Aren’t you sick of hearing about which fashion bloggers are influential? Have you ever been influenced by a blogger to do anything besides vow not to make an ass of yourself?
Okay, that was a little harsh. Many fashion bloggers are stylish and level-headed. But I can’t imagine being influenced by any of them to buy the stuff they like or anything else. I can think of only two instances of being moved enough to spend money to follow a style blogger’s lead: Once I bought a nail polish that Faux Fuchsia wrote about, and once I was compelled to wear leather shorts after seeing them on Queen Michelle. (She graciously saved me from myself by sending me a pair.) This is a total of two actions (and only one purchase.)
And yet, someone believes that fashion bloggers are the way to market products. Coach believes this, and even Barneys believes this. But at least Barney’s is on record as feeling that Jane Aldridge speaks to the Barneys customer, and not a general audience.
Here’s Jane herself on the subject:
“I think the media industry is changing and bloggers are leading the change. The term ‘blogger’ doesn’t do it justice – so many of the top bloggers are trusted experts that have developed loyal fan followings.” “Fashion bloggers are a unique combination of publisher and talent. This is part of the next evolution of advertising – a more integrated approach. It’s important for both bloggers and advertisers to stay true to their brands.”
I don’t know about you, but I don’t regard any blogger as a “trusted expert.” And I don’t like “integrated advertising.” I like to know when an ad is an ad. When I watch movies on TV, I still like to yell out “Product placement!” when I see the Mac laptop or the Nike running shoes.
Looking at a panel of Tavi, Brianboy, Diane Pernet, etc etc, I can’t even imagine letting them dictate what I’ll buy or wear. I look at style blogs for the pictures, and sometimes for the inadvertent comedy. I am more inspired by Elle or Vogue, because I enjoy the fantasy evoked by a gorgeous model. If I want to see average looking people wearing trendy clothes, I can go to the mall.
Here’s Jane again:
“I think our blogs are freshly personal. There are a lot of blogs out there that cover fashion, but for us it’s totally homegrown content. We’re not going to blog about Chloe Sevigny’s Opening Ceremony collection.”
What does she mean by “content?” When did content become photos of yourself? I would rather someone cover the Opening Ceremony collection, because at least that constitutes information.
I am hearing about fashion bloggers making lucrative deals with companies like J. C. Penney and Urban Outfitters, but I wonder if the investments will pay off. How many readers are so impressionable?
But wait. A new comment appeared on my post about Gala Darling. A long, heartfelt and eloquent comment that I will quote only in part…
You caught me at a very impressionable age and quickly became my idol. You told me that young girls like myself could make a living from blogging, could live a carefree life of shopping for shoes, sparkles and photoshoots and more so that that was how my life should be spent. If it wasn’t what I wanted, than I just didn’t love myself enough. If I loved myself like you loved yourself than my life too would be consumed with shopping sprees and soapbox speeches for animal cruelty whilst wearing fur.
You already know how it ends. Gala Darling betrayed the girl’s trust because Gala Darling is a brand, not a person. And her fans were consumers, not friends.
Bloggers who align themselves with products become products themselves.
Me, I have nothing to sell, but I’d still like some money. I’d like to influence my readers to see or think or feel as I do, or to want to entertain me. Anything else seems monumentally presumptuous, or like Tavi’s infamous hair-bow, absurd.
Any thoughts on this?