Category Archives: Fashion Marketing

9 Tips from Fashion Tech Experts on Driving Sales through Social Media

{Post written for PRCouture.com

Earlier this month, Social Media Examiner’s podcast talked about how to determine your ROI. Nichole Kelly, author of How to Measure Social Media and the CEO of Social Media Explorer and SME Digital explained that there is an issue with measuring ROI in terms of ‘return on influence’ or ‘return on engagement because ultimately ROI is defined by a financial return.

So instead of measuring number of likes and retweets, Kelly recommends measuring social media like pay-per-click advertising and determining the simple cost per click on web traffic being directed back to the site from social. This concept is especially useful when you’re convincing a numbers-focused client or C-level executive to invest in social.

With this in mind, we were curious to see how the leaders in the fashion industry tackle this ROI mystery – so we joined Third Wave Fashion’s #FashionTech #SMW13conversation during Social Media Week.

Moderated by Third Wave Fashion founder Liza Kindred, the A-list panel of fashion marketing experts included:

We’ve rounded up the top 9 tips from the Third Wave Fashion panelists for you:

1. Research and find analytics tools that fit your needs and budget, and stick with them for at least six months to understand if the tools is the right fit

2. Aside from Google Analytics, try Curalate to track Pinterest and Instagram analytics, as well as Sprout Social for Social Media Management

3. Go outside the industry for inspiration. A few of the panelist’s favorites include Oreos, Skittles, and Taco Bell.

4. Use the same hashtags (make them Evergreen) from successful campaigns so they become quintessential to the brand. For example, even after Bergdorf’s #BGWindows Instagram Challenge concluded, fans continue to use the hashtag

5. Pinterest and Facebook win for driving sales for brands. Pinterest sells because users pin with the intent of getting inspired and potentially shopping. Facebook sells simply because it’s well ahead of the curve in terms of metrics and ad targeting.

6. Organic success on Facebook is all about understanding and staying up to date on the algorithm that dictates which posts are seen. At the moment, Facebook photos albums and posts without links are more engaging than posts with links or single images.

7. Allow for spontaneity. Off the cuff posts that remain true to the brand are often the most successful

8. When in doubt, panelists agree that content around shoes, puppies, liquor, beauty, the President, or wishing a popular celeb Happy Birthday are recipes for getting fans “talking about you,” particularly on Facebook

9. So what about Vine? It’s about taking offline, online.  The panelists were particularly impressed with Vine user, Pinot. Think of Vine as visually authentic, whereas Instagram glorifies a moment.

For more insider tips, find the full recap of the Third Wave Fashion panel here!

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{Go} Fashion Collab

Calling all indie designers, mark your calendars for Fashion Collab next Monday! This one-day digital marketing workshop is specially tailored to the independent design community. Fashion Collab founders Nicole Giordano and Jim Powell of StartUp FASHION along with Jessica Quillin and Krista Peck of Atelier 36 have teamed up to answer specific questions that truly apply to the indie space.

The event is being held at Studio Arte in New York City’s Garment District on October 22nd, 2012 from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Follow the conversation on Twitter @FashCollab and use hashtag #FCNYC.

For more reasons to attend, plus a special 15% off code – head over to PR Couture!

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{Recap}: Fashion GPS Conversation Series on Tech and Fashion Week

Fashion GPS launched a new Fashion GPS Conversation Series, where they’ll be hosting a series of events to bring the fashion community together in new ways. Panelists will consist of fashion leaders who are navigating the vast changes going on in the industry. I covered the Fashion GPS app on PR Couture last fashion week so I was thrilled to connect with the brand further.

The first event of the #FGPSconvo kicked off with a cocktail hour and panel discussion on Technology and Fashion Week, featuring fashion insiders:

Peter Levy – SVP, Managing Director IMG Fashion Events & Properties

Jenne Lombardo – Co-Founder, Made Fashion Week | @JenneLombardo

Rachna Shah – Senior Vice President, KCD Worldwide | @KCDWorldwide

Dirk Standen – Editor-in-Chief, Style.com | @StyleDotCom

Fern Mallis, formerly the Executive Director of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) and widely credited as the creator of Fashion Week New York opened the panel. The panel was moderated with clever quips by fashion influencer, Simon Collins, Dean of Fashion at The New School for Design.

