FINAL POST: Social media’s influence on fashion

So we have come full circle- my blog has discussed media, travel, fashion and now this post specifically talks about how one has had an effect on the other. To be more exact, how social media has impacted fashion and the world as we know it today.

Growing up fashion magazines were my bible and the idea of ever being front row for a runway fashion show would make the hairs on the back of my neck stand straight up in excitement. I couldn’t wait to open the newest edition of TeenVogue, then Shape and Elle, as well as Paper and Vogue as my taste aged. The days of glossy magazines being set on your bed by your mom, and catwalk shows first hand seem outdated to many young millennials. “Instagram, for example, functions as a live magazine, always updating itself with the best, most current trends while allowing users to participate in fashion rather than just watch from afar” (The Fashion Network). The children of the generations younger than that of my own are growing up with a fashion industry easily accessible through their phones, anytime, anyplace. No more folding down the corners of magazine articles in your newest addition of Vogue or cutting out the “how to’s” and “latest trend” sections of different magazine- all you have to do is click open an application like Instagram and your favorite models, designers, and brands are constantly updating you with what they are up to daily. 

When a designer puts out a collection on the runway, you can watch the show in its entirety from your very couch with easily accessible livestreaming platforms like Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, or YouTube. Killing an element of exclusivity which the live show would encompass was a small price in the eyes of many fashion designers when choosing to livestream their events. In the past, the controlled channels of invite only fashion shows and high fashion magazine subscriptions limited those who could enjoy the saintly products which the fashion industry had to offer. This evolution in how fashion brands are able to connect with their core audience was transformative for the entire industry.

Then came about the niche of marketing ourselves as social media influencers for others. Multiple sources online have written tutorials on how to do so, such as: Inc.com, (click here, for the exact article) BuzzFeed, and high power house editorial pieces like Vogue and Forbes Magazine (click here, for the exact article).

Individuals everywhere are capitalizing on this high-speed availability by branding themselves in such a way that they influence the fashion choices, and even lifestyle choices of their following audience. “For fashion brands, the backbone in the approach of influencer marketing involves working with influential social media accounts and “personas” to increase the awareness of the brand and widen the reach of their market. Additionally, these social media accounts can influence the purchasing patterns of brands target audiences and bring credibility to individuals whom which they hire. “They [fashion brands] pay influencers to review and market their products. Therefore, the influencers act as puppets for the brand, and the brand reaches millions of subscribers through the vloggers mouths” (GreenBuzz Agency). 

This “third party” influencer could have the same if not more success in selling a product then that of high end super models on the runway. According to the Independent “Instagram is the eighth largest social networking platform in the world. But in the fashion world, it’s probably number one” (Kiki Georgiou, Independent). While a runway models look is seen by an exclusive 50-60 individuals in a show, an Instagram post by an Instagram influencer with a high social following can reach millions in minutes. 

“Fashion is a visually based industry, so using a trendy photo-driven app like Instagram is a perfect match. With over 800 million active users, there is massive brand reach potential” (Green Buzz Agency). What bloggers and Instagram influencers are wearing in their social media posts sparks the interest of thousands, even millions, in a matter of seconds after pushing the “share” button. Seeing people who we “follow” and admire on our social media accounts, wearing or promoting certain products is boosting the confidence which we may have towards that brand. For brands it is imperative to choose social media influencers who ensure that their following is aligned with that of the company because with greater confidence, comes a greater chance of purchase, and in the end comes greater success for the company. “The brands are relying upon the fashion bloggers for the feedback on their products and they are serving as a link between target consumers and the company” (The Research Gate). Brands are hiring Instagram influencers to wear their products to promote a more genuine take on advertising to the general public. Additionally, they are asking everyday people to post themselves in their products, creating a realm of inclusiveness amongst consumers of certain companies and products. This user-generated content allows people to feel greater comfort in the fact that “everyday people look great in the clothing, and so will you” mantra. This being said, I must mention that in my opinion, this takes away from the luxury of the fashion industry of which I do adore. However, the results of brands traffic and sales has been undoubtedly responsible for greater numbers in sales for a variety of fashion brands via social media.

