Mura is an online fashion boutique with two retail stores at the Sunshine Coast and Brisbane. Mura was established by Asako Nakamura in 2011 as a direct response to the missing link between making girls feel beautiful and empowered at an affordable price. Since then, Mura has been at the forefront of the online fashion business with a large social media following.

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With over 800 thousand Instagram followers from around the world, it is pretty clear that Mura has found the key to social media success. Their feed is dominated by pictures of Instagram’s hottest models wearing their clothes and styled to the nines by Brisbane’s most sought-after hair and makeup artists. This has allowed the company to gain maximum brand exposure.

We were lucky enough to sit down with the brains behind the success, Taylin Davis. She is one of Mura’s Marketing, Promotions and Social Media officer and has kindly agreed to discuss how social media has impacted Mura as well as other companies in the e-commerce world.

Taylin began her role with Mura in 2016. Taylin studied a Bachelor of Creative Industries majoring in Interactive and Visual Design with a minor in Fashion and Marketing at QUT. We asked Taylin a series of questions that relate to the social media world of e-commerce fashion in the hopes that it could help and inspire those wanting to break into the industry.

STRADDL: Hi Taylin, thanks for sitting down with us! We would like to begin by asking if media, in particular social media, is a major component in expanding the market? If so why?

TD: Absolutely. The amount of reach that social media has is extremely beneficial for online businesses. People from all over the world follow us every day on our social media accounts. They then get directed to our website, which they may not have found otherwise. Generally, all of these media platforms are available worldwide too, so operating over multiple media sites definitely increases your chances of being found by potential new customers.

Media influencers also have a big effect on the market. If you can utilise influencers overseas then they can direct all of their followers to your business, widening your customer base with just a single post!

STRADDL: With so many digital media platforms available at our fingertips it is sometimes hard to differentiate between them. What do you think is the most influential social media site for e-commerce fashion?

TD: Having visual elements is key. Instagram is probably the best site at the moment and is used the most by e-commerce fashion brands. The platform itself is already insanely popular, so if you can create the content that will garner ‘likes’ then you can convert potential customers and grow your customer base. With the added abilities of Instagram Stories it is definitely becoming more powerful for businesses. Customers can now shop a product directly from a story you post. In an age of technology, the easier it is for a customer to get to your products, the better.

With their Instagram account allowing them the ability to directly communicate with customers in an instant, Mura frequently offers time conscious discount codes and specialised offers directed to their Instagram followers, in the hopes that it will encourage spontaneous purchases and browsing. Not only this but the Mura website offers customers with an ‘Instashop’ section whereby the company’s Instagram feed is featured with the specifications of what the models are wearing and how to buy them. With Instagram fast becoming the one-stop-shop for fashion brands to sell, engage with customers and promote business, it can be argued that more traditional social media platforms like Facebook are being left behind. Taylin touches on this.

TD: Facebook can also be influential for e-commerce fashion, provided it is used correctly. With paid advertising, targeted media and ‘shop now’ links you can also potentially reach a lot of customers, however I don’t personally feel it is popular for reaching NEW customers or directing people to e-commerce sites. It can however have an extreme impact on how your customers perceive your brand. Customer service over Facebook is extremely important because it is such an open platform where users can express their opinions instantly. Brand reputations can easily be damaged through Facebook because it is so public.

STRADDL: How do you use social media to the company’s advantage?

TD: We target our content and post certain things at certain times to appeal to our worldwide customer base. It also allows us to get feedback on products or to see which styles people are really loving. If we can post imagery that makes as many customers as possible go onto our site then we ultimately have a higher chance of potential sales. We also use Facebook to post relevant content and use paid advertising through Facebook to convert customers with clickable links. We use snapchat to give customers a BTS look at the company and to provide simple, fun competitions.

STRADDL: What do you see the future of social media doing for businesses?

TD: I think it will always be an important part of business from now on. People want information provided to them quickly and easily and I think social media plays a big part in this at the moment. The trick will be always staying up to date on the features of different and even new platforms. They are always improving and adding features and if you don’t utilise them it is easy to get left behind. I also think businesses will be expected to become even more transparent online and customer service will be an important aspect.

Social media is undeniably a business-changing tool that can lead to many successes.

by Emily Fitzgibbons and Kate Healy