Social Media in Style at Lucky Magazine’s debut FABB Conference

by @Rachel Shechtman
Founder | Cube Ventures :  Connecting Innovative Storytellers with Brands

Lucky Magazine debuted at Social Media Week NYC with a new all-day conference called “FABB” (with two b’s!), a fashion and beauty Bloggers conference.  The shopping magazine’s editor-in-chief Brandon Holley welcomed a crowded room at the amazing new Apella building complex by proclaiming, “you all created a democracy and that is what lucky style is all about!”

The day was packed with an impressive line up of diverse Bloggers, industry executives and entrepreneurs.  I enjoyed kicking off the day with coffee with fashion star Rebecca Minkoff; bloggers in attendance included John Jannuzzi who after his day job covers fashion and style on Textbook, to the energetic and distinctive Karla Sugar who came in from Dallas and MsSpinach who arrived from Washington, the notable Jessica Quirk from What I Wore, and the list goes on….

The first panel, Big Brands and You, included executives ranging from Coach to Bergdorf Goodman.  There was clear consensus among the panelists that they are thrilled to see magazines embracing Bloggers and social media, although I am not sure they had a much of a choice in the matter.   Many referenced Polyvore and one campaign that received a lot of buzz was Bergdorf Goodman’s partnership with Polyvore to dress its fashion director Linda Fargo for this Fashion Week – we the people dressing a front row fashion icon!

Kerry Diamond from Lancôme said “Bloggers are one of the most exciting things that have happened to the industry in years …” however, she went on to comment on the over saturation of blogs and lack of quality control.  So then exactly how do you appear on her radar?  No, it’s not by garnering the most followers or traffic but in Kerry’s words by having a strong “point of view”.  In her words “if your blog doesn’t have a point of view we won’t be working with you.”  She closed saying that blogs help sell products as much as magazines.   One blogger stood up and commented after these remarks “Bloggers are experiencing a moment of popularity like supermodels did in the 80’s.”

Lucky Magazine Editor in Chief Brandon Holley and Fashion Designer Tory Burch

Holley Brandon, Editor in Chief of Lucky Magazine, welcomed Tory Burch to the stage for a great conversation about the growth of her business, her Madison Store opening this coming fall and hiring Honor Brody away from the traditional publishing world to run and build her media presence online.  Tory was very candid about her learning curve and using twitter to be dynamic, not just push sales and product; however she went on to say “ there is a fine line between being private but interesting.”  When asked about her favorite blogs, she said there were too many to name but two that came to mind were industry favorite satorialist and new buzz worthy svpply.

Lucky Magazine Editor in Chief Brandon Holley with Entertainer and Entrepreneur Joan Rivers

Fashism co-founders Brooke Moreland and Ashley Granata did a great social shopping demo which was followed by lunch with Joan Rivers.  I could write pages on Ms. Rivers after her dynamic talk but Brooke summed it up perfectly.  “Yes she is a celebrity, a legend and downright hilarious – but she also had poignant, honest words of wisdom that relied on her years of experience as an entrepreneur.  Joan is a brand- she is a self-made woman who has learned from many mistakes and is still out there every day hustling and building her brand. Also, she says ‘fuck’ a lot, which is cool.”  Later during Q + A DIY Author and Blogger Erica Domesek asked, “Do you make things?” Joan replied, “ I needlepoint and paint terribly.”

A notable start-up which is the ultimate fashion democracy is StyleTrek.  Founder Cecilia Pagkalinawan shared insights into their business and partnership with Lucky.
•    Site launched Sept 2010
•    Selling to Customers in 91 Countries
•    500% sales increase from November to December
•    Featuring 25 designers from 5 continents

It is impressive to acknowledge that it’s not only democratic as it pertains to social engagement and marketing messaging, but also in the sourcing.  “Styetrekkers are empowered entrepreneurs who get a percentage of sales from designers they acquire for StyleTrek”  Not only are they enrolling their consumers to co-create their inventory and supply flow but the participatory experiences makes them feel like stakeholders and further results in their loyalty and consumption.   Leveraging supply to create demand!

An image from Lucky Magazine that highlights

The day ended as energetic as it began with a conversation between Brandon and Jenna Lyons, J.Crew’s creative visionary.   “She’s in the building” someone commented.  Jenna has endless wit, charm and intelligent insight.  She spoke about the importance of storytelling and debuted a new video, About a Thread Count which is the second in a three part series.  While it isn’t online yet you can see the first About a Shoe shown below

All filmed in Italy, you get an intimate sneak peek into the J.Crews design, discovery and inspiration process, which makes this big brand feel so accessible that you wonder if it just might be the result of a small designer working in Italy.  Brands spend so much time looking to outside sources for inspiration and marketing messages, and the J.Crew video series is a testament that there are golden nuggets of consumer marketing in your existing business practices – just look!

As you can tell it was an action packed day with amazing people and content.  The day’s conversations were captured thanks to Livestream and are available online – check it out.  Cocktails and photo fun concluded the amazing day.  Thank you @LuckyMag

Fab @FABB – Social Media Week Attendee and Friend Elspeth Rountree enjoys a photo moment