Get With the Trends

It is no secret that social media has changed the fashion industry forever – that being said, it has changed consumerism forever. Regarding social media in the fashion industry, people are far more likely to share content and photos of clothes and models than they are with other sorts of products. Fashion is a very social industry that is heavily embedded into our society, which is one of the reasons it is so prominent in social media. People are able to share their opinions online about certain brands or items of clothing that they have had experiences with, giving reviews and ratings for these products. This is another reason social media has become so powerful; interpersonal communication between fellow customers has become probably the biggest influencer when it comes to making purchasing decisions.

Social media has become an extremely powerful marketing tool. Companies are able to engage with consumers, build brand awareness and make it easier than ever for customers to buy what they want. It has also been found that companies with higher customer engagement through social media have higher sales than companies that are behind with the times; traditional, luxury brands might be in trouble if they don’t start to follow the trend soon.

One of the reasons the fashion industry is also very prominent in the social media world is because famous fashion designers are able to instantly share events that are happening in their lives with their fan base. They can use apps such as Snapchat to preview their new clothing lines, as well as film their fashion events from their perspective which gives consumers a personal, intimate, inside-look into their lives.

vs
Victoria Secret gives an inside-look on their 2015 Fashion Show

It is undeniably true that fashion is now everywhere, with social media being its biggest facilitator. Nowadays, the influence of someone with a large social media following is enormous. In fact, some marketing agencies for fashion campaigns will only hire people with a large online fan-base: models, photographers, make-up artists etc. It would seem that the amount of experience one has isn’t as relevant nowadays. Everywhere we look, fashion is a part of our culture, and can now be taken with us everywhere due to the advent of mobile phones.

By: Kirsten Matthewman

Ready, Aim, Fire: Targeting Consumers

In recent years, social media has globally taken over and has become an extremely effective communication platform for companies to interact with and market to their consumers and potential consumers.

Social media has enabled people to have plentiful access to huge amounts of information, as well as being able to share it with others. This has therefore made it possible for consumers to avoid marketplace exploitation, meaning they are a lot less likely to simply believe traditional advertisements and are more likely to look into whether or not a product or service is actually worth their time and money. Other than this, social media

social-media-marketing-bullseye
Companies are able to highly target consumers through social media

has also made it possible to highly target consumers. Nowadays, companies are able to track a person’s online activities and use that information to determine their lifestyle, their demographics, and other factors that could influence what they are most likely to buy/use. Companies are then able to send their advertising messages to the exact type of customer they are targeting.

Using social media as a marketing tool also means that a brand has the potential to build its awareness among the public. Nowadays, a huge amount and variety of people are currently using the Internet in their everyday lives, meaning that it is easier for a brand to make themselves known amongst the public. By having large followings on social media sites, a brand is able to reach thousands, if not millions, of potential customers everyday.

There are two types of social media communication, in terms of marketing. One is paid. This is where the company pays for advertisements to show up online and on social networks, and the other is organic. Organic content is created by the company itself, and can often lead to something called earned media. Earned media is what happens when consumers share their opinions and promote the company with others, either online or by word-of-mouth.

By: Kirsten Matthewman

Shifting Communication Paradigms

We live in turbulent times. The world is only a few decades into the digital age, and yet we have already seen drastic changes in the technological and social characteristics of the online environment. From intranet to internet, email to social media, web 1.0 to 2.0, individuals and organizations have had to learn and adapt quickly to rapidly changing technologies. And there is no reason to believe that change will be coming any slower in the future.

It is incredibly important and often challenging for corporations to determine how to navigate these technologies, especially concerning communication. To be fair, public relations and marketing professionals have done outstanding work so far in adapting their communication practices to new media. However, there is always growth to be achieved and better practices to establish. If we want to measure the success of social media communication in economic terms, consider the following: a July 2016 survey found that a little over half (55.3%) of social media users polled reported that a brand’s social media presence has some effect on whether they buy that brand’s products during the holiday season.

holiday-infographic

It’s safe to say that while basic reach- and awareness-based communication has its place, it is inevitable that corporate communication can and will evolve far beyond this paradigm in the coming years. Lee and Taylor write about homo dialogicus – a communication framework based on conversation between consumer and corporation as equal participants. Essentially, this new model of corporate communication posits that organizations need to talk less and listen more, empathize with their constituent groups and interact with stakeholders, customers and the general public alike in a genuine and respectful manner. If you like the way this sounds but are unsure about how to affect these changes in your business or organization, a good place to start is changing up how your organization communicates internally. These basic tips of creating time for conversation, creating and sharing a lexicon, introducing a dashboard, challenging your colleagues and sticking to meeting times, will help you master internal corporate communication that can be applied to communication with external audiences as well.

Regardless of the industry, understanding how to communicate effectively in the modern online environment is vital. Companies that understand how to not only reach their audiences but engage and interact with them will only become more successful as social media become more complex, more personal, and more powerful. In order to succeed at this communication, we have to look beyond the technology and address the people first.

By: Wesley Marcum