Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 1, 2011 03:00 PM
Uniqlo has used models such as Agyness Deyn and celebrities including (most recently) Charlize Theron and Orlando Bloom to promote its fashion-for-the-masses designs.
Now it's promoting its apparel and the style chops of its fans with a unique community-building initiative.
The just launched Uniqlooks site invites fans of the Japanese brand to upload photos showing their individual spins on how they style Uniqlo clothes.
A global audience then determines each "Look of the Week" winner (the current title-holder is Florian Gravovil, a 22-year-old French musician/student) to be featured on Uniqlo’s website, Facebook page and on in-store signage.
The digital lookbook by and for brand fans marries the best of self-styled fashion with social media's thirst for image-sharing, pushing the edges of both.
It also engages fans by tapping into converging online/social trends, including the popularity of "haul" videos on YouTube, amateur fashionista blogs and observers, and stalking — er, checking out — others' Facebook and Tumblr photos... not to mention web surfers' love of online voting and quick recording and sharing of smartphone-taken images.
In short, don't think of it as a source of free advertising and user-generated content. “From our perspective,” writes PSFK, “Uniqlooks seeks to engage fans and brand advocates by making their community both their models and their stylists.”
It also inspires fans — and no doubt, the brand's own stylists — with the next fresh twist on fashion.