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Posts in: digital-media

Fashion Trade Shows

WWDMagic: Evolution of Digital Media in the Fashion Industry

The next session in our WWDMagic seminar coverage is The Evolution of Digital Media in the Fashion Industry by Yuli Ziv of the Style Coalition.

Here’s a breakdown of what Yuli covered during her seminar. Hopefully, you’ll learn a bit about the challenges that the digital revolution poses, how the fashion industry has adopted these changes, how your brand can stand out, and the where digital media is headed in the future.

Challenges the Digital Revolution Poses

  • Disorientation and chaos have erupted as a result of breaking the old rules. It is now realized and accepted that the real value is in people and everyone is entitled to an opinion about fashion and, frankly, the old heads can’t stand it.
  • Free access to information and increasing transparency have made it so that every moment and every object can be and is documented.
  • Group consciousness vs. personal expression; we are unifying as a world.  We are grouping and connecting with people globally. The impact of this on brands is huge.

How Has the Fashion Industry Adopted These Changes

  • Social media has changed everything and bloggers are at the forefront of this change as a key way that brands have adapted to the changes in how products are marketed.
  • Brands have become human and have created their own voices.
Statistic: According to emarketer, 50% of readers say that blogs help them to make well-informed purchasing decisions.

How Can Your Brand Stand Out

  • Consistent brand messaging across all channels is key. Your brand must remain recognizable.
  • Know that people don’t like talking to logos, they want to talk to people.
  • Understand and truly embrace the fact that it is not about you, it’s about your customer.
  • You need to become a publisher; constantly communicating and creating content. With an emphasis on constantly.

“Understand that people cannot afford to buy your products everyday…but they can afford to consume your content everyday.” —Yuli Ziv, Style Coalition

The Future of Digital Media in the Fashion Industry

  • Trends are becoming less important.  Style influencers are creative and don’t stick to traditional trends.  They create their looks using fashion from various seasons, vintage, mom’s closet, etc.
  • On top of that, seasons will start to become non-existent. Delayed delivery should disappear as street style becomes more eclectic and people no longer care about what the industry says they should be wearing.
  • We’ll start to see seasonal collections transition to individual products a la the sneaker industry.
  • Search is being replaced by discovery. Help people discover your brand and products!
  • Personalization is the new made-to-measure. We should stop seeing the same brand home pages as our neighbor, these pages will be tailored to our preferences based on past purchases (among other things).
  • The implementation is smart and digital fabrics; clothes that can change shapes, change sizes,and become devices.

So what do you think about what Yuli had to say?  Have you embraced the changes and do you agree with her future predictions?

Fashion Industry Resources Retail Sales

ReQoop: App that Highlights Brick and Mortar Stores

StartUp Fashion resource ReQoop

With all of the buzz surrounding online retailers these days, there’s something refreshing about those highlighting brick and mortar stores. In turn, this is where you should be gaining information and feedback about your consumer and your product line. Plus, there’s something mighty special about local, independent boutiques that can give you insight on your brand and their own expert feedback.

Making it easier to understand the retail landscape, we’ve come across a new App for the iPhone called ReQoop. The idea is simple. Snap your favorite finds in-store, tag the location and write a pithy and informative description about what you’ve discovered and hashtag it with a trending topic. You have the option to send your find to Twitter and Facebook too. Those finding “qoops” have the opportunity to win great prizes and also show their style within their own database of curated boutique selections while other can like or dismiss (“it’s a dud”) your pics and follow you too.

From a consumer perspective, that app is fun, interactive and allows you to catalog your finds. For an emerging designer, we think this app is beneficial for a couple of reasons.

1. Boutique Snapshot

The ReQoop database has a catalog of boutiques that you can drill down by location and ones that are deemed popular by those using the app. For an emerging designer, what a great way to see what type of merchandise is carried at a boutique and to see if you are a fit with a store before you pitch your product line (Ohh, and what a good segue to a retailer—I found out a bit more about your store from this new app)!

2. Competitive Overview

From a competitive standpoint, you’ll also be able to see what other brands are doing in a variety of boutiques and locations. Specifically, you’ll see what type of brands are carried, fabrics used, silhouettes and what type of inventory the store bought. Most importantly, you’ll understand why people are selecting. Market research at its best!

3. What’s Trending

This is a great tool to see what’s on trend. After a look through the database, you’ll notice a lot of mannequin and window shots. These are the pieces that retailers want customers to see and buy, and ultimately your tip to what’s popular.

4. Product Promotion

In the spirit of self-promotion and brand promotion, this tool is another way to spread the word about your line. Whether it’s telling a boutique owner, snapping a picture yourself, or letting your fans know about the app, this is just one more way to get your product listed on a network that can be seen by others.

Remember, there’s nothing wrong with giving your key partners a call-to-action in order to get your product into the marketplace, and this is just one new cool medium at your disposal.

Be sure to check it out at ReQoop and find out how it can best work for your brand.

