Casper's Innovative Content Marketing Strategy
Having a great ecommerce product is all well and good, but it can all be for naught without a solid marketing strategy to back it up.
Casper rocked the sleep industry when it released its state-of-the-art memory foam mattress to an eager audience. Revolutionary in that it only initially offered a single product, the Casper mattress was a massive success and has inspired several similar brands which have sprung up in its wake. Casper has since diversified its product portfolio to include pillows, bed frames, lighting, bedding, and even a dog bed, but the mattress remains the core of the business.
Being a brand born of the ecommerce age, Casper has long had its finger on the pulse of digital marketing, but most impressive of all is its innovative content strategy.
The mattress industry has long been the territory of the brick-and-mortar retail space. This, of course, makes sense, as a mattress is something a consumer keeps for the best part of a decade, and so tends to want to get a feel for the thing before handing over their hard-earned money.
This presented Casper with an uphill battle when it came to marketing an entirely online-based mattress company. The only way to get consumers to pay up front for a mattress they hadn't seen, never mind tried out, was to build trust. This is where content marketing came in.
The Casper blog is full of great content designed to build confidence in the brand. The pinned blog at the top of the page is a tongue-in-cheek article titled '7 Reasons why this Blog Post is Trying to Sell You a Mattress'. This serves to immediately diffuse any cynical view of the blog by taking ownership of the fact that, at its core, it's a marketing tool.
The idea is that customers visiting the blog will be impressed by the fact Casper is so upfront about its intentions to sell you its products. This builds trust in the blog - and by extension, the brand - and reassures customers that Casper is dedicated to a mutually-beneficial transaction.
Pages of guides on everything from pillows to heatwaves set up Casper as a thought leader and expert in its field - sleep - which makes its audience confident that this is a company they can trust when it comes to buying a mattress sight unseen (and a 100-day no-questions-asked returns policy helps seal the deal).
"Combining these tactics, Casper has been able to overcome a significant amount of potential customer pain and caused a visible shift in the way the mattress industry thinks about their product," reports Jilt.com. "Their successful deployment of the direct-to-consumer ecommerce model has changed the way millions of consumers now buy mattresses and precipitated the launch of dozens of competitors."
The best part of Casper's content marketing strategy is not found on its own website, however, but rather in another corner or the internet entirely.
Casper now has its own online magazine called Woolly, which it uses to entertain and inform its audience on a wide range of topics. The magazine is available online as well as in print and contains articles on everything from trans issues to making your own pasta. Only a relative handful of its content is in any way related to sleep. Content is divided into six distinct categories - Comfort, Wellness, Culture, Feelings, Sloth, and Things - and the whole site is decorated in a manner congruent with Casper's own webstore.
With Woolly being so young, it's hard to measure its success just yet, as SEO data is not complete enough to draw conclusions, but its articles get shared an average of 260 times on social media, which is a pretty good rate for a niche product such as this. This is helped along by Casper sharing Woolly articles on its own branded email newsletters as well - which also brings the two brands together in the minds of their audience.
"Woolly is a curious exploration of comfort, wellness, and modern life — published and emotionally supported by Casper," says Woolly Editor-in-Chief, John DeVore. "It is a departure from the competitive conversation around wellness. Because when did wellness get so unattainable? Woolly is an oasis of acceptance that appreciates that your best self is, well, yourself. In this always-on, social media-obsessed society, it's time to unplug, relax, and get comfortable."
Lots of brands could take a lesson from Casper about content marketing. By staying true to its identity, but focusing on valuable information over the hard sell, the mattress innovator can build trust in its audience and increase the value of its proposition alongside the number of products it sells.
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