The fashion market is extremely competitive, which is why brands go to great lengths to increase their visibility. Just think of the labels participating in fashion weeks, for example — while costs vary, it is undeniable taking part in them is a considerable investment in media buzz. But does extra publicity always translate into more sales? Not necessarily, according to Russ Powell, Head of Marketing at Search Marketing Consulting Firm Red Hot Penny. He argues that media buzz doesn’t last as long as it used to in the age of social media, when trending topics succeed each other at short intervals. To get the most out of waves of extra attention, brands must have a smart online strategy. FashionUnited invited him to share a few tips on how to convert media buzz into bottom line.
“For an event to be successful, you need to already have an online strategy in place”, says Powell. More visitors are expected both on the company’s website and social media profiles following an important event, so companies have to make sure all channels properly convey the brand’s image. While events are great for generating content (photos, videos, live streaming, sneak peeks behind the scenes etc), new visitors are likely to also take a look at older posts to try and understand the brand. What was published in previous months matters, too.
Give new visitors an incentive to buy
Ready-to-wear brands can benefit greatly from ‘see now, buy now’ fashion shows, as long as they make sure the route to finding the items showcased at the event is as fast and easy as possible, both in stores and online. For the latter, Powell recommends analyzing customer journeys in search of points of improvement, ahead of the event. As for bespoke brands or those showcasing collections which are not yet on sale, Powell recommends them to “keep in touch with those new visitors by featuring clear calls to action. They can register their email address to be notified when items are launched, for example”. Savvy brands take the meantime as an opportunity to establish a relationship with that potential customer.
Last but not least, Powell recommends brands to actively react to posts mentioning them and take note of who’s mentioning or tagging them, as that is a great opportunity to meet social media influencers big and small with whom to work with in the future. “They already like your brand”.