January 25, 2011

Social media has permeated even the fashion world!!

Okay I shouldn't be surprised, seeing as everyone and their mothers have Facebook (yes, my mother included), but it totally threw me for a loop when I found out that Bergdorf Goodman, DKNY, and Oscar de la Renta have Twitter accounts.

I kid you not. I found this out from Business of Fashion, which is one of my favorite blogs to read.

There are many reasons why:
1. Thematically, it connects two of my favorite things in the world, fashion and making money. The latter of course is to afford the former. Haha, kidding obviously. I think it's rare that one platform is so devoted to describing just the business end of fashion (even WWD has commentary about the collections) and BOF condenses all the business news about fashion in one handy dandy Daily Digest. Did you know that J Crew is being bought out (and that Urban Outfitters made a bid but it was too low)? And that the founder of Zara is stepping down (I love Zara!!)? I didn't, until I read BOF.
2. They have great interviews. One recent one they have is with Susie Bubble, one of my favorite British fashion blogs, but the ones I love the most is a series they have called CEO Talk, where they've interviewed CEOs from firms/stores such as The OutNet.com (Net-a-Porter's online outlet store), Loewe, and Harrods. The interviews are business-focused, in-depth, and are extremely interesting to read (for me at least, I love this stuff)
3. They have great fashion exclusives, and I love the style of writing on BOF. Even if the exclusives may be on arguably shallow and frivolous subject matter (not that I personally feel this way, but some people who value computer science over fashion might), the writing is never that way and is both accessible and smart at the same time. (Kind of how I feel Vogue's writing is--I know many people think of Vogue as a shallow fashion magazine, but I really like how Vogue's articles are not filler fluff for their photographs, but actually explore interesting issues in an intelligent way).

But back to the Twitter- I think it's really interesting how these 3 fashion powerhouses are all using social media to market in a very untraditional way. I feel like marketing, and especially fashion marketing, is really about showcasing a lifestyle, and these companies are using Twitter to do that. Their Twitter accounts sound like the lifestyle of a very hip 20-something WEARING DKNY/ OSCAR/ STUFF FROM BERGDORF and just basically being awesome at life. Bergdorf also has this #BGTutorial thing where they basically use products that are sold at Bergdorf counters and Twitter a makeup tutorial (the one I read, which also comprise their most recent Tweets, was on putting on different Ellis products with tips for a flawless application). I am blown away because fashion is traditionally a super cloistered industry with zero transparency (they need to keep all their sekrets in their big runway hair), PLUS Bergdorf and Oscar aren't exactly new and young, so it's refreshing to find that they're using Twitter to appeal to a different audience than they traditionally attract. (Okay actually, I'm not sure about Bergdorf, but I'm pretty sure no regular 20 year old can afford -or have a place to wear- one of Oscar de la Renta's gorgeous gowns)
I don't even have a Twitter account. This is how hip they are (or how unhip I am)!!

Follow them on Twitter here: DKNY, Bergdorf Goodman, Oscar de la Renta

Oscar de la Renta also has a Tumblr. I actually like reading the Oscar Tumblr a lot more because I'll be honest, I really don't get Twitter, and I hate the Retweeting and hash signs (#) nonsense. Here is a screen shot of Oscar's Tumblr page as of an hour ago:

Isn't it pretty? I love the simplicity of the header, the ink and marker drawing, and just the overall chicness of the design. They blog pictures from backstage, runway show pictures, celebrities who have worn Oscar on the red carpet, Oscar features in magazines and on websites, and, my favorite, old ad campaign pictures:

Oscar de la Renta, Spring 1999

Isn't that absolutely gorgeous??

I think all of it--Tumblr, Twitter--all contribute to a greater richness of understanding about the brand and the lifestyle they represent. We've been learning in Marketing that the best way to become a market leader is not through market share, but through customer loyalty, and that is built upon increasing (perceived) customer value. I think by giving poor (I mean this in the literal financial sense of the word as well) mortals like myself unprecedented access to this rarefied world, Oscar de la Renta has earned my glowing enthusiasm for the brand! Just because I feel like they've given me an all-access pass and I'm thus super special. I mean, not that it really matters, because I'll probably never be able to afford a Oscar de la Renta gown or ever have occasion to wear it, which makes me wonder how effective this is in reaching their attractive customers, i.e. the people who actually purchase.

Whatever the case, this is how it should be done, Louis Vuitton and Chanel!! Not that working in LV was particularly glamorous or aspirational...haha.

Today I also carried 10 pounds of textbooks to class all day. I love you, Riverside Shakespeare and Modernism: An Anthology. You will give me very defined shoulders and arms by the end of the semester.

Edit: Theory also has a pretty interesting Twitter!

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