Her Black Book’s focus on women-led brands drives 10-fold traffic surge

An online event celebrating women-led fashion brands has reached nearly one million people in its first day, Her Black Book co-founder Julie Stevanja says, highlighting an appetite for Australian shoppers to support the women behind pioneering labels.

Festival of Her, which launched Thursday, offers users of the Her Black Book app-exclusive discounts and cashback offers to more than 200 female-founded brands.

Big-name labels like Australia’s own P.E Nation, Viktoria & Woods, and Anine Bing are on the roster, joining a growing range of brands to use the Her Black Book platform.

The app has seen a ten-fold increase in daily usage since the Festival of Her launched, and Her Black Book’s social media notices have reached 880,000 people without direct marketing spend, Stevanja told SmartCompany.

While welcoming the recent torrent of shoppers, Stevanja said the campaign’s goal is to bolster authentic, long-term support for female-founded businesses.

“You don’t have to shop for them just in a two-week period,” she said.

“Just by actually increasing your awareness, and potentially even thinking about, ‘I might shift where I spend my dollars’… it may be over the years to come.”

“But even that is a huge help to businesses that are growing in the environment we find ourselves in.”

Stevanja and twin sister Sasi Sali launched Her Black Book in November 2021 as a tool alerting shoppers to discount codes, sales, and tailored updates from the brands they most admire.

The pair, which previously launched Stylerunner, last year welcomed $1.6 million in seed funding to help build out the platform.

Their experiences have informed the shape of Festival of Her, Stevanja said.

“We have faced a lot of challenges and bias and all the things we know exist,” she continued.

“And so we’re acutely aware of how tough it is for other women starting businesses.

“So it really comes down to just the values of our founders, and they have become the values of our business.

“And wherever we can we try to assist other female founders, alongside us — not in the way that we’ve made it yet, we’re a one year old company and also on our way — but if we can help people along the way, then we always try to do that.”

Beyond simply celebrating players in the fashion scene, the duo is offering mentorship to three participating female-founded small businesses with fewer than ten employees.

The three-month program will offer targeted startup training sessions with members of the Her Black Book team.

It will be free for winners, a point of pride for Stevanja.

“We know how these sorts of mentorship programs are being charged. You know, they can be quite expensive, but there’s a lot of value that comes from them.”

Brands are still welcome to sign up for the Festival of Her, she added.

This story was originally published on Smart Company.

You have 7 articles remaining. Unlock 15 free articles a month, it’s free.