By Julia Eskins
Photography provided by interviewees
It’s a verb, a wonder-quencher and an essential marketing tool. There’s no denying that Google is an integral part of the daily lives of many: this especially rings true for the fashion industry and its followers.
In a world where staying on trend means following the latest fashion week coverage, scoping out new designers and keeping your style vocabulary up-to-date, Google is ready to help. For example, according to Google and Your Business, search volume for “fashion week schedule” has increased by 140 per cent in September 2012.
Along with the 37 million monthly searches containing the word “fashion”, Google’s additional services have been central to the business development of designer brands. From AdWords to analytics, Google has helped many boost their online visibility, connect with new audiences and track their progress along the way.
September not only marked the search engine’s 14th birthday, but also its runway debut. In Diane von Furstenberg’s spring/summer 2013 showcase, models walked the runway with an unlikely accessory: Google Glass. The latest eyewear device to be developed by Google has smartphone-like features, including the ability to record video. Following the show, a short film called DVF [Through Glass] was released, which comprised footage shot by the glasses before, after and during the show.
It’s not the first time Google has been involved in fashion week. This past season, fashion industry professionals like Rebecca Minkoff hosted pre-show Google+ hangouts and others posted live runway GIFs to their +Page.
Between seasons, it’s not uncommon for people in the fashion industry to turn to this search engine. Whether it’s for inspiration or information, Google has made a lasting impact on fashion.
FAJO Magazine asked some of the industry’s most tech-savvy professionals about their experience using Google for fashion. Here is what they had to say.
“My endless Google searches let me glide from one inspiration to the next, creating endless addiction.”
– Eva Jeanbart-Lorenzotti, CEO, VIVRE
“When I was starting my career as a model and make-up artist, Google was a huge part of creating my online platform! I did not have the luxury of having an agent, so Google was almost my agent. I would create profiles on many online sites and promote myself that way.
“Without Google and its gateway into the endless amount of data it holds behind it, I don’t know how far along my career would be. Thank you, Google!”
– Myles Sexton, model and make-up artist
“Google has enabled us to have the world at our fingertips and to easily find what we’re looking for to make business happen. For the fashion industry, that could mean anything from finding a supplier at the end of the world to looking for pictures immediately after a runway show in Milan, London or Paris. More recent tools, such as Google+, provide tremendous features that enable smaller brands to improve a site’s click-through, help customers find businesses faster and easier, as well as increase web exposure to potential customers based on their interest. For a small business or brand, that means potential sales!
“I have a hard time remembering life (and business) pre-Google! I use Google Translator to impress our international clients with one-liners in their language, Google Analytics to evaluate web visits following the implementations of strategies and Google Alerts to help track coverage every day. With 2.7 billion searches every day, no wonder Google became a verb that is a part of our daily business vocabulary!”
– Brigitte Foisy, PR agent
“When working with top Canadian designers, such as McCaffrey Haute Couture, and styling for the national capital’s top retail destination, Bayshore Shopping Centre, it is imperative to be up-to-date with all of the latest trends and going-ons in the industry.
“With Google, it takes me minutes to have all the key information at my fingertips. Google Alerts is also a terrific tool for tracking media stories featuring our clients.”
– James Jefferson, co-owner & creative director, Blackbook Lifestyle
“I find one of the biggest changes in fashion, in relation to Google and the Internet, is the role media plays and how it influences consumers. A young independent blogger could easily have a larger readership than a magazine, regardless of their journalistic abilities…
“This also changes how we see fashion, how we interpret what people wear and how we portray ourselves in dressing.”
– Emily Woudenberg, fashion designer