customers send photographs of themselves wearing Betabrand clothing to the company, which in turn sends them a link they can forward to friends that puts those photos front and center on what looks like the Betabrand home page. (In fact, it’s a personalized version made just for them.)"
Besides a noteworthy newsletter which has an opening rate of 40%, fashion bloggers also play an important role for Betabrand:
"[Betabrand-Gründer Chris Lindland] says once sites such as Daily Candy debuted, fashion--like food, wine, and sports--was released from clutches of industry elites. “If you look at fashion and fashion marketing through the lens of the Internet, you end up taking a different approach,” he says. The idea is to turn fashion forward into "fashion forwarded."
Betabrand introduces 6-12 products per month which are produced in limited quantities.
Originally posted in German by Jochen Krisch and Marcel Weiss, adapted for excitingcommerce.com by Jason Soo.