Creative Ideas To Market Your Fashion Brands And Increase Your Sales.
Digital marketing for fashion brands is full of a variety of different approaches that your business can take making it incredibly difficult to know just where exactly you need to start. Here are some tips to help you create a successful fashion marketing strategy for clothing businesses and brands.
1: Get a Website
Shopping habits have changed and consumers are increasingly preferring to shop online rather than visiting a physical location. For you, this means getting a website if you don’t already have one; this means going from a fashion brand to a fashion eCommerce brand.
2: Have a Mobile Presence
Now that you (hopefully) have a website, we move to digital marketing for the fashion industry. Similar to our propensity for online shopping, we’re substituting keyboards for screens and are opting to browse the web with our smartphones rather than desktops. As a fashion brand, this means getting a responsive website that resizes content according to the screen it resides in. Not doing so will lead to subpar experience for your mobile users, which will deter them from further interactions with your brand. This is especially important in the fashion industry because many consumers see things they like as they go about on their day, and if they happen to see something you offer but can’t load it on your site, you can be they’ll go to a competitor.
3: Join the Social World
Social media marketing for fashion brands is an absolute must. Not only can you use it to connect with your audience and build a relationship with them, but you can also use certain platforms like Instagram to show off and promote your products. Additionally, you can integrate your store with certain channels like Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest, meaning that if your audience sees something they like as they browse through your catalogue, they can buy it right then and there.
Facebook Ads: Most people are not ready to buy immediately upon seeing an ad or visiting your website. With retargeting you’re able to reach the same people that were thinking about buying your product with reminder ads.
If they don’t purchase—let’s say after a week—you can give them a slight discount in the ad to get them to act. Retargeting people who have abandoned their shopping cart is also a fantastic way to generate sales that otherwise would have been lost.
A Giveaway in Instagram:
If you have a very popular item in your store, run a giveaway strictly on Instagram. For the giveaway have your Instagram followers comment on why they want to win the item in the photo and then tag three of their friends that would want the gift as well. (Who will often comment and tag another three friends!) Instagram giveaways can become a regular feature for your brand, offering a new item at the beginning of each month.
Make sure you use beneficial and/or recognizable hashtags for the item giveaway. Create a special hashtag just for the giveaway program, that you will use each time.
Running an Instagram campaign will increase your followers and brand awareness among Instagram users.
4. Create style guides to show your visitors how to wear or incorporate your items into their everyday life.
If you own a fashion brand that sells a variety of clothing items, put together a style guide for your website so that visitors and subscribers can get ideas on how to wear your clothing, and even incorporate pieces into their existing wardrobe.
Don’t limit yourself to just one guide. Style guides can be done seasonally (spring, summer, fall, winter), for special occasions (wedding, party, picnic), holidays (4th of July, Christmas, New Year’s), and for more topical themes: travel, work, weekend, beach.
Guides can be listed as a special section on your website and incorporated into your blog, where you can provide more in-depth information on each item in the collection. Try telling a story with the style guide to interest your customer.
5. Attach an Influencer to Your Brand
Speaking of social media, some of the best fashion social media campaigns revolve around influencers. For those who don’t know, influencers are people within your industry/niche who have large fan followings and command attention — when an influencer posts, others follow. For example, one of the best ways to promote your clothing line is to get an influencer to Tweet pictures of them wearing some of your clothes.
6. Create gift guides year-round for your ideal buyer’s life events to inspire them to buy.
Depending on the type of ecommerce store you own and your ideal buyer, create gift guides for life occasions. People buy gifts year round, not just Christmas, so promote your products by creating gift guides for Mothers Day, Fathers Day, graduation season, Valentine’s Day, weddings, anniversaries, baby showers, etc.
Gift guides should be available on your website and can be sent in target emails to customers. You can also promote gift guides on all social media (with images, of course).
These gifts guides are a collection of items that you sell on your shop that would fit a certain category for gifting. For example; for Mother’s Day if your brand sells women’s items, you could create a collection of perfect gifts for mom. Create a special landing page on your website with the list of shoppable items. You could also create a digital ebook with a magazine style gift guide. With ebooks make sure you include links to your ecommerce store so they are easy to purchase.
7. Remember customers’ Special days to build brand loyalty.
Send your customers a happy birthday card via snail mail with a coupon code (#happybirthday). “Happy Birthday Sara, Here’s our birthday gift! Enjoy!”
Speaking of snail mail, you might periodically do a snail mail blast to your customers with an upcoming sale or to debut a new clothing line. People love getting things in the mail and it means you’re going the extra step outside the digital world. This will reinforce brand awareness and build loyalty. But you should always tie your non-digital activity like snail mail offers to digital so you know if your efforts are working. For example, include a code that is only available to the customers who received the letter. That way you’re able to track offline activities.
Make sure your campaign messages resonate with your audience by reaching them everywhere—marry up offline and online channels for a truly integrated campaign.
8. Launch a blog or, if you already have one, keep up with it.
Provide constant valuable information to your audience via a blog.
Blog posts should be regularly released (same day[s] of the week, same time of day) so your readers know when to visit, they should also be visually interesting and generally less than 500 words. Short, sweet, and to the point—which is what most readers are looking for these days. There will be times that your online digital marketing strategy will require a longer (1500-2000 word) post with numerous photos and maybe even a video.
