Coco Chanel once advised, “In order to be irreplaceable, one must always be different.” How do you apply that advice to fashion marketing and make it big in this fiercely competitive industry? What is the best way to break into the stylish and fast-paced fashion scene?
To help you answer these questions and more, we spoke to the pros and compiled this list of the 25 best fashion marketing ideas.
1. Capture Your Relevant Audience Using Snapchat
Crissy Bogusz, Designer and Motion Graphics Artist, Vogue International’s Snapchat Team
I’m a designer and motion graphics artist for Vogue International’s Snapchat Discover channels. Throughout my career within design for interactive, I have never before seen a bigger buzz than is currently surrounding Snapchat. If your target audience consists of a young audience, then you will not reach a bigger capacity on any other platform. Consider using Snapchat ads to reach a large-scale audience.
At Vogue, we appear on the Discover channels. We do not have a Vogue Snapchat page, which is dependent on Snapchat’s invitation. There are not many of these channels in existence. But, a recent update to the app has allowed other businesses’ Snapchat pages to appear on the Discover page alongside the few Discover channels, depending on whether the individual using Snapchat may be interested in your business.
2. Work with Influencers
Morgan King, Founder, Market Boost
Fashion trends can sometimes change faster than the seasons. For that reason, it’s important that brands have a strategy for spreading their stylish new collections as fast and effectively as possible. Having influencers (people on social media with many followers) share a selfie wearing your products is one of the best and most cost-effective ways to spread the word. You can reach out to these people via direct messaging or email. It’s not uncommon for brands to be sending thousands of free products to the “micro-celebrities” of Instagram every month.
3. Get Hired as a Fashion Expert on a Local TV Station
Paul Chittenden, Founder, Oil Trash Gear
There are so many different ways to market a fashion brand, and one of the hottest right now is influencer marketing. However, everyone is doing that right now.
Here’s something many fashion brands aren’t taking advantage of — the local news channel. News reporters are always on the lookout for good programming, and fashion is always a hot topic, such as fashion trends, how to look slimmer, seasons, looking like a celebrity on the cheap and many other countless topics. As the head of a fashion brand, you should reach out to your local TV station and offer your services as the “fashion expert” for the channel, offering commentary and stories for your area.
Your fashion brand will give you the “expert status” in the community, and it will provide tons of exposure. Remember to pitch interesting stories. This isn’t about pitching your brand, but your brand gets the benefit from your publicity. Every story you pitch should be creating value for the viewers. Do this, and you’ll be on TV in no time.
4. Stay Consistent with Your Brand
Dan Salganik, Managing Partner, VisualFizz
My recommendation for individuals in the fashion industry, in order to improve their marketing, is to stay consistent with your brand. When in fashion, your exposure is everything. If your audience doesn’t understand your brand or are seeing inconsistencies in your messaging and imagery, then they will not be interested in purchasing your product. Another recommendation is to figure out how you can differentiate. There are too many brands doing the same exact thing. If you don’t differentiate your brand from the others, you most likely will question why your marketing campaigns are getting the results you hoped for.
Having a great looking website is not enough. You also need to keep in touch with your clients to make sure that they always remember your brand. A solid email marketing strategy should help you regularly reach your clients with your the latest trends and your new fashion line. This is where email marketing comes in. This is a platform you can use to provide excellent customer experience continuously by offering deals and promotions. With Constant Contact, these tasks can be completed in a timely manner with its custom templates and other intuitive marketing features. Click here to sign up for free and see the difference
6. Use Google Shopping to Market Your Business
Preksha Madan, Vice President of Marketing, AdNabu
Not a lot of fashion brands use Google Shopping for marketing their businesses. I understand it can be tricky as well as tedious to set up, but it is also a perfect opportunity to beat your competitors and there are huge advantages, especially for fashion brands:
- Usually, it is the highest converting channel for all businesses as ads are visual
- It is a very niche marketing as you reach the audience who is really looking for the product
7. Participate in Popular Fashion Forums
Saud Ibrahim, Digital Marketing Manager, The Jacket Maker
Popular fashion forums like Styleforum and The Fashion Spot and general forums like Reddit and Quora can be great for getting sales if done right. A lot of new companies even use them to validate and generate new ideas.
