In an ever more competitive landscape, a company can no longer rely solely on the quality of its products and services to stand out. Getting the message across convincingly is essential. The good news is there are now many ways to reach out both to buyers and consumers
The denim industry is well versed in the art of stor y-telling and brand-building. This situation raises the bar for incoming companies that need to learn to navigate the many available options, events, venues and platforms to carve out a space in the market. The beauty of denim lies in its incredible diversity and creativity. This means that companies have a rich catalogue from which to craft the most desirable story.
Placing an ad in a trade or consumer magazine, or online media, is one of the most straightforward ways to promote a brand and company. You control the message and the image that you seek to communicate and the audience you reach is that of the media’s circulation or visitor count. Though not fail proof, paid media has the advantage of being relatively easy to evaluate in terms of return on investment (ROI) and value for money. To ensure a successful campaign, it is however essential to craft the right message for the targeted audience. Ads are
ideal to publicize a new product range, launch a new logo or marketing strategy. A company should ideally tie in a public relations (PR) operation to inform the media’s staff of the new development, as this can translate into editorial coverage that will reinforce the impact of the campaign.
Diesel’s campaign stie the company’s DNA with contemporary issues .
The age of internet has vastly expanded the available channels to reach out to trade partners, buyers and consumers. Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, SnapChat, Twitter, Medium, etc. each social media platform has a specific identity and audience, and though some overlap, each should be addressed with a specific and targeted approach. The world of denim thrives on visual content, which makes Instagram the preferred platform to convey a creative message the most effectively. Facebook, for consumers, LinkedIn for trade partners, and Twitter, for journalists, allow a company or brand to communicate a targeted message to an intended
audience. Whatever platform you decide to focus on, it is essential to keep the conversation alive, replying to messages and posting news or images at regular intervals. Users are quick to notice a forgotten or abandoned feed. The key to success is to appoint a member of your staff to update social media posts or recruit a specialized agency
to ensure a dynamic social media presence.
Social media platforms are beginning to indicate which posts are sponsored by a company.
Once a brand has defined a clear message and vision, there are a wide array of brand-building options for denim mills and manufacturers.
Marketers recommend varying backgrounds in social media posts .
Tommy Hilfiger has teamed up with Gigi Hadidandher 3 5 million Instagram followers .
SPONSORSHIPS & PARTNERSHIPS
Once a company has built a clear identity, developing partnerships with designers, brands or retailers, or sponsoring industry or consumer events, can help expand its territory and grow its audience. Collaborating with a fashion brand can enable a company to test a new product direction or style and can therefore be a source of renewed creativity and inspiration. Denim mills are often more than willing to co-develop a new fabric style if it translates into additional sales. Sponsoring industry events is another way of reaching out to a new audience. The important guideline here is to choose events that are in sync with the company’s image and vision so as to
reinforce the message.
FASHION SHOWS & SHOWROOMS
The decision to participate in a fashion showroom or to stage a catwalk can only be considered when a company is sure that the products it is developing are creative enough to attract attention in the increasingly dense fashion industry calendar. It is however no longer necessary to aim for the top Fashion Weeks as many cities are creating their own events, which can be a stepping stone to an international market. This strategy implies a high investment and is most effective for companies aiming for the premium and high-end markets. It is also best suited to companies that have already built a following beyond their borders. Presenting a collection in a showroom would be the first step in an international marketing strategy, and the product presentation can be paired with a catwalk, cocktail or party. Producing a look book, showing the season’s key products or silhouettes to hand out to attendees will add to the show’s impact. Keep in mind that fashion media representatives are a highly sought after population that will attend your event only if it’s considered one not to be missed.
TRADE & CONSUMER EVENTS
The ideal setting for networking opportunities, participating in a trade show is crucial for denim professionals to nurture and form business relationships. Kingpins, BlueZone, Denim Première Vision, Bangladesh Denim Expo are leading venues in the denim sphere and the setting where designers, developers and buyers come to discover
new suppliers and fabrics. They are essential tools to reach out to new business partners, but it is important to keep in mind that they do not translate automatically into fruitful connections. Prior to the event, sales and marketing teams should prepare the ground, send out invitations, design flyers and identify the new product lines, innovations or creative developments to focus on to build up interest and attract visitors. Preparing a press kit, gifts for buyers and training staff to the specific message that you want to publicize will vastly increase the success of the event for your company. Increasingly, trade-only denim events are opening their doors to consumers. Now owned by German e-commerce site Zalando, Bread & Butter has become a public event. Kingpins and Denim by
Première Vision have added open-to-all events to give consumers direct access to the world of denim.
Street bazars, customization workshops and pop-up shops are now staged in conjunction with trade shows to create more opportunities to reach out to the denim community at large. S.B.
Amsterdam Denim Days
Industry trade event sare slowl y opening their door stocons umers and organizing festivals alongside their traditional buyer – only shows
Bread & Butter by Zalando, in Berlin .