It should come as no surprise that social media has become a crucial marketing tool for a brand co-founded by a member of the most followed family in the world, Khloe Kardashian. Good American brand director Jamie Girdler is charged with building off of that momentum, and creating a following and consumer base for the women’s denim and activewear brand to call its own.
With more than a decade of experience in the fashion and entertainment industry, Girdler has had the opportunity to work with some of the world’s leading brands, from developing the #MyCalvins social influencer campaign for Calvin Klein, to overseeing global campaigns and celebrity partnerships for H&M and G-Star Raw. These projects schooled Girdler, who joined the Good American family prior to its 2016 launch, in how to stay in tune with consumers—particularly in an increasingly digital world.
“Through these experiences, I’ve been able to see what resonates with consumers from a brand and influencer perspective, and brought these learnings to Good American to develop their marketing and social strategy,” he said. “This especially helped when developing and casting the brand’s #GoodSquad, a diverse group of real and confident women who are featured in our campaigns.”
And consumers are taking note of the brand that famously sold $1 million worth of denim on its launch day. For the Spring ’19 #GoodSquad campaign, Good American partnered with IMG Models for open casting calls, receiving 60,000 submissions. The winners, Girdler said, will appear in the brand’s campaign set to launch this summer.
Good American’s efforts to connect with women extend behind the camera, too. For those who aren’t aspiring models, but would like to learn more about the fashion industry, Good American offers the chance to win a week-long mentorship with its top executives.
“Since the start of my career, the rise of social media has given brands a completely new way to reach customers,” Girdler said. “At Good American, social media is at the forefront of our marketing strategy and we’ve dedicated a lot of resources to it. It’s the place where a lot of customers discover us and they use it as a tool to understand what we’re about.”
Good American has 1.3 million Instagram followers. Like most denim brands today, the company has worked with influencers to help spread the Good American gospel, but the company has a “unique approach to influencer relations,” according to Girdler.
“When working with influencers, we focus our efforts on women that already have an affinity with our brand and align with our values,” he explained. “We take a more holistic approach to our influencer strategy, so it’s rarely a one-off transactional relationship.”
Rather, Girdler says the goal is to create a long-term collaboration with influencers, which he noted could evolve into anything from being featured in a Good American campaign as part of the #GoodSquad, to reviewing product or creating shoppable pages on the brand’s e-commerce site.
By keeping it real and authentic, Girdler said social media has also become a source of information for Good American designers to fine-tune products based on consumers’ feedback and comments. As a predominantly direct-to-consumer brand, Good American relies on the immediacy of customer feedback that it receives via comments or direct messages on the platform, Girdler said. And it will likely continue to grow in importance as new features like IGTV and a native shopping feature picks up momentum.
“We have an open and honest dialogue with all of our customers and we’re always applying what’s important to them to our design process,” Girdler said. “Crowdsourcing is an extremely valuable tool for us to help determine what product and design features the Good American customer needs in the future.”
Feedback led Good American to introduce last year the elusive size 15 to its size range. “After analyzing return data and conducting a series of focus groups, we determined that standard sizing in the industry creates fit issues for many women who fall between sizes 14 and 16, and realized there was a huge opportunity for a size 15 that did not exist anywhere on the market,” Girdler explained.
The brand also launched an e-commerce sizing tool, which features product shown on 15 sizes across 15 different fit models ranging from size 00 to 24, to help customers find their perfect fit and style.
“This was a really important project for us and especially exciting since we are the first brand ever to offer this to customers,” Girdler said. “These insights help us to ensure we’re constantly delivering the best products, but it also means we’re constantly reviewing and applying feedback. It can be challenging, but it’s of utmost importance that we listen to our customers so we’re able to offer them what they want.”