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. 

Just the Beginning

Social media is a vital channel through which the fashion industry enhances brand engagement and marketing techniques. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snap, Pinterest, and so many more are used as vehicles to promote brand identity and converse with consumers. Since fashion is constantly evolving and changing, it’s important that there are ways for companies to keep their consumers up-to-date with current events in a quick and easy manner.

Our earlier posts talked about how it is smart for companies in the fashion industry to use celebrities to promote their products since they are influencers for so many people. As consumers, we tend to trust our favorite celebrities because we feel like we know them and see them in such a positive light. We especially love to hear when someone we trust is connected with a brand name or product because (in our heads) it gives the brand more authenticity and credibility. Another advantage is that when celebrities or beauty-influencers post something on social media, it’s been proven to reach its target market quicker than would a 30-second paid advertisement shown to a general audience. If celebrities don’t just outright sell the product, but rather try to embed the advertisement by showing the benefits of it in their daily lives, then audiences will respond especially well. This can be done through simple commercials or videos spread through outlets like Twitter, Facebook, etc. This is efficient and more cost-effective than traditional advertising.

Designers use social media in a similar way. Instagram is especially popular with designers to visually show their new product lines. In a way it is replacing fashion magazines, with it’s ability to show the latest trends and products with just the touch of the finger and the scroll of a screen. Designers often use this platform to create excitement and spread word-of-mouth about upcoming fashion shows and fashion week.

Lastly, fashion companies don’t all have the same target audience. There are many different demographics to be reached that are specific to each and every company. My post focused on body types, and how some companies try to appeal to those with bigger body types, while some are more attracted to the fitter body type for their brand. This doesn’t apply to women alone. The “ideal” body type for men has gone from lean and skinny to big and muscular over recent years. However, there has been a strong movement of women promoting body-positive image in the media. Companies like Aerie have done this by campaigning with hashtags such as #TheRealYouIsSexy.

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The fashion industry has thrived now more than ever since the arrival of social media.

Undeniably, social media and the fashion industry will continue to evolve together. It’s important for companies to reach their audience by being whereever they are, and nowadays everyone seems to be online. It is a great vehicle through which the fashion industry promotes products, encourages conversations, and creates excitement for new lines and fashion events all over the world. This method of reaching consumers won’t be going anywhere anytime soon.

 By: Alanna Goodman

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

The Future of Fads

Over the past couple weeks, we as a group have looked at different related topics on how the fashion industry uses social media. We analyzed demographics, designer brands, and celebrities and their interaction within the fashion industry and what type of impact they have on social media. A common trend that was seen across all three different topics covered was that content must be updated frequently and be effective. The fashion industry uses specific social media outlets such as Twitter, Snapchat, and Instagram to reach the audience. Fashion companies such as Nike will endorse a celebrity in exchange for them representing their clothes/brand on social media. This is effective for Nike because more millennials will see the clothing on the celebrity and want to buy it. This works with designer brands as well. When designers get new clothes or want a new look they will use Instagram to post the outfit or twitter.

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Hand holding a Social Media 3d Sphere.

A new emphasis on honesty, trust, and loyalty through social media from the fashion industry has helped it acquire a new taste.  The use of live streaming allows a more personal experience with fashion week going on in New York City as well as Paris, two of the biggest places for fashion. Designer brands, such as Dolce & Gabbana controlled live streaming by giving an inside look of what is behind the scenes. It also allowed the viewers to get a more personal experience with the models associating it with the brand. It widens the audience, allowing thousands of views from anywhere. Social media apps such as snapchat also has live streaming by posting stories. It again allows people from all over the world to check in and watch what is going on in fashion. The last topic I talked about, which was how fashion deals with race on social media and how it rarely shows models of color. When showing models of color on social media they are photoshopped to have lighter skin or shown in a stereotypical way that doesn’t help normalizing race in everyday culture. The purpose of social media in fashion is to promote. By including models of color on social media builds a stronger community  in fashion and while doing that will reach  as  a new audience and viewers. The key take away between demographics, celebrity endorsements, and race is that it all ties together and leads to the same point that fashion needs social media to keep their audience attentive and to make business successful.

Companies that are in fashion need to be growing with technologies and internet by adapting to it. Right now the biggest fashion industries are following 4 common social media trends to help raise sales. These are:  1. recognizing that your customer’s are telling the story, not you. Let them help with the brand image and this will help drive sales. 2. Make influencers a big part of marketing. The consumers trust other consumers more then they trust the company.  3. Work with other brands or companies to help promote each others brand and products. 4. Allow up-selling to occur on social media. Allowing fashion companies to follow these techniques for social media and incorporating it into the industry drives business.

Fashion industries have started to ask their customers what they want, and they reach them by social media. By asking them what they want out of the company, this allows them to promote the items through Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and other social media vehicles. This proved to have the consumer spend more on websites if they are more likely to get free shipping or something else out of it. Since online shopping is becoming more popular this puts a bigger emphasis on links on social media that will take you directly to a certain site or clothing piece.

Blogging is highly used in fashion industry and has become one of the biggest trends in the industry. The consumers go to blogs to get more knowledge about a brand, or a product as well as reviews. Now these blogs are used as research for fashion industries to know more about their brand and hear all the buzz that people are making. This gives fashion media research to use to set objectives and evaluation their company.  The main purpose of this is to allow the public to be the leaders of fashion-making instead of the designers or celebrities.

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Screenshot of Kylie Jenner promoting her new lip gloss

By analyzing all this information it is  notable that social media is a huge influencer on the fashion industry. Whether it is Dolce&Gabbana’s social media live stream of fashion week, Kylie Jenner’s Instagram of her nee lip gloss, or an African American model on a Facebook campaign for a clothing brand,  all these reach various constituents and continue to grow. The transition from traditional media to new media is adapting the industry and shows the grow of the industry as a whole by making these changes.

By: Corinne Schmidt

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

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