Brands building consumer connect using social media

RetailME Bureau

Retailers are seen to be leveraging social media in a big way – now, more than ever before – in their attempt to build and maintain a strong connect with consumers.

US-based Neiman Marcus has announced a new contest allowing its Instagram followers to upload images using the #nmmyway hashtag suggesting different ways to wear the brand’s spring trends. This contest is running from February 11-to-25 after which Neiman Marcus fashion directors will pick five winners, to be announced in March, each receiving $500 Neiman’s gift cards in addition to getting featured on neimanmarcus.com.

“This is the first time we’ve engaged in user-generated content. Merchandise doesn’t have to be purchased at Neiman Marcus, just reflective of our trends, including include the new Bohemian, fringe, spice market colours, long layered necklaces, the bucket bag and ‘mix, don’t match’, among others,” says Ginger Reeder, vice president of corporate communications at Neiman Marcus Group.

Likewise London-based shoe designer Sophia Webster had launched a social media competition in January celebrating her 213,000 Instagram followers, a number that has risen more than 50% over the past six months. To honour the 200,000-follower milestone, Webster had set aside a dozen pairs of her shoes for that one lucky follower. According to her, social and digital media play a key role in her brand strategy.

That’s not all. In September 2014 Marc by Marc Jacobs had turned to social media to find male and female models, selecting 11 individuals from across the world, to star in its spring 2015 advertising campaign. To be part of the campaign Marc by Marc Jacobs fans simply had to turn their Instagram and Twitter privacy settings to public, uploading their picture using the hashtag #castmemarc.

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