Consumers are becoming more and more empowered to voice their opinions about fashion and influencing trends through social media platforms. Retailers are soon adapting to this trend and using the vast pool of information being generated on social media platforms to make profitable business decisions. Retailers are now aware about the trends of shopping, timings preferred for online shopping, modes of payment preferred by customers etc explains Stephanie Horton, chief marketing officer of Farfetch.com. Fashion companies are using social media platforms for keenly listening to the voices of very opinionated consumers, where they are sharing their likes, dislikes and constant feedback. It is no longer an era era where the end user of fashion products didn’t have any say. Customers are very actively making their views heard.
A recent example is Topshop and Victoria’s Secret, who responded positively to customer protests on social media. Laura Berry who voiced her dislike about the unusually small size of the mannequins being used in Topshop stores got instant support from others in the form of 3000 likes and 70 comments on the post. The Topshop team was quick to respond and apologize by commenting “We have taken yours and other customers’ opinions and feedback on board and going forward we are not placing any further orders on this style of mannequin. The views of our customers are extremely valuable and we apologize if we have not lived up to the levels of service that we aim to deliver.” on Topshop’s Facebook page. A negative review of a fashion brand in the yesteryears wouldn’t be of much importance, however a negative review of a brand can now go quickly viral and destroy the image of the brand beyond repair. Social media platforms are extremely beneficial to gather important information about trends without the additional cost of hiring research agencies. They are perfect for startups or small scale businesses as they give them instant feedback about market trends so that they can adapt accordingly. Brands must however be careful about not letting constant feedback effect their creativity. They should continue to experiment with designs.