Crotch Commerce: What Makes the Social Web Tick

Betabrand Crotch Commerce Dress Pant Sweatpants ad 
The Web has always played host to prickly and divisive subject matter. Be it soda ads (and their depictions of racial equity), Soviet bathrooms, even Miley — but what about crotches and controversial work wear?

In a heated Facebook ad test for Dress Pant Sweatpants, we pit 30 images against one another, and the results were… perverted.

The lead image of an iPad and crotch won by a sizable margin, delivering:
– 28k free site visits as a result of shares
– 64% more engagement (shares, likes, follows)
– 60% more on-site email signups
– 30% more clicks for the dollar
– 20% more purchases

Sweatpants Dress Pants by Betabrand marketing

In total, a single image put an extra $6,000 in our pocket over a three day testing period.

True, it’s difficult to prove that image choice can impact behavior downstream — but an incremental 27k visits will add a warm, insulating layer to just about any online ad effectiveness metric.

Needless to say, we were onto something, and don’t-nobody embrace a high performing crotch-shot like Betabrand… so we took our findings to Twitter.

The results were mutually impressive. King Crotch delivered:
– 4x the purchases
– 1.5x the number of Retweets
– 78% more followers as a result of tweets
– 67% more Favorites

Betabrand Crotch Commerce blog post dress pant sweatpants

We nicknamed this style of direct-response marketing “Crotch Commerce.”

Not to get all existential, but why do we care about crotches?  Truth is, we don’t. Crotch Commerce, isn’t really about crotches at all, nor is it about baiting people into clicking. What it is about is connecting what you have to say with what makes the social web go bananas.

We’ve conducted hundreds of tests like our crotch-examination, and the findings could not be more in-line with Betabrand’s single advertising truth:

Powerful internet ads are equal parts thought-provoking, disruptive, never-before-seen — and, where appropriate, humorous. Not Internet funny.

In our example, inconspicuously comfortable work-wear was a new and interesting concept. All we needed was an aggressively cropped image to carry out our message.

Every advertiser has a “crotch.”  Find yours, I say.

Julian Scharman

Julian Scharman

Head of Customer Acquisition & Traffic at Betabrand
Julian's focus is on finding the most innovative ways to attract new customers. He has worked at leading San Francisco advertising & media agencies designing multi-channel communication campaigns for Fortune 500 companies. Around here, we just call him Supreme.
Julian Scharman

Julian's focus is on finding the most innovative ways to attract new customers. He has worked at leading San Francisco advertising & media agencies designing multi-channel communication campaigns for Fortune 500 companies. Around here, we just call him Supreme.

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