Instagram Drives Online And Physical Sales For Fossil

The result is a conversion rate of 20 percent — and not just online, but in-store as well, says Fossil’s Jencey Keeton.

Instagram advertising has been the key to success for apparel and accessories retailer Fossil, which recently reported a 20 percent increase in traffic from the social media site since June — and described sales driven by the platform as “substantially higher” than from Twitter or Facebook.

Fossil’s results are indicative not just of individual success, but of a change in the social media marketing ecosystem largely concentrated around this Millennial-favorite platform. The early days of Instagram were characterized by hesitancy on the part of brands; ad options were limited, and marketers were loath to disturb the swaths of user-created content in fear of coming off as “intruders.”

It’s still a delicate balance, but a recent embrace of more creative native advertising — particularly in the face of ad-blocking related concerns — has changed the game as Instagram has matured.

Fossil Instagram

To promote its products on Instagram in a way that enhances the user experience, Fossil partnered with Curalate to deploy its Fanreel user-generated content solution. With Fanreel, Fossil lets consumers upload product photos and create posts about Fossil merchandise on its e-commerce site. Fossil can then select photos and posts it wants to share on Instagram and send consumers a message that lets them give rights with a single click.

Essentially, this allows Fossil to share promoted posts that are created by fans themselves, which helps them feel native to the Instagram platform and less overtly like “ads.” However, these posts still have a direct link to commerce; with Curalate’s Like2Buy option, Fossil has made these photo galleries shoppable with links that bring users back to the Fossil website to either buy the products or locate them in a Fossil store.

“Our overall conversion is 20 percent — not just online, but in-store as well,” Jencey Keeton, marketing manager, digital branding and global marketing for Fossil, told Chain Store Age.

Looking ahead to the rest of 2016, Fossil plans to roll out Curalate’s Reveal tool, which allows customers to make purchases directly from the images in its social posts. It’s all part of Fossil’s broader strategy of obtaining the full benefit of social conversation with consumers — and seamlessly weaving together social, e-commerce, and in-store shopping.

“We need to continue progressing with engagement and be proactive,” Keeton said. “Customers who engage on social media spend four times as much over their lifetime as customers who do not engage on social media.”

About The Author
Lauryn Chamberlain Lauryn Chamberlain @laurynchamberla

Lauryn Chamberlain is the Associate Editor of A New York City based journalist, she specializes in stories related to retail, dining, hospitality, and travel.