Jewellery brand Emma By Jane’s collaboration with Clémentine MacNeice doubled its sales in just two months

Posted by Caroline Edwards in Case studies

7 months ago

In early November 2022, Irish jewellery and handbag brand Emma by Jane unveiled its first influencer collaboration collection, with stylist Clémentine MacNeice. In November and December 2022 alone, the brand doubled its total sales from the year prior.

Founder Jane Asple said: “It wasn’t just down to her products, we found that all products across the brand sold when we launched the collection. Our sales more than doubled in those two months when working with her. Our following jumped [and] our features in magazines hugely jumped.”

The collection was gifted to creators and on launch day approximately ten creators shared the collaboration instantly because they wanted to support MacNeice. A highlight of the press drop was having Pippa O’Connor Ormond promote the launch to her 427,000 Instagram followers. After she gave a shout-out, Emma by Jane gifted her its most expensive pieces, including its Chunky Links Bracelet retailing at €259 (£228) and Chunky Wave Bangle, which costs €199 (£175), both from MacNeice’s collection. These then “flew out and sold out” because the entrepreneur promoted them.

What helped the collaboration become a success was the timing and it being exclusive. It was released at the start of the holiday season and the brand didn’t need to rely on discount codes to entice shoppers. “From the minute we launched at nine o’clock on the [second] of November we were flying like it was Christmas and Black Friday,” said Asple.

The launch itself was introduced in two drops and the first drop sold out in three weeks. Having two drops helped make the launch more desirable. “It just worked out really well because it gave the idea of ‘Oh my god, that sold out really fast’,” Asple explained. “But for anyone that missed it [they] were like ‘Hold on, there’s another drop coming, so don’t worry’. But it makes people go ‘Oh god, I need to get on this drop because this is the last drop coming’. So it was really good for marketing.” People always want what they can’t have.

The collaboration has proved fruitful and Emma by Jane is teaming up with MacNeice again to release a collection this summer. Asple noted MacNeice is a good face for the company and that both her price point and style suit the brand. “She’s just really loved in Ireland,” she said. “She’s opened the doors for a lot of people that didn’t know about us [and now] suddenly know about us and respect us because we aligned with her.”

According to Asple, roughly 82% of the brand’s customers are based in Ireland, with the next largest customer base being in the UK, although these are mainly Irish people living in the UK. Asple has another Irish creator in mind for potential collaboration, but she is hesitant because the Irish market is limited. That said, she is hoping to expand more into the UK market this year.

When it comes to influencer partnerships, Emma by Jane has mainly worked with creators on a gifting basis. The brand’s strategy is focused on letting creators choose the piece they want so that there is an increased chance the influencer will wear it, and also working with creators whose audiences appreciate quality jewellery. “If they’re going to promote something that’s €20 (£18) in jewellery, they’re not going to suit our customer because their follower likes that price point.” It’s all about aligning with the right creators.

Gifting needs to be authentic, Asple noted. “We wanted to give them pieces that they would wear and actually always wear because the follower is not stupid, and they know when it’s an ad and then they know when someone’s wearing something all the time,” she said. “They can spot it.” Asple explained that this makes a better – albeit slower – conversion than just randomly gifting products.

Case in point, Asple was ready to discontinue the Anastasia Chain Link Necklace since it was a “slower seller”. Then lifestyle creator Naomi Clarke (The Style Fairy) selected it, wears it constantly and tags Emma by Jane, which has made the necklace a bestseller that the brand “can’t keep it in stock”.

Outside of gifting, Emma by Jane has done a few paid sponsorships – including with MacNeice who was the first one – but this is only done with creators who have already promoted the brand for free and resulted in a good return on investment. “We’d never pay someone that we hadn’t already tested the market with.”

That said, not all paid posts have performed better than gifting campaigns. In September 2022, Emma by Jane did a paid post with a creator who had always been “amazing” for the brand, until they collaborated on a sponsored post. “We did not see a huge increase like we normally would from her,” Asple said, but was unsure if this was due to the timing of the campaign or the fact that it was an advertisement. “I thought it would really increase the sales [in September] and actually, it did increase it a bit, but not to the level I expected,” Asple said.

When it comes to plans for 2023, the collaboration with MacNeice has given the brand “the cash flow and enough eyes on us to do these bigger things”. This includes a pop-up at designer outlet Kildare Village beginning on 20 April for eight weeks and plans for a solo pop-up shop around Christmas. At Kildare, the brand will have styling events with MacNeice and will also be launching a bridal collection, and Asple hopes to have Clarke come and join as well.

With pop-ups on the horizon, another collection with MacNeice on the way and plans to expand Emma by Jane’s team, this is a brand to watch.

By Caroline Edwards, CORQ news and features writer. Picture credit: Clémentine MacNeice via Instagram