Weekly Digest: October News Bites
| By: Abena Gyebi
All the fashion, beauty, tech and ecommerce news you need to know… bite-sized! Read on for the week’s top headlines, and click through to the story to get your fill.
Week of Oct. 12
1. Technology On And Off The Runway At Fashion Week
‘Misha Nonoo ditched the runway altogether, organizing an “Instashow” where followers could view the new lines using special social media accounts set up for the occasion. Instead of the usual mix of celebrities, buyers, and editors, Givenchy allowed anyone to enter a lottery for 1,500 seats available to the public. In New York especially, fashion seemed to be trying to ditch it’s high-end image, with outlets putting out effusive headlines like “This is the most inclusive Fashion Week ever.”’
2. How Michelle Phan Built A $500 Million Company
“Phan, who began posting YouTube makeup tutorials eight years ago, swiftly grew a following which now exceeds 8 million subscribers. “I thought, if [YouTube] is going to be the global television of the future, I need to build my brand here,” said Phan, who uploaded her first video, a natural makeup tutorial, from a humble grainy webcam in 2007.”
3. Pinterest Expands Its Ecommerce Program
“In a blog post, Pinterest announced that Buyable Pins can now be integrated into e-commerce platforms like Bigcommerce, IBM Commerce, and eBay-owned Magento. Pinterest is also debuting Buyable Pins for a slew of new merchants, like Bloomingdale’s and DVF—all of which are supported by its launch partners, Demandware and Shopify.”
4. Nike’s COO thinks we could soon 3D print Nike sneakers at home
“The way it might work goes something like this: You could head to Nike’s website, customize a sneaker to your specifications, and buy a file containing the instructions for the 3D printer. If you have a printer at home, you could print it yourself and have a new pair of sneakers in a matter of hours. If you don’t, you could take the file to a Nike store and have them print it for you.”
5. HSN and the Power of the TV Shopper
“Last year, HSN (once called the Home Shopping Network, now known simply by its initials) sold $2.5 billion worth of merchandise — one steamer, one blender, one treadmill at a time. The 33-year-old company knows what sells and, more importantly, who it’s selling to. You’d be hard-pressed to find another company more loyal to, or obsessed with, its customer.”
Week of Oct. 5
1. Diplomatic fashion crisis averted: Michelle Obama wears Vera Wang to China state dinner
For last week’s state dinner in honor of the Chinese President and his wife, First Lady Michelle Obama wore a gown by Vera Wang, a Seventh Avenue veteran of Chinese heritage. Who would design the first lady’s state dinner gown was more than an aesthetic curiosity. It was a matter of smoothing the ruffled feathers of an American fashion industry that had felt snubbed when, for a China state dinner in 2011 in honor of president Hu Jintao, Obama selected a fiery red gown from the British label Alexander McQueen.
2. YouTube is now a place where you can shop
YouTube is introducing the ability to shop for products directly from its videos. Relatively unobtrusive ads will appear as a small box in the top right corner of videos. Users that click will be shown a drop down menu of products to peruse as the video plays.
3. The good old days are gone and they won’t return
Luxury brands — primarily European, with the occasional American among them — wishing to increase profits headed east to China. Its swelling urban population had a seemingly insatiable appetite for their wares. But, over the past two years, the dream has begun to sour. Not only is growth in the mainland Chinese economy slowing after the stratospheric rates recorded over the past two decades, but it is coming down from such a level that luxury companies may well be the first to experience the “hard landing.”
4. Your next item of clothing should be so expensive it hurts
In the US and much of the industrialized world, cheap clothes are everywhere. At any fast-fashion chain store, you’ll find piles upon piles of jeans that cost less than $20. The problem is, all that low-cost clothing is produced, sold, and finally discarded in mass quantities, which has serious consequences for the environment, the workers paid poorly to make them, and even the mental well-being of the people buying them.
5. Here’s How Luxury Brands Are Doing Social Media Very Wrong (& The Few Who Break The Mold)
“As an industry, [luxury fashion brands] have been relatively more reluctant to adopt social media programs. Their reluctance may have a lot to do with the culture of these brands — there’s a heavy focus on quality, heritage, and in some ways a certain level of exclusivity,” James Lovejoy, Brandwatch’s content researcher, told Refinery29. “I think a lot of these brands have felt that becoming active on social media might introduce the kind of ubiquity you see around mainstream clothing brands…by being quiet or not paying attention to what’s happening on social, many [luxury] brands are becoming blind to how they’re being discussed online and the way social affects fashion.”
Abena Gyebi is Marketing Manager at Corra, a New York, Los Angeles and London based digital commerce agency creating unified customer experiences for fashion, lifestyle and beauty. With a team of 100+ ecommerce strategy, design and technology professionals, Corra delivers rich shopping experiences across all channels and devices. Corra is trusted by retailers of all sizes to implement and support the Magento, Demandware and hybris platforms.
Corra is a digital agency creating transformative commerce experiences for fashion, beauty and lifestyle brands. With headquarters in New York, Los Angeles and London, Corra provides strategically led creative and technology solutions to a growing global market.