Why Instagram is Fossil’s top social media priority

January 18, 2016 08:44 AM

Fossil Group Inc. is all in on Instagram.

“Instagram is our top priority,” says Jencey Keeton, Fossil’s digital brand manager, adding that the watch and accessories maker last June launched what she calls a “360-degree approach” to the platform; at least one member of the seven-person team oversees the channel seven days a week, from 7 a.m.-10 p.m.

Fast-growing Instagram appeals to Fossil for multiple reasons. The brand wants to attract millennial shoppers, and many of them regularly use, Keeton says. Instagram also allows Fossil a better opportunity than other social networks to reach followers since the platform shows every brand post to consumers following the brand. That stands in contrast to Facebook, which continues to reduce brands’ organic reach; last year in the span of seven months the percentage of consumers who saw a brand’s typical nonpaid Facebook post fell nearly 1 percentage point—from 8.34% in May 2015 to 7.39% of a brand’s followers by December—according to social media analytics firm Locowise.

As Fossil decided to devote more resources to Instagram, it set about posting arresting images highlighting the brand’s products to boost brand awareness, engage with shoppers and drive sales. It also began using marketing vendor Curalate’s Fanreel user-generated content tool, which collects images shoppers share via hashtags like #FossilAddict across multiple social networks. Fanreel also provides the brand with a hub on Fossil’s site that shoppers can use to upload photos featuring Fossil merchandise.

Fossil also began using Curalate’s Like2Buy product that lets the multichannel retailer drive shoppers from the visual-focused social network to its site. When a consumer clicks on Fossil’s Instagram profile page she can bring up a gallery of Instagram photos that, when clicked, go to Fossil’s e-commerce site.

Fossil’s Instagram push, along with Curalate’s tools, provided a huge jolt to the brand, Keeton says. For example, the brand’s Instagram following grew 480% last year, even though it only started its push in June; it now has about 386,000 followers. And Instagram is helping drive traffic and sales. For example, the Like2Buy link is helping Instagram make up roughly 20% of its traffic from social networks.

Instagram also gives Fossil a greater understanding of its customers. Examining the products consumers post via Fanreel helps Fossil understand trends. “It gives us a richer perspective that goes beyond raw sales,” Keeton says. “It gives us a sense of a product’s popularity, as well as helps us understand which products we should be promoting in ads.”




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