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73m views later and #TheDress hits eBay


Last week, ‘#thedress’ hashtag took the internet by storm. The image caused debate among retailers and consumers alike, as to whether the garment was white and gold or blue and black – it turns out it is actually the latter.

Roman Original, the retailer behind the internet sensation, has thrived in the spotlight, as the post that was originally published by a woman from Scotland, has now received 73m views on Tumblr. Adrian Addison, Head of eCommerce for Roman Originals made sure that the company did not go unnoticed in the commotion:

“Straight away we ran our own social media campaign off the back of it on both Twitter and Facebook. We made sure that we updated all of the creative to reflect this opportunity”.

A competition was launched to win ‘#TheDress’ by the company, following a tweet drawing attention to the business, “We can confirm #TheDress is blue and black! We should know!”.

Other quick thinking company’s also reaped the success of the dress’ limelight. Pizza Hut confirmed, ‘it’s White and Gold’ with a clever picture of a ‘white and gold’ pizza. Lego even introduced new figurines kitted out in both colours to commemorate the commotion:

“#whiteandgold or #blackandblue? We found a way around science - you can have both! #TheDress #dressgate”, which received 3.7K retweets.

‘#TheDress’ has highlighted the need for companies to keep up with trends on social media and to hone in on positive exposure. Roman Original has excelled in its ability to strategically make the most of its marketing methods, turning to technology advertising firm Quantcast to formulate timely ‘dress themed’ ads. This is key to building up a successful online market, as social marketing vendor AddShoppers recently reported that consumers using social media sites are likely to spend 8% more than typical online users.

As a result, Roman Original saw its site visits increase by 3000% or 1.2m on the 25th, while advertisements in stores were used to highlight that the retailer was behind the internet sensation.

A one-off white and gold dress has been put together in time for Comic Relief, with an auction on online giant eBay. It started this morning at 11.23 and is set to end Sunday 15, with a new hashtag ‘ #Bidthedress’ to promote it. What began online, will finish online as a spokesperson from Roman Original told Retail Gazette” #TheDress that broke the internet could become one the world’s most wanted dresses”

Can retailers afford to miss out on the perks of social media?

Published on Thursday 05 March by Rachel Gee

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