By now there is no doubt of the standing of influencer marketing as the fastest growing digital marketing tool. It gives marketers unparalleled power and access to real-time word-of-mouth targeting. It is as if they can not only eavesdrop on conversations between friends, but they can intrude on them with discreet suggestions and recommendations of things to buy, because nowadays followers feel a strong connection to the bloggers. Many of them check religiously their blogs and social media for updates and take serious cues from the clothes, home decor and other products featured. Today’s bloggers are yesterday’s celebrities and socialites, just with a more eloquent voice and more things to say.
No other industry is more influencer-marketing driven than the fashion industry. It makes sense if we think of it, because this is where its roots are. It all started with movie stars setting fashion trends within one single appearance. Nowadays, the fashion industry is, even more, prone to using influencers, but it is more democratic: you do not need to be a movie star to have thousands of followers who are adopting your style. On the contrary, many actors and actresses are notorious for their uninspired street style.
In the past, only the famous fashion houses had the budget to hire a well-known “face” to represent their brand. The good news is that now every brand, no matter how small, can afford to get in on their share of influence. Even the bloggers with a smaller following — micro-influencers — are a better investment than traditional advertising. While having your ad in a glossy magazine does not guarantee you more than a glance with little traction from the bored reader, having your brand promoted by bloggers with small reaches still taps into hundreds of interested readers, so it has a more noticeable impact.
Fashion being one of the industries more comfortable with influencer marketing also offers many ways of collaboration between bloggers and brands. This is not limited to just blog and social media posts, but it can include, Instagram takeovers, event hosting, modelling or even product design. Involving bloggers early in the creative process can pay off, as they know their audience and offer ideas and strategies that are effective for their audience.
A great example is Aritzia’s campaign “Nowhere to Go but Everywhere” to promote their Spring/Summer 2015 collection. Aritzia used several strategies to ensure the success of their influencer marketing campaign:
- They used geo-targeting by moving the campaign from city to city and using local bloggers. For Vancouver, Aritzia used four of our most famous: Alex from To Vogue or Bust, Jill from The August Diaries, Cara from A Fashion Love Affair and Kiara from Tobruck Ave.
- They created a hashtag, #nowhereeverywhere and chose a positive theme of freedom and vacation.
- Aritzia organized a contest around the hashtag, with multiple giveaways, thus encouraging the followers to not only witness the campaign, but participate and feel part of it.
In the end, #nowhereeverywhere on Instagram got over 11 thousand posts, with extensions on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. The Vancouver bloggers alone reached an audience of over 200k followers just on Instagram. Aritzia got a lot of buzz and many of the fans of these bloggers followed in their footsteps and took pictures of themselves wearing their own Aritzia finds. It was the talk of the summer and a resounding success.
But as a fashion brand or store, you do not need to be Aritzia to use influencers. The array of bloggers is very diverse and for every brand there is bound to be at least one blogger that fits that style, budget and location. Platforms like Sidebuy make that search an easy task, so do not wait too long before starting your campaign and rip the benefits of influencer marketing.