Payless trolls influencers with viral marketing campaign

The budget footwear retailer said it wanted to ‘challenge today’s image-conscious fashion influencer culture.’ It produced social media content in the process.

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Though many say you can’t put lipstick on a pig, doctoring up bargain products (and their price tags) might work in your favor.

That’s what Payless showed when it recently opened a fake luxury shoe store in Santa Monica, California. The retailer wanted to pull the wool laces over fashion influencers’ eyes—and did so quite easily.

USA Today reported:

Payless took over a former Armani store, renamed the retail location as “Palessi,” and stocked the outlet with its discount-priced boots, heels, tennis and leisure shoes. Then, it invited a flock of partygoers and sold them the shoes, typically priced at $20-$40 in Payless stores, at inflated designer price tags of $200 to $600.

The experiment worked, as many influencers gushed over their purchases.

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