Since its inception in 2011, Instagram has become more than a personal photo sharing app but an outlet for companies to promote their brand and connect with fans. In the fashion industry, Instagram has become a way for brands like Kate Spade and Burberry to a promote upcoming collections and exciting new collaborations. As Instagram has evolved and gained over 150 million monthly users, designers have also created their own personal accounts that have made them more transparent to their fans. Many designers like Tory Burch and Rachel Zoe upload personal vignettes, allowing fans rare insight into designer’s daily lives that even goes beyond their fashion. Each account becomes a mini scrapbooks, which allows fans to connect to a brand a more personal level.
Instagram has opened up a glimpse into the lives of designers, but it has also provided designers valuable insight from their consumers. Many have noticed more than the number of likes on their posts but the interesting comments and feedback from loyal fans. Designer Rebecca Minkoff frequently asks her Instagram followers their suggestions on themes and patterns and even runs contests asking them to design a piece for her to produce. Instagram has been a great place to get publicity and feedback, but surprisingly, many designers and brands are also pulling inspiration from users themselves.
For budding fashionistas, Instagram has become a way to document their most stylish moments into a mini fashion diaries. With simple hashtags like #ootd and #mystyle, average men and women from around the globe have gained loyal followers for sharing pictures of their daily styles. As artists of clothes, fashion designers are always looking for their next inspiration. For designers like Jason Wu, Instagram has become a great tool in finding their next muse. Many fashionistas have also caught the eye of designers themselves for their unique street style. Some might repost pictures of them wearing their clothes or even collaborate on a campaign for their collection. Overall, it’s exciting to see how Instagram has evolved the lines of communication between designers and consumers in only two years. It will be interesting to see how Instagram might help consumers have more impact in the decisions of the fashion industry as time goes on.