After misplacing my $400 glasses last month, I knew it would be a total pain to replace them. Not only was I not ready to drop a few Benjamins on some glasses I would wear rarely in public, but I also dreaded the trial and error of trying on dozens of frames and trusting the glasses guy to give me good feedback on which ones look best.
I bucked up and got my prescription filled, but held off on buying the frames just yet. I saw a few Facebook ads for Warby Parker, a company who boasts “boutique-quality, classically crafted eyewear at a revolutionary price point”. Not only had Facebook ads been popping up for over a year from this company, but I had also seen quite a few of my Facebook friends talk about the brand on their personal feeds.
I wasn’t completely sold on purchasing glasses through a website, so I decided to get some feedback from my Facebook friends:
I had 24 comments of people giving me their feedback from a few different online optical merchants, and 11 people gave me the thumbs up to order from Warby Parker.
As I started reading about Warby Parker, not only did I realize how affordable they were and that the designs were great, but they also donate a pair of glasses to those in need for every pair that is purchased. So for $95, I get a pair of glasses, and so does someone else! Score!
The really unique thing I discovered while I was browsing their selection was they offer a free trial box of 5 frames to try on at home before you make your decision. When you pick your 5 trials, an option comes up to share on your social networks about your experience. So I tweeted out once I ordered them, and the community managers at WP responded immediately. Now THAT is customer service!
@MichelleGamradt Can't wait to see what you choose, Michelle! Let us know if you have any questions.
— Warby Parker Help (@WarbyParkerHelp) February 20, 2014
In 2 days, the box showed up at my house, and the fun began. What is brilliant about the trial pairs is that they KNOW you are going to take pictures of you wearing them so you can get feedback from your friends on which one to purchase.
So, obviously I did. I used their official hashtag #warbyhometryon, and had fun crowdsourcing all my friends opinions. And opinions did they have! Between Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, I had over 60 comments on which glasses to pick – including Warby Parker as well.
@MichelleGamradt We love Wilkie on you, Michelle!
— Warby Parker Help (@WarbyParkerHelp) February 25, 2014
Once it was decided, I just uploaded a photo of my eye prescription, paid for the glasses, and they were on their way to my face.
Playing on people’s natural want for feedback, tying in social hashtags and sharing cues, playing in the paid media space, and utitlizing a super prompt customer service team, Warby Parker has paved the way retailers can activate social media in a organic/non-pushy way, while increasing their brand recognition, building positive PR and growing sales. Now that is vision. (See what I did there?)