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Innovation allows smaller fashion retailers to level the advertising playing field

The larger fashion retailers and brands can still, to some extent, pummel consumers to death with an endless heavy rotation of adverts.

However, both larger as well as smaller names in fashion are now utilising innovative multichannel campaigns to get ahead in advertising.

Out-of-town retailer Matalan last week launched a weekly online fashion series to boost its fashion kudos and compete with its better-known high street rivals.

Presented by Closer magazine style editor Kat Byrne, the branded online TV show places Byrne in a Gok Wan-type role to demonstrate how consumers can practically combine items from Matalan’s clothing range, highlighting the potential of its latest fashion collections.

To leverage the content as much as possible and address Matalan’s issue of ‘visibility’ against retailers with a high street presence, the retailer is running the campaign until 2013 and across multiple channels. The show is hosted on the websites for ITV, Closer and Matalan and supported by a 90-second airtime spot on ITV’s This Morning as well as a weekly eight-page advertorial campaign in the print magazine.

According to Bauer, Closer readers are women between 25-45 years-old and interested in shopping at fashion retailers like Next, H&M, and Primark, while according to television marketing body Thinkbox, 25% of women they surveyed from 16 to 34 years-old claim to regularly watch This Morning, so the retailer should reach the right audience.

Whether the campaign will push consumers back time and time again will depend on the strength of the content each week, but the promotional activity does show how fashion brands are linking multiple channels for a unified brand message, in which each media channel drives the other.

Our upcoming ‘Innovation in Fashion Report’ looks at forward-thinking strategies like this, as well as new technologies, that are drastically changing the whole industry.

We’d love to get your input into this report and find out what innovations you think have had the biggest impact and are the most important today. We’d really appreciate it if you could take just two minutes to answer the following multiple choice survey.

Many thanks.

David Brooks, Deputy Special Projects Editor

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