6 things fashion brands look for when they work with influencers

6 things fashion brands look for when they work with influencers
fashion brands

Getting paid gigs with fashion brands is the holy grail for many influencers. Vamp offers regular fashion briefs with brands like ASOS, Country Road, Superdry, Timberland, New Balance and even on-line fashion stores like eBay. All of our briefs are sent out via our Vamp app. To become a Vamp influencer simply download the app to apply.

Fashion brands will often give influencers the choice of what fashion items they want to shoot from a collection. They might have a new collection of swimwear, for example, and they would allow influencers to choose which swimwear item they most wanted to shoot. This is amazing from an authenticity point of view as influencers have total freedom to select item/s that their followers will best engage with.

A lot of fashion brands simply do free-gifting to influencers in exchange for posts which makes the number of sponsored posts even more competitive. Free gifting from fashion brands can be an attractive option for many influencers. Getting clothes they love for free is one reason why many influencers might be happy to create content in exchange for product. Working with fashion brands also gives them a lot of kudos from their followers and fashion looks have the potential to gain a lot of traction on Instagram.

Vamp is Pro-Influencer which means we believe high quality content creators always deserve to get paid for their work. Like any professional. Fashion campaigns are some of our most competitive briefs. Therefore, we’ve brought together some key tips for influencers who want to get selected by fashion brands.

Fashion Brands Tip 1: “We are looking for… influencers that align with our brand aesthetic.”

Fashion brands often have a very clear persona and brand personality. Think – does your personal brand align with the fashion brands you most like to work with? Probably yes as if you are attracted to that fashion brand personality, the likelihood is that your two characters will get on like a house on fire. However, does this translate clearly across to your followers via your feed? Brands will be looking for existing content that

Influencers are not catalogue clones. Fashion brands who are clued up to how influencer marketing works best will love you for being yourself as this will communicate best to your followers. However, with more and more brands purchasing additional usage rights of content to utilise in their wider advertising campaigns, they will want something that slots in naturally within their own brand narrative too.

If you want to target fashion brands… First, write a list of your personal attributes. Everything from your colour scheme, your aesthetic (what does it sound like, smell like, feel like, etc), your personality. Second, write a list of which brands you would love to work for. Third, Visit their Instagram page, the About Us on their website and jot down what these brands make you think and feel. Last, see what cross over there is and make a plan on how your content can start reflecting theirs. Do you live and breathe the style that represents who that fashion brand are? Be true to yourself. Note: A nice spider diagram or perhaps even a Ven diagram if you are feeling extra creative might work well with this. 

Fashion Brands Tip 2: “We are looking for… someone that wears other brands that are complementary to our brand.”

In Vamp briefs you’ll often get given guidance not to include competitor brands in your sponsored brand posts. Fashion brands usually take a different approach. They understand that hardly anyone goes around wearing their brand’s clothes from top to toe. With fashion, everyone mixes and matches all the time. Their primary focus for an influencer campaign might be on a handbag, for example, but they wouldn’t expect you to only wear the handbag…

What fashion brands come to us with when we send the brief out to our influencers is a list of complementary brands that they’d like to see that our influencers are already wearing. These might be fashion brands with a similar aesthetic and personality.

Pro-tip: Ensure that you always tag the brands you wear. This is a signpost to fashion brands that your other favourite brands are complementary to their own.

Fashion Brands Tip 3: “We are looking for… influencers that create unique content that will stand out.”

If someone pointed a gun to my head and told me to guess how many fashion related posts there are on Instagram a day I’d say… A LOT. (I’d then send them a monkey see no evil emoji in the hope they go away). It’s quite possibly the most competitive space on Instagram. That and pictures of pizza which coincidentally won an award for the most Instagrammed food of the year in 2016.

So get creative like your life depended on it. (Of course, please don’t take any life endangering risks – too many people have died in the act of taking an extreme selfie. R.I.P. Don’t add yourself to that sad list!) Understand the brand you’re working for, understand the brief and then push your creative boundaries to fulfil that brief. Your content should be as unique as you.

Ensure it is the highest quality you can muster. If it stands out and they love it enough to re-gram it on their brand social channels chances are they will want to work with you again. We’ve seen an influencer’s followers going up by 5k overnight after ASOS re-grammed one of their Vamp photos. Just as they are leveraging your brand to connect with your audience, your personal brand can be leveraged from theirs. It works both ways.

Another pro-tip, ensure your fashion content spans across video, Instagram stories, blog content as well as Instagram images. More strings to your bow.

Fashion Brands Tip 4: “We are looking for… influencers with an engaged audience.”

Do you know what your average engagement rate is on fashion posts? Instagram Business account insights will tell you so much about how your followers are engaging with your content.

Most fashion brands won’t even consider working with influencers if they don’t have a business account now. So if you haven’t got a business account, it’s a good idea to get one asap. It’ll help you to better understand your audience too as well as give you the stats to back you up. They want to under

Most fashion brands want reassurance that the majority of your audience is local to the country they are looking to promote a product in. Business account insights tell you where your followers are based. If you want to grow your engaged following in a particular region to attract fashion brands, ensure you geo-tag every single post and use locally appropriate hashtags. Also Ensure that you post your fashion content at your peak time of day to get the most traction.

Fashion Brands Tip 5: “We are looking for… influencers that will help drive sales.”

A key question we get asked time and time again by brands is: do influencers drive sales? We say, absolutely yes but Influencer marketing is not a sales channel. It’s a word of mouth channel. Word of mouth advertising is powerful when it comes from influencers because people actively look to influencers for product recommendations. Influencers’ product placement within their personal narratives makes their recommendations so much more trusted than that of a celebrity or a brand.

With that said, Instagram is rolling out a shoppable post option to some brands and, we anticipate, to influencers at some point in the future. This will give you direct stats on how well your post performed in driving direct sales. Of course this will never be the only point of success with influencer marketing as a lot of customers take a long time to buy now and might purchase a product you featured off-line or at a time that better suits them personally. The quality of your content will always be your most valuable asset.

However, it can’t hurt to make it as easy as possible for your followers to purchase what you’re wearing. They’ll probably be asking you how to find it in your comments anyway so why not make it easier for them? If you don’t have the swipe up to shop functionality in your Instagram stories, ensure you provide the produce code or the exact name of the item you’re wearing. In a blog post, include direct links to help your followers shop. Make sure this blog post link is in your bio for the duration of the campaign.

Fashion Brands Tip 6: “We are looking for… influencers that can attend our brand events.”

Fashion brands often put on brand related events and would love influencers to attend these. This might be in-store or at a festival or even a food truck. Ensure that your event content is just as high quality as your fashion look content. Bring the right camera gear, ensure the lighting is correct, etc.

If the brand hasn’t considered all the elements of lighting and backdrop, arm yourself with a list of questions prior to the event to ensure that you are ready to cope with challenges conditions. Shop lighting can often be unflattering. (If only they had access to endless reams of natural light!) It might be a night-time event. It might be crowded and tricky to get those nice clean backgrounds. If you feel confident you can deliver the kind of shot they are after you will shine.

Pro-trip: When you attend an event you’ve got a chance to build relationships with representatives of that brand too so as always, best foot forward professionally.

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