SmartCompany, July 22 2016:
Alternative clothing and beauty brand Beserk has taken out the People’s Choice Award for Small Business at this year’s Online Retail Industry Awards (ORIS).
Beserk is the first winner of this brand new category from the annual awards celebrating Australia’s top online retailers.
The small business has come a long way after surviving the Brisbane floods in which founder Fleur Beserk lost everything.
But Beserk says losing everything was a blessing in disguise.
“That gave us a bit of a kick-start to start afresh and learn from a few mistakes we made,” Beserk told SmartCompany.
Through it all, Beserk has been able to turn around her luck and build a strong brand with a highly loyal following by staying true to her niche, alternative punk rock audience.
She started off designing and selling her own alternative clothing but had to pivot when local stores started to shut down.
Since moving online, Beserk has been selling curated clothing and beauty brands that appeal to her target audience.
“We used to go to a lot of events like roller derby and we still sponsor some teams, we have market stalls at tattoo shows, and music festivals like SoundWave used to be massive for us,” she says.
Getting out and about in the community has helped Beserk generate a highly loyal customer base with more than 300,000 followers across Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
The business stocks brands like vegan cosmetics Lime Crime, sponsors events such as the BloodLust Ball and runs social media competitions where it gives away free gifts to followers who like and share content.
“We always try to have lots of competitions there to involve our customers as much as possible,” she says.
The site also features a fast delivery countdown enabling customers to know exactly how much time is left if they want to make same-day dispatch.
Beserk’s loyal customers even helped her win the award.
While her business was a finalist in last year’s ORIAS, Beserk says she really took advantage of StarTrack’s toolkit this time and promoted it across all their social media and direct mail-outs.
“It is huge for us to be recognised by so many amazing online retailers in Australia,” she says.
“It’s still a bit of a shock.”
Beserk has been recognised alongside online giants like Catch of the Day, which took out the ORIAS People’s Choice Award.
“It does sort of put us on the map and lots of new people will hopefully learn about Berserk.”
To fellow online retailers, Beserk says her number one tip for success is staying true and connected to customers.
“Realise how important keeping your customers happy is,” she says.
“We always go above and beyond to ensure every customer is looked after and really has a great experience.
“Be grounded and know that you have to look after them and they will look after you.”