Inside accessories brand Susan Alexandra’s collaboration with meme account Starter Packs of NYC

From the Facebook group “Harvard Memes for Elitist 1% Tweens” to the ad industry’s “Digital Chadvertising” on Instagram, every community is loyal to a meme account these days. NYC (and those who ❤️ it) is no different—and some local brands are taking advantage.

Take Susan Alexandra, for example. The designer accessories brand, best known for its beaded handbags (including bags depicting Milton Glaser’s iconic I ❤️ NY design), recently collaborated with an Instagram meme account called Starter Packs of NYC to promote its new astrology-themed jewelry line.

“My brand is New York-based, and I love that I get to be grouped in with all these other…iconic things about New York right in this specific time period,” Susan Alexandra founder Susan Korn told Marketing Brew.

While Susan Alexandra isn’t hyperfocused on metrics, Korn and Sasha Mutchnik, who runs Starter Packs of NYC, both said they see collabs like this one as life hacks of sorts for getting on Instagram closer to the level engagement it was a few years ago .

Age of Aquarius

“I’m your standard-issue astrology girl,” Korn joked, talking about the inspiration for her brand’s new line of nameplate necklaces that spell out each astrological sign, from Aries to Pisces.

“When we were going into launching it, I had this idea to work with Sasha from Starter Packs of NYC, who is a friend of mine,” Korn explained. Scroll through Mutchnik’s account, and, as you might guess from the name, you’ll find items that might come in a “starter pack” for every type of New York City resident (think: an Olivia Rodrigo album cover and texts about Travis Barker for the pop-punk-revival fans frequenting Tompkins Square Park these days).

Korn told us she saw the format as a fun way to depict what the personality traits of each astrology sign would be, while showcasing not only the brand’s new astrology line, but also what other Susan Alexandra accessories each sign might like.

For instance, in the “Aquarius” starter pack, there’s the Aquarius necklace, but there’s also a Susan Alexandra hair clip meant to look like a rain cloud, because, per Korn, it’s a bit outside the box and dreamy—traits she said are associated with the Aquarius sign.

In the stars

This wasn’t Mutchnik’s first rodeo. The account has worked with brands like Supergoop and Bumble. She told us that she’s seeing more and more brands interested in working with her account. “I think brands see this as a really organic way to integrate their content in a kind of humorous way and get it in front of a different audience, or perhaps the same audience, but just in a new fashion,” Mutchnik said.

Get marketing news you’ll actually want to read

The email newsletter guaranteed to bring you the latest stories shaping the marketing and advertising world, like only the Brew can.

“A lot of brands like the idea of ​​being in on the joke, and this is a great way to kind of display their product in a humorous way,” she added. “I think it’s a little bit more organic than, say, gifting something to an influencer.”

She also told us that brands she’s worked with have given her feedback about how a product she’s featured suddenly started selling more after she posted it, or that they got a lot of new followers.

Korn told us she paid Mutchnik for the effort, and while neither disclosed the dollar amount, Mutchnik said that she received both monetary payment and free product in exchange for her work with Susan Alexandra. Mutchnik evaluates how she wants to be paid by brands for these collabs on a case-by-case basis, she told us.

The only promo Susan Alexandra did for its astrology line specifically happened on Instagram, Korn said. The brand’s Instagram posted about it organically, partnered with Starter Packs on its posts, then re-posted them to its own account. While Korn said it’s too early to see the results in full from the effort, she’s seen higher engagement with the Starter Packs graphics that she reposted to her account than she typically sees on an average Susan Alexandra Instagram post, which made the collaboration a success to her.

“Instagram isn’t the tool that it was three years ago,” Korn told us, saying that she’s seen posts across the platform getting lower engagement than they did before. “And it’s really nice when you see that good ol’ engagement back up.”

Despite declining engagement, Korn said most of her brand’s sales still come from Instagram. “I still think that creating an Instagram page that has a unique voice and a unique point of view is so valuable.”

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.