Above: Jessica Williamson
Founder, Ete Swimwear and Somewear Elsewear
Jessica Williamson is the Founder of Ete Swimwear and Influencer travel agency Somewear Elsewhere. Hailing from a background in digital marketing and advertising, and with no formal training in in fashion, Jessica launched Ete at just 22 years of age, receiving almost instantaneous success, and in invitation to showcase at New York Fashion Week - just one week after launching.
Recently launching her second business, Somewear Elsewhere, Jess runs promotional Influencer trips creating amazing content and promoting brands and destinations. With her digital marketing and branding expertise she helps other brands build their presence online.
We caught up with the multi-talented Jess to find out more a little bit about herself and her businesses, the state of retail right now, and Jess' top tips when it comes to influencer marketing.
A little bit about you
Describe what you do in 5 words:
A serial entrepreneur & business coach
Finish this sentence: Your customers love your business because...
...they’re always at the centre of everything we do! Plus I always like to add personal touches wherever we can.
Something we might not know but will be glad to find out about you/your business:
I run 4 different businesses (ete swimwear, Somewear elsewhere an influencer travel agency, an events venue and coaching!) but my passion is really helping others grow and thrive in their businesses! I started my first business Ete Swimwear at just 22 and it had almost instantaneous international success, being invited to showcase at NYFW just 1 week after launching!!
Retail Right Now:
What are your main priorities right now?
Continuing to adapt and better serve our customers, always. We have recently released our new Ete Swimwear sustainable range to do our part for the environment and future, plus it’s the softest most luxe fabric I’ve ever felt!
How has COVID-19 impacted your business?
Being a seasonal product such as swimwear, most people purchase to take on vacation which at the moment is a lot more restricted, so the sales did decline over that period but we are always agile and quick to pivot so we were able to be there for our customers and keep them engaged during that time, and now the northern hemisphere have summer, its picking back up! However with my coaching, I was able to be there for my clients when they needed me, to help them pivot and make the most of a bad situation too, which is super fulfilling being able to support and guide others to their own success too.
How have you had to innovate your customer experience?
Since launching Ete Swimwear back in 2016 the customer experience has always been at the forefront of our focus, during covid we adapted our content to be more engaging and entertaining so that even though our customers didn’t necessarily need swimwear at the time, we were building relationships and trust. In addition to this, we are always working to optimise, systemise and automate our processes to ensure the best customer experience with as little input from our staff as possible. During Covid shipping delays were huge with standard international post so to keep with our core customer service, we upgraded all orders to express at our cost so that our customers would be happy and excited to receive their items on time.
On influencer marketing:
What are your Do’s & Don’ts when working with influencers?
My top tip for working with influencers and vice versa when influencers are working with brands is to ensure you both have the same values, aesthetic and that they truly believe in your product or service. The more authentic the partnership, the more results you will get as a brand! The influencer is more likely to over deliver and share more often too if they are truly using your product/service regularly.
What is your one piece of practical advice when working with influencers?
Build relationships! It sounds simple, and it doesn’t have to be complicated. Even as a brand, you are a person, the influencer is also a person, so when you can build human connection between a brand and influencer it becomes so much more than a transactional once-off relationship & in turn, creates more success for the brand’s campaigns longterm.
Why should brands use influencer marketing?
Influencer marketing is still a super powerful strategy for brand growth. There is a lot of talk that it is not as effective as it use to be, however brands and influencers just need to pivot. The world changes so fast these days, the same strategy that worked last week may not work this week. So I truly believe all brands can really benefit from influencer marketing because people trust other people more than they trust ads. It builds awareness & trust in consumers and once the brand gains momentum with influencer marketing, it really does help scale sales, content and so much more.