How Shapermint Grew Sales 70% YoY (And Lowered Its CPA) During A Crisis

Shapermint CMO
Despite the coronavirus crisis, two-year-old ecommerce shapewear company Shapermint is increasing its media investments and has lowered the price to acquire customers. Sales grew 40% year over year in April and 100% year over year in May, and it’s even tracking ahead of its annual goal of more than $150 million in sales.

The company’s secret to growing during a Q2 most advertisers skipped over? Data and flexibility.

“Brands that are growing are being flexible by adjusting their communication to be relevant,” said Shapermint co-founder and CMO Massimiliano Tirocchi. “And they’re performance-driven and focused on getting results.”

Shapermint’s 60-person in-house marketing team – with 40 people dedicated just to creative –is set up to quickly adjust messaging based on data about performance

With Shapermint’s social media budgets in May topping $300,000 per day (compared to $150,000 per day pre-pandemic), every day of improved performance due to a better creative counts. Based on learnings the creative team receives on a Monday, a new iteration of the ad creative will be running on social media platforms like Facebook and Pinterest arrives by Friday.

Shapermint has continuously updated its creative during the coronavirus outbreak by giving its models equipment to photograph and film themselves.

The company has also kept its finger on the pulse of consumer behavior – which luckily has worked in its favor during the pandemic.

During the early weeks of the outbreak, consumers wavered due to the uncertain environment but soon returned, Tirocchi said. In addition to buying comfortable products to wear at home such as leggings and soft bras, they bought products for a future beyond sheltering in place. So Shapermint made sure its messaging included not just loungewear but its figure-forming garments.

Because department stores are closed, Shapermint is also serving a new set of customers who normally buy shapewear in retail locations, Tirocchi said.

And on social media, where it spends most of its media dollars, CPMs are down and more inventory is available. The influx of people spending time there make it an even more appealing place to distribute its messages.

Testing new initiatives during a crisis

Because of the pandemic, Shapermint is also running social responsibility campaigns for the first time and accelerating its push into TV.

It decided to try social responsibility messaging. For its normal quarterly branding push, Shapermint had planned a Mother’s Day-themed campaign with in-person interviews with moms, “the real shapers of our lives.”

Because the pandemic makes connecting with moms in person no longer safe, Shapermint came up with a new idea: #MaketheCall, a plea to keep moms safe by connecting with them via video chat. A video about the program reached 12 million views across Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, influencer posts and a partnership with the publication Scary Mommy.

The social responsibility campaign helped people see Shapermint in a different light, Tirocchi said: “The brand has a different face, and wants to be part of the community.”

So Shapermint has increased budgets going to social responsibility messaging and planned a second initiative launching June 4. The initiative, #WeAreInThisTogether, will highlight individuals on the front lines of the crisis.

TV push

Shapermint is also accelerating its push into TV due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The brand started testing TV advertising in December. Then the coronavirus pandemic caused entire advertising categories to flee the medium, creating discounted media spots the shapewear company scooped up.

“We are increasing the [TV] investment mainly because of the opportunities with the rates,” Tirocchi said. It’s using the ad creative it shot for the December ad campaign with a hybrid brand and performance message.

By increasing its investments in a new medium, Shapermint is learning faster. “For us to measure the lift [in TV], we need to increase the budget,” he said.

But Shapermint isn’t alone in this regard. All ecommerce companies are learning to adapt – and grow – faster than ever during this unprecedented time, Tirocchi said. On the other side of the pandemic, companies will look much different than they did before, he predicted: “This accelerated in two months what could have been four years.”

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