Independent or small fashion brands need a strong marketing plan and strategy in order to gain healthy recognition in a saturated industry. Fashion marketing plans should have a clearly defined target audiences, timeline and realistic yet strategic goals. In the ideal world, a fashion marketing plan should include several marketing channels that work together to achieve the fashion brands goals.
There are several different ‘types’ of marketing plans, and all of which are useful to any up-coming fashion brand. These include; digital marketing, publishing marketing, live events marketing and brand ambassador marketing. Integrating all of these types of marketing tools in your final marketing plan will be of benefit for your fashion brand, and you’re more likely to get good results if you plan well and stick to it.
Lets’ dig a little deeper into what each of the marketing plans are and how they can benefit your fashion business:
Digital Media Marketing Plan
A digital media marketing plan enables you to reach out to your target audience online, using a variety of different social media platforms, such as Facebook Ads, Instagram, Twitter and even Snapchat. Facebook advertising is a great online platform to use, because it allows you to select your specific demographic and psychographic data of the audience you want to reach out to. Being aware of who your target audience is for your fashion brand is important to know beforehand, because it then means you can fill out these categories online with ease.
You will also need to analyse the types of website that your target audience will frequently visit and may want to advertise on those. Building partnerships with the desired websites will allow your brand to increase its recognition and also have the possibility of reaching out to new consumers, so it is a win-win on your behalf.
We also suggest building an email list for your brand. You can do this by putting up an email sign-up form on your website; this will allow you to reach out to your current customers as well as new site visitors. Using a service like Mailchimp can help you to do this, and it also means you can personalise your emails by adding your brands logo. Sending regular emails to your target audience to update them on new products, blog posts and promotions will allow your fashion brand to become more memorable to them as well as increase your sales.
Publishing Marketing Plan:
By developing a public marketing plan that combines PR (public relations) and marketing in print (such as fashion magazines and blogs) will also increase the visibility of your brand. Researching specific publications that reach out to your target audience is a good start as you can then use their marketing and editorial channels to gain more exposure for your fashion brand.
For example, if your brand specialises in streetwear clothing for males and females then it is ideal to work towards magazine publications such as Dazed, GQ and Pause. These are big and established publications, so it may be difficult reaching out to them, however you could offer them an outfit to put in their magazine or used in a styling shoot that will be featured in the magazine; then if they credit you correctly, you will get the right exposure that your fashion brand needs.
Alternatively, you could approach smaller publications at the start, as they’re more likely to help you and will need the content too. Even if they have a smaller consumer base, you still have a good chance of reaching out to more potential audiences as well as increasing your brands visibility. It also looks much more professional to have on your site that your fashion brand is featured in a publication, so it’s a win-win for both parties.
Live Event Marketing Plan
This may be slightly more difficult if you’re primarily an online fashion brand. However, hosting the odd live events such as a ‘pop up’ store or having a stall at global Trade Shows will be a benefit for your fashion brand. These live events may have a variety of fashion companies, from fashion brands, to photographers to artists; it depends on the event itself. You will find that more recently there has been an increase in live events that collaborate fashion with music.
Most attendees will also be people who come from a creative background, such as influencers and bloggers. Therefore, with the right communication and connections, you could even discuss the idea of collaborating with any bloggers and influencers who attend the events- make the most of it and network as much as you can.
Hosting or being featured in specific live fashion events that target your fashion brands demographic is essential for your brand to get the exposure it needs. Face to face interacting and word of mouth goes a long way- it isn’t all just social media! Hosting live events within itself will also have a social media impact, as attendees will most likely post images and hashtags from these events, so be sure that you’re getting the right credentials online also.
Brand Ambassador Marketing
This leads on to the final step of a great marketing plan… brand ambassadors!
Create a marketing plan that focuses on gaining some useful and relevant brand ambassadors that can really help to influence your fashion brand and get a positive name for it. Brand ambassadors are people who are online influencers. For your fashion brand, you will want someone who features outfit posts and promote fashion brands that they wear, you’ll also want their style to fit into your fashion brands style well. Instagram is the ideal platform for ambassadors, as it is more visual, therefore ambassadors can add your brand in their caption as well as tag you in the actual image.
Brand ambassadors can vary from local or national celebrities to worldwide public figures. For example, if your fashion brand specialises in affordable gym wear for students, then approach universities and colleges; offer incentives for those who refer others to your brand. You can do this by giving them a discount code which they can share with their fans. Most current fashion brands use the ambassadors name and a number as the discount code, such as; ‘HANNAH29’. By doing so, you can track how much impact your chosen ambassador has had and how many sales she/ he has made happen from her/his discount code.
As a reward, the more ‘clicks’ your chosen ambassador gets the more rewards she or he receives. This can vary from more free clothes or how much she gets paid. Depending on the scale of your fashion business and what your budget is, you can work out how to ‘reward’ your influencers and increase the amount of profit you’re making, but remember it all goes down to how far your brand is reaching out. Celebrity endorsement has a massive impact; it is definitely a marketing route you will need to go down for the promotion of your fashion brand.