DMNews talks with Sarah Superfon, director of interactive marketing and direct response at Philosophy

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Sarah Superfon
Sarah Superfon

Sarah Superfon, director of interactive marketing and direct response at Philosophy, discusses how the beauty brand used user-generated storytelling to bring mothers and daughters together.

Q: Why did Philosophy decide to introduce user-generated stories to its Web site?

A: Philosophy has a very loyal customer base that is very engaged with the brand. They love the pro-ducts and love to tell their stories. We've always had a very active tes­timonial link on our Web site where people could tell their story by sending an e-mail to the company, which we kept internally. The story functionality lets us make that more outward-facing and allows customers to share their stories with each other.

Q: How did you decide on the Mother's Day-inspired campaign?

A: We wanted to test storytelling with something that we'd had a lot of success with in the past. Mother's Day is a big time for us, so we put together the concept, “Your mom's philosophy.” The storytelling compo­nent was, “Tell us about your mom and your mom's philosophy.” The top 10 stories won a prize.

Q: Did you work with any partners on this campaign?

A: We worked with an agency called Dotbox out of New York. It helped us conceptualize the campaign from start to finish and we worked with Dotbox and Bazaarvoice on the implementation.

Q: When did the campaign run?

A: We launched it on April 14, and it ran through Mother's Day. The campaign ran on our Web site and we promoted it in stores, as well as to customers in our database through e-mail. On Mother's Day, we sent an e-mail telling everybody they could come back and vote for their favorite story.

Q: How was the response?

A: We received more than 1,000 stories. May was one of the biggest months for traffic to our site, and 39% of all site traffic for that month originated on the stories page.

Q: Why do you think the campaign worked so well?

A: For most of our customers, Philosophy means something to them in their lives. We just took that one step further, looked at how customers engage with each other and got them to share their relationships with their mothers for Mother's Day. It also fit in very well with Philosophy's brand objective to strongly engage its customers.

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