Ask Alison: Shopstyle and American Express collaborate for ‘Style Inspiration Hub’

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Shopstyle Inspiration Hub

Here’s the latest ‘Ask Alison’ guest post from retail expert and DRG contributor, ALISON BISHOP, on the new editorial ‘hub’ from ShopStyle.

It seems like the whole *social-curation/discovery-commerce/influencer-marketing (*choose your term du jour) trend has been crystalised with a new collaboration between ShopStyle and American Express. After a soft launch in November, the Style Inspiration Hub will be live for six months and hosts a range of curated content from fashion and beauty bloggers, industry insiders and online retailers. Susie Bubble leads the charge, writing about her signature eclectic style.

Of course everything is instantly shoppable and there’s new ‘style influencers’ content every week. At the press launch, ShopStyle CEO Brian Sugar told me: “There’s an evolution happening with brands that want to tell their story through content curators instead of more traditional media. Brands are looking at native advertising to target the audiences they want to reach.”

In his presentation, Sugar described ShopStyle’s four key business priorities as mobile, global, discovery and personalisation, adding that shopping via the new ShopStyle app will be a whole lot more personal and social with initiatives such as ShopStyle.it (to make Instagram shoppable) and a video technology partnership with Taggled.

ASK ALISON: WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?
Are we looking at a new era of synergy retail where mutually beneficial partnerships like this one work in tandem to reach new audiences? Well yes, ShopStyle has identified the way that consumers ‘snack’ on visual inspiration on their mobiles and made it instantly shoppable via a network of the industry’s top style influencers. At the same time, American Express is facilitating the platform and itself reaching a new audience – the younger, notoriously picky millennials – and doing it in a credible way. The challenge is to keep the content and contributors original and fresh so they don’t get lost in a vast sea of sameness.

Follow ALISON BISHOP on Twitter, read her previous guest posts on Disneyrollergirl and discover more of her retail insights on her blog, The Retail Planner.

WIRED Retail 2014: My top 5 takeaways

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WIRED-Retail-Amber-Venz-Rewardstyle-Like-To-Know-It

This year’s WIRED Retail (supported by digital marketing agency Valtech) was a winning combination of all my favourite elements – fashion, retail, social and curation. We’ve been talking about these subjects a hell of a lot lately but certain messages are being crystalised. Among last Monday’s speakers were the founders of Lyst, Farfetch and RewardStyle, as well as Google UK’s Peter Fitzgerald, Etsy’s VP of business development Nicole Vanderbilt, Instagram’s Tracy Yaverbaun and Depop’s CEO, Runar Reistrup. Continue reading

THE DRG STYLE INDEX: TIFFANY T, FINERY LONDON, JOHNNY COCA FOR MULBERRY, MARC JACOBS X DAMIEN HIRST

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Here’s the latest weekly DRG STYLE INDEX ranking, a round-up of the brands currently buzzing on my radar…

1) TIFFANY T PUSHES UP PROFITS

It’s not just me that’s crazy about Tiffany’s new ‘T’ line of minimalist T-motif jewellery. Created by design director Francesca Amfitheatrof, it has helped push up profits for the jeweller which reported a sales uptick of 5%. P.S, if you’re in the market for a new style crush, watch Amfitheatrof in the Google hangout above… Continue reading

Buy it now*: Diana Vreeland perfume

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Diana-Vreeland-fragrance

The good news: The Diana Vreeland perfumes have landed at Net-a-Porter. Continue reading

THE DRG STYLE INDEX: Shinola, Michael Kors, Fenwick

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Here’s the latest weekly DRG STYLE INDEX ranking, a round-up of the brands currently buzzing on my radar…

1. SHINOLA – ACTING SMALL, THINKING BIG

shinola-London-Newburgh-Street-Jamie-McGregor-Smith

Shinola’s been in the news a lot lately since it opened its rather lovely little London store on Newburgh Street. What’s most enlightening is the quietly savvy strategy behind it. For instance, who knew that the brains behind it all is Tom Kartsotis who also founded the mass market watch retailer, Fossil? His approach of creating a story around the manufacturing and people of Detroit has helped imbue the two-year-old watch-and-accessories brand with a romance that really resonates with customers. Continue reading

What Asos did next – get ready for the ‘new in’ app

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10 Asos-ss15-press-day

There’s no denying that Asos has had a tough year this year, with younger, sexier, leaner upstarts snapping at its heels (hello Missguided and Boohoo). But it’s fighting back for SS15 with some excellent product and clever customer service initiatives. What does the Asos girl want? Newness. When does she want it? All the time. And so Asos is launching ‘New In’, a new Tinder-like app that let’s you swipe yay or nay to the Asos new-in feed, adding your choices to your profile. Continue reading

Could Farfetch click & collect be an ecommerce game changer?

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farfetch-click-collect-Celestine-Eleven

Oooh here’s a clever move from Farfetch. It’s just rolled out a new Click & Collect service, whereby you can order from one of its international indie retailers but instead of having your order sent to your home or office, you can pick up from another of its retailers located more conveniently to you. With over 100 boutiques currently taking part globally, this could potentially be a real game changer. Continue reading

THE DRG STYLE INDEX: OSMAN X AMAZON FASHION, JOHN LOBB, H&M, SIMONE ROCHA X J BRAND, KURT GEIGER

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Here’s the latest weekly DRG STYLE INDEX ranking, a round-up of the brands currently buzzing on my radar…

1. OSMAN FOR AMAZON FASHION

Osman-Amazon-Christmas-jumper

Someone is giving Osman an almighty great push on the PR and marketing front as he seems to be popping up everywhere at the moment. I just noticed this Osman collection on Amazon.co.uk and surprisingly, it looks really luxe and beautiful. Amazon has tried hard to sell high end brands on its site but it never quite achieves the Net-a-Porter aesthetic that I’m guessing it’s aiming for. Until now. Continue reading

THE DRG STYLE INDEX: MARC JACOBS BEAUTY, BALENCIAGA, DIOR, LEVI’s, SELFRIDGES, MATCHES FASHION

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Here’s the latest weekly DRG STYLE INDEX ranking, a round-up of the brands currently buzzing on my radar…

1. MARC JACOBS’ INSTAGRAM SHOP

Marc Jacobs Beauty shoppable Instagram

Oh the bane of not being able to shop from Instagram! Marc Jacobs Beauty couldn’t stand it any longer and has set up a tool just for Insta-shoppers. It’s a bit like LikeToKNOW.it, and thus, slightly clunky. Continue reading

Retail report: Selfridges ramps up its luxury ready-to-wear with a nod to Dover Street Market

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Selfridges-designer-galleries-celine

It feels like Selfridges has been tweaking its third floor Designer Galleries for ever! Finally its finished and the verdict is quite the A-Z of modern luxury fashion. In short, the Selfridges buy has been Dover Street Market-ified. (And  that sentence right there gets the award for clunkiest sentence of the year. Soz.) I still remember the third floor as it was eons ago – contemporary labels like Anglomania alongside A.P.C, Whistles and Joseph. Pffft, this is so not that. Contemporary and denim have all been shunted up to the fourth floor, leaving gleaming aisles of expensive statement-wear. Of course, I can’t actually afford any of it.

It’s a textbook exercise in taste and wealth though. Continue reading

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