Fab has already racked up more than 4.5 million members
BUMBLEBEE-STRIPED or polka-dotted, neon orange or neo-argyle, socks of all types are selling out fast on Fab.com, a popular design e-tailer. Gung-ho for hosiery, its fans are even posting sock images on Pinterest and tagging them on Tumblr blogs.
“It’s Happy Socks Day at Fab,” says Jason Goldberg, the company’s chief executive and founder, as he checks digital dashboards on his iMac screen that continually chart customer sharing and spending. “It’s socktastic!”
Fab.com is a pioneer in social retailing, the kind of e-commerce site that encourages shoppers to discover and select products through crowd-sourcing. It sends out e-mails daily, alerting design mavens to flash sales of whimsical, limited-edition items — like candy-colored typewriters or clear plastic coasters embedded with gummi bears — and offering a variety of ways to share their favorites with friends. Founded last June, Fab has already racked up more than 4.5 million members, who collectively shell out about $400,000 on a typical day, the company said.
But behind that fast success is a new social media math.
Mr. Goldberg is among a new generation of e-commerce executives determined to measure the impact of social marketing and act on it in nearly real time. He keeps constant track of how many people visit Fab.com from, say, Facebook, Pinterest and Google Plus. He gauges Twitter posts that mention the site’s newest items as harbingers of next-day sales. He regularly blogs about the company’s revenue, product trends, app use and leading sources of traffic. He has also hired two customer analytics start-ups to determine the current and potential value of Fab.com shoppers.
“On typical e-commerce sites, every single piece of real estate is calculated to measure the return on investment of each pixel,” Mr. Goldberg says. “But social media marketing needs to be measured differently than traditional marketing. We need different ways to measure sharing.”
via New York Times – NATASHA SINGER
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