Local fashion brands slow to adopt social curation

Local fashion brands slow to adopt social curation

Marketing spend on social media among luxury, lifestyle, fashion brands and retailers is out of whack with Australia’s high social media penetration, according to the founder of WeAreDigital.

Karson Stimson, the director of Melbourne-based independent agency WeAreDigital, told B&T that marketers still struggle with social media.

“Too many people are aligning their budget spends to revenue. But the success measure for social media is not always about return on investment,” Stimson said.

“It is around brand building, it is about awareness, creating attention and being part of the decision cycle.

“We are one of the highest markets for penetration in terms of social media but the percentage of budgets being allocated to social media doesn’t equate – there is a massive gap.”

Among Australian internet users, 62% use social networking sites including Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn, according to a 2012 study by Sensis.

However, the same report found large businesses allocate just 4.5% of their marketing budgets to social media while medium businesses invest 9.2% on average.

Stimson spoke to B&T late last week after hosting the Social Curation panel at the L’Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival Business Seminar.

Overseas fashion brands have been busy refining their social curation skills, but Stimson believes it is still “early days” in Australia

“It is actually working with your customer and not talking at them whereas traditionally it has been a very dictatorial type of relationship where you as a fashion, luxury, retail brand said ‘here is a picture that we want you to look at and this is how you should wear our product’,” Karson explained.

“Where as true social and social curation is a collaboration between a customer and a brand.

“It is all about letting go which is a big mind shift for big businesses, big brands and retailers because that loss of control is such a foreign concept.”

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