The event was hosted a ‘the house’ of Bumble and Bumble and each attendee was treated to their popular Surf Spray along with product samples. (Have to say I’m a converted fan!) The cookies and cream rendition pictured above was provided by the crafty group at Fancy Girl Table. Additional event sponsors included In Digital Media, Svedka and Voga.

Overall the conversation centered on the convergence of traditional and digital fashion week practices along with musings on the next wave of innovation. Notable digital influencers such as top-tier fashion blogger Bryan Boy, Yuli Ziv founder of Style Coalition, and Aliza Licht better known as DKNY PR Girl were in attendance.

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{Recap} Third Wave Fashion Panel featuring Refinery 29, Of a Kind + Bonobos

Nizzi Karai Renaud, Refinery 29 | Tracy Keim, Bonobos | Erica Cerulo, Of a Kind

Had the pleasure of attending the Third Wave Fashion Meetup co-hosted by  Open Source Fashion at The Fashion Center.

The Meetup gathered the industry’s top brand marketers to discuss how fashion and tech have become inextricably linked and how to market to your consumer. The brilliant and engaging panel consisted of:

Tracy Keim: VP of Integrated Marketing at Bonobos

Erica Cerulo: Co-founder of Of a Kind

Nizzi Karai Renaud: VP of Marketing and Commerce at Refinery 29

The panel provided insight on each of the brand’s existing marketing strategies in addition to an interesting insider look at each company’s culture and unique successes. The most intriguing portion of the panel was the unveiling of each of the experts’ top go-to marketing tools (the lists are pictured above). Email marketing and online ads comprised the top three tools for each brand, proving the genuine power and importance of digital marketing. For an in-depth look of the 13 most fascinating–and at times surprising–things learned at the discussion, head over to the Third Wave Fashion’s blog.

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{Fashion Round-Up} SXSW Highlights + Fashion Digital Activations

FMM has the scoop on “How Luxury Premium Brand Leverage SXSW,” from the Warby Parker + Citizen’s Circus collab, the #BonobosNation campaign, Kate Spade’s cross country roadtrip/tour that ended at SXSW to how Neiman Marcus and Bergdorfs combined their New York poise with their stylish Texas roots. Read the full story and loads more cleverness on FMM.

Business of Fashion looks back on SXSW and ponders the prospect of how fashion fans may be able to collectively influence which model opens an anticipated fashion week show, the new age of social curation platforms like PinterestSvpply, The Fancy and the fashion-specific Lyst, and shares impressive SXSW activations by Amex and Nike. Full story on Business of Fashion.

To celebrate its first birthday, Men’s apparel retail site Mr Porter (owned by Net-a-Porter) is staging an interactive mobile treasure hunt across five cities to celebrate its first birthday. Participants will engage via augmented reality app Goldrun. The app will guide users to locations in each city, where Mr Porter shopping bags will appear on their mobile phones. Full story on Mashable.

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{Fashion Round-Up} Top Fashion and Marketing Sites to Bookmark Now

Fashionably Marketing (FMM) - One of my personal favorites!

I’ve recently updated my Blogroll with the top fashion and marketing resources that I read nearly everyday, I’ll continue updating this list so feel free to mosey over and scroll down to the bottom of my site for additional must-reads to bookmark. Please email me with any additions you’d like to recommend: dara{at}darabupr.com. Here’s the running list so far:

FASHION & MARKETING

PR Couture - P.S. I'm a contributor and wrote the featured piece above!

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{Tips} Preparing Your Brand Page for Facebook’s New Timeline {via Fashion’s Collective}

BY ELIZABETH CANON

Facebook recently announced that it is rolling out the Timeline redesign layout for Pages (this format had previously only used for individual profiles). While converting to the new layout is currently optional, as of March 30th, all brand Pages will appear in the timeline format. What does this mean for your brand’s Facebook Page and how can you prepare?

