Chrissy Teigen John Legend Revolve

When it comes to earned media value, year-over-year gains can be extreme. In Tribe Dynamics’ Fashion La Mode Second Quarter 2016 report, Revolve, Asos and Topshop jumped to the top positions in the rankings of earned media value with triple-digit increases.

Tribe Dynamics, a social media analysis agency, ranked the top “third-party retailers” according to its prescribed metric of earned media value. EMV quantifies the estimated value of publicity gained through digital media and its respective engagement levels. A specific dollar amount is assigned to each piece of content based on the publishing channel’s perceived value of digital word-of-mouth in the industry.

Revolve took the number one position with an EMV that totaled $88.3 million reflecting a 626.37 percent growth increase from last year. Asos secured the second position with an EMV of $75.4 million — a 343.14 percent increase year-on-year — while Topshop rounded out the top three with $65.4 million — a 154.28 percent increase. Fourth was Nordstrom with an EMV of $61.9 million, a 127.31 percent gain, which was followed by Urban Outfitters at $45.7 million with a 295.93 percent gain.

The landscape is changing quickly. As social media influencers solidify their spot in the marketing hierarchy, responsibility of engagement falls into the hands, or devices, of bloggers who often boast millions of followers in their various social accounts. Revolve has upended the competition with its strategic, yet seemingly organic approach to storied courtships between brand and ambassador.

This does not mean quality over quantity. The authors of the report said, “This explosive growth [of Revolve’s EMV] represents not an anomaly, but a culmination of Revolve’s consistent investment in creating compelling brand experiences.” In just the second quarter alone, the e-commerce retailer hosted 10 brand experiences for social influencers ranging from trips to Hawaii and Shanghai to an exclusive retail and event space in Los Angeles.

A tropical backdrop might not be enough to draw heightened numbers. As visually driven content serves as an installment of social marketing, strategically photogenic — and branded — scenes will serve well when aligning with ambassadors. “Revolve designs each brand experience to make the influencer feel personally loved, valued and part of a community. Its astronomical success relies upon the brand’s continuous commitment to forging lasting relationships with its influencers,” said the report’s authors.

By developing these relationships, loyalty abounds — and then is captured in a photo. The authors of the report said, “The brand has prioritized friendships through its brand experiences, and in an age where superficial branded content is exceedingly easy to identify, Revolve has set itself apart by cultivating a truly genuine sense of community among its influencers.”

While other brands will follow in Revolve’s example, the competition can be found in who elevates the sense of community for even larger returns.

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