Blogs are used as a way to promote products, let consumers know who you are, and provide them with advice. You can personalize your blog by writing about an employee, how your items are created from drawing to production , or how you choose your pieces in your collections. Discuss current trends and feature items in your brand that fit those trends. For your more popular pieces, pair them in a style feature with a more obscure item to garner interest and show how to pair up different pieces from your store.
9. Nurture people that are not ready to buy to turn them into a customer later.
When someone first comes to your shop they are not always ready to buy. Make sure to capture their email address and have an automated email series that slowly feeds them new content and you’ll also learn their buying preferences, like how many emails it took for the person to turn into a customer. You’ll learn what type of products they prefer by what they click on in the emails and day and time they open their emails.
10. Email a reminder to people who left items in their shopping cart to increase conversion rates.
People add items to their shopping cart and then forget all about them. Send a reminder email to those who added items to their shopping cart but didn’t buy. Send them in intervals: the next day, the next week, and then maybe the next month, along with a discount code to encourage purchase.
In order to send reminder emails, your website visitors will need to have an account, so make sure you make it very easy for visitors to create accounts on your website.
11. Run a promotion during holidays to increase sales and capture attention when buyers are more aware.
Depending on the time of year, you could provide different incentives to buyers.
If it’s New Year, have a series of emails go out to your email subscribers with a digital marketing strategy that focuses on compounding discounts. For example, you could promote 12 days of giving and offer a discount each day on a different product. Day one you discount shoes, day two dresses, etc. Give your subscribers a reason to share their email discounts with their friends and on social media.
Every seasonal incentive should also be shared on social media: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, as well as your blog.
12. Personalise Everything
Ecommerce websites reports that 43% of purchases are influenced by personalised recommendations or promotions, and that 75% of consumers want brands to personalise messages, offers and experiences. What’s important to note here apart from the fact that personalisation will help you sell more is that consumers don’t just want personalised messages with their name; they want their whole experience with you to be personal. They want you to know them and their preferences, and if you’re going to promote something, you better make sure it’s something they’re interested in. When it comes down to it, personalisation is what creates successful fashion marketing campaigns.
13.Focus on Your Visuals
Visuals are important for all brands, but more so for fashion brands that depend on aesthetics to attract and keep customers. If you upload something that’s meant to be seen, whether it’s an image or a video, make sure it’s high quality and looks good. These may seem like no-brainers, but you’d be surprised at the amount of brands with pixelated or blurry images that paint their products in an unflattering light. Don’t be like them — always capture as many angles as possible and let your products speak for themselves.
Challenges In Digital Fashion
1. There is a large amount of competition.
Everyone dreams of becoming the next big name in the fashion industry. Unfortunately that status is reserved for only a select few. Because it is so easy to break into the fashion merchandising world, the amount of competition someone may have will be enormous. Many entrepreneurs find themselves even selling the same fashion products. This can make it difficult for someone to get their foot in the door.
2. Trust can be difficult to establish.
If you’re just getting started with fashion merchandising, then you will need to work on establishing trust with your core segments. There’s just no getting around this fact. People are going to be wary of you until you are able to prove yourself. Reviews and testimonials are a good first step, but what you really need are satisfied customers who give you free word-of-mouth marketing. That takes an initial investment that not every fashion entrepreneur is willing to take.
3. The pay scale can be very difficult to predict.
Fashion merchandising can go through severe droughts from time to time. This happens even if you’ve made all of the right connections within the industry. There will also be floods of success, so it is important to make sure your budget is structured to help you get through the difficult times. Otherwise it may be difficult to survive.
4. User Generated Content
Unhappy customers are likely to complain about a brand on social media. User-generated content comes with a large amount of credibility from consumers. Therefore, brands must keep on top of unhappy customers and try to make them happy before they spread too much hate, ultimately leading customers away. Unfortunately, “there is not much a marketer can do to prevent these occurrences.The best way around it is to “immediately respond and neutralize harmful posts”. Controlling this is important for fashion companies, as there are so many alternatives so customers can easily find an alternative brand.
5. Time commitment
A major challenge in digital merchandising is that it is time intensive Meaning that we have to fulfil our commitment on time. It may be in terms of delivery schedules, or live customer queries in chatbots or Emails. The focus is placed on establishing long-term relationships that can turn into more sales.. If a company does not have an employee that is dedicated purely to this area, the company’s tactics will not be successful in reaching new customers. Therefore, when deciding this area of concern, companies must first analyse if they can rise to this time commitment.
3. There are always technical issues which need to be solved.
Websites can go down. Hosting companies have server errors which need to be fixed. Fashion components can change slightly from year to year, but create big ripples that can effect your merchandising business. This means there is a great variety of tasks which need to be performed daily and this limits boredom, but it also creates challenges that can be difficult to solve.
Digital Fashion can be a fairly easy and fun way to increase your brand awareness and sales. While it’s not necessary for you to employ all tactics I’ve outlined here, you will probably find that each one individually will increase sales, brand awareness, or your community. So the more you utilize, the stronger your brand presence will be.
Fashion merchandising show that there is a niche which can be highly beneficial for a passionate entrepreneur. If the challenges can be appropriately managed, then consider giving this industry a second look.