Well, for starters, the new configuration offers a more highly visualized experience; a benefit for brands (especially those in fashion that rely on imagery to convey an experience). The new format also lends itself to storytelling, and provides the opportunity for brands to more readily express not just the current content, but the legacy of the brand throughout history.

Over the next month, here’s what marketers can do to prepare for March 30th:

1. Get acquainted with the new layout on your personal profile. Play with the navigation, reorganize your content and become familiar with the new features.

2. Carefully choose your profile picture. This image becomes much larger and more prominently featured in the new Timeline (a 851 x 315 pixel banner to be exact), so be sure yours is high resolution and captures the essence of the brand. This can be changed as frequently as you like, but know that cover images cannot include a call to action or prompt for people to “like” your Page.

3. Re-examine your content. The new layout has a timeline feature that allows fans to click on a time period to access content. If you’re a brand that posts very frequently to engage fans, you may want to weed out some of the posts that don’t enhance the story of your brand. Ideally, you want fans to be able to select a timeframe to see a curated collection of content that allows your brand story to come across quickly and effectively.

4. Pay homage to your history. The timeline feature starts as early as your brand or business was born. Though your brand may have been in existence 10 years ago, you surely weren’t posting to Facebook and your timeline will show a gap from the brand’s inception until you started posting content. Go in and chronicle milestone dates, events and occurrences throughout history so the timeline becomes a vehicle to tell the brand story.

5. Understand how the new layout impacts apps. Before, page administrators could control the tab a user landed on if they weren’t a fan. This will no longer be the case, so your apps may get less attention. Also, apps will be moved from the left column to the right hand side of the horizontal Page, and will be represented by images instead of text.

6. Geotag your photos. The new map feature plots where your brand is or has been, based on the photos you’ve tagged with a location. For events, store locations or travel excursions, be sure your photos are tagged appropriately so that your map section is engaging.

7. Prepare to handle customer service inquiries. The new layout allows fans to send private messages to Pages. However, this is only one-way, meaning that as a brand you cannot send new private messages to fans, you can only respond to their inquiries. Customer service questions or issues can now be dealt with privately, rather than on the public wall.  Start setting up customer service protocol for how to handle these direct messages on Facebook.

View the full story on Fashion’s Collective.

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{Interview} Post Fashion Week Strategy with Tadashi Shoji’s HL Group Fashion PR Team {for PR Couture}

{Post written for PRCouture.com}

This season, I had the pleasure of attending Tadashi Shoji’s Fall 2012 show at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. Inspired by the Golden Age of Shanghai, Shoji utilized rich, delicate and opulent colors and fabrics to set an ominous tone. The collection incorporated Chantilly and Venetian lace, high necklines, beaded embroidery, scalloped sequins and chiffon along with rich velvet.

With such a powerful fashion week collection, it’s no surprise that the designer was asked to dress a notable red-carpet starlet at this year’s Oscars. Drawing upon this season’s series of pale nude beaded dresses, ‘Best Supporting Actress’ winner Octavia Spencer, donned a custom hand-beaded, ivory silk and tulle draped cap sleeve gown that was absolutely perfect for her big moment.

After the fashion week madness, I caught up with the ladies at Tadashi Shoji’s top-notch PR powerhouse, HL Group. The Tadashi Shoji PR team consists of Kimberly Flaster (Managing Director), Kelly Ricci (Senior Account Manager) and Zeba Rashid (Account Coordinator). We were curious as to what these PR Mavens do after fashion week:

What designers, shows or events did HL Group represent this fashion week?

HL Group produced 19 shows during NYFW. Some of which included Tadashi Shoji, Rachel Roy, Oscar de la Renta, Elie Tahari, Dennis Basso, Marchesa and BCBG.

How many fashion weeks have you executed? What do you love most about it?

Amongst the three of us, we have over 15 years of experience planning, producing and executing shows. We look forward to prepping and completing each show for our clients because we know in the end our hard work is demonstrated with the successful press outcome.

What was your favorite fashion week outfit that you wore this season? (Can you send a picture of it?)

Poppin Fashion Week Survival bag, Royal Blue Tadashi Shoji dress, seating chart and of course a smile! (See Kelly pictured in the Poppin bag below.)

