Yesterday I attended the first ever conference on the state of social media and the fashion industry: The Fashion140 conference: “How Social Media is Changing our Business”, co-produced by Jeff Pulver (@JeffPulver) of the 140Conf and Lilly Berelovich of Fashion Snoops (@fashionsnoops).
Check out the video here (bonus: you will see me in a 5-sec interview 🙂
The conference was held at the snazzy Alice Tully Hall at the Lincoln Center, NYC — a perfect, upscale location to host all the fashionistas that showed up, dressed to the nines. And there were lots!
Fashion140 served as an aggregating platform by bringing together some of the top people in this industry to give an overview and taste of how real-time Web and social media – from Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Mobile and more – are being used and how they are impacting and reshaping the fashion industry, as we speak!
The line up of speakers was truly amazing. Each and everyone brought an enormous amount of wealth and real experience in social media to share with the audience. All smart, savvy business people.
After listening, talking, connecting and tweeting all day (my fingers nearly fell off by the end of the day) it was absolutely clear that social media is a POWERFUL tool for the fashion industry, and those that are using it are benefiting enormously.
This industry thrives, flourishes and gets its high on the latest and greatest fashion news, trends, forecasting, hot gossip. And the faster this information can be delivered, the better. To quote Lilly from the fashionsnoops panel discussion: “We need content fast. And fast is not fast enough. Social media makes content available at the speed of light in the fashion industry!”
Social media makes this possible! Social media was MADE for the fashion industry. It fits like a glove.
What social media is doing is connecting the dots, crossing over industries, people, cultures and countries in real-time, turning the huge diverse fashion world into a small diverse fashion village. Social media and the Web are making this information so easily accessible to everyone, big and small, from the designer, to the retailer, to the consumer. All this information is at the touch of our fingertips. Our iPad, iPhone, laptop fingertips!
So here’s my “Darwinian” prediction: Those in the fashion industry that are embracing social media will thrive, be strong and out shine. Those that don’t will get weak, be mediocre, will be hanging by a thread, and even ultimately die out. I don’t mean to be the profit of doom here, but I do believe its true. Just listen to the speakers from the conference to hear their success stories and how their business is thriving through social media.
Here are the most pertinent and simple messages I came away with that have also been the cornerstone of my social media strategy for my clients:
- Be authentic. Be yourself. Be real. Be genuine
- Engage. This is not a one way dialogue, its two-way
- Content is King. Create rich, quality content that people will rush back for
- KISS. Keep It Simple and Shareable
- Quality not Quantity. Its not about how many followers you have, its who they are and what they mean to your business
This is the best advice I can give and will be the ultimate success of a brand’s social media presence and longevity.
So those of you who have not yet engaged in social media, don’t get your knickers in a knot. Its not too late to join the social media runway. Make sure you have a social media strategy and social media plan. Start small, with baby steps and go forth and engage!
Fashion140: This was a first, and a feather in your cap. We cant wait for the second show!
PS: Best quote all day from the conference was from @CarolBrodieHSN “I’m tweetarded” so cute, it still makes me smile every time…(she’s actually one smart business woman)