Tag Archives: Twitter

Forget Instagram: what has happened to fashion week commentary on Twitter?

28 Feb

This post first appeared on Fashionista.com

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Is it just me or has Twitter become much less inspiring during fashion week season? I say that as an avid user – both personally and profesionally. I peruse posts day to day, and particularly once the shows hit London, Milan and Paris, when I’m watching via livestream from New York. I scroll through my own feed, I consume via social dashboards attached to designers’ websites, and I go back and search using hashtags and brand names afterwards, too.

What I’ve always enjoyed is the live commentary that you gather from those in the front row, but there seems to have been very little of it for the past couple of seasons, and I for one really miss it. Not the tweets that tell me what show they’re waiting for, the fact the first model has appeared/the last model has walked out, or even what color they’re seeing. Those still exist, and I can gather all that from home.

No, what I really want back, is actual commentary. I want to hear from the editors –- the experts no less — about the 1930s theme emerging at Prada and the influence Miuccia drew from film director Rainer Werner Fassbinder, or the details of the new Bloomsbury-inspired, hand-painted florals at Burberry Prorsum. I want to know what is sashaying down that runway that, from my own 13-inch screen, I can’t quite see.

The images that are posted can be nice, of course, and on occasion insightful (if not blurry, but that’s another issue). But what happened to a wonderfully descriptive annotation along with it? Or better yet a real-time opinion, a review-on-the-spot even? Here are some of the highlights from the Lanvin show Thursday:

Lots of pictures naturally, but did you gather much about the line really? Navy, white and feathers. It’s a start.

Now it’s not that everyone has put their smartphones back in their handbags to focus on the clothes as they come out of course. So what’s going on?

First up, quite obviously: Instagram. During London Fashion Week there were a total of 266,767 mentions on Twitter, and 316,359 posts on Instagram, according to Bell Pottinger, a British public relations and marketing firm. So arguably, much more time is being spent there.

It goes without saying there’s huge benefit in that space of course. But when someone is at at home watching a livestream, or has access to high-res images in near real-time — not to mention backstage ones from the brand themselves — Instagram shots from the front row don’t necessarily offer all that much. They’re a nice-to-have, and for a feel of fashion week in general, a fantastic stream to follow. But for those really wanting to know about the collections themselves, there’s still a gap — an information gap.

The skill of an editor who has worked in the industry for 10 or more years is to be able to quickly deduce what a collection is about, to analyze its importance for trends, to bring contextual knowledge of its applicability to the commercial market and to offer a clear understanding of the technical side (i.e., garment construction and fabrications).

Portraying that over Twitter is no mean feat. I attempted it as a guest Tweeter on behalf of my employer, WGSN, for the @mbfashionweek account during New York at a number of shows and it’s entirely consuming.

But I don’t think the fact few editors or publications seem to be offering anything like this anymore comes down to just not having the time. With social media now reaching maturity, there’s inevitably becoming a greater push in terms of strategy for organizations and individuals alike on what to do and what not to do to achieve audience engagement.

So here’s my question: Is this lack of Twitter commentary as simple as editors just becoming more obsessed with Instagram? Or is there actually a direct decision being made not to give away too much there and then? (The knowledge of these men and women is a valuable commodity — why hand it out on a free platform, when you can rather store it up and post it on your own site for traffic generation later?)

Then again, maybe it’s just as simple as the fact we’re also all just a little bit over it. Or overwhelmed. Or lazy. Still, I’d like it back.

Digital snippets: Burberry, Calvin Klein, Moschino, Saks, M&S, Primark

27 Feb

A round-up of all the latest stories surrounding fashion and tech…

 

  • Burberry reveals ‘digital innovation’ partnership with WeChat to strengthen social presence in China [The Drum]
  • Calvin Klein asks fans to snap selfies in their skivvies for #MyCalvins campaign [BrandChannel]
  • Fast-fashion: Moschino offers fans the ability to shop its McDonald’s-themed show live [Dazed Digital]
  • Saks recreates in-store beauty tutorials with six-second videos on Vine [LuxuryDaily]
  • Marks & Spencer launches new website to replace Amazon platform, after three years in the making [The Telegraph]
  • How Primark achieved 1.7m Facebook Likes in just six months [Econsultancy]
  • Former GQ editor Lauren Bans comes out as @CondeElevator Tweeter [Fashionista]
  • New privacy website lets you opt out of tracking in retail stores [AdAge]
  • Ebay buys virtual fitting room start-up PhiSix Fashion Labs [PC Mag]

Digital snippets: Michael Kors, Rebecca Minkoff, Vivienne Tam, Marc Jacobs, Zac Posen

17 Feb

From New York to London, and everything in between, here’s a mega round-up of all the latest stories surrounding fashion and tech…

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  • Rebecca Minkoff gives inside look at fashion week with Keek app [Mashable]
  • Vivienne Tam’s WeChat partnership delivers NYFW front-row access [Jing Daily]
  • Marc Jacobs opens fashion week pop-up that accepts Tweets as payment (as pictured) [Fashionista]
  • Zac Posen curated a Spotify playlist for his new lookbook [Styleite]
  • Alexander Wang showed colour-changing clothes during fashion week [Technical.ly]
  • Warby Parker tops list of top 10 retail innovators [Fast Company]
  • London Fashion Week: Nokia and Fyodor Golan create ‘world’s first’ smart skirt [Marketing]
  • Net-a-Porter puts its fashion sense on paper in new print magazine [BrandChannel]
  • Miu Miu unveils ‘Spark and Light’ short film [WWD]
  • Sass & Bide launches 360-degree shoppable ad [PSFK]
  • Bloomingdale’s hosts live-styling event on Instagram to drive interaction [Luxury Daily]
  • The new Moda Operandi app is like Tinder for designer clothes [NY Observer]
  • Instagram is shaping up to be the world’s most powerful selling tool [Forbes]
  • Seven ways retailers are embracing tech, from body scanning to digital wallets [AdAge]
  • What’s so alluring about a woman known as Man Repeller? [NY Mag]

Twitter Mirror arrives at fashion week with Matthew Williamson

13 Feb

twittermirrorMatthew Williamson is introducing the Twitter Mirror backstage at its London Fashion Week show this season.

Already becoming a regular feature of events such as The Grammys, The Oscars and even NBA games, this is a tablet usually positioned off-stage that enables celebs to snap selfies and autopost them to the event in question’s Twitter feed.

This will be the first time it is used at a fashion week. Williamson will have it set up for models to interact with in the build up to Sunday’s show. Each shot will be placed in a bespoke frame by the designer that reflects the new autumn/winter 2014/15 collection and its inspiration.

According to the brand’s head of digital, Rosanna Falconer, the aim was to give fans of the brand access behind-the-scenes in much more of a natural way than ever before. In previous seasons, Williamson shows have seen Vine used to reveal the details of the collection in real-time. Without intending to be, the best ones have always been when the models wearing the looks have been a little cheeky.

“This time we wanted to strip away the camera and the photographer, so it was just the models left, and see what we ended up with,” said Falconer.

Vine will be used during the show itself, with three posts revealing key pieces in full narrative – from sketch, to beading and final look. The brand will also continue its #ohmw campaign, handing out props branded with the hashtag to encourage attendees to similarly tweet and Instagram photos of themselves.

Tommy Hilfiger opens ‘social concierge’ service to 8 million+ followers for #NYFW

9 Feb

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Tommy Hilfiger is opening up its social concierge initiative to its online following this fashion week season. First launched at its spring/summer 2014 show in September, this service enables users to request bespoke assets – pictures through to collection information – in real-time.

The aim is to provide immediate customised access to the collection and the show, in order to enable social media storytelling.

This was only offered to media and influencers physically in attendance in September, but Monday’s show at the Park Avenue Armory in New York, will invite any of Tommy Hilfiger’s eight million followers on Facebook, 473,000 on Twitter and 155,000 on Instagram, as well as global media, to participate.

A staff of roughly 100 photographers – up from 30 in September – will be on hand to fulfil the personalised requests. They will be both on- and off-site, receiving requests via email and Twitter, and working to respond as quickly as possible.

“Efficiency is a top priority,” a spokesperson at the company told me. “Blink and the moment is over – media and consumers don’t want to wait to see coverage, and the social concierge facilitates that process.”

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While there’s no automation involved, it is perhaps inevitable many of the requests will be similar or the same, like a backstage make-up shot, or a picture of Tommy himself, maybe one of the model opening the show (last season Jourdan Dunn), or a detailed view of one of the pieces – therefore easing the load.

An image bank will be created accordingly for the team to draw from throughout the event, but they are also willing to gather more specific assets both backstage and front of house. Fans are actively encouraged to be as creative and original with their requests as they like. Last season saw bespoke deliveries ranging from a personal handwritten message from certain models to an image of Tommy with his thumbs up.

