The fashion industry is a vibrant mix of artistry, inspired design, and creative marketing. It’s where some of the most innovative statements and boundary-shredding ideas are brought to life by fashion influencers, industry trendsetters, and risk-takers. Consumers are constantly redefining new fashion trends every day. As a result, the fashion industry is a prime example of how brands can leverage social influencer marketing to create winning campaigns and better engage with consumers.
What Is a Fashion Industry Social Influencer?
A social influencer is someone who uses a social network like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, or other sites to deliver opinion pieces or feedback about a particular product. Many of these individual influencers have thousands, even millions of followers, so a simple promotion of a product can have a massive effect on the buying activities of the general public. Some of the leading social influencers in the fashion world today are Chiara Ferragni, with 5.6 million Instagram followers and 1.2 million Facebook subscribers, Kristina Bazan, Swiss model and blogger with 2 million Facebook subscribers, and Wendy Nguyen, leading fashion blogger whose YouTube videos have been watched tens of millions of times.
Why Does Social Influencer Marketing Work for the Fashion Industry?
The fashion industry is perfectly suited to digital and social influencer marketing for a variety of reasons:
- Fashion is and will likely continue to be one of the most talked about subjects on social media. How many Facebook posts, news articles or blogs have you seen that start with “This person is wearing a stunning X to the Met Gala?” What how about a picture of a fashion influencer applying Y brand of makeup with the logo clearly visible in the shot?
- The fashion industry is all about visual appeal. And, studies show that content containing a strong visual element tends to drive nearly double the engagement than words alone.
- While not all consumers are hooked on sports, automobiles, or other areas of interest, just about everyone identifies with some aspect of fashion. Fashion choices are made every day, making it an integral part of consumers’ lifestyle. This universal applicability is one reason why social influencer marketing has such a huge impact in the fashion industry.
User-Generated Content (UGC) and Social Influencer Marketing
Several key players within the fashion industry – from startups to industry legends – have employed social influencer marketing as a strategic force multiplier. User-generated content, including the plethora of blogs, tweets, podcasts, videos, photos, and other relevant posts created by fans of a brand, are incredibly powerful tools used to support the fashion influencers in the industry. Here are three examples of how UGC and using fans of a brand as your fashion influencers has ignited serious growth for fashion brands:
- JustFab– This rapidly growing online fashion retailer carries a wide selection of jewelry, handbags, denim, shoes, and more. What sets it apart is the personalized shopping experience that’s created by using specialized software that to record member shopping preferences and then using these indicators as a guide for future interactions. The company uses special fashion advocates as brand ambassadors for JustFab. The company uses the UGC from their ambassadors to increase brand awareness, all without having to invest substantial funds in traditional marketing methods.
- Tommy John– This revolutionary undergarment designer realized that traditional marketing methods weren’t providing the payback they were looking for in the early days of the business. Instead, they saw the business grow from word-of-mouth referrals and repeat customer business. Tommy John marketers empower customers to use UGC to create fan-level marketing pieces and then employ custom software to catalog and organize this information for use. UGC is all about brand awareness from those who most publicly and vocally promote the business – the consumer!
- Splendid/Ella Moss– With a target market that appreciates comfortable, light, airy, and Bohemian styles, Splendid seems like the perfect business to use customer feedback and content to support their company goals. In fact, Splendid is a newcomer to the UGC field and recently saw a four to six times return on investment when integrating user-generated content on their homepage.
Social influencer marketing can do so much more than provide a quick lift to a business. In fact, this philosophy is more of a long-term play, even if it does trigger results quite quickly. UGC, when used and managed appropriately, can create steady, predictable growth that will help any business to thrive – all thanks to the support of enthusiastic fans and fashion influencers.