Vibes is excited to announce that our customer Hibbett | City Gear has been selected as a 2021 Brand Experience Award winner in the category of Mobile & Social Optimization. The leading athletic-inspired fashion retailer was nominated by Vibes and was one of more than 80 nominees in the second year of the award.
The Brand Experience Awards were created to spotlight the retail businesses that are redefining the rules of interaction, engagement and loyalty. These businesses are recognized for their leadership in implementing new technology and strategies in one or several areas of the brand experience, raising the stakes for their competitors and the entire retail industry.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Hibbett | City Gear was forced to temporarily shutter most of its brick and mortar stores. With new restrictions on in-person shopping, Hibbett needed solutions to organize its stores for COVID-19 protocols, expand shopping options, and cope with the increase in fulfillment demand.
Losing in-person retail touch points and experiencing uncertain consumer shopping patterns, Hibbett implemented Vibes’ Mobile Engagement platform to grow its ecommerce business and increase digital communication with customers.
Hibbett used its well-established base of mobile subscribers to experiment with more sophisticated mobile marketing engagement strategies. The brand’s connection with its customer base through mobile meant it was well positioned to continue uninterrupted contact with customers for both promotional and operational communications as they adapted to the challenges of the pandemic.
Customer Engagement Through Mobile
With customers spending more time at home, and looking for entertainment, Hibbett saw an opportunity to drive interest and engagement with its special reveals and sneaker drops. Hibbett used the Vibes Mobile Engagement platform to promote virtual raffles so that consumers have an opportunity to buy the exclusive shoe drops, as well as drive customer engagement and build hype around the product. For young customers, this built a new level of excitement around the experience and the brand that will likely translate into long term positive regard for Hibbett.
Meeting Fulfillment Demands With BOPIS
Additionally, Vibes’ Mobile Engagement allowed Hibbett to address the in-store shopping challenges caused by COVID-19. Hibbett saw a huge growth of demand for its ecommerce platform, but this put strain on its fulfillment centers and supply chain. Vibes’ Mobile Engagement platform allowed Hibbett to communicate with customers about potential shipping delays and order updates to avoid customer frustration and unnecessary support queries. It also gave the brand an opportunity to fine-tune timely transaction SMS notifications for BOPIS/ROPIS/BOSS (Buy Online, Ship to Store) transactions and set up a curbside pickup program for COVID-19-wary customers. By partnering with Vibes, Hibbett was able to better build and manage these programs than its competitors, while staying connected with customers due to its usage of the mobile channel.
A Best-in-Class Mobile Experience
With Vibes’ Mobile Engagement platform, Hibbett was able to focus on increasing high value
loyalty subscribers, creating a best-in-class mobile experience through targeting and personalization, and continuing to drive acquisitions through evergreen campaigns. As a result, the brand achieved:
16% growth in mobile traffic in 2020
Upwards of 35% growth in customer acquisition in 2020
A 42% YoY increase in total mobile audience subscriber base
Congratulations once again to Hibbett | City Gear!