Avery Baker, CMO of the Tommy Hilfiger group, said: “This ‘beat-the-clock’ mentality is an important component of amplifying our brand message in the new digital age of fashion where coverage and commentary are happening in-the- moment before it’s on to the next!”

Tommy Hilfiger is also hosting a runway “Instameet”, inviting 20 local Instagrammers to join onsite on show day and receive a guided tour of the set, including backstage. The initiative is in collaboration with Brian Difeo (@bridif) and Anthony Danielle (@takinyerphoto), both influential New York Instagram users. The hashtags to follow include #tommyfall14 and #nyfwinstameet.

JC Penney tried, but failed to nail social marketing during Super Bowl XLVIII

3 Feb

Last year’s Super Bowl game was all about the success Oreo achieved with its Dunk in the Dark instant Twitter response. While lots of brands played with social this time round – from Tide to Chobani – no one quite nailed it in the same way, or certainly not with a legitimate real-time feel to it.

JC Penney however, was one that tried. The US department store posted two tweets throughout the evening with numerous typos in them. Needless to say, even in a sea of 25 million tweets (up from last year’s 24.1 million), they quickly went viral.

A drunken employee with access to the corporate social accounts was the inevitable assumption. Not surprising with copy that read: “Who kkmew theis was ghiong tob e a baweball ghamle. #lowsscorinh 5_0.” And: “Toughdown Seadawks!! Is sSeattle going toa runaway wit h this???”

In no time at all, they’d received upwards of 19,000 retweets and 8,000 favourites each. Things then got even better when other brands weighed in – Macy’s amusingly denied responsibility, Kia asked whether they needed a designated driver, and perhaps the best of all, Snickers looped in its own ongoing campaign concept by saying: “Eat a #SNICKERS, you’re not you when you’re hungry RT @JCPenney Who kkmew theis was ghiong tob e a baweball ghamle. #lowsscorinh 5_0.”

It was a brilliant marketing ploy – JC Penney was just about to respond with something groundbreaking, bang on target for the ever eager, second screen consumer. Weren’t they?

Alas, mittensgate. Yes mittens. The JC Penney social team were wearing mittens. New York / New Jersey was so cold they couldn’t possibly tweet in any other way (although it turns out it actually wasn’t), so they had to keep their fingers wrapped up in cosy mittens and desecrate all over what could have been a spectacular social hijack in the process. #tweetingwithmittens: how disappointing.

According to the follow-up posts, the initiative was designed to promote the retailer’s Team USA mittens for the upcoming Sochi Winter Olympics. From one cold sporting event (or not) to the next (also a case of, or not)…

Kate Coultas, a spokesperson for JC Penney, told BuzzFeed: “We knew Twitter would be very active but wanted to find a way to stay above the Super Bowl fray and instead create our own narrative. Given it was cold, and we are selling Go USA mittens — we thought it could be a fun stunt!”

Perhaps I’m being a touch harsh, the move has after all generated a ton of buzz, not to mention coverage across multiple major marketing publications, and all that without the hefty $4 million TV media buy. That said, without the best recent sales history, it just feels like there might have been somewhat of a slightly wasted opportunity in focusing merely on a pair of gloves for sale.

As Business Insider, who referred to the ploy as “frankly, a bit lame”, said: “It’s sort of hard to gauge the actual sentiment toward the campaign, as the Twitter bios of the people who interacted with JCPenney’s posts indicate that most of them are involved in media in one way or another.” This writer included.

Digital snippets: adidas, Louis Vuitton, Neiman Marcus, Bitcoin, American Apparel

20 Jan

Here’s a highlight of the best stories in the fashion and tech space over the past couple of weeks…

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  • adidas launches Stan Smith pop-up store, includes 3D-printing station (as pictured) [Dexigner]
  • Louis Vuitton debuts spring campaign on Instagram [Refinery29]
  • Neiman Marcus CEO apologises for data breach, offers free credit monitoring [The Verge]
  • Overstock CEO: Why we’re accepting Bitcoins [CNBC]
  • Five reasons why American Apparel is bullish on Twitter [AdWeek]
  • Aerie’s unretouched ads ‘challenge supermodel standards’ for young women [Huffington Post]
  • Warby Parker launches interactive 2013 annual report [Laughing Squid]
  • Wet Seal hires 16-year-old to build its following on Snapchat [AdAge]
  • François-Henri Pinault puts his money where his mobile is via Square, hints at future for luxury world buying into tech [FT Material World]
  • Show business: are fashion shows still relevant? [BoF]
  • Beacons: what they are, how they work, and why Apple’s iBeacon technology is ahead of the pack [Business Insider]
  • Personalisation is key for beauty omnichannel strategy: L’Oréal Luxe exec [Luxury Daily]
  • Try on virtual make-up and pay with your hand with retail tech at CES 2014 [BrandChannel]

