Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Designers Blend Traditional Designs and Modern Technology: Social Media and the Fashion Industry

Various blog posts of ours dictated the way to create a fan base on Twitter and Facebook, Tumblr and Blogger. Usually, it helps to give step-by-step guides, telling each and every business owner the actions it takes to break into public relations, marketing, and social media. However, it also helps to learn from successful brands, ones that utilize the sources your company is trying to figure out. As such, we profile here two major fashion labels, Balenciaga and Alexander Wang, both of which are innovatively using social media to connect with their fan base and gain attention for their label.

Balenciaga is a company that dates back to 1914 Basque Country, Spain. How does a old-world brand merge into the 21st century? By infiltrating the social media market. For Balenciaga’s Fall/Winter 2011 campaign, the brand is paying homage to their heritage, hoping to fuse history and modernity. How is this possible? ”Some photos were shot in a Gothic Harlem church, with a futuristic world — the black and white tiles in a studio – that still showcases the iconic sense of what people have come to know with the Balenciaga brand.” But what makes it modern? Half of the campaign was shot in a bright, tiled studio set. This part of the campaign features “the same poncho-like dresses, with bright colors popping in a futuristic, 3D look due to the shiny, black-and-white tiled background.” You’re probably wondering what this has to do with your business. Well, this new campaign is showcasing the the brand’s effort to combine the classic with the modern as it takes its first leaps into the digital world. “Balenciaga’s new Web site is rumored to feature more than 200 video clips, 3,000 photos and an e-commerce section.” This shows you that it’s never to late to revamp your image, join the digital community and gain success and new customers/fans.

Other types of social media being utilized include building projections. Yes, you read that correctly, images and videos placed on stationary towers. Apparel and accessories designer  Alexander Wang decided to release his latest campaign video on the walls of New York buildings. ”The young designer deployed several vans on July 13 to project the Fall 2011 ready-to-wear video onto the walls of buildings throughout Manhattan. The new video features model Raquel Zimmermann and debuted globally on the branded Web site the following day.” The vans that displayed the videos were located in SoHo, Union Square, and the Meatpacking districts of Manhattan. From 9 p.m. to 3 a.m., the designer was tweeting about his video, providing his fans with the exact locations to see the campaign live. Alexander Wang diehards are wondering if this marketing approach will spread to other cities, and others in the industry are awe-stuck, noticing the sales-successes and attention this has created for the brand. One article claims, “Certainly, other brands will take a cue from [Mr. Wang's] playbook and start promoting in this way in other cities.”

This post shows us that there is not only one way to approach social media or that it is only suitable for more “modern” companies. Balenciaga, a company favored by an older demographic, unaccustomed to social media and technology ,is branching out, reaching a new  younger demographic and making a huge splash. Alexander Wang is trying things no other designer has before, but likely things every designer will try in the future.

Whether these case studies inspire you to create a new website, launch a new social media campaign, or simply reconsider your marketing; understanding--and, thus, implementing--a new approach via technology can increase your fan base, bring attention to your brand and, ultimately, lead to increased sales.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Miamore Communications to Team Up with the Rhode Island International Film Festival!

Miamore Communications is thrilled to announce that we will be assisting the prestigious Rhode Island International Film Festival with their social media & public relations initiatives! Since its inception in 1981, the Rhode Island International Film Festival (RIIFF) has attracted filmmakers, critics, and movie buffs alike from across the globe, showcasing numerous feature productions including short films, narrative features, animations & documentaries. The RIIFF also boasts its recognition as one of sixty-five Academy Award pre-qualifying film festivals worldwide.

This year, a collection of 175 films --many of which making their world debut at the RIIFF-- will dazzle audiences around the state of Rhode Island, and allow them the opportunity to experience every aspect of film production with workshops and meet and greet opportunities occurring daily. The RIIFF also offers a unique summer camp opportunity for young filmmakers eager to get in on all the [lights, camera] action!

Miamore Communications looks forward to promoting the Rhode Island International Film Festival, and is thrilled to be a part of its continued success! More information about the Rhode Island International Film Festival, including ticket information and event schedules, click here. For media inquiries relating to coverage of the Rhode Island International Film Festival, please contact Miamore Communications via email at carrie@miamorecommunications.com.

Monday, July 11, 2011

The art of promotion: providing product to Bloggers

From traveling to conventions and events to paying employees and suppliers, money can be tight and PR/marketing often falls off the bottom of the to-do list for businesses. Advertising can cost a fortune and traditional PR takes time and patience. But have you considered the new--and less costly--alternative of promoting your company with the help of bloggers? Whether your business is in the food, wine and spirits, fashion, or sporting goods industry, there is a blog out there that has hundreds or thousands, or hundreds of thousands of readers...readers anxiously waiting to hear about what’s new.

With thousands of blogs in the interactive world and hundreds in categories that your company would fall into, interacting with bloggers is marketing tool that is underutilized--especially by many small business owners. Many bloggers host giveaways, in which they promote a good/service in exchange for the product, which they will provide to one of their readers. After a review of the product on their blog, many bloggers will ask their readers to enter by commenting on the particular brands Facebook page, tweeting to the company and spreading the word about the contest and giveaway for extra entries. The result of those mentions/interactions with your social networking profile? According Adweek, “Facebook users who like a brand's page on the social networking site use its products regularly or occasionally and, after following the brand on Facebook, more than a third want to buy this brand's product more.” So, as those tweets and posts about your product add up, so does your army of brand ambassadors. The cost to you? Your product to give away.

With all that said, how do you find the right blogger? You probably already know the best ones in your industry. (If you’re lost in the blogosphere, your public relations agency can be determine which to target, whom to contact, and facilitate the giveaway).

From Dick’s Cottons sunglasses on the blog Sarafit.comSarafit.com to Pop Chips on A Knack for Nutrition, bloggers are making it easy for companies to get their names out there. According to Bizammo.com, a leading resource for small business owners, there are three major steps that are important to recognize when offering up a product to a blogger. First off, “think outside the box.” This may seem obvious to you--you wouldn’t create the same exact product as a competitor, right? Don’t decide to just give something away because you have tons of product left in stock, just sitting in a warehouse. Think about it. You want to find your target market, so find a blog that gets attention and traffic from readership that is similar to those who buy your product or service. Then, find something that your business produces that these readers would need, or desperately want. Second, make sure whatever you provide to the blogger is easy to find and purchase. “The whole reason the item is free is so that as many people as possible benefit from it and learn about your company – if the customers can’t find the product, you may as well be charging for it.” Lastly, give it time. In Public Relations and marketing there are no immediate results--but there is value in raising awareness and engaging potential future customers. As long as your product is useful and is being promoted through different mediums, attention will follow.