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Dr. Brandt Skincare was behind in social. As of January, it did not have a Snapchat account and had no way of discerning sales conversions from its other social platforms. Since then, newly installed vp of digital Lisa Raggiri has spearheaded an aggressive social expansion plan for the 17-year-old brand.

Dr. Brandt Skincare has recently seen its social following increase by tens of thousands of followers. On Instagram, for instance, the brand now has nearly 79,000 followers, up from around 30,000 at the end of 2016. The success the brand has seen is due to investing more in social, especially with paid media campaigns, which now run up to $30,000 a month, according to Raggiri.

“Last year, social went from being our eighth priority. It’s now No. 1,” said Raggiri.

Last week, Dr. Brandt Skincare worked with influencer Hannah Bronfman’s lifestyle website HBFit.com on a five-day social campaign to promote its new Water Booster product. In Instagram Stories, HBFit.com showed how viewers could add the product to smoothies and bowls.

The problem, however, is that social platforms are not designed for purchasing goods. Brands have had to find ways to work around the dilemma, such as placing links to their websites in their bios on Instagram or using tags or links in Snapchat Stories.

“When it comes to people looking at social content, liking content and trying to find the content elsewhere to get more information, there’s a lot of friction there,” said Raggiri. “People were always asking us questions about where they can find certain products. That friction bothered me, so we were really looking for a way to inform our audience as well as help them buy what they want.”

Therefore, in April, the brand partnered with video company MikMak to use the new feature MikMak Attach, which allows users to purchase an item without leaving Instagram or Snapchat. On mobile, users swipe up when viewing a Dr. Brandt Skincare Instagram Story, Instagram Ad or Snap Ad, and they are connected to the brand’s e-commerce pop-up window where they can click “Add to Cart” to begin the purchase process.

 

With the MikMak Attach feature, Dr. Brandt Skincare has seen 16 percent of users add items to their carts, and of those who do, 52 percent completed the purchase, and it’s now the main acquisition channel for the brand.

“The perception is that [Snapchat] is better for brand awareness,” said Raggiri. “But we are making our media investment back by driving direct sales from Snap Ads.”

However, Dr. Brandt Skincare found that the highest ROI came from using the feature on Instagram. Six times more people added a product to their cart from Instagram compared to Snapchat, according to the brand.

“We don’t want to push commerce in our channels so severely; we really want it to be a natural extension,” she said. “This way, if they want to shop, it’s there, it’s easy, it’s one step. If they’re not interested, it’s something they don’t have to think about.”

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