From left Zeba Rashid (Account Coordinator), Kelly Ricci (Senior Account Manager) and Kimberly Flaster (Managing Director).

How do you decompress after fashion week? Any essential remedies? Or, do you even get a chance to de-stress?

Luckily enough, we had a long holiday weekend right after fashion week, which was lovely. We got to catch up on much-needed sleep, caught up with our friends and family as we haven’t spoken to them in a month and of course eat a proper meal!

What are a fashion publicist’s core responsibilities post-fashion week?

A publicist’s responsibilities never end when it concerns fashion week. Immediately following shows, we have to work on recaps, compile media alerts, service images and follow-up with scheduled press print and broadcast interviews. Additionally, we have a two-week break, then it’s on to planning Press Days for editors.

When do you start planning the next fashion week?

We are always planning the next fashion week but for Spring 2013 we will get hands on in July.

How does HL Group use social and digital media to complement your PR efforts post fashion-week?

It comes from all angles. Most of us at the agency have our own social media logins and help support and promote our clients internally. Some of our clients handle their own social media and some hire agencies that specialize in managing their social channels. We all work together to successful promote in a timely manner.

Thank you HL Group for taking the time to chat with PR Couture, can’t wait to catch up with you lovely ladies next season!

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{Tips} Fashion PR: How 5 Fashion iPhone Apps Engaged Influencers During NYFW {for PR Couture)

{Post written for PRCouture.com

It goes without saying that apps like Style.com, Hootsuite, Instagram and Pinterest are the go-to apps for every well-heeled fashion publicist. However, here are five up-and-coming apps that are also enhancing the fashion week experience for both PR insiders and the fashion-obsessed.

Fashion Photo Sharing Apps

1. Snapette

Founded by Harvard grads, Snapette enables fashion-savvy women to discover and share in-store products by location. The app was conceptualized when co-founder, Jinhee Ahn Kim, set out to find must-have pieces in Notting Hill but was at a loss as for where to start. However, when she was ready for lunch, her iPhone enabled her to seamlessly discover places to eat on Yelp and Foodspotting. Fusing these concepts for fashion, Snapette was born.

“The future of shopping and commerce is all about discovery rather than search.  We are building Snapette from the ground up to lead this movement,” says co-founder Sarah Paiji.

Snapette is the first mobile app that lets fashion-conscious users browse and snap photos (with Instagram-like filters) of products near their current location, allowing them to easily see or share what shoes, bags and accessories are in nearby stores right now. Users can also browse categories such as “Hot” and “New” or vote and comment on their favorite snaps – this essentially empowers users to act as the trend expert. Moreover, with embedded details like brand, price and store, users can virtually window-shop and determine where to go for the affordable bold, cross-body bag trend or whether to splurge on the irresistible color-blocked Prada. Better yet, Snapette provides feeds from featured boutiques as well as fashion experts. The app also adds value to retailers, as the location-based features drive foot traffic to physical stores. By clicking on the embedded map, users can find out exactly where any store is located.

For fashion week, Snapette paired up with Rebecca Minkoff to bring one lucky fashionista to Mercedes Benz Fashion Week to enjoy a first look at Rebecca Minkoff’s amazing new Fall 2012 collection. The winner also had the pleasure of being in the company of New York’s most fashionable crowd at Rebecca Minkoff’s Fall 2012 Show after party, complete with a personalized Snapette photo booth.

2. Luster

Taking fashion photo-sharing concept local, Luster emerged in the mobile app marketplace for shopaholics who want to discover, shop, and share local boutiques. Luster joins the burgeoning community of local fashionistas who enjoy scouring their city for the trendiest fashion finds. Luster enables users to geo-tag cool clothes they spot and share them with fellow shopping enthusiasts. Luster shows what’s trending in a specific fashion community and provides a map of a user’s proximity to the geo-tagged items in-store.  Globetrotter and co-founder Lina Chong designed the app specifically for fashion lovers around the world who are always on the go. Luster helps users find out the local trends wherever they are in the world.

