- Fashion brands are transforming customer connections with innovative digital marketing strategies, including interactive technology, social media, and augmented reality.
- User-generated content is a valuable and authentic component of social media campaigns.
- Fashion marketers must use these approaches strategically to create memorable experiences and forge connections that drive results.
Technological advances and the demand for personalisation have transformed the way brands market themselves and their products to customers. In recent years, fashion brands have embraced the more innovative approach to digital marketing, with incredible results that have been proven to engage customers. These digital-first strategies showcase the creativity of this industry and are the perfect example of how businesses can use digital marketing to create immersive experiences.
Using interactive technology
Interactive technology is a fantastic way of generating a buzz that leaves a lasting impression, and it’s something forward-thinking brands are using more and more. With the right strategy in place, brands can encourage customers to participate and engage with digital marketing campaigns that leave an impression.
Interactive technology ranges from social media to apps and virtual reality, and the capabilities of this format are constantly evolving. Keeping visitors engaged with long-form content in today’s fast-paced world can be a challenge for businesses, but interactive technology makes storytelling incredibly effective and a powerful resource for brands.
An example of this technology being put to use was in January 2022 when H&M introduced its virtual clothing line by organising a competition, inviting customers to submit creative names for their featured looks. The virtual garments were offered as prizes, with winners given the opportunity to ‘try on’ virtual pieces that could be shared on social media. The gamification of this campaign was so successful that they teamed up with the metaverse later that same year for another innovative campaign.
This campaign can teach fashion brands that leveraging interactive platforms and user-generated content can help to create memorable experiences that build connections with customers. It breaks down that wall between businesses and audiences, creating two-way interactions that are personalised.
Regardless of the industry, social media is a marketing tactic every business has in common. But some brands are more successful than others. Social media has become an industry standard for fashion brands to reach their target audience and increase brand awareness.
By leveraging the likes of influencer marketing, user-generated content and community building, fashion brands can reach their target audience and drive engagement and conversions more effectively. Brands can run the risk of relinquishing some of the control of their brand message or become vulnerable to online security incidents.
Building a community on social media allows fashion brands to share user-generated content, which is viewed as more authentic and trustworthy, and create engaging posts that bring like-minded people together. Brands can participate in fostering connections and creating communities of shared relevance connected by similar interests and values.
For Milan Fashion Week, Prada worked with influencer Charli D’Amelio — one of TikTok’s most followed people, with over 150 million followers. D’Amelio was invited to the show and given a wardrobe of Prada garments to choose from, in return for the renowned influencer creating several videos of herself dancing during the event to popular TikTok sounds. Charli’s largely Gen Z fan base meant that Prada could reach a younger audience and increase brand awareness, making it a successful revenue-generating campaign.
Partnerships with social media influencers and engaging in live streams or social sharing at exclusive events can generate a lot of online buzz and engagement, as well as enabling brands to reach new demographics. As before, be aware of privacy risks with live streaming events so having proper safeguarding and adequate detection and response measures in place is essential.
For example, Estee Lauder left customer data and access exposed during an influencer campaign where anyone was able to manipulate their AR face filter app and see user photos. The campaign had to be shut down to address these vulnerabilities.
Experimenting with Augmented Reality
Augmented reality is an innovative technology that fashion brands have leveraged to create engaging digital experiences and interactive campaigns. For example, Gucci, Michael Kors and Zara have all used AR filters on social media platforms like Snapchat and Instagram to allow customers to virtually try on items of clothing or accessories.
By opening up their digital dressing rooms through AR, fashion brands provide an immersive, convenient and personalised way for customers to interact with their products. AR has also been used to bring ecommerce experiences into physical stores. Kate Spade’s AR pop-up shop allowed customers to point their phones at store products to view details, reviews and styling suggestions on their devices, blending the online and in-person shopping experience.
Campaigns like these leverage augmented reality to generate social interest, boost online and in-store traffic, and forge new connections between customers and brands in a creative way. Using AR strategically, fashion marketers can craft memorable journeys and shareable moments that captivate customers.
Adidas is one such example of a leading fashion brand experimenting with AR, with virtual try-ons through their app, while Zara has deployed AR displays in over 120 stores so customers can view different looks using their phones. Similarly, luxury brand Louis Vuitton have transformed 35 of its storefronts to magnetic shows that create an immersive experience that enhance brand loyalty and engagement. As time goes on, we’re likely to see AR feature more heavily not just online but in physical stores too, enhancing the customer experience and giving brands a new avenue for marketing and building brand recognition.
Innovative digital campaigns allow fashion brands to engage customers in new ways, but also bring new responsibilities. Interactive experiences, influencer partnerships and augmented reality can forge connections that drive results, if wielded strategically.
When done well, technology-driven fashion marketing leads to shareable social media challenges, virtual showrooms, live streaming and more. Striking this balance allows brands to make an impression and keep customers loyal. Innovation starts with commitment to experience, and the brands that keep this at the heart of their campaigns will shape stories worth sharing and returning for.