This post was originally featured on hellospark.com on October 26th, 2015.
Let’s face it: we live in a digital, online world. The old benchmarks which we once used to measure success have been long replaced with what is faster, easier and most of all, newer. The name of the game now is who can take risks, make strides, and keep our shorter than ever attention piqued long enough to stay engaged through to conversion.
The way the world now turns, it is absolutely essential for brands to have a strong online presence not just to be acknowledged, but to be followed and talked about. We recently published a blog on the 7 most surprising brands killing it on social media (a must-read, in my personal opinion). However, social media is but a piece in the online marketing puzzle. In addition to being on top of social channels, there’s email marketing, web design and functionality, and the presence in mobile and tablet friendly apps to think about. And there’s one brand that is taking the cake on all of it:Solestruck.
Solestruck has been in the shoe game since 2004, with a simple and straight-forward mission statement to rid the world of ugly shoes. With a mission statement as hilarious as it is bold, you can expect nothing less from the brand itself. As the largest shoe retailer in the nation, housing more than 100 brands, you may be surprised to find out they have but ONE brick and mortar store, located where the brand was born in Portland, OR. In an industry completely over-saturated with online shopping competitors and shoe subscription websites, you may be wondering what sets Solestruck ahead of the rest.
The online marketing landscape is drastically different now than what it was at Solestruck’s inception 11 years ago. I can give you one reason how Solestruck continues to stay on top of their online game when there are so many others biting at their heels: they innovate, and they do it quickly.
When a new social media platform launches, Solestruck is all over it. Flawlessly. Their brand image is consistent across all social media platforms, and with a combined 500,000 followers acrossFacebook, Instagram, Youtube, and Twitter alone, they sure seem to be doing something right. Did we mention they also have Tumblr, Polyvore, and Pinterest pages?
One of their most popular channels, Instagram, is also one of their newest. Naturally, they are on top of all the best practices for this particular channel. They post everyday, brands are tagged, hashtags are used, and true to their brand image, emoji’s are used. Take a look at this prime example of a brand shoutout, with an immediate response from the brand itself:
Having a handle on social media channels is one thing. Mastering an email program is a whole other story. Solestruck’s newsletter signup is built into the footer of every single page of their website (TAKE NOTES), and the emails themselves are timely (helloooo salesss), entertaining, and never boring. In fact, littered with their signature clever language, emoji subject lines, and even gif’s, their emails are down right entertaining. See for yourself:
We’ve touched on the formula of how to make emails your audience will actually read in a past blog as well, and Solestruck knocks every piece out of the park. Strong subject line? Check. Engaging image and text content? Check, check. Clear call to action? Checkeroo. In a world where we receive and delete emails practically in the blink of an eye, Solestruck manages to make you blink twice, click through, and like what you see. If that isn’t nailing an email marketing program, I don’t know what is.
The cherry on Solestruck online marketing cake is REALLY what sets them apart from other online retailers, and here it is: their iOS app for mobile and tablet. Their app offers all the functionality of their website, in a format that’s an online shopper’s dream to navigate. You can browse brands, add things to a wishlist, and shop directly within the app. Get this: you can even shop by size. With paypay or credit, checkout is a breeze, and the app is always up-to-date with what is available, so there is never a disconnect of available brands or sizes between the website or app.
There are, of course, larger retailer brands who have moved online in a seamless way, and carry on their store experience to that of the online world. This isn’t about them. This is about a brand, born online, and a go-to for the new, emerging, indie and cutting-edge brands and styles the site focuses it’s entire selling point on. With the ever-changing and developing platforms and best practices of what is required of an online brand, Solestruck isn’t just maintaining, they are dominating.
If you need help navigating the online world for your small, but mighty, brand, take a cue from Solestruck.