Clothing brand MeUndies’ Snapchat account has been posting special links to product pages and notched 10% to 12% conversion rates.
Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram offer buy buttons to help brands push product sales through their platforms. Snapchat does not. But that doesn’t mean marketers aren’t able to use the mobile messaging app as a guerrilla-style e-commerce outpost.
Clothing brand MeUndies has been using its Snapchat account to not only show off its wares, like boxer briefs and lounge pants, but actually sell the casual wear. The brand has included special URLs in some of its Snapchat posts and has seen that 10 percent to 12 percent of the people who see those links end up punching them into their browsers and purchasing the product. That’s good news for Snapchat and the brands and publishers expecting to set up e-commerce shops in the app’s Discover section, a plan that Snapchat board member and Cosmopolitan editor-in-chief Joanna Coles revealed in February.
MeUndies isn’t exactly trying to set up shop on Snapchat. Instead, the brand looks at the product promotions — including exclusive items that can only be had through the links posted to Snapchat — as another way to keep its audience interested in its branded content. The content pushes the product, and the product pushes the content.
“It has to tie into the storytelling. So if a product ties in with the story, at the end we’ll say here’s how to get it or we’ll match it with [stories about] product launches,” said Dan King, head of marketing at MeUndies. He likened Snapchat to “modern TV in a sense. It gives us an outlet to create our own network of programming.”
For example, MeUndies has run a series through its Snapchat account called “Lounge Off” that featured two members of the brand’s marketing team — Bob Wolfley, who handles social media and influencer marketing, and Greg Fass, who handles partnerships and influencer marketing — reclining in its lounge pants in seemingly uncomfortable spots like atop a table at Starbucks or on a crosswalk. At the end of a few episodes, MeUndies posted a snap that included a link to a special page on its site where people could purchase the pants. “People would screenshot the link, and we could track [sales back to Snapchat] because it was a unique link,” Mr. Fass said.
In another example, MeUndies aired a pumpkin-carving content through its Snapchat account that pitted Mr. Fass against actress Nathalia Ramos, with each competitor decked out in the brand’s french terry sweat suits.
“It’s like a native ad within our own content,” said Mr. King. And it can be easier to sell product through special links on Snapchat than through buy buttons on Facebook or other social networks. Those buy buttons typically require a brand to pay to use e-commerce software from tech providers like Shopify. “That’s a more advanced shopping platform that requires a bigger investment from a developer team, and it’s unclear it’s worth the effort,” Mr. King said.
The more casual approach to commerce on Snapchat means that MeUndies can pick and choose the right times to run a sale instead of overdoing it just to get its money’s worth. “We’re picky with when we want to do that,” Mr. Wolfley said. “If we know a Snapchat Story is longer, we might reward them with a link at the end. We don’t want to saturate it with all these links. We want it to be branded content and fun.”
(Some images used under license from Shutterstock.com.)