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Agenda-setting intelligence, analysis and advice for the global fashion community.

What Fashion Marketing Professionals Need to Know Today

BoF Careers provides essential sector insights for fashion professionals in marketing this month, to help you decode fashion’s marketing landscape.
Marketing team working in the office.
Marketing team working in the office. (Pexels)

Discover the most recent and relevant industry news and insights for fashion professionals working in marketing, to help you excel in your job interviews, promotion conversations or simply to perform better in the workplace by increasing your market awareness and emulating market leaders.

BoF Careers distils business intelligence from across the breadth of our content — editorial briefings, newsletters, case studies, podcasts and events, as well as the exclusive interviews and conversations we have with experts and market leaders every day — to deliver key takeaways and learnings in your job function.

Key articles and need-to-know insights for marketing professionals today:

1. What’s the Value of Viral Fashion?

Sam Smith attends The BRIT Awards 2023.

Whether it’s dressing celebrities in over-the-top looks, churning out meme-able products, or staging runways shows with clear storytelling hooks, brands have turned to stunts in a fast-paced media environment where competition for attention is more intense than ever. [...] But even as the pace of viral fashion moments hits an all-time high, some brands are easing away from the approach, which comes with both risks and rewards and may be difficult to sustain.

For smaller brands, courting viral buzz can feel like an imperative in order to compete with big rivals. But virality can be a double-edged sword, as with the reaction to Schiaparelli’s use of faux taxidermy during the haute couture season in January. The small Paris house — which claims to never pay its celebrity clients — dressed Kylie Jenner and Doja Cat in looks that were social media catnip, garnering visibility worth an estimated $45 million in earned media, according to consultancy Launchmetrics, [exceeding] what multi-billion-dollar brands like Chanel and Dior were able to generate that season with a well-stocked bench of paid ambassadors.

Related Jobs:

Marketing Assistant, Sahara — London, United Kingdom

Global Marketing Manager, Tiffany & Co. — New York, United States

Marketing Special Events Coordinator, Bloomingdale’s — Miami, United States

2. The Simple Math Behind Moncler’s Genius Spectacles

Moncler's large-scale 'Genius' events are a good example of how the brand is able to punch above its weight argues Luca Solca.

In recent years, we have seen breakthrough innovation from Italian skiwear brand Moncler, which replaced its seasonal runway partnerships with designers Thom Browne and Giambattista Valli with capsule collections co-created with a roster of collaborators — an initiative dubbed “Genius.”

Rather than using a traditional catwalk format, with one or two thousand people attending, Moncler has staged parties conducted at much larger venues, over one or more nights, for tens of thousands of people — not just insiders and top-spending clients, but fans of the brand. And because many more people can attend the event and see the products in the flesh, many more people post photographs, multiplying the magnitude of the social media buzz.

Related Jobs:

Marketing Executive, Turnbull & Asser — London, United Kingdom

Marketing and Events Manager, Apparatus — New York, United States

Marketing and Communication Manager, Kering — Singapore

3. TikTok’s Deinfluencing Trend, Explained

Deinfluencing is the latest craze to take over TikTok feeds.

“Deinfluencing” refers to how influencers encourage followers not to buy a product, the opposite tactic found in traditional creators’ playbooks. Thus far, it is playing out in a number of ways. Some creators deinfluence their followers from buying one product, only to suggest an alternative. Others fill their deinfluencing videos only with products they tried and did not like. A few go a step further and speak out against the “more, more, more” culture that often dominates the shopping conversation on social media, telling users to resist consumption for the sake of consumption and think more critically about their purchases.

For creators dealing with swelling competition for brand deals and advertising dollars (which are facing renewed scrutiny in the current economic climate), convincing followers they are trustworthy has never been more important. Rather than a pushback on influencer marketing as a whole, definfluencing’s emergence actually should serve as a reminder that when it comes to longevity in the influencer marketing space, honesty and candour are essential.

Related Jobs:

Social Media and Influencer Marketing Manager, Koibird — London, United Kingdom

Email Marketing Operations Assistant, Tory Burch — New York, United States

Digital Affiliate Marketing Manager, Neiman Marcus — Dallas, United States

4. Fashion’s Dreams for ChatGPT

Supercharged chatbots, hyper-personalised marketing copy and new ways for shoppers to discover fashion online are just a few of the dream applications for ChatGPT and similar AI models.

ChatGPT is a type of AI called a large language model. They are trained on huge volumes of data — plus some fine-tuning by human supervisors in ChatGPT’s case — and what makes them noteworthy is their ability to perform an array of different tasks. Right now, the data a model like ChatGPT is trained on tends to be whatever is publicly accessible online, but where they arguably hold the greatest potential for businesses is when companies start merging the tools with their own data, creating much more specific applications.

