This week we are very honored to feature designer Norma Kamali in our Ask the Brand series. Kamali is a creative spirit who has designed many iconic pieces in American Fashion – the sleeping bag coat, Farrah Fawcett's red bathing suit of Charlie's Angels fame, she has even been credited with starting the shoulder pad trend of the 1980s.
Kamali recently launched a new line – KamaliKulture – of timeless, classic pieces all under $100 (and now available on Amazon!) So, without further ado – here is Miss Kamali herself to give us the scoop on her digital strategy!
At what point in your marketing strategy for KamaliKulture did you incorporate Social Media – was it considered from the beginning?
KamaliKulture is a collection of timeless styles under $100 available exclusively online- it's a democratic collection that is for everyone – from sizes 0-18, for every budget. And since it's exclusively available online, social media is a very important part of our strategy. When we did the collaboration with Walmart, bloggers helped to make our collection the #1 selling women’s clothing brand on the Walmart website- and that was all through word of mouth and bloggers loving and posting about our collection.
How big is your social media team?
Our social media team consists of a core group of four individuals all working together – graphics, copy, strategy. We also work with a PR/digital agency on strategic campaign efforts.
Has Social Media changed the process of your designers at all?
I design the collections and social media inspires and influences design, as technology is a big inspiration for me!
In what capacity do you work with bloggers?
We love working with bloggers- and read many great blogs on a daily basis. For KamaliKulture especially, I have such respect for the pioneering spirit of bloggers that I am personally interviewing them getting to know them on a one on one basis. We love what bloggers are doing to change the structure of how fashion reaches the consumer.- they are truly pioneers of the fashion world, and it's a pleasure to watch the evolution of that change.
What do you look for when choosing bloggers to work with?
We don't simply look to the top 10 bloggers that everyone chooses to work with. We look for bloggers with a raw and authentic voice, with a good niche and those who not only know what they are blogging about, but also have that passion about their core subjects.
How do you measure the overall value of bloggers and social media?
When measuring the effectiveness of campaigns- we do look at core metrics such as visits to our website/click throughs and raw data such as sales. But most of all, we monitor buzz and sentiment- which is a little harder to measure. It's about developing long term relationships- not about driving a quick sale for us. We are interested in tracking and participating in the development of the blogosphere as we now maintain a blog ourselves!
Do you use a different approach when working with bloggers in regards to the KamaliKulture line than with the main Norma Kamali line?
It is both easier and almost overwhelming because of the democratic nature of KamaliKulture. You can be a fashion freak and love the line or a mom with kids and no time for fashion. We connect with the brand and so do a wide assortment of bloggers.
Photo of Norma Kamali by Todd Heisler, The New York Times.
Fashion photos via Norma Kamali