Coco Chanel – the founder of the eponymous fashion house – framed the world of fashion very well when she said, “In order to be irreplaceable, one must always be different.” How very true, particularly when it comes to the marketing strategy every fashion brand must put in place today to help it stay ahead of its competition. Fashion is big business; the global market is projected to grow in value from $1.5 trillion in 2020 to about $2.25 trillion by 2025. And the sheer pace at which fashion runs genuinely sets it apart from other industries.
A top-notch advertising strategy is a must to help any fashion brand stand out amongst fearsome competition and help its steady growth with a solid, loyal customer base. Moreover, the strategy itself needs to evolve rapidly, never more so exemplified than the events of the past year, which unceremoniously ripped out most of the face-to-face brand touchpoint opportunities.
Digital takes the crown
Getting digital marketing right had been necessary for years before 2020, but this specific avenue became even more important during the pandemic. To a large extent, it became the only way for the world of fashion to speak to its customers – a true digital transformation.
Brick-and-mortar stores, fully or partially closed for such a long time, are only now beginning to reopen fully. As a result, acquiring foot traffic, which was never easy, has been made harder. Brands that can best promote themselves right now, potentially with clever campaign tactics, are the most likely to win out in the long run.
There’s a perception that once a customer has experienced online only for a prolonged period of time, there is no need for them to go back to physical stores. Reality speaks differently, though. According to a survey from Retail Leader, “90% of respondents said that they would be more likely to return (in-store) if they have a positive in-location experience.” This news is particularly encouraging for small brands who had little opportunity to scale online like some of the global behemoths.
Fashion icons IRL
Before homing in on the digital marketing angle, the areas any fashion-related brand needs as part of their marketing strategy are in-store events and demonstrating genuine support of their community. Adding social media to the promotional mix and a loyalty program wouldn’t do any harm either! Beyond this checklist, what does the fashion world have to nail to deliver the business success they crave? Let’s start with a relatively new phenomenon: the influencer.
While some business owners do view influencers as a scourge, influencers are the future of marketing. They’ve become a culture inextricably linked to consumerism and the rise of technology. In simple terms, it’s someone or something with the power to impact people’s buying habits (or other measurable actions) by uploading some form of original, often sponsored, content to social media platforms. Their followers are viewed as trusted voices. Companies need to work with influencers who have a following similar to the profile of customers being sought.
Target, then retarget
After leveraging the influencer, brands should retarget visitors using reminder ads to recall a product they saw before. The inclusion of a discount is an excellent tactic to push the sale over the line, and if done well, such campaigns can produce significant ROI. Hyper-personalization is required here, and adding a person’s name alone is not enough.
The very essence of fashion is its look for the wearer. If there are no visuals or delivery is of poor quality, rarely will you get that second chance at making a first impression.
It’d be easy to assume that only social media channels, such as Instagram, and chat apps like WhatsApp, have the oomph to deliver results for digital engagement in fashion. But don’t rule out the OG – SMS.
98% of SMS are opened and read, with 90% opened within three minutes. It’s ubiquitous, and people worldwide feel at home with it. Never overlook it or underestimate the mobile engagement punch it packs.
Engaging audiences is all about generating honest conversations, whether it’s about hats making a comeback or this season’s must-have sandals. Here at Mitto, we provide the best omnichannel communication solutions that bring you and your customers closer. It’s time for you to reach your customer, wear-ever they are.