BlackMilk x Taggd



BlackMilk burst onto the fashion scene in 2009, quickly establishing itself as an e-commerce leader, offering leggings, swimsuits and other apparel featuring unique prints. In a crowded retail market, BlackMilk designs resonated with millennials and grew from being sold at local Brisbane markets stalls to a multimillion dollar business with a cult-like community of loyal fans around the world.

From Founder and CEO James Lillis sewing the first designs to today employing over 150 staff, BlackMilk still proudly manufactures 99% of its goods in Australia, making it Australia’s biggest clothing manufacturer.

If customers see a photo of themselves on a product page, they feel like they’re representing it and are part of the community. The endorsement of the community is what helps sell the product.”
— Michelle Levings - Social Media Manager, BlackMilk

Key results WITH TAGGD


Increase in conversion rate


Average session duration


Increase in average order value

Leading Customer

BlackMilk was one of the first companies globally to incorporate social content for e-commerce purposes and are well known for using customer-generated content (CGC) as a marketing tool to drive demand and sales.

Michelle Levings is the Social Media Manager at BlackMilk, tasked with cultivating their community - all two million of them. Michelle explains:

“We have quite a vocal and engaged community; they’re called 'Sharkies', so called because of the way they circle around an upcoming release like a group of sharks. Once the limited editions were released, a buying frenzy would happen and often all the stock would go in 30 seconds. It’s incredible!”.

As a result, BlackMilk’s website traffic experiences an enormous spike when a new product is released, which happens a few times each month. This involves a full campaign, product shoot, podcast, and videos - an extraordinary amount of output from the design, manufacturing and marketing teams. Return on investment is key for Michelle, who actively seeks to measure engagement, audience growth and revenue for each release.




Before Taggd

To properly leverage the loyalty of their customers, BlackMilk initially built a system in-house that gathered customer-generated content from Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and embedded posts into product pages - one of the first businesses to do so.

The system worked, but relied on customers using a specific hashtag for each product and the sheer volume of content meant a full-time team was needed to source, product match, publish and moderate content to the site. This made it costly and time consuming, and meant the team were potentially missing out on the best performing content.

Even once images were published to product pages, “We couldn’t see how successful the particular images were, or how many times it was clicked, and clicking on them pushed shoppers back to the original source and away from the BlackMilk site”. On top of that, “Since Instagram brought in some new changes to the platform, we could no longer use what we built.”

Michelle and the team set out to find a new solution.




Making the switch

They knew they needed a feature rich solution that would make their audience feel rewarded for sharing content and proud of being a ‘Sharkie’. It needed to automatically match products and find high performing content quickly, give more clarity around sales, user retention, basket size and bounce rate through robust analytics, and be easy to use so the team could free up time for other tasks.

For a business that regularly sells out of products within 30 seconds, it also needed to somehow target and retain customers who’d missed out on a limited edition sale by prompting them to consider other items.

After considering and testing various options on the market, Michelle and her team struggled to find a perfect fit - some offered analytics, but fell short on the display options. Others were entirely managed manually from sourcing right through to product matching, and limited to only the content produced by the brand. Finding Taggd, and having seen the platform in action, BlackMilk felt Taggd was the ideal solution.




The results

Working closely with the Taggd team in Melbourne, Michelle and her team were able to integrate Taggd into the BlackMilk site within a week. All customisation, design and content management was handled by Taggd, allowing BlackMilk to focus on creating great products.

Michelle described the onboarding process as, “Fantastic, seamless. The nature of our business is always frantic so knowing you’re based here in Australia and that the time zone is the same, it’s just easier to communicate versus a platform based in Canada or America.”

BlackMilk saw the impact of Taggd immediately. Conversions increased by 130%, bounce rate dropped almost 100%, and session duration tripled. Customers were spending more time on the site and pages per session jumped threefold.

The lookbook now truly delivers the custom filters and sorting that BlackMilk needed, giving customers the ability to navigate through a specialised gallery of tens of thousands of on-brand customer photos by category, sub-category, size and availability.

“Since the company has so many different styles and collections, it’s just really nice to be able to sort it all out and give people the freedom to browse at their leisure on site based on what’s in-stock and fresh. Since user created content is something that we haven’t created, it's far more authentic, and I think our Sharkies really love that!” commented Michelle.

Taggd autonomously sources, curates and matches content to individual products, a process that was once done manually. Now, Michelle and her team leave that to Taggd and simply approve or deny content for publication, giving them the control over what’s published as well as more time to spend on other community building strategies.

Best of all though is the benefit Taggd has had to the BlackMilk community.

“The customers are loving it. It’s so important to show different body sizes, not just one particular ‘model size’ so they love seeing different sized girls wearing the product. If customers see a photo of themselves on a product page, they feel like they’re representing it and are part of the community. The endorsement of the community is what helps sell the product.”


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