Consumer Brand Engagement of Fashion Brands on Social Media Platforms

Key takeaways:

  • Online consumer engagement is becoming very important and the author observes that there seems to be an increasing interest in that topic especially among fashion brands, on social, face Media it is one of the most powerful.
  • The increased knowledge of consumers’ motives to engage with fashion brands social media and their activities will be without any doubt very useful for creating new marketing strategies.
  • The goal of this study is to discover what motivates consumers to engage with fashion brands on social media.

Introduction

The way consumer engagement communicates with one another, find and exchange product information, and buy and consume has all altered substantially in the previous decade as a result of digital advancements. The internet has become a key source of information for consumers engagement allowing them to make more informed decisions throughout their purchasing. Consumers had a more active role as market actors of new media channels like Facebook, YouTube, Google, and Twitter, which allowed them to reach out to anybody, anywhere, at any time. 

Social media is thought to be an ideal environment for farming communities that allow users and businesses to interact while also making the material more accessible to the general public. Social media has slowly but steadily become a part of our everyday life. Massive social transformations were brought about by networked computers and communications. People all over the world were able to find one other and form groups based on a wide range of cultural and consumer engagement and social interactions thanks to networked computers, which allowed them to ignore geographical and time limitations.

The brands discovered that social media not only allows them to reach out to their customers in a passive (informational) approach but also allows them to interact with them through active dialogue. Such a good Consumer engagement can boost the brand’s attributes and attract more customers who believe in a particular brand. As a result, such customers may become advocates for a certain brand. Furthermore, because consumer engagement was assessed as having the ability to impact a consumer’s decision to buy or not buy, it went even more to the forefront of all marketers’ minds. Users of social media can interact with a firm in a variety of ways.

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Social Media & Fashion Brands

Online apps, platforms, and media that enable interactions, collaborations, and content sharing are referred to as social media. Almost all businesses, regardless of their size or type of business, use social media to advertise and promote themselves. The number of businesses with a social media presence continues to rise. Many businesses are beginning to use social media in marketing, public relations, or other departments where it is vital to maintain a direct line of connection with customers. Customers can interact with businesses by leaving comments on their profiles, for example. It’s also a strategy to raise awareness and Consumer engagement among clients who aren’t familiar with the brand.

In summary, many businesses are looking for ways to engage their customers, and many believe that using social media is one of the best ways to do so. Advertising and promotional information are no longer the only sources of product information. Furthermore, because social media allows customers to share information about items and companies among themselves, social media users are frequently impacted by the experiences of others before making their own purchasing decisions.

Fashion firms found it difficult to use social media at first. They were concerned about how their brand would be seen, as being on social media seemed almost too much for them, as they felt overly exposed. However, without social media, today’s an advertising and marketing strategies would be woefully inadequate. Fashion shows used to be closed events attended only by buyers and journalists, with no celebrities in the front row. Thanks to new technology, the collections are now available to all clients throughout the world, not just a select few.

Social Media Users

Digital advances have radically altered the way consumers communicate with one another, find and exchange product information, and purchase and consumer goods over the previous decade. Consumers played a more active role as market participants as a result of new media channels like Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter, which allowed them to reach anybody, anywhere, at any time. Consumers are becoming more empowered as a result of information technology, and their roles are shifting from passive recipients of information to active creators of information.

In Web 2.0, creative consumers are becoming the new value Centre. They’re the ones who post stuff on social media and then provide far more value than businesses. The definition of social is formed by their networks of friends and acquaintances. This new media landscape is driven by creative customers. Social media is frequently referred to as user-generated content (UGC) or consumer-generated media in the marketplace (CGM). However, there must be a distinction made between the media and the customers. Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest are useful for distributing content. Consumers from all around the world create the material, which might take the shape of words, text, photographs, or videos.

Online Brand Communities

The Internet allows for quick information transmission and communication regardless of time or location. The lack of physical boundaries distinguishes the online community from the traditional geographically confined community. Online communities are typically built on the voluntary efforts of their members and are centered on common interests. There are many different types of online communities, but brand communities all have a common personality and are linked to consumption. However, the focus of attention is not on consumption, but rather on a common interest in and love for a particular brand.

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Consumer Engagement Motives with Fashion Brands

The theory of planned behavior has already been used in the study of consumer adoption and usage of various technologies.  Internal motives drive personal considerations toward the brand page. After receiving favorable or unfavorable feedback, a person makes a decision. Subjective norms, on the other hand, are defined by normative views that one believes someone else expects him or her to do something. These social considerations have something to do with peer pressure to join a brand page. Internal or external control factors, or both, can be used. When a consumer is stimulated creatively by a brand, when he or she is boosted by other consumers, or when he or she senses the receiving of some benefits, the consumer begins to engage with the brand.

To maximize the reach and depth of engagement on social media, it’s critical to create material that keeps fans, followers, and friends interested. Due to the analysis of word-of-mouth dialogues on social media, active dialogue with fans ensures a grasp of customer impressions of the brand. Such information can be utilized to improve the brand’s image, reply to specific customer care requests, and explain misunderstandings and false rumors that could harm the brand’s reputation. 

