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Digital Marketing in the Fashion Industry


Today, the development of marketing strategies and ways of business development is impossible without considering technology. The most common marketing technologies are online sales, digital marketing, SaaS, cloud computing, cloud storage, robotic process automation, and robotics to collate data. The fashion industry is a massive segment of the global market that contacts billions of consumers worldwide. In recent years, digital marketing technologies have played an increasingly decisive role in creating a successful marketing strategy for the mass market and high fashion clothing stores. This essay will present how the fashion industry uses digital marketing technologies to attract new customers and increase customer engagement. It will also define the terms marketing strategy, CRM, and digital marketing. The first part of the essay will provide an overview of the marketing technologies actively used in the fashion industry today. The following part will assess and explain the use of technology in the fashion industry. Sustainability issues will then be discussed, and referenced recommendations will be presented on the future use of digital marketing technologies.

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Definition of Important Terms

A marketing strategy is a strategy to attract potential customers who should become customers of a company’s product. A marketing strategy can be built on a value proposition, key brand messages, and customer data, including demographic and other characteristics. It can incorporate marketing plans that describe marketing activities and marketing initiatives (Barone, 2020). A marketing strategy can remain unchanged for quite a long time, as it contains the business’s essential elements. At the same time, a marketing plan is a kind of map, a logistic scheme for achieving a marketing strategy’s goals. Therefore, various techniques, including marketing technologies, are usually used to implement marketing plans, where the details of specific marketing campaigns are presented (Barone, 2020). The marketing strategy can also include a description and analysis of the marketing technologies’ effectiveness, as this allows ensuring sustainability in the application of these technologies.

One of the essential tools in the interaction of a company with its potential and regular customers is customer relationship management (CRM), which contains fundamental business methods and principles. CRM involves covering sales processes, customer service, forecasting, trend analysis, and customer behavior analysis (Hargrave, 2019). CRM can use various tools, including digital marketing technologies, such as creating an attractive website, bulk emailing, and communicating with customers on social media. The goal of CRM is to adapt to current trends, make a good impression of the brand among customers, and grow the customer base. Sometimes the term CRM also refers to those marketing technologies used to attract customers or improve the brand experience (Hargrave, 2019). CRM is implemented at all stages of the customer’s life cycle, including discovery, learning, purchase, and after-sales service.

Digital marketing is a CRM tool and involves using the Internet, mobile devices, social networks, search networks, and all the technologies available within this use. Since digital marketing is a CRM tool, its ultimate goal is to reach consumers (Barone, 2020). Digital marketing has appeared recently; it appeals to new generations of consumers, uses new ways of presenting information, and requires new approaches. Digital marketing is characterized by targeting or segmentation and interactive technologies (Barone, 2020). There are many channels of interaction with customers within digital marketing, such as advertising in search results, email marketing, blogging, Web 2.0 communication, video-streaming, and photo sharing. Web marketing is the centerpiece of a company website, while pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, content marketing, email marketing, social media marketing, video marketing, and SMS marketing are some other examples.

Digital Marketing Technologies Review and Analysis, Web 2.0, SEO, and Google Ads

Fashion brands always try to keep up with popular tech trends. They adapt their marketing strategies to emerging markets, old and new, where digital marketing is the primary means of interacting with audiences. Besides, the use of digital tools is the key to success in attracting younger generations. According to Muniesa & Giménez (2020), one of the leading digital marketing methods used in the fashion industry is Web 2.0. Web 2.0 describes the phenomenon when users can view content and make changes to it (Kenton, 2018). An example of Web 2.0 is posting comments on websites, social networks, and specialty websites such as Britannica or Wikipedia, where users are encouraged to create content.

More generally, Web 2.0 describes the tendency for the Internet to have diverse user-generated content and user experience technologies, compared to Web 1.0. Therefore, Web 2.0 describes changes in how the Internet is used and presents a new era characterized by a high level of information exchange and interaction between users (Kenton, 2018). Notably, Web 1.0 describes the early Internet era when websites were more static and had limited functionality. In contrast, Web 2.0 is characterized by adding comments, creating accounts, and publishing articles. Outstanding examples of Web 2.0 are WordPress, podcasts, polls, personal blogs, and social media with all the interactive features they offer.

SEO tools, SEM, and social media are important digital marketing tools too. Scientists note that Pinterest is one of the primary sources of information dissemination for high fashion brands such as Chanel (Muniesa & Giménez, 2020). At the same time, scholars emphasize that “luxury brand websites are very stylish, but perform poorly when it comes to user experience and functionality” (Muniesa & Giménez, 2020, p. 235). It is also noted that high fashion brands are not taking full advantage of search engine optimization (SEO) opportunities, losing potential traffic, and revenue. Google is one of the most influential channels through which shoppers find brand information and shop. Therefore, scientists recommend that brands be sure to optimize sites for SEO. Low ranking in Google searches leaves brand websites unavailable to many potential consumers.