Creating a more accessible conversation among companies and consumers gives brands a greater chance of selling their products to a more loyal fan base. This conversation and relationship between a company’s brand and products is one of the most striking reasons to why many fashion brands have incorporated this new influencer marketing feature into their digital strategies. Through the act of “following” your favorite companies, brands, and influencers, you gain a sense of trust in the people and company. “According to statistics reported in the Fashion Monitor and Econsultancy report, The Rise of the Influencers, just 27% of US, and 23% of British consumers reported that their purchasing choices were “influenced by ‘great’ brand advertising”. What’s more, fashion marketers reported allocating between 30% and 75% of their total marketing budget to influencer marketing. Fifty-three percent said that they spent “a sizable chunk” of their budget on “social media community growth and engagement” (The Social Element). “Following” an influencers account makes each of their actions seem more personal to your own life- you follow their meals, their purchases, their travel, and a little part of you is then able to live vicariously through this fantasy life that they may put forth to their following. An example of one of my favorite social media influencers is a woman named Arielle Noa Charnas, who started her own fashion blog and with its popularity came her opportunity to start her own company which is known as Something Navy, now sold in big name stores such as Nordstroms and Bloomingdales. (Click here, to view her collection on Nordstrom).

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MARCH COLLECTION IS LIVE! GO GO GO! 💖

A post shared by Something Navy (@somethingnavy) on

So, when major Instagram influencers are posting their latest purchases and advice, you are retrieving them with the mindset that these recommendations are peer based. Peer recommendations are much more valued by most than ambiguous advertisements on the television or in your magazines. You are able to look back on certain posts and pictures which your favorite Instagram influencers have posted and re live that moment with them to your hearts content. 

Applications like Instagram have created a false hood of intimacy between user to user interactions on their forum- giving users a fake sense of trust when it comes to that of which Instagram influencers may be promoting to their audience. Many social media users look for peer validation through every action they carry out on their social media accounts. Recently, an option known as Instagram Shopping has become available to Instagram users. This launch has made it available for influencers and companies to directly link the clothes that users see on the models in their ads or on the bodies of your favorite influencers to the company website to purchase. Brands are able to tag each product in their post and directly navigate users to the point-of-sale…revolutionary. 

I had the opportunity to interview Jonathan Messinger, 21, from Long Island New York- and see what his opinions and experiences with social media and the fashion industry consist of.

Fashion companies need to capitalize on their online image in order to stay relevant to a vast amount of the public. The social media takeover of the fashion industry as we know it cannot be ignored. Even luxury brands that once rejected the commoner aspect of social media have done away with their fear of cheapening their brand and felt it vital to jump on board the social media movement. Social media users can’t help but be influenced by what they see on their social media accounts, which is why brands are beginning to use third party influencers to market their message. We create bonds with these influencers, and with that trust comes a greater chance of purchasing their recommended products. Social media has hit all time high levels of engagement with each generation of people, opening a whole new world for fashion marketers and creating countless unexplored outlets waiting to be discovered by different brands. Don’t get me wrong, Haute Couture fashion shows, high budget magazine photoshoots, and timeless covers of Vogue are like a classic Chanel bag, timeless. The days of magazines and catwalks will never fully be in our past, but for now, the social media movement has definitely pushed non-digital marketing to the backseat.