8. Have a Strong Brand Mission or Values
Kevin and Stephanie Lin, Co-founders, KESTAN
With so many brands and products at their disposal, consumers are inundated with options. Having a strong brand mission will allow you to not only connect with your customers but also give them a purpose to support and ultimately encourage individuals to become brand ambassadors in an organic and authentic way. At KESTAN, we strongly believe in ethical production, factory transparency and the use of eco-fibers in our garments. We find that when the values of our customers align with our brand ethos, they naturally want to support our brand. Often, they’re also our most authentic promoters as well.
9. Take a Unified Commerce Approach
Hannah Stewart, Head of Marketing, Yieldify
E-commerce and brick and mortar should be on the same team. Many fashion brands are known for their in-store experience, and e-commerce brands need to learn from the successes of the in-store experience. Sephora is known as the go-to source for makeup, and it’s popular for its lenient return policy, generous samples and free 15-minute makeovers. While the makeovers aren’t possible for its e-commerce store, the retailer can offer the same return and exchange policy easily, allow in-store returns and exchanges, offer free gifts with purchase, gift wrapping, rewards programs and more. When all channels are working together seamlessly, brands and retailers create customers for life.
Your website needs to look professional and showcase what your shop has to offer new members. Wix lets you create a professional website in just a few clicks with an easy drag-and-drop website builder. Choose from dozens of fashion templates that look great on desktops and mobile devices. Wix offers a free basic plan and premier plans priced between $5 and $25 per month.
11. Support a Cause
Christine Bagot, Co-founder, Texas Standard
In reaching a wider market in the retail fashion space, we believe you show your customers you care by investing in their causes. When we decided to create Texas Standard, it was important that our company have a larger purpose and directly giving back to Texas communities became a key part of our mission. ‘Ten to Texas’ is our initiative, which dedicates 10 percent of Texas Standard’s profits and donates them to our partner charities. We are currently working with Feeding Texas, Texas CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children), Habitat for Humanity Texas and the Texas Parks & Wildlife Foundation.
Our long-term vision is to add to the list of partner charities as we grow while developing volunteer opportunities for the company and our customers. We look at this strategy as a long-term sustainable investment.
Offering a monthly subscription box with a few pieces from your fashion brand gives customers a chance to actually feel the product as opposed to just seeing it while scrolling through their social media feed. Cratejoy offers both the software necessary to efficiently run a subscription service and the marketplace to connect you with customers looking for boxes to subscribe to. Using its platform, you can reach customers in a unique way and build loyalty and trust for your brand. Click here to start a free 14-day trial today.
13. Show Off Your Outfit of the Day with a Fashion Blog
Maggie Aland, Editor, Fit Small Business
Creating a blog will allow you to share a compelling story behind every outfit choice, and it is an effective venue where you can engage with your readers and potential consumers. Alternatively, you can partner with existing popular fashion bloggers and have them include pieces from your collection in their OOTDs [outfit of the days]. This can help grow interest in your brand as readers enjoy seeing how your clothing looks on real people.
14. Send Samples and Press Kits to Fashion Editors and Bloggers
KristinAnn Janishefski, Founder, The Vanguard PR
KristinAnn Janishefski from The Vanguard PR wrote that sample pieces and a press kit might be the person’s first glimpse into your brand, so you have to make them count. A press kit must be eye-catching, creative, fun and memorable. Use breathtaking photos and high-quality content to tell your story in a clear and exciting way.
Remember, editors are super busy, and they probably receive numerous press kits per week, so make sure that yours stands out.
Make your advertising budget go even further with some help from the pros at Hibu. It is one of a select few officially badged Facebook Marketing Partners in the United States who also specialize in supporting small businesses. Hibu offers social campaign creation, management and monitoring, and it’ll even run social advertising campaigns for you. As a full-service digital solutions provider, it also offers website design, search engine marketing and optimization, display advertising, digital listings management and other services that boost your online presence. Click here to get in touch with a representative today.