In addition to providing a gallery within the app of what to wear for fashion week, Luster hosted their very own Fashion Week Giveaway, where users could snap a photo of the fashion week look they’re lusting over for a chance to win $1,000 worth of the items in the shot.

Flashes of Style's Outfit for the Pose/BeachMint Brunch

3. Pose

Pose takes the photo-sharing element and incorporates the social shopping trend that has moved from the web to mobile apps. Pose is poised to help users shop and inspire fellow users with suggestions and recommendations. Pose is meant to enhance the user’s in-store shopping experience by allowing them to take photos of merchandise, record pricing and location information.

Pose provides continuously updated style feeds with popular items, the latest posted, and editorially selected feeds featuring “the finds of a handpicked group of exceedingly stylish shoppers.”

To kick off fashion week, Pose hosted an intimate brunch along with LA-based start-up Beachmint and the Poser community. During Fashion Week, the Pose app was optimized to feed some of the best fashion week looks. Pose also attracts fashion influencers like model Coco Rocha, blogger Sara Zucker and the Zoe Report who utilized Pose to showcase behind-the-scene looks along with daily fashion week looks. In fact, DKNY PR Girl listed Pose one of her top apps during the IFB Conference.

We caught up with Alisa Gould-Simon, Director of Marketing and Communications at Pose, to find out what trends she was spotting on Pose.

“Some of the most popular looks for fashion week have been layered ensembles with a touch of flair by way of fur, neon or metallic. We’ve seen lots of booties on the ground…and plenty of chic tailored jackets. Collars buttoned all the way up and accented with statement necklaces have also been a popular trend.” Alisa, however, opted for “a dash of prints, quite a few cut-outs and the Alexa Chung pony hair leopard booties for Madewell.”

Live Fashion Week Apps

4. Fashion GPS

Beyond photo sharing, there are two major apps geared to fashion’s insiders created by Fashion GPS. Its digital tools and newest invite-only Radar by FGPS app are widely used by fashion PR powerhouses Paul Wilmot, HLGroup, KCD and LaForce and Stevens along with top-tier brands like Bismark Phillips, GUCCI, Dior and Lanvin.

Fashion GPS operates digital systems and two companion apps. The GPS Events and Samples systems act as a ”PR assistant” with pre-show functions such as inventory management, building invitation lists, sending out evites, managing RSVPS, assigning seats, creating virtual tickets for attendees, generating reports of who attended the event and keeping up with editors’ and buyers’ whereabouts.

The Fashion GPS iPad app syncs with the GPS events component of the software, which allows insiders to handle check-in and essentially sync everything for the attendance report. However, this app is not downloaded through the app store but licensed through Fashion GPS directly.

The consumer facing web and iPhone app is Radar by FGPS, which hosts a member only community and allows fashion editors, bloggers and attendees to have all their show information at their fingertips, including show times, calendar views, locations via an interactive map, seating assignments and personal QR codes that enables entrance into the show.

This season, Fashion GPS attracted over 7000 downloads via iTunes on the eve of fashion week – evidence that the industry was ready for this next digital step. With fashion week continuing into London, Milan and Paris, the FGPS Radar will continue to multiply.

5. MADE Fashion Week

Also created for industry insiders, the MADE Fashion Week app launched this past season. MADE is a year-round, dynamic platform for connecting ascending talent in fashion, music, art and pop-culture with visionary brands to create new cultural platforms and communities. The app was specifically designed to be used in real-time at MADE’s shows at Milk Studios or via Livestream. Now in its sixth season, MADE FASHION WEEK continues to showcase outstanding design talent and harness the energy of New York’s creative communities.

Partnering with Sonic Notify, the app syncs with inaudible sound waves played during the show and automatically displays information about each look as models strut down the runway. Furthermore, users can make notes, tweet images and curate a custom look-book that can be emailed in real-time, enabling designers to instantly extend the reach of their designs beyond the runway. The MADE app also includes a show schedule, bios, contact and sales information for each MADE Designer. Viewers watching MADE shows over Livestream on MilkMade.com can also enjoy the same benefits and features, since Sonic Notify technology is triggered by soundless audio signals, will also send content of the app through the user’s home computer.

Happy downloading!

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