Zappos, a case study in content strategy
A US shoe and fashion business that has grown from nowhere in 1999 to over a billion dollars in revenues in 2008 using content and social media strategy. It was bought by Amazon in 2009 for 1.2 billion dollars.
Content lies at the heart of Zappos’s success, with social media interactions making up the core of the brands marketing.
The company was built on maintaining an overriding and coherent brand story across every part of the organization. This story has been centred on the claim that customer service was more important than sales and that customer engagement, using all their audience’s everyday touch points, would drive growth. Zappos has built a persistant and balanced relationship with their audience, using targeted and relevant content specifically designed for the platform they are on. They aimed at humanizing the online experience with a staff culture of belief in having a unique relationship with their clients.
The Zappos customer experience has been designed to be memorable, distinctly different and inclusive. Throughout their messages there is an encouragement to interact with the staff and other clients. The brand is honest about the nature of the messages, they are there to sell stuff, but they also encourage people to have fun while doing it. Zappos have achieved a remarkable conversion rate of 1.75% for Facebook to sales for each of their posts and a repeat business score of 75%.
Zappos encourage the creation of groups amongst their audience; their “Clans”, allowing people to find and make the choice to be associated with others who share their interests. These clans can then have content tailored and curated for them, bringing people into the Zappos culture. With an emphasis on social responsibility, and non-commercial social campaigns, Zappos creates the image of a ‘generous’ brand whose culture their audience is happy to be a part of and share.