How Brands Used Instagram Stories During New York Fashion Week – Forbes
Instagram Stories is the current darling of the fashion world, or so it seemed in New York this past week as each and every designer brand took to the platform alongside their runway shows.
Fashion week has long been a central part of the social media strategy for these businesses – a ripe opportunity to capture what’s being putting out into the world with their new collections and build noise around their brands accordingly.
Providing fans with a “first look” or a step “behind-the-scenes” is somewhat par for the course these days, however. Much like live-streaming is no longer newsworthy (though Instagram Live was also in heavy use this season), neither really is a glimpse backstage or front row – more par for the course.
What Instagram Stories has provided however is an opportunity to do all of that at a rapid pace, without having to worry about the quality of the content. As with Snapchat before it, it’s the fact this content disappears 24-hours later that’s so appealing to these brands. Blink-and-you-miss-it as standard provides the exclusivity they appreciate, while not compromising on the beautiful feeds they are otherwise curating on their main accounts.
What’s more, this is a space that can generate big numbers – of the 700 million users on Instagram worldwide, 250 million are viewing the Stories feature everyday. What’s interesting to look at then, is how exactly brands are taking things a step further and playing with content in this environment. Here are some highlights straight from Instagram Stories this season:
Ralph Lauren had one of the most thorough, not to mention strategic, approaches to using the platform this season. It took the 24-hour nature of Instagram Stories as its basis and used it to reveal different content at the top of each hour throughout. That varied from the inspiration for the line about to be showcased (cars!), the food the guests would soon be enjoying (burgers!) and eventually all the celebrities arriving for the event too.
Doing so acted as a form of countdown for what was ahead – reminding people to tune back in again an hour later, but more importantly to do so for the main show which would be live on the platform at the end of the timeframe.
Make-up being applied backstage, celebrities arriving outside, influencers on the front row, the models hitting the catwalk itself – these are all examples of popular types of fashion week content on social media; the par for the course content, as already mentioned.
What’s quite often forgotten in all that however, is the collection itself. Yes there’s the runway reveal, but the live video portion of Instagram is often not the best quality, and while there are regularly high value shots appearing on the main feed once the show has completed, Instagram Stories provides that real-time close up that you might only otherwise get as an industry insider immediately after the presentation has completed.
Marc Jacobs did that this season, zooming in on the new line and much of the detail of it. These are quick-fire close-ups acting as a digital re-see of the line.
Shoppable influencer content
Having an influencer strategy around fashion weeks and tied to Instagram is another example of standard fare for designers these days (as per both Ralph Lauren and Marc Jacobs), but adding in a shoppable element makes it all the more interesting.
Michael Kors is a great example of a brand that focused on that this season. It worked with big names like Chriselle Lim and Aimee Song, dressing them in the current collection and then used the Instagram Stories swipe up feature to link to e-commerce pages for purchase. It was a simple but incredibly effective way to capitalize on the popularity of street style shots we’re so used to seeing outside the shows.