Start-up Explodes, Finds Audience through Social Media

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New e-commerce start-up Wizards of the West sets itself apart by using social media and gamification to reward customers.

The fashion start-up Wizards of the West, a new company from Costa Mesa, in California (USA), is launching their new e-commerce store. They are a successful example of how a business born through social media can grow up and become a part of their clients’ daily life, by reaching out to customers where they are most comfortable: the social networks.

Jason West, Wizards of the West co-owner, can explain this success: “unlike our competitors, who had to integrate an existing business into social media, we were born from it. Essentially building a new business from within the platform and not supporting it externally. We have a completely different perspective on how to approach and enable social media”.

“Even in our short lifetime we have seen an enormous amount of brands trying to capitalize sales directly through social media. This is not a good approach. The worst mistakes we have seen happened when organizations used social media as a bulletin board. It's an incredibly rich platform that's so effective at rewarding your customers”, adds the Wizards of the West co-owner.

This innovative e-commerce store works according to the ideals of social rewarding and gamification, a new concept even for the savviest online retailers. Always choosing to be different, Wizards of the West took the concept and applied it to their technology infrastructure, “rewarding customers for loyalty before they even become customers”, says Jason West.

The term gamification is used to describe the techniques that increase people's natural desires for competition, achievement, status or self-expression. One of its core strategies is to reward the “players” with points or other kind of compensation, such as digital currency, when they complete the desired tasks. Providing a reward encourages more and more people to compete and this is an approach that has been revealing to be successful in the e-commerce world.

Currently, one of gamification’s major applications is in the marketing field. Actually, over 70% of Forbes Global 2000 companies are using or intend to use gamification for marketing and customer retention purposes. This is why gamification is one of the paths followed by Wizards of the West. Until now, tenacity and proprietary technology have enabled the start-up to stay ahead of the curve.

“Our ecommerce platform is well integrated with social platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. We do a lot of R&D on social migration, getting to know how people react to likes, tweets and pins. Gamification is relatively a new buzzword around social media, but "we are already experimenting with it”, states Anil Gupta - Director of Technology.

Taking into account that e-commerce sales continue to grow worldwide in 2013, with sales projected for over $333 billion and an aggressive 13% growth rate, as stated by official data (emarketer.com), this bet doesn't seem so strange or risky.

For now, the methodology is working, as the fashion start-up has been seeing its sales skyrocket month over month. Why? Because Wizards of the West uses proprietary technology to track, analyse and encourage social interactions among their clients and potential customers. Fashion is fickle, but not as fickle as social media. As brands spend millions trying to map out what makes a brand socially acceptable to their followers and fans on social media, this start-up has known that since the beginning.

To discover more about this project, you can visit wizardsofthewest.com or contact the company directly (info (at) wizardsofthewest (dot) com).

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Jason West
Wizards of the West
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