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Besides, Google Ads and Facebook Ads are widely used in CRM as they provide a high level of segmentation and targeting of advertising messages. Muniesa & Giménez (2020) note, “you can target your ads to 35-year-old married Parisian men who love Prada, Gucci and Versace” (p. 234). Besides, ads targeting allows specifying indicators like the company where the potential buyer works, their position, and music preferences.

Review and Analysis of Digital Marketing Technologies, Storytelling

Another exciting aspect of the marketing strategies of high fashion brands is brand exclusivity. Ways to properly convey this exclusivity include creating private member groups, offering concierge or shopper services, and digitally delivered loyalty benefits (Muniesa & Giménez, 2020). However, there is another tool for creating a loyal relationship with a customer, increasing customer engagement, and brand awareness – storytelling (Romo et al., 2017). Telling the story behind a brand helps explain its values and uniqueness. According to scientists, this method is used in video marketing strategies, social networks, and public events.

An example would be the #series events organized annually by Louis Vuitton in different cities. Through storytelling, brands shape the key messages and values, creating stories of the collection creation process, describing the life path of the brand founders, the procurement processes, and the origin of the materials from which products are made (Romo et al., 2017). Shows of behind-the-scenes events, individual interviews with creators, and employees are also in great demand. Brands also use digital platforms, interacting with the public through blogs, forums, social networks, to develop viral marketing and make customers a part of the brand’s world.

Scientists present digital marketing technologies in the fashion industry using famous brands Prada, Chanel, and Luis Vuitton. In particular, Prada prefers storytelling on digital platforms, including social media and mobile, engaging celebrities and bloggers. Prada also uses online sales to promote sales from the brand’s website (Romo et al., 2017). Chanel offers richer content using the website, social media, and blogs to connect with customers. On the company’s website, one can find a series of videos that present historical information about brand building, new and old collections, haute couture presentations, and other events through storytelling. There is also a series of mini-videos that Karl Lagerfeld filmed to revive the brand’s image (Romo et al., 2017). These videos, presented in chronological order, reveal the main stages of the brand’s history and evolution. One of the most striking examples is the video “Coco inside Chanel,” which presents the founder’s story and her path to fame.

Luis Vuitton is also actively using digital marketing strategies, focusing on product quality, manufacturing processes, and emotional communication. Besides, Luis Vuitton advertises exhibitions, which it organizes in different cities, presenting seasonal collections (Romo et al., 2017). Like the previous two brands, Luis Vuitton uses social networks and attracts celebrities to promote the brand. For example, Selena Gomez became the face of the most recent digital marketing campaign that targeted millennials.

Review and Analysis of Digital Marketing Technologies, Influencer Marketing

Another way to communicate with potential consumers and regular customers is through influencer marketing. According to Sudha & Sheena (2017), the fashion industry uses the importance of influencers’ opinions to consumers, which are expressed in the form of blogs, posts, photos, or videos on digital platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram. Influencer marketing’s advantage is its interactivity and high level of user engagement, who can comment on their experience using the company’s products and share it with friends. However, buyers’ freedom of expression has led to the need to minimize negative messages and maximize positive ones, which should help create a positive customer experience within CRM. Therefore, fashion blogs became an essential way for brands to digitally interact with customers and promote products to targeted consumer segments. In this way, influencers have become hubs or meeting points for shoppers and the primary place for exchanging opinions.

Targeting potential influencers is done in the same way as segmenting customers – using Google Ads or Facebook Ads. More advanced tools include AdWords campaigns and more sophisticated CRM tools such as SAP C4C, Microsoft Dynamics, Sage CRM, and Salesforce CRM (Sudha & Sheena, 2017). The purpose of influencer marketing is to identify and activate individuals who impact the target audience or environment. The brand then recruits these influencers to participate in marketing campaigns to increase audience reach or increase sales.

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When working with customers through influencers, brands focus on developing trust and genuine relationships. Influencer marketing can be paid or unpaid. In the case of unpaid marketing, the influencer uses the brand to enhance personal social growth (Sudha & Sheena, 2017). Paid influencer marketing involves influencers participating in paid marketing campaigns. Paid influencer marketing includes sponsorship, pre-advertising, and feedback (Sudha & Sheena, 2017). The form of the advertising message and the audience’s reach depends on the digital marketing campaign’s budget. Anyone can become an influencer, and sometimes it can be a group of people, an organization, or another brand. In addition to influencing and building brand trust, influencer marketing allows creating social dialogue around the brand.

