Surviving Means Staying Connected

Over the past few weeks the way fashion industries use social media outlets has been dissected.  From celebrity endorsements to the world’s most renowned designers, a conclusion has been made: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat are the reason audiences feel inspired to purchase your product.  In a world where millennials are taking over, fashion industries are constantly striving to reach audiences of all demographics.  Not only are we able to scroll, text and swipe with the touch of a finger, but we can watch and live stream, too.  Everything is given to us right in the palm of our hands through our electronic devices and social media profiles.

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An Instagram post by @kyliejenner advertising her cosmetics

We live in a world where celebrities are idolized and followed on every social media account possible.  Who knew that “Keeping up with the Kardashians” would not just be a famous reality TV show, but instead literally mean keeping up with Kylie. Millennials want to be the first to comment, repost, favorite and purchase Kylie Jenner’s new makeup line right off of her Instagram photo within seconds of her post.  Social media has given  one of Kylie’s 78.7 million followers on Instagram a whole knew meaning.  Audiences feel connected and involved like never before.  Fifteen years ago, who would have predicted that professional athletes such as Tom Brady and David Beckham would be the faces of UGG and H&M?  We live in a society that loves to watch professional athletes on the field as much as we do on the billboards.  How are long-time, brand-name designers adapting to the social media culture?  A hashtag like “#InstaKors” seems to do the trick.  

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@uggformen is using Tom Brady as the face of their social media accounts

Our century is surviving through the ability to stay connected.  Individuals are a tweet away from the newest trend. This is creating new reputations for the fashion industry and allows them to reach constituent groups with a different outlet, creating a whole new era. 

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.

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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

Cheap-Chic, High Demand

Fashion is a 1.2 trillion dollar global industry, with more than 250 dollars spent annually on fashion in the United States, according to industry analysts.  With that being said, fashion labels need to be reaching audiences of all incomes across their social media platforms.  Fashion will always be important and present in society, it is how the designers work to make their mark in the social media field that will help get their name out and respected while still being an affordable product.

Value-seekers who do not want to sacrifice style in the equation, are shopping at fast-fashion chains such as H&M, Forever 21 and even Target.  The reality is that these cheap-chic brands are picking up more shoppers and have more traction.  Not only does their high-quality for low-price ratio keep buyers happy, but also their constant engagement on social media.  With Twitter and Instagram at the top of the charts for all three fashion lines,  followers have said that posting online links and coupon codes on the brands social media accounts makes them eager to check out the latest trends.  Frequent buyers have also stated that when they are notified about an upcoming sale on either Twitter or Instagram, they are more likely to purchase clothing right away.

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An  example of a fashion blog promoting cheaper, imitation products

 

Nowadays, why purchase one shirt for 50 dollars at a high-fashion store when you can buy a pair of business casual pants, a nice blouse and ballet flats at H&M all for the same total price? It’s all about shopping the looks for less!  The media, such as a number of fashion blogs, are constantly offering suggestions for discount and imitation products that are very similar to designer brands, but half the cost.  While this is good for average income and lower income consumers, high-fashion designers are losing money on their products and losing their importance in our society.

By: Shannon Quinlan

Social Media Demands Models of Color

In the past, fashion would strictly use white people in ads. There was no diversity in social media and the industry only portrayed whites. Racial tension increased due to only white models being portrayed within the fashion industry, and a bigger divide between the races was created. Now, fashion companies have incorporated more diverse models into their media and campaigns. The fashion industry uses social media as an outlet to incorporate different races into the industry and are now able to reach out to new audiences. The effect of this allowed for a greater following as well as more consumers interested in certain fashion brands. There have been fashion campaigns such as TotallyHer that gives females the opportunity to look at certain companies who offer more opportunities to women in the fashion industry as well as reaching different races. This site allows users to learn more about how different fashion groups are trying to use more non caucasion models.

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Zac Posen’s Instram, showing how he designs dresses for different demographics.

Designer Zac Posen started using models of color to show-off certain collections he designed. Consumers are able to see that Posen is using different models to embrace his collection and that will paint the brand in a positive light.

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Jourdan Dunn, Vogue covergirl.

Unfortunately, stereotypes are heavily portrayed when depicting native americans on social media. The fashion industry uses stereotypes which limits racial groups and encourages them to conform to fit into the ideals of today’s fashion culture. It doesn’t help that there has been so much racial tension in the past couple of years, only creating a bigger racial gap. There has been progress in the right direction, but it isn’t enough.

