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Fashion in Actions on Social Media – Spanish SME Fashion Brands Case Studies

Fashion is one of the most vibrant sectors in Europe and important contributors to the European Union (EU) economy. In particular, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) play a major part in European fashion industry (EU 2012).

Just like fashion, where people´s style has inherently meant to be shared as it is foremost a representation of one´s self‐image, social media allow the reflection of ones’ personality and emotions. Although fashion practitioners have embraced social media in their marketing activities, it is still relatively few known at an academic level about the specificities of fashion industry when approaching social media marketing (SMM) strategies. This study sets out to explore fashion companies’ SMM strategy and its activities. From an exploratory approach, we present case studies of two Spanish SME fashion companies, anonymously named hereafter as Company A and Company B, to deepen our understanding on how fashion brands implement their SMM strategy. Company A offers high-end fashion products while Company B produces medium fashion products.

We analyzed the case studies using qualitative (interviews to companies’ executives) and a mix of qualitative and quantitative (content analysis of companies’ social media platform) methods. Public posts data of both companies’ Facebook brand pages were used to perform the content analysis.

Our findings through case studies of the two companies reveal that branding-oriented strategic objectives are the main drivers of their SMM implementations. There are significant differences between both companies. The main strategic action employed by Company A is engaging customers to participate into brand’s offline social gathering events by inviting them through social media platform, while Company B focuses its effort on posting product promotion related contents and engaging influencers such as fashion bloggers. Our results are expected to serve as a basis of further investigations on how SMM strategy and strategic actions implemented by fashion brands may influence marketing outcomes.