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DKNY is ahead of the game

The label has moved into the world of gaming via a Facebook app that lets wannabe stylists test their skills.

For a fashion business, moving into the world of gaming can be daunting, but previous campaigns by high street retailers such as Topshop and Aldo have shown how online games can open the door to a new generation of customers.

Fashion consultancy IMG has launched a new fashion game on Facebook called Fashion Week Live, which challenges players to become the stylist on this social platform.

The game gives users tasks to complete such as building an outfit in a contemporary casual style. The game then rates the outfit and pays the player with points, which allows them to buy further items to use in later challenges. Different challenges have different payment times, but the game is integrated with the Facebook payment tool, giving users the opportunity to buy points (in the form of Facebook credits) to get further into the game at a quicker pace.

Matthew Primack, managing director of Fashion Week Live for IMG, says that when it came to launching the game, Facebook felt like the perfect platform. “When the idea for a fashion game first came to light about five years ago we thought it might be a console game project, but over the creative gestation period, Facebook emerged as the obvious home. The global audience is vast and Facebook gaming is driven by social engagement and peer-to-peer promotion (virally).”

Fashion Week Live launched in partnership with US designer brand DKNY. Players of the game can buy virtual DKNY product with their Facebook credits and avid tweeter DKNY PR girl (Aliza Licht) is on hand to virtually help players with their style choices. Licht explains why DKNY decided to collaborate with the Facebook game. “We dipped our toes in social gaming with Stardolls back in 2007. Of course, through embarking on social media in 2009, the landscape quickly changed for us and we fell in love with digital. We love taking fashion to the public. That’s why I love Twitter so much. It doesn’t matter who you are, or who you work for, if you have an interest in fashion, you can be a fly on my wall. But TV and Twitter can only go so far; you can watch it but you can’t be in it. Fashion Week Live gives women a chance to see if they can make it, albeit virtually, in an industry they may have always fantasised about.”

While the game is fun and Facebook is the ideal platform for users to share their progress on the game with their friends, the commercial gain from this initiative for DKNY is likely to be low. However, it will introduce the brand to a new customer base and is another way to show the DKNY product, even if it is virtual.

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