Fashion marketing or expression based marketing seems to have many faces online. From the fairly new brands (well established in the physical world) going online with full-flash sites. Over time, when they become more experienced online actors, nearly all brands are moving away from 100% pixel control.
The trend is lead by Gucci, Diesel and Abercrombie (just to mention a few). They are all going from flash catalogue sites into real web-sites produced with CSS, HTML and Flash just as elements. There seems to be many reasong for this.
It's obvious that the struggeling economy are getting everybody to join the SEO fight with well optimized sites/portals. Something that flash doesn't offer - at least not propably. Content is also starting to become king - even for expression based marketers. And brand marketing is realising that it's all about how to influence customers to purchase. Terms like social and engage are taking over from 'which media can we buy' - and getting the content into the playfield. The future winners will be the companies getting the balance between image based expression and communicative engagement right. Using social platforms and likewise tools to connect with the customers defined by persona targets groups.
We're right now in the phase of giving the online design control back to brand marketing. This is a huge task involving a lot of content production. The right term should propably be that we've just loaned the .com's for a short period of time. Now the .com's are started with focus on e-commerce. The blended focus is now being prioritized with a more equal weight on branding and commerce.
Hopefully this will give us as brush up on expression. Adding extra graphical resources alone will do a huge difference. Being an online department there so many other aspects/tasks to focus on.
More about these focus areas in the next blog post.