New and Noteworthy

StylePage Interviews Nicole Giordano, Founder of StartUp FASHION

Have you heard of StylePage, yet?  Until recently, I hadn’t either.  But for the last few months, I have had the pleasure of acting as an early adopter of this new social sharing tool for the fashion industry and I’m really starting to get into it.  Like any social platform, it takes time create a community and build engagement but I think StylePage has got real potential.

A few days ago, StylePage asked to interview me about why I created StartUp FASHION and I thought you might enjoy reading it:

Nicole Giordano Tells Us Why She Started StartUp FASHION
by Julia French for StylePage

We love StartUp FASHION, so when Nicole Giordano the founder agreed to chat with us, we were overjoyed! I love what she has done and the impact that her site has had. We also love of course the fact that she has been an avid user of StylePage!

 

Why did you create Start Up Fashion?

My background and education is in textiles. I was working in the field, sourcing for designers and, while helping them choose fabrics for their collections, I realized how hungry they were to learn more about textiles; properties, hand feel, end use, etc. They wanted an education.  I initially created StartUp FASHION as an editorial-driven blog where I wrote about my experience in the field and shared my knowledge of the science behind textiles.

The blog has since evolved (as so many blogs do!) and really become a much more comprehensive resource for young, emerging designers to learn about different aspects of starting a fashion label.  While it’s still mainly editorial, we are working hard to implement a resource aspect to the site; introducing designers to manufacturing resources, important events, fabric sources, boutiques that buy from independent labels, etc. It’s a work in progress.

What resources do you think designers need the most access to?

All of them!  Some of the topics we cover on StUF are textile sourcing, manufacturing, marketing and PR tips, digital media and social networking strategies, designer experiences….. the list goes on. Emerging labels, especially those started by designers who have not previously worked in the industry, are like sponges soaking up every last tid-bit.

One of the things we love to do is interviews with emerging labels that are finding success and truly building a sustainable business model.  We ask them questions about their experience and for any advice they can offer. We think our readers really appreciate this. True business acumen is just as important as design talent…fantastic design will get people’s attention, business smarts with allow you to capitalize on that attention

What are the things that are really at the top of your mind right now in regards to fashion?

Conscious Design, i.e. Ethical fashion is a major topic.  I’m not just talking about being environmentally friendly or going “organic”.  Those things are important but I believe that labels today need to have meaning behind them, they need to stand for something.  Consumers are quickly shifting from frivolous, fast fashion purchases and are becoming more of the mindset of wanting to feel good about what they buy. Emerging labels today have a leg up on the more established labels in that they can implement better practices right from the start and make them a stand out characteristic on their brand.

We write about it on StartUp FASHION a lot but my passion for the topic has also led to the creation of my personal blog,NicoleGiordano.com/blog where I cover all kinds of topics in ethical living, with an emphasis on fashion and style. So it’s definitely at the “top of my mind”!

Oh, another topic that really interests me is the state of the fashion industry today when it comes to textiles and manufacturing. The industry is in a major shift, everything from China’s role to the price of raw materials…it’s so exciting to watch and report on all that’s happening. I cover it a lot in my work as features editor on FashionablyMarketing.me

What are some things we can do to support the health and wealth of the fashion industry?

Support the emerging labels, they are the next generation of fashion and have the ability to make real change in the industry. Purchasing from them is one way to support but so is sharing your love for them with your friends and networks. Utilize all of the amazing social and digital tools we are lucky enough to have at our fingertips. Spread the word on all your platforms and become an influencer- there really is no better way to help create the success of an emerging label.

What unique qualities do you bring to your work that you wish you saw more of in the industry overall?

Well, I think my most valuable quality is my diverse background.  While always involved in the fashion industry, my focus has shifted over my decade-long career. I have a true understanding of the science behind the creation of textiles, I’ve started and run my own textile and accessory company as well as my own (with a partner) boutique public relations firm. I currently am a digital marketing and social networking consultant for various companies in the industry…. I’ve really delved in from all angles in order to have a true understanding of the industry. I think my clients and readers appreciate that. As for what I wish I saw more of, that’s a good question. I guess I wish I saw more big brands implementing better business practices, more consumers finding value in conscious fashion, more emerging designers succeeding in what they love….all the things that drove me to create StartUp FASHION.

Fashion Industry Resources Fashion Marketing

Build Brand Awareness with Lionesque Media

One of the most important aspects of business sustainability is brand recognition. Without it, you’re done before you start.  In this fashionably techie world, brand recognition is ever more digital; so creating a presence that goes beyond a simple and basic website should be top on your list.  It can seem overwhelming, yes, but it shouldn’t be.  Why?  Because there are places you can turn to, people (professionals!) who can rescue you from a sea of overwhelm, work their magic, and execute one fantastic plan of action.

One such savior?  Lionesque Media.