The use of social media is fast and effective and quickens the pace of impact. Social media is the best place to campaign for diversity in the fashion industry and has the ability to reach many different constituent groups.

By: Corinne Schmidt

Age is but a Number

Age is one of the most important demographics when it comes to social media marketing. A person’s generation affects how they think, what they value, and all in all how they live their lives. The Baby Boomer generation for example bases their purchasing decisions on the features a product has; they want to know about the product and how it functions. Millennials on the other hand, have a distrust of salespeople and traditional marketing and will base their purchasing decisions on what experiences and benefits the product can bring them. They will also do more research on a product before buying it, for example, reading reviews written by other customers online. This post will discuss the different methods used in social media marketing to reach the Baby Boomer Generation and Generation Y (Millennials).

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Infographic comparing Baby Boomers and Millennials’ purchasing decisions

Baby Boomers are currently the fastest growing constituency group with social media use. In 2011, their online use increased by 60%, proving that this is not a group social media marketers should ignore. Research has shown that Facebook is the platform that has the largest percentage of Baby Boomer presence and usage, with 84.9% stating that they belong to/use Facebook on a regular basis, showing that Facebook marketing is a key element when trying to reach Boomers. When marketing to this demographic, it is important to remember that even though they are active on social media, Boomers do not use it in the same way as other generations (such as Millennials). They mainly use it to keep in touch with family and stay updated on current events, so it is vital to keep their content relevant. Advertisements and such should avoid the use of current slang and fads that younger generations are into.

When it comes to targeting Millennials, social media is probably the most important element to include in a marketing strategy. This age group is more or less constantly on their phones, and continuously taking in information on the go. Active on more platforms than any other age group, practically every social media site can be used when pursuing this demographic. Having access to a mobile phone almost 24/7 means that they are able to find information immediately, therefore, content should be quick and easy to access. If this component is ignored, then millennials will get bored and impatient with the site or ad and find something better to do.

Social media can be used in a variety of ways to target virtually any age group. When targeting a certain generation, it is important to consider what they value most and how they spend their time in order for a campaign to be successful. Fashion companies especially should research their demographic thoroughly to find out how they use social media platforms.

By: Kirsten Matthewman

Are you #livewatching?

Designers in the past had little competition and people were drawn to the company because of the name. Luxury brands now have adopted and applied social media marketing actions. Designer corporations are actively seeking out promotional strategies through social media to reach the audience which has changed from baby boomers to millennials. This drastic change has influenced marketing and advertising media in these companies because it is a different outlet of communication. Luxury is a necessity for millennials and they are constantly using social media channels, making it a necessity that the two work together.

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Dolce&Gabbana’s facebook page where it shows you how to livestream events

The luxury brand Dolce and Gabbana (D&G) realized the switch in media usage and now heavily use social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat to have conversations with their consumers. The effect of this has been positive for the company. D&G uses live streaming on Facebook to show what they are doing on a daily basis. The results that the company gets shows that large engaged audiences will remain engaged in your brand if your content is meaningful and relevant. D&G uses Instagram by having posts that contain the right content to target an audience. They use campaigns at certain times that go well with what is happening in the world. One campaign that was very successful was their “Back to School”campaign, that caught the attention of their consumers by having 4-6 posts about going back to school. D&G pin pointed: which audience they wanted to reach, which was younger (boys or girls), and targeted them in their Instagram posts.  These posts were made on Instagram because that was where they had the biggest amount of followers that were millennials and the younger generation. The company also used a new campaign during the 2015 Milan Fashion Week giving an inside look at a model’s day to day life. They posted selfies of the models on the runway to Instagram, creating a bigger following of devoted fans.The selfies allowed outsiders to get an “inside” look on model life and made it feel like the followers were also in Milan at the fashion show.

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Dolce&Gabbana’s back to school campaign on Instagram

It is hard to measure the effectiveness of a social media campaign. This can lead to less attention being put on on how well a campaign is doing if there is no measurement factor added in. Digital marketing is super important now because everything is online and the majority of companies promote branding through social media. D&G uses social media to build consumer loyalty by content. D&G is actively participating in their social media channels by creating conversations that they want to have with their consumers. They are constantly reaching out to different audiences that allow them to create loyalty and also get a bigger following. They have learned and adapted to the new ways of media and are getting more successful with each campaign.

By: Corinne Schmidt