An editorial image from Matchesfashion.com's Style Report.
LONDON — When is a story not just a story? When the content is targeted to a specific customer with the aim of driving a sale.Storytelling has become a cliché in the fashion business, with brands and retailers forever weaving elaborate narratives around products and projects in a bid to justify price and keep their customers’ eyes from straying to the competition.The London-based Matchesfashion.com is set to make those narratives work harder by adding a new, commercial dimension to online magazine content via a partnership with the AI content distribution platform E-Contenta.The platform uses an algorithm that collects and analyzes data on user behavior, enabling Matches to refine the distribution of its weekly online magazine The Style Report by directing it to users who are most likely to buy from its pages.[caption id="attachment_10949941" align="aligncenter" width="400"] An editorial image from Matchesfashion.com's Style Report.[/caption]The partnership came about as a result of Matches' sponsorship of the New York Fashion Tech Lab, a program that supports women-led technology start-ups such as E-Contenta."When you have so much content it can be complicated to decide who would be interested in reading which story and on what platform," said Zoya Andreeva, founder and chief executive officer at E-Contenta. "This is where we can help with automation of relevant story delivery." Nicholas Pickaerts, Matches' e-commerce director, said he foresees the new partnership increasing both the visibility and the conversion rate of the editorial content, which is fully shoppable."It is about increasing the repeat visits of our customers, but doing it in a way that is going to be relevant to them, based on their own interests,” Pickaerts said.“Because we know that content and editorial have such an impact on the business metrics and performances, we believe we will also see an uplift on conversion rate."[caption id="attachment_10949940" align="aligncenter" width="400"] A look from Halpern[/caption]Using E-Contenta’s AI technology, Matches will be able to tailor editorial to certain customer groups depending on their interests and online activity. The editorial will appear in the same way that product is advertised.According to Matches, the more exposure that people have to certain targeted editorial, the higher their eventual order values will be.“People being exposed to content on our site on average spend twice as much time browsing our site — 12 minutes. They look at twice as many pages — up to 15 — and have a better conversion rate and better average basket value,” Pickaerts added.Even before the E-Contenta partnership, Pickaerts had been working closely with Matches’ editorial and buying teams, giving them data to help influence their decisions.Demand in a specific market, for example, can be predicted using Matches’ customer database, which provides information on average order values, frequency of visits and retention rates.One new model that Matches has been using is called Brand Family. It can predict the “propensity for customers to make subsequent similar purchases depending on their past ones, browsing behavior and on-site preferences,” according to Pickaerts.Emerging labels are among the main beneficiaries of Matches data-driven content and marketing.Matches’ global content director Kate Blythe highlighted the importance of “multilayered content” when introducing an emerging label, such as exclusive interviews, fashion shoots and bespoke social media assets.[caption id="attachment_10949939" align="aligncenter" width="400"] An editorial image from Matchesfashion.com's Style Report.[/caption]Other initiatives, such as a dedicated "Labels to Know" section which narrates the story behind the new labels launching on the web site as well as pre-shot product marked as "Coming Soon,” also help to build a sense of anticipation among shoppers and to track interest, according to Blythe.Customers who engage with the "Labels to Know" section of the site have a much higher average order value at 800 pounds. The general AOV for Matches customers is 538 pounds."It's about tracking the engagement we have with certain brands or products and then watching the response when the product does come in," said Natalie Kingham, the site's buying director.Kingham has also been working to maximize sell-throughs by shifting the time when product drops on the site. The aim is to offer more relevant products to the retailer's global consumers. "What I'm really interested in is when the product delivers, not what season it is," said Kingham, who plans her buy more than a year in advance based on data analysis of how product performed at the same time last year."It's always hot somewhere, it’s always cold somewhere, and we’re selling globally. We do ensure that we have very good high summer products and very good high winter products, but the rest of the year is more about the stories that we tell and letting the products be a part of that story," Kingham said."It was difficult at first because not all the brands were set up to deliver like that, which is why we worked on exclusives."One of the most successful exclusive capsules Kingham points to was with of-the-moment label Vetements, launched in a warehouse in the outskirts of Seoul, Korea, which resulted in a four mile-long queue and people camping outside overnight.An exclusive summer capsule of Zandra Rhodes caftans is also set to be launched during Port Eliot Festival later this month.
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye
"Nowadays when life is not so happy with everything going on in the world, I think people come to me for a little bit of whimsy and color and fun." - Designer Rebecca De Ravenel on her cult-favorite jewelry line. (📸 : @vsteves) #wwd40
“Everyone is talking about how the retail industry is struggling, but I think it’s an incredible time because brands who are doing something different and innovative are setting themselves up for the future,” said @adamgoldston, who founded the luxury athletic brand @apl with his brother @ryangoldsten. The Goldston’s are part of WWD’s 40 under 40: a group of industry notables. See the rest of the list on WWD.com. (📷: @vsteves) #wwd40
@eyeswoon blogger Athena Calderone debuted her first-ever cookbook, “Cook Beautiful,” which is heavily centered on the presentation and visual expression of food. Pictured here are her miso glazed carrots from the book. Get the recipe on WWD.com. (📷: @johnny_miller_) #wwdeye
“It’s passion that helps get anybody to a certain point and it’s what’s propelled me,” said Kith founder @ronniefieg, one of WWD’s 40 under 40: a group of industry notables who are changing the face of retail, fashion and beauty. Fieg, who opened a Manhattan flagship on October 7, began his career at age 13 as a stock boy and salesman for footwear chain David Z. “I think staying true to [my] beliefs, hard work and passion have gotten me to where [Kith] is today.” See the rest of the 40 at WWD.com. (📷: @vsteves) #wwd40
25-year-old @samweaving is about to break out this fall, starring in Netflix’s horror film “The Babysitter,” fittingly out today on Friday the 13th. That’s not the only place you’ll be seeing her, though — Weaving’s got a role Showtime’s “SMILF” and another alongside Frances McDormand and Woody Harrelson in “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.” Though she’s got a full plate at the moment, there’s one role she’s got her eye on: Marilyn Monroe. “I’m a little too young at the moment, but it’s on my bucket list,” the actress told WWD (📷: @dandoperalski) #wwdeye
BFF's Poppy Jamie and Suki Waterhouse celebrated the launch of their bag line Pop x Suki at Nordstrom last night. "The line is really about our friendship, and how we are so different but complement each other," said Waterhouse. 👯 (📷: Katie Jones) #wwdeye
After designing the new @louisvuitton and @bulgariofficial flagships and a @chanelofficial boutique opening in Japan, @petermarinoarchitect has another project on his plate: The Lobster Club. Located in the Seagram Building, it’s the famed architect’s first restaurant project in New York, serving up modern Japanese brasserie-style cuisine. Bronze hues, bespoke material detailing, blush and chartreuse tones and a heavy emphasis on Picasso can be seen throughout. Mark your calendars for Nov. 1 for the much-anticipated opening. (📷: @clint_spaulding) #wwdeye