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Guest speaker: Marta Llibre

Motivational Marta

In one of our most recent classes for Journalism 2.0, we had the pleasure of getting to know Marta Llibre and obtain a greater understanding of her own experiences and advice when it comes to technology, startups, public relations and marketing. She focused in on the many aspects of digital marketing. By definition, Digital Marketing is the marketing of products or services using different digital entities- this includes but is not limited to the internet, mobile cellular phones, display advertising, television, and broadcasting. Marta spent a good amount of time also discussing with us the many aspects of podcasts and how she believes that podcasts are a great tool in communicating to audiences in today’s culture. Digital marketing has transformed companies and consumers to simultaneously become well versed in the role which one has on the other. Digital media continues to rapidly grow and with that growth comes the inevitable growth and expansion of marketing budgets and the evolution of business models and structures for companies in our society. Additionally, with this growth comes the decline of certain traditional media platforms and ways of conducting business. As Marta made us aware of, digital marketing activity is still evolving each and every day- as consumers and a generation of upcoming business and technologically savvy consumers it is our responsibility to use digital media to the best of our ability. She shared how she viewed the media realm as a hub of intelligent people and how she believes that the increase of knowledge amongst us as students will help our progress and success in the future. In addition to her explanations of business and media objectives, she shared insight on business analytics and the impact which media can partake in to allow a company to become noteworthy amongst the general public of consumers. She specified how the development of digital media as a personal tool is imperative to our positive progression as not only students, but young adults in the media industry. I personally enjoyed hearing about how she was so strongly supportive of the feminist movements and the way in which women are such an essential aspect in ensuring a better future for generations to come. Marta reiterated to her audience the importance of humaneness and ethics in what we choose to pursue in the future. This connected with me on a visceral level as I strive to live each and every day in an ethical manner, whether it be considering the health of the environment or individuals around me. You could tell she was not only extremely passionate about what she was doing but also about the people who it would affect. Her pure intentions surely shined through during her presentation to our class and I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to gain knowledge from her this past week.

Multimedia Project: Madrid

Madrid Spain was not only filled with amazing markets, outstanding museums, marvelous people, and breath taking sunsets (for which I have included some photos I took above) but Madrid enlightened me in Spanish history in a way I had never imagined. My time in Madrid was best spent within the Prado art Museum.

The museum truly opened my eyes to the many angles of the Spanish Inquisition and what that entailed for the people of Spain during the time, as well as how it still impacts Spaniards today. I learned how the Spanish inquisition was a panel started in 1478, followed by a long-standing reign of Catholic Monarchy in Spain. Its original purpose was to create a group of institutions within the government system of the Catholic Church whose aim was to contest heresy. Heresy is the belief or opinion which does not coincide with that believed in the religious doctrine. The Spanish Inquisition practiced brutal methodology in the efforts of establishing religious unity amongst the newly consolidated Spanish Kingdom. Out from the critical ashes of Catholic Monarchy, Spanish Inquisition, and disparaging war came a series of extremely influential painters, sculptors, poets, architects, and other virtuous artists in Spain. Many of which have work put on display at the Prado Museum in Madrid, Spain.

Madrid in general is a place rich with religious history and culture- so it was no surprise that within the walls of one of their largest art museums was the artistic genius of artists such as El Greco, Juan Bautista Maino, and Luis Tristan. (If you are interested in learning more about each of these artists, I have attached links to each of their names above. They will direct you to a source supplying much greater detail into their work and lives than this post will incorporate). All in all, I learned how all of the pieces in the exhibit which I was able to visit were tied together to one another with the mutual string of religion. 

The pieces jested on the religious ideology of Catholic values in Spain during the 15-18thcentury time period. The first piece I came across was The Crucifixion, painted by Luis Tristan in 1633.

The Crucifixion, painted by Luis Tristan

As you can see, the painting is of Christ on the cross with two roughly hewn beams bouncing off of the cross figure. Beginning in 1556, Catholic Monarchs were those in the position of power to conduct Spain’s political standings at the time. The Catholic Monarchs unite the incipient state and ally with principal families of the nobility to maintain their power. The Catholic Monarchs have a common international policy which reads that they will sign all agreements under the two names and both kingdoms help each other. The first Catholic Monarch was Phillip II (1556-1598) who was recalled as a ruthless tyrant of the time. Phillip II was the king of Hispanic realms, American colonies, Italian territories of Sicily, Sardinia and Milan, the Franche Comté and the Netherlands. During his time in power, the inquisition remains powerful and active. His main purpose was to preserve his kingdom and fight against heresy. During his time as Monarch, the cost of the Empire was higher than the money that gets collective and so loans were needed to sustain the army and the administration. That resulted in the Spanish courts bankruptcy during Phillip III’s time as Monarch of Spain. During this time there was great misery in Spain, and Phillip III seems much more consumed with hunting than of any of the political turmoil around him. Then in 1621, Phillip IV puts Spain in a religious war, known as the War of the Thirty years. Phillip IV is the first king to govern Spain as if it was one unity and not only a group of different kingdoms. His three main objectives consisted of turning the Spaniards into good business men by providing money to finance their businesses as well as changes in the complicated system of taxes into one global tax. His final objective was to create the union of the arms, which was one single military army financed by all kingdoms reduced local autonomy. The last Monarch during the 16thcentury, and during the Habsburg dynasty was Charles II. He was king from 1665-1700. Charles II leaves Spain in a war of succession: European war looking to balance power in the old continent. We learned of at least 6 other Catholic Monarchs with whom held power over Spain up until the first republic.

