New Barrie Pace Site Targets Future Mothers-in-Law

Here comes the mother of the bride… or at least MotheroftheBride.com, a new microsite from women’s clothing cataloger Barrie Pace.

Having noticed that a significant number of visitors to its core Website arrived after having done a keyword search for “mother of the bride” and related terms, Chicago-based Barrie Pace launched the site in mid-June. Despite its name, the site sells apparel and accessories for more than just wedding days.

“It’s special-event and gala driven,” says Lori Krzyzewski, vice president of marketing and advertising for Barrie Pace, “with a lot of exclusive items for second weddings and black-tie events.” In addition to the Mother of the Bride Collection, the site offers four other theme categories: Executive Dressing, Business Casual, Gala Events, and Weekend Living. Selecting any one of the collections leads visitors to the Barrie Pace Website.

“This is step one of a long-range strategy we have,” Krzyzewski says. “It allows us to provide a better entryway into our site, giving what we already have more strength.”

Merchandise ranges in price from $150 to $600. Krzyzewski says that the company will be adding fashion tips and other editorial to MotheroftheBride.com in the next few months. “There is a significant amount we could do to make this more of an experience for shoppers,” she says. “There’s an amazing amount of relevant content you could add for people going through this.”

Barrie Pace, founded in 1985 as a catalog division of apparel manufacturer Hartmarx Corp., worked with New York-based interactive marketing and technology services provider Agency.com to develop MotheroftheBride.com. Because customer use of keyword searches was such an important part of the site’s genesis, Barrie Pace naturally plans to promote it through search engines. The company will work with Itraffic, the interactive marketing and advertising subsidiary of Agency.com, on search engine optimization for the site.

In addition, Barrie Pace will advertise the site with targeted placements on other Websites such as the Shopping Channel. The company is also considering an e-mail marketing campaign, says Krzyzewski. But it has no plans to mail a Mother of the Bride print catalog or add a related section to the Barrie Pace print catalog.

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