Community Usage Behavior

The report also explains how online communities work by describing how members create and consume material. Members consume content created by others, gaining and transferring informational and social value in the process. Members consume content by reading posts, watching movies, or looking at photographs that others have posted. They are examples of no interactive community behavior, whereas content creation is an example of interactive community usage behavior. Users’ content is a key aspect of the social media phenomenon. Members can contribute to the community by providing content, such as commenting on other people’s postings, asking questions about the community’s theme, and sharing product evaluations and experiences.

Consumption is the first method, which refers to people who read, watch, but never interact. Participating entails both user-to-user and user-to-content engagement, such as sharing material with others and leaving comments. Producing entails the creation and distribution of one’s own personal content, which might include text, photographs, audio, and video. People consume material for a variety of reasons. For starters, they read content offered by other users for information and amusement. Second, they participate in social contact and community growth, therefore they frequently remark on the content of others. Finally, they create their content for self-expression and self-actualization. Even though he depicts these activities individually, he contends that they are highly interdependent, which implies that users are typically members of multiple categories at the same time.

Community Engagement on Social media

Consumer engagement has become a hot topic thanks to the rapid expansion of the Internet and social media outlets. Social media has allowed businesses to reach out to customers, increase their visibility, and communicate with customers in new ways. Although, in particular, online connections with customers can help a brand’s market standing. Crossroads’ Marketing & Communications Manager, Erin Wallace, explains that they were always looking for fun, genuine ways to engage with their customers, so social media was an obvious choice.

They are now happy that their community shares its opinion because they have up-to-date, invaluable feedback (Finding Success with social media, 2010). The interaction between a specific subject (customer) and the engaging object (brand/product or organization). As a result, engagement may be evaluated from both a consumer’s and a company’s or brand’s standpoint. Consumer engagement is determined by the preferences of each customer.

Brand Trust and Brand Loyalty

Companies and customers can interact with one another through brand communities. While businesses strive to engage with loyal consumers, influence members’ impressions of the brand, raise brand recognition and learn from and about customers, customers profit from a range of online behaviors. Brodie et al. suggest that consumer engagement can lead to numerous outcomes, including trust, satisfaction, commitment, emotional connection, and loyalty. According to the report, the online brand community is primarily about loyalty, commitment, and empowerment.

According to Gummerus et al. brand community collaboration is based on loyalty. Consumers are willing to join brand communities because they like the brand and hence feel loyal to it, he adds. Consumer loyalty can become more powerful as a result of customer interaction. It has been proven that committed fans and followers are more likely to buy products from the brand they follow and are also more likely to promote them to others. It’s worth noting that they’re not encouraging individuals to start following brands on social media; instead, they’re encouraging people to buy the product, which is ultimately what brands want.

Which are the key motives that encourage people to engage with fashion brands on social media?

Being up to date on the latest trends is a powerful incentive for people to engage with companies’ social media accounts. Fashion is an industry that is always evolving, and being up to date on the latest trends is a strong motivation for people to engage with businesses’ social media profiles. It is critical for fashion enthusiasts to have access to the most up-to-date information on collections, products, and materials. Respondents do not see their interaction with firms’ social media accounts as a leisure activity; rather, they want to learn something helpful.

People become fans/followers of a brand when they are considering purchasing its items or when they have had a personal experience with a product or brand. People become fans or followers of a brand if they like its products or the brand as a whole, and they want to be a part of the surrounding community, according to the study. As a result, the followers are primarily those who have already consumed and used the brand’s products or services, making it simple for the company to communicate with them. The relationship with such clients can be long and stable, and under the threat of being taken away, these customers can grow extremely devoted to that brand.

The motive for discounts is a little hazy. It’s either one of the most crucial motives or one of the least important. There appear to be two kinds of fashionistas: one loves discounts and special deals, while the other is uninterested in receiving such benefits. It verifies our main result that customers are most interested in learning about new items, obtaining basic information, or reading reviews.

What are the different ways that customers interact with fashion brands on social media? Are those activities involving a specific fashion brand linked to a product's readiness to purchase?

It’s only the beginning of the tale when customers become brand fans/followers on social media. Through various activities, brands must deepen their relationship with their customers. The findings are unsurprising: respondents’ responses indicate that individuals prefer to consume rather than engage in or create their material. People enjoy reading postings written by fashion firms, but they are uninterested in content written by other consumers. People prefer viewing videos to reading posts when it comes to consuming activities. Younger individuals appreciate videos because they do not have to exert mental effort; all they have to do is watch and listen. Furthermore, the popularity of video may be linked to the visual element of fashion. As a result, we believe that videos should be a natural fit for fashion brands’ social media platforms.

Conclusion

The goal of this study was to determine what motivates customers to interact with fashion brands on social media, what types of activities these followers engage in online, and what reason(s) urge consumers to interact with businesses further and then share the information released by firms. Furthermore, whether there is a link between consumer engagement and purchase intent.

People typically follow a brand’s social media page based on their sentiments and opinions. They may act on a referral from a friend or in response to an invitation from the company. Fashion firms try to engage people with posts in the form of text, video, and competitions. Apart from competing, all of these activities are intertwined, so, likely, people who watch videos will also read postings and respond to fan comments. Fans that create and share their material on the company’s social media page reflect the strongest relationship a fashion business may have with its customers. The only activity that has been linked to purchase intent is posting a comment on the brand’s wall.

Pragya Kant

Content writer

Vignesh Gounder

Graphic designer

Ashish Singh

Editor 

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