Fashion Brands Still Wary About Using Social Media

When visitors land on fashion and design blog The Lil Bee, they’ll notice something unusual. In the upper right corner of the page sits a graphical rendering of poppy flowers sprouting across the page with the message “You’ve found a poppy” and an invitation to “follow the poppy trail.”

The Lil Bee is one of hundreds of blogs that are part of a network stitched together this month in a social media campaign from fashion brand Coach. The bloggers have added a small piece of code to their sites that acts as a mini-discovery tool, along with a game for users to grow the poppy image on the site by their visits or using Twitter to broadcast a message.

The Poppy Project, which promotes Coach’s Poppy line of affordable but still luxury fashions, is an unusual approach for the fashion world, which has built brands in traditional media with lush images and an aspirational message. These approaches run counter to the ethos of social media, where sharing and connectivity rule the roost.

Coach leaned on Facebook to launch Poppy a year ago. It tapped into its fan base — now nearly 1 million — and gave Facebook fans a gift when they visited the store. In postlaunch research, store managers reported many customers said they initially heard of the line from Facebook, according to David Duplantis, svp of global Web and digital media at Coach. “We felt the organic nature of poppies growing in social media was a home run,” he said.

Yet many fashion brands, particularly those in the luxury category, remain wary of social media. Instead, visit the sites of major fashion names like Louis Vuitton and Gucci, and you’ll find pretty much the digital equivalent of Vogue: lots of glossy photos and little in the way of interaction. Diana Hong, creative director at Create the Group, a New York digital shop that specializes in fashion, said the rather simple step of adding a Facebook “Like” button can worry fashion clients who zealously guard their brand image around exclusivity.

“Being open to social media has been challenging because it’s almost too open for them,” she said. “They’re worried about how their brand is perceived.”


Brian Morrissey, Adweek
When visitors land on fashion and design blog The Lil Bee, they’ll notice something unusual. In the upper right corner of the page sits a graphical rendering of poppy flowers sprouting across the page with the message “You’ve found a poppy” and an invitation to “follow the poppy trail.”

The Lil Bee is one of hundreds of blogs that are part of a network stitched together this month in a social media campaign from fashion brand Coach. The bloggers have added a small piece of code to their sites that acts as a mini-discovery tool, along with a game for users to grow the poppy image on the site by their visits or using Twitter to broadcast a message.

The Poppy Project, which promotes Coach’s Poppy line of affordable but still luxury fashions, is an unusual approach for the fashion world, which has built brands in traditional media with lush images and an aspirational message. These approaches run counter to the ethos of social media, where sharing and connectivity rule the roost.

Coach leaned on Facebook to launch Poppy a year ago. It tapped into its fan base — now nearly 1 million — and gave Facebook fans a gift when they visited the store. In postlaunch research, store managers reported many customers said they initially heard of the line from Facebook, according to David Duplantis, svp of global Web and digital media at Coach. “We felt the organic nature of poppies growing in social media was a home run,” he said.

Yet many fashion brands, particularly those in the luxury category, remain wary of social media. Instead, visit the sites of major fashion names like Louis Vuitton and Gucci, and you’ll find pretty much the digital equivalent of Vogue: lots of glossy photos and little in the way of interaction. Diana Hong, creative director at Create the Group, a New York digital shop that specializes in fashion, said the rather simple step of adding a Facebook “Like” button can worry fashion clients who zealously guard their brand image around exclusivity.

“Being open to social media has been challenging because it’s almost too open for them,” she said. “They’re worried about how their brand is perceived.” Leer más “Fashion Brands Still Wary About Using Social Media”