This all being said; the print of Catholicism was greatly indented in Spain during the time of great artists like El Greco- with who’s work I was exposed to during my time at the Prado Museum. El Greco was a well renounced artist during the Spanish Renaissance. The Spanish Renaissance was a wide spread movement in Spain between the 15thand 16thcenturies. It was buoyed by the unification of the Christian kingdom with the definitive taking of Granada alongside the inhumane expulsion of thousands of Muslims and Jews at the time. El Greco’s dramatic expressionistic style was first met with skepticism but became well regarded by the 20thcentury. In 1577, El Greco migrated to Madrid, and then to Toledo which had been the religious capital of Spain. 

The Almadrones Apostle Series by El Greco was a series of four pieces which I was also able to see during my time at the Prado Museum. The four paintings are part of an incomplete Apostle series discovered during the Spanish Civil War in Almadrones. They were painted during the final period of El Greco’s work. El Greco produced various Apostle series during his existence culminating in a collection of thirteen canvases depicting Christ and his twelve disciples. 

I got the opportunity to interview three individuals at the Prado Museum. Two of which were also visiting the Prado Museum at the time, and the third was an usher who worked at the museum for over 7 years. Marcos, the usher at the museum gave me great insight on how the religious tones of the museum are directly correlated to the vibrant religious history which Madrid had endured. He had worked as a shoe maker in Madrid as an adolescent and then worked for a friends local business until retiring with his wife on the outskirts of downtown Madrid. During his retirement he began to feel unchallenged and found himself often bored, this is why he looked into, and later fell in love, with the position as usher for the Prado Museum. The amount of information he was able to rattle off in an instance regarding what the walls of the Prado Museum had to offer was mind blowing. He was an absolutely lovely man that I had the pleasure of getting to know while I was in his fantastic city.

I asked the fellow visitors what their favorite pieces at the museum were and what brought them to the Prado Musuem. One of the interviewees was a woman from Paris who had come to Madrid for holiday and to gain an enrichment in Spanish art culture. She said her favorite piece was one of a bouquet of flowers in a metal vase and in a surrounding orange frame. The piece was done by Tomas Hiepes, finished in 1674. This was also one of my favorite pieces.

The flower piece which my interviewee adored.

My second interview was with a woman from Madrid. She said she tries her best to visit the museum regularly. Her favorite pieces were the pieces by El Greco. One in particular that she mentioned was The penitent Saint Jerome. The piece was finished in 1605. It is a painting of a man engaged in prayer, concentrating greatly on the crucifix. Other symbols such as the skull, the hour glass, the cardinals hat as well as the varying writing supplements attest to the ongoing religious theme throughout the entire exhibit, as well as throughout the time period of that era. 

Through the many works by these talented artists, we are able to visit attractions such as the Prado Museum and pear into the drama and viewpoints which were prevalent in Spain at that time. The cultural experience which Madrid granted me, is one I will never forget! Click the following link to visit the Prado Museum website, and to gain a better understanding of the many opportunities it has in store: https://www.museodelprado.es/en

You can also click here to purchase your tickets for a visit of the Prado Museum! And if you want to further gain insight of what is going on at the Prado Museum feel free to follow the #pradomuseum on Instagram or their account as well as following the Prado museum Twitter account shared below.

Blog Post 6: Marketing

In my opinion, each and everyday we market ourselves in one way or another. We put forth a version of ourselves into the public either in person or via the web which others are exposed to and then have an opinion on. Those opinions are shaped by what we offer forward to the public. Not only do we market ourselves to one another, but brands are constantly marketing themselves to us as well. The evolution of our brand as individuals, as well as the brands of companies are what attract us or drive us away from the many facets in our lives.