The value that influencer marketing creates comes from three sources, namely reach, relevance, and resonance. Reach refers to the size of the audience that will receive the ad message. The higher the level of influence, the wider the audience reach, the higher the campaign budget (Sudha & Sheena, 2017). A right influencer should have more than average subscribers in a given niche and qualities that can motivate followers to take action. Sometimes it’s about reaching millions of consumers with a single influencer through multiple social channels and blogs. Next, relevance measures the influencer’s level of significance to the brand’s products. Finally, resonance reflects the level of activity an influencer generates by posting content (Sudha & Sheena, 2017). Resonance depends on the response that a single Twitter post or post on Instagram can cause in followers. One of the influencers’ most critical tasks is maintaining a strong relationship with an audience based on trust.

In the fashion industry, influencers are among the most sought-after campaigners for luxury brands. Scientists divide influencers into four main types: traditional influencers, emerging digital influencers, influencers by connection, and influencers by topic (Sudha & Sheena, 2017). Traditional influencers are PR agencies and celebrities, as well as industry experts. Emerging digital influencers are mainly bloggers who have gained recognition from a broad digital audience and are opinion leaders. Influencers by the connection are determined by the number of followers or friends on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram (Sudha & Sheena, 2017). Usually, companies attract this type of influencer when they create a new brand or product. Influencers by topic are the influencers on specific issues whom brands generally attract to draw attention to existing products.

There are several most popular platforms for influencers – fashion blogs, video platforms, and photography platforms. Influencers usually blog regularly, posting graphics, photos, videos, comments, or event descriptions. Each influencer has an individual style, from which they cover the fashion industry (Sudha & Sheena, 2017). The central video platform is YouTube, where influencers can upload videos about fashion and beauty. This platform’s advantage is the high interest among subscribers, as the videos usually describe various practical tips that can be applied in everyday life. Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, and other photo platforms target the younger generation and have the advantage of fast photo messaging speeds (Sudha & Sheena, 2017). Besides, influencers’ common benefit is a high level of trust in reviews, photos, and videos, and direct communication with the audience.

Google Trends and Online Virtual Fitting Rooms

Another useful digital technology tool related to online sales rather than digital marketing is virtual online fitting rooms. This tool allows creating a parametric consumer avatar after entering the given dimensions, such as size, weight, and height (Guercini et al., 2017). The use of online virtual fitting rooms is an excellent solution for online sales as it increases customer engagement and reduces shopping risk. Online selling is a new business model that is being adopted by many well-known clothing brands today.

Simultaneously, Google Trends is a useful tool for analyzing and forecasting seasonal demand fluctuations and other fashion industry trends. According to Silva et al. (2019), Google Trends accurately determines the style and fashion preferences of various target groups, providing appropriate targeted analytics. This digital tool allows assessing a particular item’s popularity, such as jeans, sunglasses, waterproof watches, or bomber jackets. Besides, Google enables fashion brands to track search queries and predict purchasing decisions (Silva et al., 2019). Therefore, Google Trends creates a significant competitive advantage for companies that use this tool, allowing them to use resources more efficiently.

Moreover, Google Trends enables more accurate decisions about strategic fashion management. With the help of analytics, brands can identify seasonal demand patterns, analyze the behavior and demand for competitors’ products, identify opportunities for brand expansion, and the most appropriate marketing terms (Silva et al., 2019). In particular, the tool makes it possible to display the seasonality of demand for any selected product, representing changes in the demand curve. Simultaneously, it is possible to specify more extended periods to get an idea of ​​fashion changes over the decades.

Analysis of competitors allows analyzing the demand for competitors’ products and assessing the adequacy of their behavior. Besides, identifying opportunities for brand expansion implies additional planning investment options in manufacturing, new product development, and marketing. Google Trends allows assessing trends for individual units of goods, groups of goods, and entire sectors in a particular industry (Silva et al., 2019). Therefore, before planning an expansion, a marketer can find out what the likelihood of a high ROI is and how successful the development will be. The demand for a particular product can gradually increase or decrease and be subject to more or less seasonal fluctuations.

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Finally, using the right marketing terms or unit names can be a decisive factor in determining the demand level for that product. Changes in language and product names are usually associated with changes in sales geography (Silva et al., 2019). Therefore, Google Trends offers brands the opportunity to use the most appropriate definitions for the units or product groups they plan to bring to market. Correct use of the language is essential as, for example, the demand for the same items can be very different for the US and UK (Silva et al., 2019). Therefore, scientists recommend using Google Trends as a digital marketing tool that helps improve consumer demand.

