Tag Archives: culture

Zappos piloting personal shopping service on Instagram with #nextootd

19 Mar

Most of you will have already heard of the hashtag #ootd. For those who haven’t, this is the epitome of the #selfie phenomenon. “Outfit of the day” as it stands for, has over 23 million posts attached to it on Instagram.

That’s 23 million images associated with what people are wearing, said Will Young, director of Zappos Labs – the San Francisco-based experimentation and innovation arm of e-commerce site Zappos – during SXSW last week. “We looked at [those figures] and asked as a retailer how do we be a part of that?”

The answer? His team recently launched a pilot project on the platform called Next OOTD. Very simply, followers are invited to post a selfie along with the hashtag #nextootd. Those who do will receive a personalised shopping recommendation based on their Instagram from Zappos in return.

Zappos is of course a company that prides itself, and has become known, for customer service (its longest ever phone call was nine and a half hours – and celebrated for that fact, Young revealed). He said they are constantly trying to think of lots of different ways to take that service to the next level.

At the moment this project is entirely manual – there’s one person doing it who doesn’t even work weekends – so the potential to scale isn’t really there, he admitted, but that’s not to say it won’t be down the line.

“Personal shopping via Instagram… that could be the future of our business,” he argued – and perhaps rightly so given the buzz around social shopping once again at present. “It could have a 50 person team manning it and making personalised shopping recommendations.”

To his own strategy, he added: “I heard Sarah Friar, CFO of Square speak recently, and she said: ‘Think big but start small.’ That’s kind of how we approach things at Zappos Labs.”

Velocity revisited: key quotes from Stefan Olander and Ajaz Ahmed for brand marketers in 2013

9 Jan Velocity

Velocity

I recently rediscovered my copy of Velocity: The Seven New Laws for a World Gone Digital, written by Ajaz Ahmed of AKQA and Stefan Olander of Nike, and published last summer.

In it are dozens of tabs bookmarking pages with my favourite quotes on, so I thought I’d share some of them here. It’s one of the most valuable books I’ve read regarding the movement of digital communications for brand marketers, and highly applicable to the fashion industry just as much throughout.

If you haven’t already, do pick up a copy – I defy you to get through it without likewise picking up the highlighter pen…

Stefan: “Without a platform to manage and nurture every interaction with its consumer, a company has no spine.”

Ajaz: “We’re in the age of connectedness. The solution is to create work that people want to share. Ideas that define culture rather than follow it.”

Stefan: “Belief in your ideas and an environment that encourages risk taking is incredibly important to create acceleration.”

Ajaz: “The philosophy has to be: let’s use the technology to make this the best way to do something, or let’s not bother doing it at all. The goal has to be about making a new experience an order of magnitude better than the existing way.”

Stefan: “People will usually thank you for taking the responsibility to curate their choices, for making things simpler for them, for doing the truly inconvenient stuff on their behalf. This means editing down product lines and ramping up product benefit.”

Ajaz: “Brands that have authentic, believable values use the spirit and energy of those convictions to ease effortlessly into any new environment. Even with a pre-digital heritage, they’ve found interesting methods and ideas to express their stories.”

Stefan: “We’re not chasing eyeballs. The goal is to create connections with our customers and earn their loyalty by serving them. The better the service, the stronger the connection.”

These two guests comments also stood out:

Trevor Edwards, VP of brand and categories at Nike: “The single biggest opportunity today is that buying a product or service marks the beginning of the consumer relationship.”

And in the intro by Richard Branson: “We’re living through a time of big and little changes in the way we do just about everything and the only people and organisations guaranteed to make fools of themselves are the ones who think they have got it all figured out.”

Now there’s something to consider for the year ahead…

James Bond exhibition kicks off with online documentary focused on tailoring and style

5 Jul

 

The Barbican Centre in London has released a short documentary looking at the tailoring and styling of James Bond in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the iconic character.

The spot was created to accompany an exhibition showcasing the design and craft behind the movie series. “Designing 007 – Fifty Years of Bond Style“, is a multi-sensory experience opening on July 6, documenting everything from the costumes, set and production design, to the automobiles, gadgets, weapons and special effects.

The film (as shown above) sees Oscar-winning costume designer Lindy Hemming alongside tailors such as David Mason, creative director at Anthony Sinclair, and Ritchie Charlton, managing director of Douglas Hayward, looking at the varying styles of Sean Connery, Roger Moore, Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig.

Says Hemming: “Bond is a British icon, but he’s a world citizen, and he’s beloved all over the world and he’s iconic all over the world, so what he looks like has to not just suit England and Britain but it has to actually be acceptable to the world.”

The spot also describes details such as the silk turned-back cuff worn by Connery in the first film as a sartorial nod to author Ian Fleming’s own style.

The exhibition has been created in collaboration with EON Productions, with unprecedented access to their archives. It was designed by Ab Rogers and curated by the Barbican alongside fashion historian Bronwyn Cosgrave and costume designer Hemming.

There is also another short film available that focuses on the design and craft of the sets, vehicles and accessories.

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