If conversational AI begins to change how people search online, it could shift the way shoppers discover new products. Instead of searching for, say, “best running sneakers 2023″ and then looking at lists compiled by different sites, a customer might just expect the search engine to digest all the information out there and provide an answer directly.

Related Jobs:

Digital Marketing Coordinator, Garrard — London, United Kingdom

Global Digital Marketing Director, Massimo Dutti — Barcelona, Spain

Director Marketing Transformation, Coach — New York, United States

5. How E.l.f. Went From TikTok to the Super Bowl

"White Lotus" front woman Jennifer Coolidge starred in E.l.f. Beauty's first Super Bowl ad.

E.l.f. Beauty [...] debuted its first-ever broadcast television commercial just before Rihanna performed at the Super Bowl halftime show. The comedic 30-second spot stars Jennifer Coolidge, fresh off her Golden Globe-winning turn in “The White Lotus,” and highlights the brand’s Power Grip Primer, which launched in 2021.

The shift to television shows the extent of the brand’s ambitions: E.l.f. may have won over TikTok, but it needs to reach a bigger and broader audience to take on legacy competitors like Covergirl, L’Oréal Paris and Maybelline. “We want to get more eyeballs. We’re looking for a place where we can get mass reach,” said Kory Marchisotto, E.l.f. chief marketing officer. “The underpinning of all of this is to take E.l.f. to a bigger stage.”

Related Jobs:

Marketing Manager, Vestiaire Collective — Paris, France

Account Executive, JOOR — London, United Kingdom

Senior Marketing Manager Fenty, Chalhoub Group — Dubai, United Arab Emirates

6. The End of Blanding?

This week Burberry changed its logo to a serif font, following Ferragamo and Bottega Veneta.

In February, [Burberry] unveiled a new logo featuring an understated typeface, complete with small but clearly visible serifs on the edges of each letter, replacing the redesign nods to the 167-year-old brand’s heritage — to underscore that point, Burberry also brought back the logo’s equestrian knight motif, a man on horseback carrying a banner reading “Prorsum” (forwards in Latin), albeit with a tweak to showcase the logo in a bright blue.

There’s an argument to be made that even if these sorts of logos become de rigeur in luxury, it should not deter brands for whom it really is the most natural fit. Serif or sans, there is not one sort of font that is a clear cut win for luxury brands. Instead, what matters is what feels in line with a brand’s ethos and overall aesthetic. [...] If a brand just hops on a trend because it is what feels of-the-moment without much thought behind it, that is where the backlash begins.

Related Jobs:

Marketing Executive, Turnbull & Asser — London, United Kingdom

Head of Marketing, Sézane — Paris, France

Marketing Manager, Burberry — Seoul, South Korea

7. Op-Ed | Tiffany x Nike: You Can’t Buy ‘Cred’

Tiffany and Nike have collaborated to create a $400 Nike Air Force 1 Low sneaker, which is facing criticism from sneakerheads.

[Christopher Morency, chief brand officer of Vanguards, argues] Tiffany and Nike’s partnership failed on multiple levels. First, there was no authentic synergy between the two brands, no discernable rationale for the collaboration other than two corporate juggernauts wanting to generate marketing buzz. Unlike the best collaborations, the whole wasn’t greater than the sum of its parts.

Then, there was the execution. While the ads were clever, the product itself was a misfire. To say it lacked imagination would be an understatement. What’s more, the choice of colourway seemed to reflect an executive team unaware of the memes surrounding Nike’s black Air Force 1s, which are widely spoofed as linked to untrustworthy types.

Related Jobs:

Senior Marketing Manager, Dora Larsen — London, United Kingdom

Marketing Coordinator, Hugo Boss — Copenhagen, Denmark

Digital Marketing Coordinator, Stuart Weitzman — New York, United States

8. Can Olaplex Reclaim the Narrative?

Olaplex is known as the prestige hair category creator.

For most of its first seven years, Olaplex was the hair care brand that could do no wrong. Cult favourite products beloved by both stylists and consumers led to TikTok viral fame, culminating in a September 2021 IPO that valued the company at $13.6 billion.

On Feb 9, Olaplex was sued by a group of 28 customers in California who said they suffered hair loss and damage after using the brand’s products. [...] Olaplex is hoping to regain control of its story with a marketing campaign emphasising the science behind its formulas. New products are on the way, including a dry shampoo that hit the market in January. International distribution is meant to make up for slowing growth in the US. But above all else, Olaplex needs to recapture the connection it had with customers. [...] Overcommunicating to customers in all mediums — marketing messages, customer feedback and social comments — will be key.

Related Jobs:

Digital Marketing Executive, Billionaire Boys Club — London, United Kingdom

PR and Marketing Coordinator, Cinq à Sept — New York, United States

Retention Marketing Specialist, Figs — Santa Monica, United States

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