Digital Marketing Sustainability

The primary indicator of digital marketing campaigns’ sustainability and reliability is the broad reach of the audience through many digital channels and creating interactive communication based on social dialogue around the brand or product. The large number and variety of digital interaction methods allow reaching various audience segments. Besides, tools such as Google Ads or Facebook Ads suggest the most detailed targeting. These tools are also indispensable when a marketer needs to analyze current trends or forecast seasonal demand (Silva et al., 2019). Various CRM tools such as Web 2.0, SEO marketing, storytelling, or influencer marketing make it possible to achieve a marketing campaign’s most specific goals.

Scientists also point out many advantages of digital marketing over traditional approaches. Specifically, Rathnayaka (2018) says that the increase in internet penetration leads to an increase in audience reach to 40% of the global population. It is also noted that digital marketing techniques enable companies to have a proactive presence on web platforms, provide a 7/24 service, keep the information up to date, and provide customers with brand access and brand information (Rathnayaka, 2018). Digital marketing also makes it possible to take care of customers and brand status and is convenient in customer availability and employment.

Digital marketing sustainability in the fashion industry is ensured by improving content performance, generating revenue, competing with global brands, increasing brand reputation and credibility, and making content performance results measurable. Rathnayaka (2018) notes that there are some limitations, such as a lack of technological literacy among brand employees to fully exploit digital media capabilities, data protection issues, rapidly changing trends, and a limited budget for optimization.

Recommendations for the Future Use of Digital Marketing Tools

Given the overall success of digital marketing technologies and strategies in the fashion industry, it makes sense to discuss some aspects that will improve digital marketing campaigns. Scientists point out several vital points to consider when designing a digital marketing campaign: dialogue with customers, loyalty, promotion, awareness, and multi-channel communication (Rathnayaka, 2018). Dialogue with customers helps maintain a good brand reputation, even in critical cases. Customers’ loyalty is not as easy to win as in the past, so all means should be directed towards maintaining a high level of commitment. Further, the promotion should consider the market’s satiety with various ads and maintain a balance between online and offline advertising based on 360 views (Rathnayaka, 2018). Besides, consumers are less inclined to self-seek product information, so brands have more freedom to present first. Finally, multi-channel communication allows increasing customer reach and not choosing between channels.

Customer relationships are the primary and ultimate goal of any marketing strategy. Scientists propose to consider three key points: ensuring customer satisfaction, a high level of service, and segmentation or targeting techniques. Noteworthy, customer satisfaction can be quickly earned by offering high-quality products and generating positive reviews (Rathnayaka, 2018). Besides, service quality still has a decisive influence on the customer experience of the brand. Further, proper segmentation allows determining customers’ needs more accurately. Plus, personalized services attract more customers to the brand and create emotional attachment.

It is not difficult to ensure that the above conditions are met. Still, it also requires that the company employees have the right skills, which will lead to the formation of the right customer attitude and proper company behavior in the digital market. Some of the critical skills in running a digital marketing campaign can be technical skills such as digital engineering, mathematics, statistics, analytics, and computing (Rathnayaka, 2018). These skills are needed by the marketer to analyze and predict consumer behavior and develop visualizations for statistics. Besides, personalizing customer needs requires creative skills. Finally, social communication skills are most important, as consumers expect a genuine and emotional relationship with a brand along with purchasing a high-quality product or service.

Attitude towards customers is determined by the fact that on digital platforms, consumers have the opportunity to leave both positive and negative reviews, so marketers need to maintain a positive brand image. Besides, marketers face the need to shift focus from immediate profit to forming long-term customer relationships. Finally, marketers need to have the right behaviors that reflect brand values and shape their image in the eyes of the digital shopper (Rathnayaka, 2018). The relationship between marketers and customers should happen in real-time, as this is what increases customer loyalty and creates a relationship with an element of preserved emotional connection.


Thus, digital marketing tools were presented, which are most successfully used by fashion brands. In particular, the benefits of Web 2.0, Google, and Facebook Ads, Google Trends were described. Marketing techniques, such as storytelling and influencer attraction, were also assessed. Fashion brand employees who work in the marketing department must have a range of technical and communication skills to use the presented techniques effectively. Besides, brand owners need to take into account that the digital and fashion markets are continually changing, as well as the way they interact with customers, and adapt to these changes, with an emphasis on consistent customer care and quality products.


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