Melissa & Doug is a toy manufacturer that provides a launch pad to ignite imagination and a sense of wonder in all children so they can discover themselves, their passions, and their purpose.

Challenge

Melissa & Doug came to Annex Cloud while planning a new site launch that involved a move to Demandware (now part of Salesforce).

They knew that their customers were thrilled with their products, and that they frequently shared their love on platforms like Instagram. Consequently, the Melissa & Doug team wanted to bring this great user generated content (UGC) into their digital hub as well as make the content shoppable. 

In addition, they wanted to use a marketing solution that fit in seamlessly with their new Demandware platform. 

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Working with Annex Cloud has been a big success and a pleasure. Their Visual Commerce implementation was quick and easy. Social Annex’s Customer Success Team worked directly with our system integrator to ensure that our launch was seamless. The dashboards are really easy to use and we are seeing an impressive conversion rate.

Em Weingarten
Marketing Director, Melissa & Doug

Solution

Annex Cloud designed, implemented, and continues to moderate a customized Visual Commerce solution for Melissa & Doug. Visual Commerce is an advocate marketing solution that leverages the authenticity and power of customer photos.

Visual Commerce automatically pulls customer photos from social networks like Instagram, in addition to allowing users to directly upload images to Melissa & Doug’s site. Then, the photos are easily configured into flexible, shoppable displays, like the toy seller’s customized homepage gallery. The gallery lets viewers sort by hashtag, seeing different types of themes and collections.

When users click on a specific customer photo, they can see and shop the toy associated with it. Consequently Visual Commerce offers a dynamic route to purchase that makes use of colorful and exciting user generated content.

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Best Practices In Focus: Explicit Permissions

Explicit permissions refer to outright asking customers to reuse their images, rather than implicitly assuming that your brand can utilize them because they were marked with your hashtag. Social Annex’s Customer Success Team always recommends using explicit permissions, as they’re more straightforward and respectful to users, and they’re less legally murky. However, whenever children are in photos, explicit permissions absolutely must be used.

Melissa & Doug’s audience is happy to share their photos with the brand. 79% of users consent to letting the toy company use their images. To implement the solution, Annex Cloud made use of its Demandware pre-integrations while working with the systems integrator Born. In terms of maintenance, Annex Cloud does the first level of moderation for Melissa & Doug, which consists of approving images. Melissa & Doug’s team then does the second level of moderation--requesting permissions to use photos from consumers as well as associating images with products. By making these user photos both readily available on the site and shoppable, Visual Commerce addresses Melissa & Doug’s desire to capitalize on how happy their customers are. The images, site, and solution look great, but there are also concrete results...

Results + Benefits

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There’s an 89% conversion rate among Visual Commerce users.
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ROI within first 5 months.
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