Meet the shopping catalog of the future
J. Crew posts its entire fall line early on Pinterest, drumming up buzz and getting an early sense of what's popular.
The company unveiled its new collection on Pinterest even before its own website and printed catalog. It gave Pinterest users a phone number and an email address for early ordering, and offered the services of its "very personal stylist team."
The move was significant enough for Bloomberg Businessweek to call it J.Crew's "catalog 2.0." And it does have the feel of the catalog business taken to the next level.
J.Crew has 65,000 followers on Pinterest, and many of them jumped in to respond. They adored the new oxford shoes coming out. "Gotta have these shoes!!!" wrote one user. They shared the "horsing around" sweatshirt 419 times, with comments like "I require this sweater immediately!"
It was a level of active interest and response that J.Crew could never see on its website or with its printed catalog. It also gave J.Crew an online focus group of sorts, as well as a sense of which new products would be immediately popular, writes Kyle Stock of Bloomberg Businessweek.
Stock also notes the "aspirational" tone to Pinterest, one that J.Crew would love to be associated with. "A pair of fancy sweatpants on J.Crew's website are just fancy sweatpants (albeit paired with gold high heels), but sweatpants on Pinterest are part of a super-saturated collage of desires that go well beyond stuff you can buy at J.Crew," he writes.
Nordstrom (JWN) and Neiman Marcus are also showing some items on Pinterest, helping the site turn from a place where you go to see trendy fashion to a place where you go to buy.
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