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Social

Net-A-Porter’s Social Shopping - The Net Set

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Net-A-Porter’s Social Shopping - The Net Set

Net-A-Porter recently announced that it will launch its own mobile (and Apple watch) based social network called The Net Set. The platform combines user images with products and leverages image recognition software to recommend the closest product match from Net-A-Porter’s range, then offer that item for purchase. It’s an interesting play by Net-A-Porter and continues their push into content and publishing where they are already leaders in this field via their shoppable print Magazine Porter. Both of these initiatives see them building and managing a platform themselves, therefore minimising reliance on existing media channels and deepening customer engagement. 

Another notable recent social commerce launch is LikeToKnow.it which was launched by RewardStyle in 2014 and is used by brands such as Matches, UrbanOutfitters and Vogue. LikeToKnow.it makes brand and user Instagram feeds shoppable by sending an email with the product featured in any Instagram posts that have been captioned with the LikeToKnow.it URL. The functionality requires registration and is very similar to Like2Buy, another shopping work around that bypasses Instagram’s current commerce and external linking limitations.

If The Net Set app gains traction, Net-A-Porter is uniquely positioned since it will provide a more consistent user experience, minimising the impact of customers bouncing from social network to the site and back, as well as potentially mitigating issues around cart abandonment and inventory availability. Net-A-Porter’s recent merger with Yoox should also enable them to scale and fund required growth in technical infrastructure, user acquisition and inventory range.  


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Top 50 People In eCommerce 2015

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Top 50 People In eCommerce 2015

I'm excited and hugely humbled to be included in Inside Retail's inaugural Top 50 People in eCommerce list. My inclusion is also great recognition for my colleagues in the Michael Hill digital team and their continued success.

A judging panel of eight industry experts selected the Top 50 based on their level of industry influence as well as their active involvement in the digital strategy and implementation for an Australian-based eCommerce business. Other consideration factors were innovation, the individual's impact, market size and value. 

The list is a great sign for the continuing maturity of the Brisbane digital scene with other local talent being nominated including Nathan Bush (Super Retail Group), Michael Gillespie (Domino's Pizza) and Cameron Parker (ex Blackmilk).

The Top 50 is filled with people and businesses that I personally admire and respect including Jane Cay from Birdsnest, the team from Shoes of Prey, Justin and Lex from Surfstich, and the boys from Vinomofo. The calibre of people on the list is high and shows great signs for the continued growth of online retail in Australia.

View the full Top 50 People In eCommerce 2015 list.


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Realtime Shoppable Billboards

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Realtime Shoppable Billboards

Topshop is again using social tools to drive customer awareness of fashion trends and make those trends instantly shoppable. They have continued their democratisation of London Fashion Week with their latest #LiveTrends campaign which brings the catwalk action to billboards across the UK.

Six billboards in London, Leeds, Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool and Glasgow presented the trends straight from the catwalk. Key trends were highlighted on the Topshop billboards as hashtags. Examples included #checks, #70s or #modernism, which allowed customers to tweet @Topshop and receive a curated online shopping list inspired by the trend. Topshop's eCommerce team had created merchandised looks ahead of time to allow them to respond instantly. All billboards were located within a ten-minute walk of Topshop for those not wanting to get their fashion fix online.

Topshop partnered with digital out of home provider Ocean Outdoor and Twitter for the live stream show, whilst Australian start-up Stackla provided the tools for social curation and aggregation.

The campaign appeared to generate positive results with an average 25% uplift across all featured trend categories (compared to the previous week). In particular, sales of the #moderism featured products were up 75% compared to the prior week.

Live advertising such as this is still in its infancy, but there are strong links with existing customer behaviour. One key takeaway is that customers are now double screening away from home (that is using a mobile or tablet device whilst consuming other media such as TV and now billboards). This will be a media consumption and interaction trend to watch.

See the campaign in action below:

Checkout Topshop's previous Fashion Week social campaigns.


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Lend Your Eyes To The Blind

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Lend Your Eyes To The Blind

Best described as simple and brilliant, the Be My Eyes app enables sighted volunteers around the world to provide realtime help to blind people in need of assistance. 

The tool makes use of relatively straightforward set of smartphone functionality to enable live video chat - essentially allowing volunteers to be the visually impaired person's eyes. Volunteers can assist when they have time and the app features simple gamification elements to encourage participation. At the time of writing over 164,000 sighted volunteers have offered assistance to over 16,000 blind people.

Be My Eyes is a non-profit organisation based in Copenhagen that launched earlier this year utilising IndiGogo as crowd sourced support for their initial funding. That funding is set to expire later in 2015 and they are reviewing alternate funding models such as subscriptions, sponsorships or donations.

Check out the service via the video below:


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TopShop Social Commerce

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TopShop Social Commerce

TopShop have upped the social fashion game and created a new Instagram/ Facebook powered social catwalk. The initiative allows people from anywhere in the world to participate in the London Fashion Week event by viewing styles in Facebook as they move down the catwalk and allowing them to be purchased immediately after the show - true democratisation of a large fashion event.

Social commerce = better access than the front row…

Social commerce = better access than the front row…

Also as part of the initiative, 5 VIP Instagrammers gave their own unique take on the fashion show and the behind the scenes action - a great way to scale engaging content and leverage existing social audiences.

Finally, TopShop allowed all customers to participate in the campaign themselves using the #TopShopWindow hashtag which aggregated posts in an “interactive digital mosaic” featured in the window of their Oxford Circus store. As well as showing shiny user generated content, TopShop analysed the style trends that people were tagging and changed featured store stock accordingly – great usage of customer data driving action.

TopShop haven't released any results from the campaign to date, however the #TopShopWindow hashtag had 1,200 posts in the first 3 days.

TopShop have executed a really strong integrated campaign that looks to have set the benchmark for digital in fashion. What other great social commerce examples have you seen?



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