What is marketing? As expressed by previous courses which I have been enrolled, as well as through the addition of information included in this course- I would say the definition of marketing is satisfying customer wants and needs by providing products (which can be goods, services, and/or ideas). 

Products are sold through channels such as advertising, marketing, and other varying media vehicles which spread a message from a provider to a consumer (i.e. my blog post comes from me, and is being read by you). Media, especially social media in our current society, is a huge vehicle in the marketing of ourselves and what we want others to know. Each account we have, whether that be Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, they all are platforms for us to market ourselves to others. They also supply the liberty for us to either market ourselves in whichever way we want, whether that be honest to our reality or not. This “catfish” kind of world allows people to post their lives in a way which it looks like a fairytale, and excludes the hardships which may not be so glamorous to have seen by others. For example, you may have had a horrible day in the library followed by a great day on the beach- you are much more prone to put forth the beautiful sunny picture of you on the beach than that of your hardships in the library.

Instagram

Above are some examples of my own accounts which shape what my “brand” may be seen as. Each outlet contains pictures and posts of my life but the overall “image” which is being marketed through each social media platform differs.

For example, on Instagram and Twitter I market myself to my friends- in the way that I post pictures of myself at social gatherings and doing the fun things which I enjoy. In comparison- on LinkedIn, the person I am marketing is of a more professional nature. I have posted my resume, my academics, and other note worthy accomplishments for hopefully future employers. In short- media is a means of conveying or transferring marketing communication and messaging between the sender (yourself) and the receiver (others). 

We also live in a time where “branding” and “marketing” yourself well can strengthen your career and overall greater enhance your quality of life. Many outlets online have published pieces which speak on how one should “market” themselves in order to have positive results in turn. Here is an example of a website which puts forth “how to’s” and advice pieces on how to brand yourself online: http://entm.ag/2bbBXuj

When it comes to marketing- your product is marketed to consumers and then received through a series of consumer decisions. What consumers may want or need is best described through the means of Maslow’s Heirarchy of Needs.

Maslow’s Heirarchy of Needs categorizes the needs and wants of the consumer. Consumer behavior is composed of the activities, actions, and influences of people who purchase and use goods to satisfy particular needs and desires. All consumer activities associated with purchase, use, and disposal of goods or services including the consumer’s emotional, mental, and behavioral responses that precede, determine or follow these activities.

Marketing’s mission is targeting consumers and successfully selling their intended product. In the case of a blog, such as this, my product = my blog posts, my image= is myself, and my intended marketing strategy is to post the material for the enjoyment of my audience. 


Blog Post 5: Sarah Moon

One of my classes here in Barcelona, Spain is about different artists who are from Europe. One who especially peaked my interest was a woman named Marielle Warin. In a sentence, Sarah Moon is a fashion model turned fashion photographer who captures images of feminity with erotic poses in a her own dreamlike style.

Marielle Warin, who went by the professional title of Sarah Moon was born in 1941. She was originally a model who blossomed into a fashion photographer in the 1970’s. She has since photographed haute couture, still life, as well as portraiture work. Her photography style is said to play on the many aspects of sensuality through encapsulating mystery and visual appeal. Since 1985, Moon has concentrated on growing a gallery of extensive film work. She has, and continues to work in both color and black and white film. As a teen she studied drawing in England, after being forced to leave occupied France for England due to her Jewish decent.

Moon began to model in London and Paris in the 1960’s under the name Marielle Hadengue. She would take photos of her model colleagues, successfully capturing the fashion industry with a lens behind the scenes. In 1972, she was the first woman to shoot the Pirelli calendar, and later received praise from big name companies such as Chanel, Dior, Comme des Garcons and Vogue. Her fine-art photography and film-making are her primary focus in the later years of her career.

Most recently, in her late 70’s, she is known to have directed the music video for pop artist, Khaled’s, hit single, Aicha.

Blog post 4: Mojo

Mojo is a company which upholds the value of being a tool to enhance technology and digital users’ competencies. Mojo is a state of mind, or a philosophy, not just gadgets. In class we got the opportunity to explore all the ways which our day to day iPhone encapsulates the capabilities far beyond what most people choose to implement. I for one have never used my iPhone for much more than communication with friends and family, application use, and photographs. This class gave me the opportunity to use my iPhone to capture high quality video footage and then have access to that footage by my side, in my phone, relentlessly. 

