Amy Rose

“With a lot of traditional businesses, if you want senior leadership to embrace social media, you have to put it into terms they’re used to.”

Becoming a social company is an expectation, not an afterthought.

That’s Brown Shoe Company’s Director of Integrated Media and SocialMedia.org member, Amy Rose. When she started for the company in 2010, her role was mainly focused on traditional media. But as digital and social media became more prevalent, her role evolved to incorporate all three. And that meant answering one important question to get everyone on board: How does social drive revenue?

She says that to prove its worth, they held coupon events for their Famous Footwear brand, created Facebook and Twitter ads, and began showing positive ROI online and in the stores. As their budget grew, they continued to show that ROI could scale.

But for Amy’s team, proving ROI just opened the door for a more meaningful social strategy.

“On the digital and marketing team, we knew we wanted to use social media for engagement, awareness, and discovery of our brand, and to drive trust and love with our customers. After we proved it could drive revenue, we were able to do what we wanted without the naysayers. They’re happy, and we’re happy.”

Now, Amy’s team uses targeting within Pinterest and Facebook to share user-generated content, develop influencer programs, and tell the story of their brand. They also aggregate user-generated imagery from Instagram and Twitter through their Oh So Famous Gallery — something Amy says has become a cornerstone of their marketing strategy.

“In the last two years, social has become one of the leading marketing efforts for us,” Amy says.

Diversity is what has elevated our team and our ability to move forward.

With photos from their user-generated Oh So Famous Gallery, they’re able to create shoppable images on their site and in their store from how real people style their shoes. In fact, they’ve also opened a digital test store in Massachusetts with a smaller footprint and fewer products to drive their omni-channel message.

“There are tons of monitors around the store showing the Oh So Famous Gallery images and tweets. Bringing digital media to the store tells consumers that the store isn’t the only place you can buy shoes.”

Integrating social even further.

“Becoming a social company is an expectation, not an afterthought. I don’t think it’s where the world is heading — teenagers and millennials are already there now. They just expect social media to be integrated into everything, and I think that’s what we need to focus on.”

Amy says she’s looking forward to extending their Oh So Famous Gallery content to product pages. She wants social logins across the site and more seamless social sharing that doesn’t take users away from the site.

To do it all, they rely on an internal social team and cross-functional support, as well as agencies and vendors.

“I don’t know how anyone could just pick one of those and do it well,” Amy says.

Her social team leads planning, strategy, influencer programs, publishing content, analytics, ads, and coordinating with consumer services, who serve as community managers and respond to customers online. To keep content creation affordable, they rely on agencies to help with writing articles and creating infographics.

“No one can do it alone, and I know there are a lot of people out there doing it alone. I think building a great team has been a really big part of our success here, and I know that’s a luxury.”

She says growing your team might take figuring out what’s important to your organization and using social to make that happen and make them comfortable.

“We have a diverse team that works well together. Each person brings their own unique perspective so they can feed off of each other. Diversity is what has elevated our team and our ability to move forward.”

Connect with Amy on LinkedIn and ask about her favorite restaurant in St. Louis.


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