Brandy Mercredi is the entrepreneur behind FRANC, an online store that sells ethically-made women’s basics — tank tops, tees and shirts.
Disappointed by cheap, trendy clothing that customers would often trash after just a couple of wears, she launched a Shopify store in 2017 to fulfill her longtime dream of creating and selling her own ethically sourced clothing line.
Brandy told me, “Things are made overseas and often children or unfairly treated workers are making clothes, and it’s all about disposable. So I decided to do my little part and change that.”
The Problem: So Much Marketing, So Little Time
She quickly found herself struggling to reach enough people to hit her first-year sales goal. A couple of major obstacles presented themselves even as she fought to get her store off the ground.
Like so many other creative entrepreneurs, Brandy found herself starved for time and swarmed by a thousand to-dos ranging from customer service to photography and website development. She recognized the many hours of constant effort each week typically required to successfully grow a Pinterest account — and she needed to maximize her impact with every minute spent.
And, operating on a scrappy budget meant she needed to focus her limited resources on the right marketing channels that would actually attract the right customers.
At the time, she also didn’t feel confident that Facebook Ads would efficiently deliver the sales she needed without wasting time and dollars.
“I don’t want to do anything unless I get a full grasp on it — especially when it comes to dollars,” Brandy said when I asked about her early attempts. “When I first started with Facebook Ads a long time ago you could just quickly waste a lot of money by not targeting properly.“
How Smarter Scheduling Grew Engagement and Sales
A critical change in marketing strategy made all the difference. Rather than draining more time and money on underperforming paid ads, Brandy committed to carving out time to schedule a steady stream of high-quality lifestyle photos.
The result? More reach, higher engagement, and freed-up time to focus on the creative side of her growing business.
After some early success on Pinterest, FRANC doubled down on a consistent rhythm – posting striking product photos and hand-picked lifestyle pins from other accounts. A robust process emerged focusing on 80% curated Pins that matched the kind of content her audience was already sharing — interesting recipes, home decor, and eye-catching lifestyle photos.
A winning formula emerged by focusing on rock-solid consistency, generously sharing content from like-minded creators, and investing in high-quality lifestyle photos for her own products. She thoughtfully spaced out a healthy mix of product photos — at least 1 each day — linking back to her store.
Not only did Brandy feel firmly in-control of her account’s overall activity, she was also able to maximize her content’s effectiveness by never missing an opportunity to post on a relevant board.
“With Tailwind, I’m able to plan way ahead and see my posts as a whole before they go to my boards. I can make sure I’m promoting my own products enough and also not forgetting about some boards I might have missed if I didn’t have that overview.”
Letting Tailwind pick the best times to engage her 47,000+ followers has unlocked a significant increase in people discovering and saving her Pins. Today, FRANC’s account snags 300+ Repins on average every single day — a noticeable bump of nearly 20% since she began posting on a schedule.
“I Pin constantly every single day. Consistency and staying on brand really work for me,” said Brandy. This is in line with what Pinterest has revealed to be helpful to get your content in front of a wider audience.
Significant time-savings on Pinterest management and a steadily-growing audience means Brandy was freed-up to focus on impactful marketing opportunities that enabled her to reach her 500th sale months ahead of her most ambitious projections. And the trend continues!
This year she’s doubled her sales goal and her customer base continues to grow steadily.
Brandy capitalized on the hours of time saved during those critical early months to knock out an impressive list of marketing accomplishments including:
- Collecting 400+ survey responses to clearly understand her customers’ needs and values.
- Building a growing network of collaborative influencers and photographers to grow the FRANC brand.
- Establishing an email marketing system to proactively encourage repeat orders from high-spending customers.
Actual Results Using Tailwind
While we can’t take all the credit for her strong results, Brandy says that Tailwind became a key tool for unlocking new growth without tacking on extra hours to an already packed schedule.
Since FRANC started using Tailwind to grow more efficiently on Pinterest, their account has seen:
- 2.8x more traffic to their Shopify store from Pinterest in 1 year
- 45,000+ Pinterest users engaged every month on average
- 44% Increase in Average Monthly Viewers Reached
Want to see how FRANC’s performance stacks up against our members? Check out our typical results infographic.
Final Takeaways: Save Time By Growing Smarter
Launching a new online store as a solopreneur can feel like jumping off a cliff and assembling an airplane on the way down. Luckily, the right time-saving tools combined with a highly-engaged audience can produce game-changing results.
Moving forward, Brandy wants to build on her Pinterest success by:
- Continuing to consistently share on-brand Pins to reach even more potential customers
- Further optimizing her Pins and products in Shopify
- Partnering with more influencers who can grow her community and in turn help supply more lifestyle photos