October 7, 2013, 3:27 PM

An apparel retailer encourages shoppers to share ‘selfies’

The White House Black Market campaign attracts more than 8,000 photos.

Lead Photo

A peek at the 'selfies' campaign

Since mid-August multichannel women’s apparel brand White House Black Market has asked shoppers to share photos of themselves on its web site, on Instagram or on Twitter wearing the retailer’s clothes as part of its fall #WearWhatWorks marketing campaign.

In the campaign’s first five weeks, White House Black Market received and posted more than 8,000 photos that shoppers can scroll through on a dedicated page that the retailer promotes with a link on its home page, says Jessica Wells, vice president, social media marketing, for the retailer’s parent company, Chico’s FAS Inc., which is No. 79 in Internet Retailer’s 2013 Top 500 Guide.

The retailer says it hopes the page inspires other shoppers’ fashion choices. “It is one thing for us to show shoppers how we would style an item but it is another thing for our customers to show how they’re wearing our clothes,” says Wells.

While the campaign’s idea was simple, it was not so easy to gather together photos that consumers share on Instagram and Twitter using the hashtag #WearWhatWorks, she says. Any word that starts with a pound sign (#) is a hashtag, which becomes a clickable link to all other mentions of that word.

The retailer turned to photo-management vendor Olapic to help it manage the campaign to avoid the labor-intensive process of developing an in-house system to aggregate the images shoppers post. Olapic combs the two social networks for shoppers’ photos that include the hashtag #WearWhatWorks and also provides White House Black Market with a dashboard where it can check to ensure each photo looks good and that the shopper is wearing the retailer’s clothing. The posted photos offer no direct way to buy the outfits posted by shoppers.

“Olapic makes it easier for us to run the campaign and easier for the customer to post their photos where they prefer,” Wells says. Both Olapic and White House Black Market decline to say how much the vendor charges. However, Wells says that the retailer signed a one-year contract with the vendor to continue to feature similar campaigns throughout the year.

White House Black Market’s #WearWhatWorks also features a sweepstakes for a chance to win a $2,500 gift card. Five weeks into the campaign it has received more than 60,000 entries, which Wells considers a huge success.

 

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