By Shannon Jameson
In the past, New York Fashion Week was a fairytale. It was a mysterious and elusive event that took place two times a year in the city that never sleeps. The world’s top fashion moguls would showcase their new lines, forecasting new trends and shaping the world of women’s and men’s wear for all demographics and classes. For the regular person, it would take months to see these new lines, either by going into a luxury boutique or by flipping through the pages of Vogue or Marie Claire. However, within the past ten years, technology has torn the mystic curtain from NYFW and brought it to the entire public in an accessible and prompt manner.
Social media platforms such as Instagram, Snapchat, Periscope, Facebook and Twitter have provided a means for digital snapshots of the action as it happens. These digital snapchats showcase a curation of the most creative content coming out of the biggest week in fashion. Now almost anyone can stay up-to-date with the latest fashion trends as they happen. Anyone in the world can feel like they are among New York City’s elite editors, buyers and bloggers sitting front row for all the action.
Luxury brands are capitalizing on the people’s hunger for content with innovative social media strategies. Snapchat offers a “live story” of New York Fashion Week, giving viewers real-time content and behind-the-scenes footage of any single event. Both Instagram and Tumblr have explore options, which curates the top trending posts related to NYFW in one easily accessible place. Periscope allows fans to see through the eyes of designers, models, and bloggers as they attend the shows.
For the first time in the history of fashion week, the Michael Kors Fall 2016 collection will include an eight piece capsule of ready-to-wear, shoes and handbags that will be available immediately following the show. The capsule will be directly buyable on both the designer’s website and the Madison Avenue storefront in NYC. In addition to the immediately available capsule, all styles presented in the entire line will also be available for pre-order. This unprecedented venture could be the catalyst that drives the fashion industry in a more viable direction that markets towards the everyday person, not just buyers and editors. Designers like Michael Kors are beginning to realize that customers want luxury items to wear across all seasons and enhance their existing wardrobe, rather than buying a whole new wardrobe every season. Accordingly, they are focusing their advertising on their customers directly, instead of going through several channels. The process is streamlined. Fashion is personable, and designers are matching this by becoming more personal with their distribution.
Social media is driving the fashion industry forward. The best way to reach consumers directly is through the internet, and designers must now adapt their advertising to meet the new needs of the savvy fashionista in the digital age. Product integration and branding play a crucial role in brands success. NYFW has evolved expeditiously since the introduction of new media, and will continue to progress as technology progresses for years to come.