2013: a designer meets digital year in review

23 Dec

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What a busy year it’s been…

From 3D printing taking its first trip down the New York Fashion Week catwalk, to the launch of Vine and Instagram videos, not to mention the continuing debate about the role of bloggers as influencers, the increased focus on the potential market size of wearables, and Oxford Dictionaries’ word of the year as ‘selfie’one thing after another has rapidly impacted the role of innovation in this niche fashion x digital space.

Below then, are 10 of the posts you loved the most on F&M this year. It’s an interesting collection, nodding to familiar ideas like storytelling and crowdsourcing, as well as higher quality content, and a general reassessment of what it is that actually works in this space. Video content does of course also have its place, as does the continuing power of celebrity.

Thank you for reading and see you in 2014!

All the interactive elements accompanying John Lewis’ #bearandhare Christmas ad

26 Nov

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Hopefully by now you will have all seen, or at least heard about, John Lewis’ epic £7 million Christmas ad: The Bear and The Hare, created by adam&eve DDB.

The hand-animated tale has received an enormous 8.7 million views on YouTube since launch on November 8, and according to reports, helped drive sales of £101.45 million in the British department store in the week that followed, up 10.7% on 2012.

Despite the fact the spot premiered on TV in the UK during The X-Factor (played as an entire two-minute ad break), this campaign lives well beyond its traditional format. Here’s a breakdown of some of the more interactive ways how: 

  • An accompanying e-book called ‘The Bear who had never seen Christmas’ has been introduced for iPad, iPhone and Android. It features a series of touch-to-activate features, including a treasure hunt throughout the pages of the story in order to decorate a Christmas tree at the end, and a musical component for kids to tap their screens along to  
  • As with last year’s snowmen, the two main characters, Bear and Hare, each have their own Twitter profiles. Following them reveals all sorts of insights into their friendship: Hare planning to tickle Bear in his sleep, and Bear snoozing through the majority of it only waking briefly now and again to tweet out a line of Zzzzzzzzz’s
  • A Christmas card maker allows consumers to create their own personalised e-cards too. A selection of templates featuring the different woodland animals can be selected from first, then a personal picture uploaded or chosen by connecting with Facebook. Lastly, a message can be added before sharing it over social, downloading it to send via email or print out, and/or adding it to the online gallery

 

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Digital snippets: Michael Kors, Banana Republic, Macy’s, Kate Spade, John Lewis, L’Oréal, Juicy Couture, Sephora

11 Nov

A short break here means there’s a stack of content to catch up on. Below are the top links for stories surrounding fashion and digital during my recent fortnight of travels. Hours of fun…

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  • Michael Kors’ widely hated Instagram ad was actually a massive success; received almost four times as many likes as the average post [Business Insider
  • John Lewis 2013 Christmas ad beats 2012 ad total YouTube views within days of release [The Drum]
  • Banana Republic, CNNMoney and CNBC among top Twitter accounts during TWTR IPO [TechCrunch]
  • Like what you see? Kate Spade video ad designed for instant shopping [Mashable]
  • L’Oréal Paris launches make-up vending machines in NYC subway [Fashionista
  • Juicy Couture to be first brand to advertise using Snapchat Stories [The Drum]
  • At Sephora, mobile-first means ‘connecting’ the customer’s experiences [eMarketer]
  • Neiman Marcus teams up with Shapeways to offer 3D printed holiday capsule collection [PSFK] 
  • Printemps sets e-commerce strategy [WWD
  • Cartier North America CEO stresses importance of carefully curated digital presence [Luxury Daily]
  • How can retailers make it easier to buy jeans online? [Econsultancy]
  • On the same theme: This app can find your true bra size by taking two selfies of your breasts [Business Insider
  • Vanessa Traina launches new curated e-commerce venture The Line [BoF]
  • Fashion bloggers see a missed opportunity to monetise Instagram posts – why aren’t links allowed? [AdWeek
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