In the fashion industry, nothing is as important as your brand’s image. Hugo Boss and Ralph Lauren are renowned for their intense resistance to black-market imitations of their product. For them, their reputation is everything and they’ll do anything they can to protect it from being damaged. Marketing campaigns can help you shape public perception of your brand.
A well-crafted marketing campaign can not only help you control the narrative surrounding your brand, it can also put your products in front of interested parties. Targeted promotions can turn brand awareness into sales. Recognising the importance of marketing is imperative to realising your ambitions. And there are a variety of marketing channels out there that you can use to expand your business.
Creating a brand identity
As a designer, you might have a clear idea of how you want your brand to be perceived by the public. That doesn’t necessarily mean public perception of your business mirrors your desired impression. Taking the time to define what your brand stands for, how it operates and who it is designed for can help you rectify this disparity in your brand’s image.
Consistent messaging is at the heart of forging a brand identity. You have to take the time to hash out your values, carve out your position in the market as well as settle on your tone of voice. Streetwear brand Palace is famed for its irreverent tone in their product copy, which separates them from their competitors and gives potential customers a little laugh while they browse their products.
Know your audience
Without doing your due diligence before you start marketing, you can suffer from a scattershot approach that yields you very little. Conversely, choose to zero in on one particular kind of customer and you can get pigeonholed as only catering to one particular market. Working on your messaging constantly and evolving it and refining it as time passes and your goals change is an important factor in any brand’s continued success.
Using data to make informed decisions
Collecting data on your target audience allows you to understand their likes and dislikes. By accumulating more and more information, you can make informed decisions about the way your products appear to users online and get an in-depth understanding of what prompts them into making a purchase.
Branding consultants, for example, know what colour palettes first-time visitors to your site like to see. They also know how social media users are likely to react to a targeted ad prompting them to visit a particular product page. By gathering information on interested customers, you can begin to shape a definitive portrait of the different kinds of customers. You can then exploit these more complete demographics to more effectively market your products and bolster sales.
There are a number of different methods you can use to collect this data. Competitions, sign-up offers and discount codes are all different ways you can drum up interest in your brand, offer real value to new customers and collect useful data sets for personalised marketing.
Leading brands run seeding missions regularly to get their products into the wardrobes of tastemakers. Instagram snaps shared by models, actors and musicians can quickly set in motion new trends which are picked up by media outlets and, from there, make their way out to the general populace. The right celebrity getting caught in an item of clothing by a member of the public or a member of the paparazzi is enough to spark interest in a brand.
Appeal to platforms with a visual component
In the world of fashion, new trends are primarily disseminated in one of two areas: social media and YouTube. While social media caters to gossip and discussion about the clothing of people in the public eye, YouTube provides content for a more committed and involved audience.
Its format really lends itself to the fashion industry – you can travel along with your favourite channels as they vlog their way through Fashion Week or take a tour of their winter wardrobe.
Earn the admiration of a fashion-focused channel and you’ll likely receive sales from their subscriber base too. That is why it so important to cultivate relationships with influential figures in these spaces.
Fast fashion brands owe their ubiquity to their sustained use of targeted ads on social media. Now massive online retailers like Boohoo and Shein were able to build their reputation through sites like Facebook and Instagram. As co-founder of Boohoo, Carol Kane, remarked in an interview with fashion business trade publication Drapers:
“If you have that imagery out there you are perceived as a much larger business than you actually are.”
Highly targeted social media campaigns can create the impression that your brand is much larger than it actually is.
There’s been a clampdown on the previously opaque marketing campaigns ran by influencers on social media. A new level of transparency has limited the effectiveness of such advertising but it still nevertheless gets your product in front of. By understanding the psychology of social media – and understanding the demographics each influencer can pander to – you can create a hive of interested users rapidly.
Keep pace with the changing face of fashion marketing
The new power players in the fashion industry have their forward thinking marketing strategies to thank for their privileged positions. Online behemoths like Shein and Boohoo were early adopters of influencer marketing. They built relationships with influential figures on different platforms and provided them with product in return for coverage.
Until very recently – when new laws demanded social media users disclose any of their relationships with brands – it was almost impossible to distinguish between a user tagging the brand in their posts because they were simply a fan of it or if they had been compensated for doing so. Today, transparency around influencer marketing has dampened some of its impact.
Seeking out the next ‘influencer marketing’ by trialling different methods of marketing your brand and being committed enough to sink time and money into pursuing these strategies can prove wildly successful long-term. You should always keep an eye out for new opportunities for your brand to steal a march on the competition.Last modified: April 15, 2021