kate spade

Decoded Fashion SXSW

Every year Austin opens it’s city to over 30,000 visitors for the notorious SXSW festival and last week we joined the lineup with our first event! With over 500 attendees crossing the threshold to take in three hours of panels, talks and face-to-face meetings at the Mentorship Hub. Here are the best bits from the conversations that took place.

First up, ” Onboarding Tech” with Amy Walker, Director of Online Marketing at Neiman Marcus, Jen Rubio, Global Director of Innovation at AllSaints and Will Young, Director of Zappos Labs at Zappos.com

All speakers emphasised their preference for finding new tech companies through networking and receiving recommendations from venture capital firms over receiving cold calls and emails.

Brands don’t want to be subjected to hard sales pitches that make unrealistic promises, but would rather engage in a conversation with a startup that has done extensive background research about the brand, has contacted the relevant department to pitch, and already has an idea about what the challenges may be and how they could be tackled. And naturally, if the technology is easier to onboard, then brands will implement it much faster. Young drives home this point “If you set the expectations we are doing something really interesting, that you might be interested in and we would love to learn what your challenges are […]’ it’s much more of a conversation than guns blazing sales pitching. And then I leave that meeting feeling like I wanna continue that conversation.”

And what technologies are brands looking for? Brands want to increase their conversion rates and their ROI in an engaging and sustainable manner, rather than invest in a fad that attracts media attention. What tools can help them seamlessly merge their content and their commerce? What can help them build an online community by telling their brand story?

Our second panel focused on content curation, featuring Rachel Tipograph, Director of Global Digital and Social Media at GAP, Kristina Di Matteo, Senior Digital Marketing Manager at Kate Spade and Katalina Sharkey de Solis, Director of Digital at Chanel.

Tipograph cited simplicity as key, it’s at the core of GAP’s brand and that filters into all of their processes, whether it’s creating content, or onboarding a new start-up. This also rings true for the Kate Spade brand, who have a tiny team creating all this fantastic content, but if it’s too complicated to onboard it just doesn’t work.

With luxury, Sharkey de Solis pointed out that social media channels engage aspirational and potential luxury consumers much more than they do existing consumers. The challenge for them  is finding a way in which to excite current consumers, which means, “We’re really looking for experiential technologies because with this very high-end consumer, they’re not necessarily wanting to engage with the brands on [social media] channels” – Sharkey de Solis

And, though traditional long-term branding campaigns may not be devised with specific measurement matrices in mind and may be ideally measured qualitatively, Di Matteo emphasised how difficult it is for brands to quantitatively measure the success of more fast-moving online campaigns. “If it were up to me, I would create the coolest reporting tool that would allow for me to understand everything that’s happening and have it really succinctly tie up into my [ecommerce] data because, at the end of the day, our goal is to generate sales, but also be able to tell a great story.” Anyone got an idea for this?

Last week’s event was a milestone for Decoded Fashion, and you can be sure to find us at next year’s SXSW.

For all the photos from the event you can check them out here, and for further SXSW fashion coverage take a peek at the FT’s feature and Stylus’s report.

Reported by Anna Abrell 

Snapchat-articleLarge

  1. Rejecting Billions, Snapchat Expects a Better Offer
    What business makes no money, has yet to pass its third anniversary and just turned down an offer worth billions of dollars
  2. Shoppable Kate Spade Ad Turns Clicks into Purchases
    The brand’s new campaign features a rolling display of purchaseable items featured in the video.
  3. Ex-Fab Exec Starts Online Discounter Lesera
    German serial entrepreneur Roman Kirsch, who sold shopping club Casacanda to Fab in the first of that company’s international acquisitions, is starting a new venture: online discount store Lesara.
  4. Valentino Targets Global Audience by Live-Streaming Shanghai Collection
    Italian fashion house Valentino is taking an unconventional approach to promote the opening of its new store location in Shanghai.

social-media-fashion-week1

  1. Fashion Week Social Media Lessons Learned
    During Fashion Week, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Instagram, Pinterest and every other form of social media have been inundated with live-streams, tweets, posts and pins…
  2. Fifth & Pacific Sells Juicy Couture Brand for $195 Million
    Fifth & Pacific Cos Inc on Monday said it has agreed to sell its once-popular Juicy Couture business to Authentic Brands Group.
  3. Top 10 Luxury Brand Mobile Campaigns of Q3
    Luxury marketers called for greater participation and enacted educational endeavors to transform ordinary fans into loyalists and increase global awareness via mobile.
  4. All the Tech News You Shouldn’t Miss from the Past Month in Latin America
    Latin America’s startup scene had a busy month of September, with a flurry of deal announcements and corporate launches. Here’s a recap of the news you don’t want to miss.

facebook_mainview_flipboard

  1. Facebook is Working on a Flipboard-Like Mobile News Reader
    It seems that Facebook’s recent creation is a Flipboard-looking news reader app with the goal to get users deeper into Facebook content, therefore, spending more time on Facebook.
  2. Gilt Groupe will Offer Mobile-Only Deals All Summer Long
    Gilt, the mobile e-commerce site, will be offering summer sales every Saturday EST time.
  3. Kate Spade Opens 24 Hour Shoppable Store Window
    New York has now four interactive shoppable windows located at a formerly empty retail store offering Kate Spade items on sale.
  4. Wantering Launches Fashion Search Engine
    According to the CEO and founder of Wantering, their purpose is to offer customers the tools to shop better. The fashion search engine will help consumers find what they want exactly.

KateSpadeiPads_610x463

Etsy Partners with Nordstrom to Feature Selected Vendors
The sell-it-yourself website, Etsy, partners with Nordstrom to add local and unique products to the retail giant’s inventory. PSFK has more.

Pinterest Launches New Data Analytic Tool For Businesses As It Prepares To Monetize
TechCrunch reports that Pinterest’s new and free analytical tool is now available for businesses as the first step toward monetization.

Google shows off Glass apps: New York Times, Gmail, Path and more
Google introduces apps like NYT, Evernote, and Gmail, to test Glass’ API at SXSW. Read more on Engadget.

ShanghaiTex to display trends in textile digital printing
Fibre2Fashion announces that ShanghaiTex aims to lead the way in supplying the surging demand of digital prints.

Kate Spade to use iPads as retail signage
Kate Spade adds iPads for marketing and merchandising purposes in their Japan stores to enhance customer experience. CNET has the details.