The first Fashion Weeks of this year are fast-approaching and brands globally are readying themselves for the FW20 season. Fashion Week has always been a lucrative marketing opportunity for brands, and so it is important that they leverage the correct Voices and implement the most effective strategies for maximum coverage and ROI at their show or presentation. In this article, we’ve created an essential checklist for brands to consider when preparing for Fashion Week, in order to maximize opportunities and marketing potential.
How to prepare for Fashion Week in 2020
Craft a Solid Influencer Strategy
The impact of influencers and celebrities has increased season on season when it comes to fashion week, both from inside the show and online. Previously, media outlets and celebrities were almost exclusively in attendance at fashion week, but with the increasing presence of digital creators who have a stronghold over Millennial and Gen Z markets, we have started to see a shift in the audience demographic. Aimee Song generated $1.9M in Media Impact Value™ (MIV®) just from her coverage of NYFW and PFW during the SS20 season.
However, it is important not just to invite the most followed influencers, but to really consider which Voices resonate the most with your brand, and more importantly, your target audience. Create a shortlist, considering the influencers and celebrities that have historically performed well for your brand and your competitors’ in order to maintain consistency, but also leverage those that will put out the right message. Influencers and celebrities that already love your brand are also more likely to publish consistently, giving you more user-generated content to utilize after the show. Brands with smaller budgets can make a big impact with a well-executed influencer strategy, whether from those watching or those walking. You can get people talking about your show with viral moments, therefore increasing the longevity of the conversation surrounding the collection.
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TIP: Make sure to communicate a branded event hashtag to your invitees before the show, so that all content created during the event will be easy to find.
Digitize Your Event Process
In order to streamline your process, and ensure your show runs smoothly, it’s important to digitize your events. Consolidate your seating plan online, so that everyone working at the show or presentation is able to refer back to it, and guide the right attendees to the correct positions. The check-in process can also cause show delays, and it’s important to make sure you get every attendee in on time since it’s likely their schedules will be packed as they move from show to show. Whether you go paperless by sending your invites online or use RFID technology to make checking in fast and easy, it is important to keep a digital record of your attendees, that you can refer back to when measuring your impact later.
TIP: Digitizing your events helps provide a greater ROI, as you are using fewer people and reallocating your budget in a more effective way.
Create a Strategy for Pushing Digital Assets
Digital assets are one of the key ways to maximize coverage following your fashion week show or presentation. It is important to upload images of your collection efficiently so that buyers, media and press have access directly after the show ends. This will help not only with after-show coverage but also potentially, sales. If your photos are readily available on GPS Radar directly after collection launch, media outlets can easily utilize them in articles, roundups, and social media posts, and buyers can send potential items to clients. By analyzing the downloads of the photos you upload, you are also able to understand the most popular looks and items by region, giving you a better idea of what will sell when the collection goes to market.
TIP: On GPS Radar, you can upload any public events or show afterparties you may be hosting, so that attendees can easily see the schedule and what events are on in their newsfeeds.
Benchmark Your Performance
Fashion week can be competitive, with the sheer amount of shows presenting day by day. Use this to your advantage by analyzing your competitors and what works for them. Understand and compare your Voice Mix to see whether you should be leveraging more Media outlets or Influencers, or whether you aren’t utilizing your Owned Media channels to their best advantage during events. See who generates the most MIV®, the most efficiently, and incorporate this into your fashion week strategy. Looking at historical data will help you understand the right formula when it comes to fashion week events, which could be through more experiential, shareworthy shows, shifting your audience demographics, collaborating with celebrities or drumming up more coverage in the lead up to the show.
Once your show has wrapped, don’t just leave it there. Analyze the data behind the show to see what Voices brought you the most value, which influencer partnerships paid off, and which products in the collection were the biggest hits. All of this intel is essential when it comes to your next show or collection so you can build upon your success and continue to increase your impact and MIV®.
We hope you enjoyed this essential fashion week checklist for FW20. Make sure to visit GPS Radar, so you can start uploading your collections and events: