October Guest Tweeter:
@Alexandra_Gilt | Alexandra W. Wilson
Gilt Groupe Founder and Chief Merchandising Officer
Alexandra brings more than 12 years of international experience in the luxury-goods, retail and finance sectors. Most recently she managed retail operations at Bulgari, overseeing 15 stores throughout North America. Prior to working at Bulgari, Alexandra managed Leather Goods Sales Planning for Louis Vuitton North America. More…
About Gilt Groupe:
Gilt Groupe provides invitation-only access to highly coveted products and experiences at insider prices. Each day, Gilt offers its members a curated selection of merchandise, including apparel, accessories and lifestyle items across the women’s, men’s and children’s categories. In addition, we provide the best in home decor and entertaining essentials, along with luxury travel packages and fantastic offers on local services and experiences. Most sales start at noon ET and last only 36 hours, making Gilt.com an exclusive shopping destination for luxury at up to 70% off.
- @LuxuryPRGal | Christine Kirk
- @EliteTravelGal | Stacy Small
- @LuxeTiffany | Tiffany Dowd
- @MissSmartFlyer | Erina Pindar
- @TierraFilhiol | Tierra Filhiol
- @leyla_a | Leyla Arsan
- @luxmextrvlchica | Melanie Schneider
Check out the full transcript from 10/20/10 here.
Some highlights from #luxurychat with @Alexandra_Gilt:
Q1. As a busy CMO, you have really embraced Twitter. Do you manage exclusively & who do you actively follow?
A1. I absolutely tweet myself on my own account @Alexandra_Gilt Its so fun to interact directly with our members! I follow brands and people who inspire me. Twitter is also such a great source of real time news! I also travel a ton for work and pleasure and find so many great travel tips via Twitter.
I am inspired by people who create things- whether they be designers, entrepreneurs, philanthropists. I am also inspired by the “Do-ers” of the world. Laziness is such a turnoff to me. Authenticity is key. People are smart - They know when something is canned and not genuine.
Q2. Aside from the highly respected team at Gilt, what do you believe is the key ingredient to the success of the company?
A2. It has been a combo of top brands, products, loyal and addicted members and good timing @GiltGroupe. Key ingredient to a success of the company is company culture as seen in Zappos - company culture is so important. Just read the Zappos book @DHBook and loved it! @Zappos' customer service is impeccable and should inspire all ecommerce companies!
A3. Yes! Just hired employee #500! About 15 of us @GiltGroupe tweet individually on our own accounts. We also have teams tweeting for @GiltGroupe, @GiltCityNYC, @Jetsetterdotcom,@GiltCityMiami, @GiltCityLA, etc
- @hotelPRguy: No need to be techie to get social media… Just a genuine interest for building real human connections.
- @CharlesHotel: Exactly! It’s fun to interact & learn from your guests! RT @sheila_gh: @hotelPRguy interest for building real human connections.
- @EpsteinTravels: I agree with the need for creating a true voice for the brand as @VegasBill just stated. I think @GiltGroupe is nailing that.
- @cruisebuzz: Regarding social media I say keep it simple, keep it real and stay on branding targets
Q4. The Gilt Groupe has moved into local “deals”? Why go local? Miami, Chicago, LA, New York & Boston. Where next?
A4. Through GiltCity, live in 6 cities, we drive traffic to offline experiences-events, stores, restaurants, spas etc. I think we are curators of fashion and lifestyle experiences. We remove hassle for members.
- @LuxeTiffany: I’m a huge fan of this regional approach. I’m even getting to know my city of #Boston better!
Q5. How important have your mobile apps become?
A5. Our iPhone, iPad & Android Apps have been key to @GiltGroupe. Our members love them. Our iPad App is so cool that we are using features from it and incorporating them into Gilt’s UI. I really hope we do a Blackberry app soon. I personally use the Blackberry Torch! Also, sometimes we offer sales only accessible via our iPhone, iPad or Android apps. Fun experience for mobile users!
- @frankidurbin: as a busy professional, I agree: your apps have fueled my commitment to your brand
- @tierrafielhol: Exclusive offers do their job. I literally follow @GiltGroupe everywhere so I don’t miss anything
- @hotelPRguy: Good design = practical + authentic. RT @alexandra_gilt: @frankidurbin Design is so important! I agree!
Q6. Aside from @Zappos, are there others u think have a great model for a luxury business in social media outlets?
Q7. Is luxury a woman’s business?
A7. We know our male members love fashion and luxury. We see the results everyday on @GiltMan!
- @tierrafielhol: It may be the topic, however #fashion for men especially @Burberry is truly being embraced this season
- @tylerhwilliams: absolutely true- my blog has loads of luxury-loving (male) readers!
- @epsteintravels: Was leaving but have to respond…I’m a guy: love football, love hiking, love beer, love luxury
Q8. Has digital/social media investments returned as much, more or less than the company’s projections?
A8. Social Media efforts @GiltGroupe have been incredibly important in growing our membership! Virality is key! Social Media efforts @GiltGroupe have been incredibly important in growing our membership! Calculating lifetime value of a Gilt member isn’t easy, but after 3 years of data,almost there!