16. Get Noticed Through Local Press Coverage
Gavin Graham, Editor, Fit Small Business
Being featured in various local media outlets is a great way to capture the attention and interest of your target consumers. This process entails a lot of research, time and effort but the results will be well worth it. In this article, you will learn how to get local press coverage and reach a larger audience. Be deliberate in where and how you want your fashion business to be covered. Have a marketing spiel with all the relevant information you want to present about your brand. Then, be ready to meet the possible surge in demand that will hopefully follow.
17. Ride the Color of the Year Trend
Pratik Shah, Director of Marketing, Grin
Every year, Pantone comes up with Color of the Year while the fashion industry waits in anticipation.
Be ready for the moment. Have a marketing plan ready around the time of the announcement. As soon as the color is announced, start writing about it. Start engaging with your customers on the new trend. Let your in-house fashion designer record a Facebook live session on the color and what it means for the fashion trends. Curate similar products immediately and have them available for purchase. This lets your customers know that you are at the edge of fashion.
Customers need to feel that a fashion brand understands them, fits their personal style and that they can truly relate to the brand’s personality and image.
An interactive lookbook can stand out, help people “experience” your brand and inspire them to be part of your brand’s story. These are four fashion brands with amazing digital lookbooks that you would want to inspire your clothing line.
Everyone loves contests and the chance to win exciting prizes, and this is definitely a great move to make people take notice of your brand. Make sure that your mechanics are well thought out and you know the goals you want to achieve before you launch your contest.
For a fashion business, here are some ideas: an OOTD contest where participants share their best get-ups wearing your clothing pieces, a T-shirt design contest or a most creative product name/tagline/slogan contest. This article lists 25 proven online contest ideas.
20. Let Your Store Reflect Your Brand’s Unique Style
Krista Fabregas, Editor, Fit Small Business
Your physical layout will certainly impact the vibe of your store and your shopper’s overall experience. Make sure that your design and accents suit your brand’s personality and will communicate what it is all about.
It is always advisable to display your best-selling pieces front and center so that you can attract more traffic to your store. Check out these retail store floor plans and decide what will work the best with your brand.
There’s no denying that fashion involves art, which means that even the marketing campaign requires the same amount of creativity. While not all great ideas can be done within a limited budget, the examples in this article can give you the inspiration you need in creating your own.
You can’t have a fashion website without a lookbook but you can definitely design it in a way that will attract your niche market. Try giving it a theme with sections that cater to each of your target demographic. This is your opportunity to show that your style can stand with the best, so check out this article and get inspiration from the various lookbook examples.
Aside from being visible to your local community, businesses in the fashion industry also benefit from gaining recognition within their circle. The best way to make this happen is by participating in networking events that can give you opportunities to participate in larger fashion gatherings and meet influencers in the industry. This article lists five networking events that can help you break in the fashion industry.
One of the biggest industries on Instagram is fashion, so it would be a missed opportunity for any fashion entrepreneur not to harness the platform’s potential to bring in sales. However, just like any marketing platform, there are guidelines and best practices you should know if you want to get noticed by your target market. Here are eight must-follow rules for smaller fashion brands to stand out on Instagram.
The idea might be overwhelming for some but these events are part of every fashion business owner’s dreams anyway, so it’s a good idea to start early and locally. Get your local community to participate, from coming up with a theme to using residents for modeling. This would be a great way to get your business noticed by everyone, including the local press. You can even tie it up with a local celebration, support a local cause and make it an annual event with social media coverage. Read this article and find out how to get started.
Over to You
A big thank you to everyone who contributed their fabulous fashion marketing ideas.
We hope these will help you to catwalk your way gracefully and successfully into the fashion scene. What is your favorite idea from this list? Leave your comments below and let’s talk!
Looking for even more tips? View our top 25 Facebook marketing ideas.