Lionesque Media

Having tweeted, “Liked”, and Tumbled the founder of Lionesque, Melissa Gonzalez, many times over the the last few months, but never actually met her, I decided it was time to schedule a “coffee”.   So last week she and I sat down for a quick chat and I learned first hand just what Lionesque has to offer.  And you know what?  It’s pretty fantastic.

So who is Lionesque Media and what do they do?

Lionesque Media is a Creative Agency, made up of a small but dedicated and talented team,  that works with brands to launch, reinvent, build awareness, and foster sustainability.  There are two ways in which to work with Lionesque: Media Services and/or RS PopUP Shops.  Here’s a little breakdown:

Media Services:

  • Social Media Presence
  • Branding
  • Photography
  • Videography
  • Facebook Landing Page
  • Ecommerce
  • Affiliate Marketing with global partners

RS Pop Up Shop:

Brands are given the opportunity to have a one month long pop up shop at 501 Lexington Avenue in New York City; either as a solo shop or, if you don’t feel that you have enough product to fill an entire shop,  you can team up with other designers who’s work compliments your own.

In addition to month-long buzz, there’s also a launch party at the beginning of your month and designers are encouraged to use the space to its fullest potential.   This is where you really need to show your business ethos; think of it as studio space where you can set up appointments with buyers and stylists.  Try experimenting with your price points, see what works and what doesn’t.  Crowdsource your designs before going into large production runs.  The possibilities are endless and the potential is abounding.

Things to keep in mind if you’re interested in the RS Pop Up Shop:

  • Price points should fall under the $300 mark
  • Have a collaboration mindset; especially with charitable and lifestyle opportunities
  • You must have a social presence or be open to building one
  • You should have a growth plan in place
  • And, I know this should go without saying but I’m going to say it anyway: Well-Made Product!

If you’re interested in working with Lionesque, and we have no idea why you wouldn’t be, check out their site, read their blog, and get in touch with the following information:

  • Link your website
  • What you hope to achieve in working with Lionesque
  • A quick overview of your current social media presence

If you think this all sounds amazing and can’t wait to become a Lionesque client, then congratulations, you’re well on your way to a fashionably successful business.

Fashion Business Advice

Retail Camp Keynote: How to Leverage the Social Ego to Generate More Sales

Last weekend I jumped on a jet plane and headed Westbound to palm tree-lined Los Angeles for a conference called Retail Camp. An event dedicated to highlighting the world of Digital Media Marketing for the retail community as well as what you need to know as a blogger in the changing face of digital marketing, the two day camp was laden with useful and exciting information for the digital professional.

One particular keynote that I would like to share with you was from Dylan Whitman, one of the faces of TabJuice, a company that allows brands and retailers to set up e-commerce and/or facebook commerce shops. Whitman covered how to leverage the social ego to generate more sales.

TabJuice at Retail CampThe Psychology of the Social Consumer: Get philosophical and think about why consumers engage with your brand on facebook.  By understanding the reason why a customer wants to be a customer, a brand can foster and develop the relationship and generate more sales.

How can you, as a brand, make this happen?  First, utilize the soft brag by boasting (although not too much) about who you are and what you do, aggregate this information out, and engage with your network.

Once engaging, you then need to think about the Tools of Actualization :

  • A brand needs to continue to present itself exactly how its customers want to be seen. Basically, are you cool? If you are, then great. If you’re not, well then you need to figure out how to be because customers are buying your image as much as your product.  I have one word: Apple.
  • A brand needs to nurture the hype.  How?

Add titles and descriptions to your products that reflects how your customers want to present themselves. You need to state more than color, size, fabric type.  Get creative because when they “like” your brand, the description shows up on their page, and the more branded it is, the better.   You need to give your customer the ability to look cool by association.

Analyze the demographics and psychographics of you customer.  Get to know who they are and what makes them tick, this will inevitably help you understand why the shop.

Innovate by constantly reinventing yourself to stay relevant because this allows your customer to reinvent themselves via your brand.

Customize your messages to different people by engaging with these people through comments, their photos (not just yours!), re-posting, etc.

Remain {mostly} genuine. Obviously,  never lie or waste their time. But keep your goal in mind and work to make them continue to want to associate themselves with your brand, not just buy your products.

Remember that everybody is important. The friends of your customers are also engaging with you by viewing your network’s “likes”, comments, photos, etc.  You are also speaking to the not-so-fashionable friends of your followers. There is opportunity there that shouldn’t be ignored.

Feel Good and Adopt early.  There is nothing wrong with smart marketing.  Stay ahead and use the momentum you’ve obtained by starting early to be a leader.

And remember, there is no single approach.  Success comes by constantly trying new angles and ideas.

About TabJuice:   TabJuice provides a free and comprehensive social e-commerce solution allowing sellers to offer a branded shopping experience directly on their Facebook page. It’s custom branding features, flat affordable monthly subscription price, open source API and superior admin panel functionality and design, make it the best social commerce product on the market today.

You can follow @TabJuice on Twitter or connect via Facebook.