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Some insiders have dubbed it houseplant hysteria. And, while interest in houseplants seems to be cyclical, with the 1970s the last time indoor houseplants had a big moment, the country is currently in a full-blown houseplant resurgence. Beginning around 2017, Millennials started today’s houseplant craze. Lavanya Ramanathan of The Washington Post reported, “The buying habits of Millennials, naturally, have a way of attracting attention. Shops have become wise to the growing number of novice green thumbs.” And, more and more, it’s not just houseplant sales from brick-and-mortar stores that are increasing. Online houseplant businesses that sell direct-to-consumer (DTC) are growing consumer interest and sales with digital marketing strategies that include online subscriptions and promotions, social media engagement and email campaigns.
Houseplant Brand Plants.com Encourages DTC Purchases With Email Marketing & Easy Online Shopping
Online shopping has become a go-to for many consumers, particularly as retailers make shopping more appealing with optimized websites that offer seamless browsing and shopper-friendly promotions, including free shipping. The Plants.com team has more than 40 years of experience sourcing plants, a skill they applied to their website and online store. The Plants.com website filters its shoppable plants by categories including plant types, plant gifts and “shop by room.” (Decorating with plants is a major component of the houseplant culture.) To support growth of its ecommerce business, Plants.com uses email to reach consumers. The brand’s email messaging and creative includes expert advice, staff picks and links back to the website for purchase. Plants.com also highlights its ordering and shipping perks in the emails, offering a bevy of information up front, helping consumers make buying decisions.
Promotional Offers & Free Gifts Help Houseplant Brands, Like LazyFlora, Reach Houseplant Beginners & Collectors
Price is likely a key factor when plant collectors make purchases, especially for plant beginners, who may not want to spend a lot when they are just getting started. Promotions offer brands a way to differentiate in a crowded, and trending, marketplace, and may entice consumers to make repeat purchases. LazyFlora, a UK brand, offers multiple promotions to consumers who sign up for the LazyFlora mailing list, including 25% off their first LazyFlora subscription boxes, and, for June subscribers, free basil growing kits. By giving consumers reasons to subscribe, promotions support the building of LazyFlora’s email list and offer consumers access to deals that could increase the likelihood of conversions. Promotions are often effective when sent through email, SMS and push notifications These channels allow promotions to be personalized and triggered based on actions — arriving at just the right times, delivered to the right people and providing the right incentive to encourage engagement and conversions.
Many Houseplant Brands, Including The Sill, Leverage Social Media To Engage Consumers For Subscriptions
The Sill, founded in 2012, is an online houseplant business that sells live plants, lifestyle items and wellness products. Plant delivery subscriptions, offering two different plan options for monthly deliveries, are available. Across verticals, subscriptions saw a boom during the pandemic with consumers appreciating the convenience, and brands the revenue.” Subscriptions bring in upfront revenue, strengthen relationships with customers and give companies much deeper data on what sells,” reported Heather Long and Andrew Van Dam for The Washington Post.
In addition to The Sill’s ecommerce store and subscription offerings, The Sill leveraged the popularity of houseplants on Instagram, featuring a robust array of content on its Instagram channel, including plant giveaways, care instructions, decorating tips and information about best plants for beginners. Plant influencers became ubiquitous during the rise of houseplant culture, and hashtags like #plantsofinstagram, #urbanjungle and #plantsmakepeoplehappy have been used millions of times. A fun and inviting social media profile can support brand building – especially with Millennial consumers – driving organic traffic to brand websites. “At the height of the pandemic we saw an increase in site traffic and sales that far exceeded any expectations,” said Alisa Richter, Director Of Public Relations at The Sill. “We have definitely noticed an increase in new customers and first time plant parents.”
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