Here are the examples of footage which I directly filmed during this class session:

This capability of having mobile journalism in your hands, simultaneously, and constant is imperative to getting news out to an audience quickly and efficiently in today’s society. Applications such as Facebook, twitter, and Instagram are platforms used to not only to constantly gain insight on current events and news but also update the world with your personal activity, journey, and thoughts. 

The advances in the internet have helped make this multi-media have such a substantial role in each and every one of our lives. Advances such as live-streaming and instant uploads make communication among digital users easy, affordable, and unceasing. Mojo proves that programs such as live-streaming gives broadcasters the ability to report from their mobile phones with high quality results. In the media industry, the best way to stay relevant is to stay up to date with the technology and trends. In order to do so, we must be wired into what is happening around us as well as what is going on through the portal of the web or internet. Being able to report with a smartphone will make broadcasters capabilities increasingly prevailing.

Pros of these advances in multi-media’s aptitudes and functions are freedom, accessibility, high definition quality, quick-thinking, inexpensive, and realistic outcomes. The cons would be when you compare your iPhone production to that of more “professional” equipment. When in comparison, you can see that the stability of an iPhone is not always the most proficient- even with a tripod docking stand. Additionally, the lighting is less predictable and not as great of quality and your audio can be choppy, inconsistent, or faint through your video broadcast. It is imperative that when reporting with Mojo technology you have a clean lens, check up on your recording marks, adjust your format, quality, and audio prior, and use strong Wi-Fi connections if available. Moreover, your phone should be put on flight mode so to avoid any distractions of incoming calls or texts from your contacts.

Blog Post 3: Valentí Sanjuan

In class this past Monday, we had the privilege of meeting with Instagram influencer and marathon athlete, Valentí Sanjuan. We discussed the perimeters in which one’s job title varies from Journalist to other. After a personal struggle in both his love life, career, and family life, Valentí used social media outlets to create a persona which he could brand and successfully sell. His adrenaline junkie persona translated to viewers and captured the attention of a wide enough audience for Valentí to become his own channel. 

When family tragedy struck, and his mother passed away, Valentí took it upon himself to move forward in life, carrying his experiences, both good and bad, as motivation to be the best version of himself that he could be.

Valentí explained how his goal was to get to the point where his brand was strong enough that companies and businesses wanted to hire him to do the jobs he wanted to do. He explained how there was a point where he would pitch ideas for trips and such to his bosses and they would then outline the different interviews and areas which he would be allowed to report on. After gaining success as an internet personality, he gained the freedom of being able to go where he wanted and conduct the interviews which he found joy in himself. One of the interviews which he pulled up for us in class was with a man about his same age who was in a marathon race with Valentí. Valentí began the story with explaining how he was at the race complaining about pain in his hands from all the previous suffrage he underwent in races prior, his friend told him to seek out the man who he had been running alongside and ask him his story. When Valentí met this fellow marathonist he saw that the man had lost both of his legs, and Valentí was then able to gain perspective of how instead of complaining about his current situation there is so much to be grateful for as well. The man he interviewed explained that he lost both his legs in a train accident about 11 years back, and when this tragedy struck he knew he had to options in how to react after. He could a. pout and give up and wonder the “What ifs” of life, or he could b. make the best of his situation and continue doing what he loved, which was pushing himself to the limit during marathons and other physically tasking activities. This interview showed me how the cards that life might dealt you, won’t be the hand that you necessarily wanted to be dealt, however, it is up to you to make the most of it.

We live in a world where many negatives may come our way, the way in which we are able to turn negatives into positives are what make us the people who we are. When I was younger, and I would tell my parents the aspirations I had for my future career, my dad would always tell me “If you do what you love, you won’t have to work a day in your life”. Valentí’s talk with us was a true testament to how true of a statement that is. If you are passionate about the person you are and what you are doing, you can find success in being yourself. Valentí’s ability to command these values in his life are what make people want to follow him and route for his success on social media.

4 months of travel through Europe

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