at Lounge Underwear
Today’s woman shouldn’t have to sacrifice comfort to be sexy. And just because something is sexy shouldn’t mean it’s uncomfortable to wear. Since launching in 2015 in the living room of our co-founders Mel & Dan, Lounge has been on one incredible journey. Their mission is to empower women worldwide, redefine beauty standards, and pave the way for all things ‘Comfort Made Sexy’.
Comfort Made Sexy is a moniker that goes far beyond clothing. Lounge is passionate about diversity and excited to show women their lived experiences are more important than photoshopped models and unrealistic expectations. Lounge refuses to Photoshop any of our models. Instead, we want to celebrate that women come in all shapes, sizes, and colours.
Before joining Lounge, I knew them as a brand whose mission was to empower women globally. This message spoke to me and is why I signed on in March 2020 as PPC Manager and soon progressed into the position of Head of PPC and Affiliates. At the time, I was the 35th Lounger. Today, there are more than 105 of us. In my role, I help Lounge develop their international growth, working closely with the CMO to ensure alignment across all marketing channels.
Lounge Underwear is a Midlands, UK born brand, where in just 5 years, international growth has accelerated dramatically, breaking into 11 different localised markets (alongside shipping worldwide) and achieving the title of the UK’s fastest growing fashion brand in the Times Fast Track 100 in 2020. Last year, we grew 300% year over year. We’ve also become a Shopify Plus merchant, which has allowed us to scale faster and easier than we could’ve before.
From Retargeting to Customer Acquisition
Lounge’s rapid growth is exciting, but it also adds new challenges and demands to the business. One of the resources Lounge put in place to harness our growth potential is AdRoll. When the partnership began more than three years ago, our focus was solely on retargeting. In the year I arrived, we saw the opportunity to leverage AdRoll’s expertise even further to cast a wider net and expand our audience.
Over the past couple of years, new customer acquisition and being an industry leading brand were two huge goals for us at Lounge. Our organic and paid social teams saw TikTok as a huge focus as we could reach young and more tech-adaptive audiences. We wanted to have a presence in a market with huge growth potential, so that was an easy choice. Whereas a big part of my job on PPC, Display & Affiliates, was launching extensive upper funnel campaigns across international markets to capture new audiences right away.
But our shift from retargeting to new customer acquisition didn’t happen overnight. In addition to launching new markets, the pandemic was a big push behind new customer acquisition. The move to a more remote work environment meant our loungewear was in high demand. We wanted to capture all of the new prospects who suddenly needed our products.
There’s more to digital marketing than just ROI. Over the past year, the strategy of the digital marketing team has shifted from an ROI-driven goal to a more full-funnel approach. After a couple of months on the team, I reached out to AdRoll to start a conversation about prospecting and brand awareness. This conversation eventually led to others about ways to leverage creative content to develop a cohesive and creative customer journey. From there, we started to dig deep into the process of engagement.
Engaging Customers with AdRoll Functions
Our busiest season runs from November through March: starting with Black Friday, into Christmas, through Valentine’s Day—obviously huge for a lingerie brand—to our birthday sale in March. That birthday sale drives just as much business as Black Friday!
But where Lounge knows women, AdRoll knows display advertising. They bring the thunder with new information and real-world experiences. AdRoll added countdown timers to our sale ads to create a sense of urgency. Adding strike-through pricing during certain days and times over the course of those sales has also improved click-through rates.
Lounge click-through rates are extremely high, averaging 1.5%. Last year on Black Friday, our click-through rates improved 82% year over year. Even our CPA got a huge boost, with a 25% year-over-year improvement.
The collaboration between Lounge and Adroll has made the growth of display advertising unstoppable. The partnership between both ourselves and their team of display experts has really led us in this growth. In fact, when we look at this financial year compared to 2019/2020, we have seen a 177% increase in traffic, but only a 146% increase in ad spend, meaning we’ve become more efficient even as we’ve grown. Partnering together to manage multiple campaigns has been invaluable for us as a team.
Understanding the Nuances of Our Female Family
Instead of just reaching out to customers who are already brand ambassadors, I saw a future where we engaged new customers and led them down the entire marketing funnel. Like anything else, this starts with knowing your audience.
I was fortunate to join a team that so deeply understood their target market. Lounge likes to describe it as the nuances of the “female family,” especially as we expand into new markets.
In AdRoll, we can see overall campaign results and drill down into how each creative asset performs. This level of detail allows us to explore why customers in a given market have engaged more with one creative than another. We can then turn these insights into benchmarks for that territory and actionable items across channels, helping us launch into new markets quickly.
AdRoll has helped us better communicate values as a brand in different markets while maintaining cohesive messaging.
The Benefits of Our Shopify Plus Integration
As I mentioned, Lounge is a Shopify Plus merchant. We wanted to take advantage of the extra support and powerful tools, which is a big deal for a small-to-medium business like ours. Not everyone has the resources to build an entire e-commerce site and manage everything from inventory to software development. Using Shopify, we don’t have to.
AdRoll’s Shopify integration is incredibly simple and extremely easy to set up. All the data that AdRoll needs, such as the audience data and product feeds, is seamlessly integrated with Shopify without undergoing a complicated implementation process. You don’t need to plan for a new territory launch six months in advance or get developers involved. We can hit the ground running in any new market.
We also use the AdRoll app, which provides AdRoll services with a ton of data (minus the complicated integration process). It’s a tap-and-go installation from the app store. It’s a brilliant addition to our tech stack and perfect for meeting sessions where we’re collaborating across teams.
AdRoll Is an Extension of Our Team
It’s vital to stay at the forefront of new trends and platforms, and adapt quickly to new situations. The landscape has changed drastically during the time I’ve been with Lounge. As demand grew, AdRoll was right beside us, and at times did some of the heavy lifting. They’ve helped us dedicate the right resources and put the proper foundation in place to ensure our display growth remains sustainable for the long term.
We’ve developed a brilliant collaborative relationship where our AdRoll account managers proactively come to us with new suggestions or changes to existing campaigns. AdRoll understands the brand so well that we don’t need to go back and forth on multiple rounds of approvals. That gives us a lot of time back.
AdRoll has helped us better communicate our values as a brand, and understand the audience that supports our international growth. They help us create and manage our goals in-house and uncover insights that turn data into action. AdRoll feels like an extension of our team, and with their support, Lounge can continue to smash barriers and engage with their customers in a comfortably sexy way.