Earlier this year online-only socks retailer Feat Socks sold nearly $500,000 worth of its Maverick’s Bling Ring socks, which it sells for $20 a pair.
The secret? The socks were designed in partnership with Logan Paul, a social media star whose YouTube page has nearly 3.5 million subscribers.
Influencers are the best way to market to millennials, the retailer’s key demographic, says Taylor Offer, the retailer’s founder and CEO. “It doesn’t matter who they are as long as they have an engaged social following,” he says.
“People classify people into categories like YouTube celebrities and athletes and actors, but the reality is, it’s more of a matter of whether people are paying attention to them. Logan Paul has 3 million to 5 million people watching his vlog every day.”
Each of those consumers watching Paul’s videos are a potential Feat Socks customer, Offer says, which is why the fledgling retailer’s marketing is tied to finding influencers who already have engaged social media followings.
Offer developed Feat’s approach to marketing while still in college at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. “We looked for any influencer we could find,” he says. “But we struggled because we were college kids with no network of connections.” That changed when a friend at a trade show knew someone who knew David Falk, the well-known sports agent whose clients include the social media-savvy gymnast Aly Raisman, who has more than 2.2 million Instagram followers. Offer proposed a profit-split arrangement to Raisman to develop socks with Feat Socks. “She agreed and we ran with it from there,” he says.
After college, Offer moved to Los Angeles where he has befriended a number of YouTube celebrities and worked with them to develop their own sock lines.
Each influencer receives a profit-split (the percentage varies based on the influencer). Feat doesn’t set a minimum number of posts for its influencers to generate, and that creates a dynamic in which it has influencers “who like the product and fit the brand,” Offer says.
“We don’t set expectations. Instead, it’s on us to make the product fun and create awesome content that they’ll want to share,” he says. For example, Offer offered Paul his car if he sold 20,000 pairs of socks. The result was a video, “He’s giving me his car if …? (need your help!)” that has attracted more than 3.9 million views.
“These people need content,” Offer says. “It’s our job to help them create it.”Favorite