Like every other advertising vertical, the Fashion Industry is making major impressions with programmatic advertising. Unlike traditional advertising, programmatic gives marketers the opportunity to reach the right person, on the right device, at the perfect time. This allows brands to stay connected to an ever-changing audience efficiently, effectively, and in a very trackable way. Fashion is nothing if not trendy, so why wouldn’t the ever-changing industry want to keep up with their constantly evolving market?

Here's why the fashion industry is moving towards programmatic:

Video Ads

Online window shoppers are quickly catching on to retargeting technology--haunted by the pair of booties they left in their DSW.com shopping cart on every site they go to until they buy those darn shoes--so marketers have started to find ways to reach their consumer in more authentic ways. In particular, fashion brands are discovering the incredible value of video in marketing their brand.  

YouTube, with over one billion users, provides a massive platform for fashion brands to showcase their products - but only as long as they don’t feel like ads. This has sparked creative videos from Chanel and Dior, who aim to tell stories and showcase their products through video in a more native way. With the help of Charlize Theron, Dior got over 27 million views on their “J’adore Dior” films. What makes these videos successful is that they feel less like ads and more like an entertaining story, which typically maintains a user’s attention much longer than your standard video ad.

Yet, YouTube videos don’t necessarily lead to increased sales and don’’t offer the advertisers much information on who is watching the ad. As a result, some are turning to Instagram with some success. By posting outfits of the day and a glimpse at the day-in-the-life of fashion designers, Instagram video has directly connected brands to their fans and followers daily. Yet again, Instagram doesn’t offer the sophisticated analytics, so both YouTube and Instagram leave marketers searching for ways to connect their video content to users in a more effective way.  
Enter: programmatic.

Programmatic, The Ultimate Accessory

Traditionally, fashion buzz was isolated to metropolitan areas. They served as the meccas for trends, designers’ inspiration, and ultimately more accessibility to new fashions. The wonderful world wide web has changed this in many ways, as digital platforms have opened doors to new markets and extended reach.

Further, these digital platforms play an increasingly large part in the customer journey. The fashion industry’s legacy of high competition and wide range of products create key opportunities for programmatic advertising to help brands stay relevant while efficiently promoting products to their target audience.

So what is programmatic? On the basic level, programmatic advertising uses automated software to purchase digital ad space in a very targeted way. Even simpler, programmatic advertising connects brands’ ad content to the online users most likely to be receptive to that ad, instantly, through a number of targeted segments. Gone are the days when brands were forced to buy ad space blindly in bulk, serving ads to people who won’t ever want their products. Dad will no longer be served those ads for the hot new yoga pants, unless of course, he wants to see them.  

What’s fantastic is that as brands learn more about their customers, they can adjust the segments they’re targeting. For example, Fabletics may initially start targeting 20-40yr old active women, with disposable income in metropolitan areas. But as they learn more about their customers, they may decide to narrow their targeted market to 25-35yr old trendy, active women with an income between $45k+ a year, with no kids.

Even better, programmatic has a wider reach since it’s not limited to one website. As brands are able to reach a wider range of sites, they are also able to access more data, which gives brands better information on the audiences and individuals they respond to, how they behave, when and where they are, and what their other behaviours are, providing a greater amount of insight from display activity. The result of all this data is that fashion brands find potential client in unconventional places, beyond the obvious places like Vogue.com, and then create a marketing strategy that encompasses these new market areas.

Luckily, there are so many opportunities for fashion brands to keep creativity in their marketing through video. Video advertising increased 59% year-over-year in the first half of 2014 and mobile video advertising became the fastest-growing digital ad format. All video ad formats can be served programmatically, from pre-roll and mid-roll ads served against video content, to in-banner video and richer formats with multiple engagement points within the ad unit. All are fair in the game of programmatic.

Yashi’s Tie to the Fashion Industry

As the pioneer of programmatic video, Yashi’s platform can target users based on over 15,000 behavioral and demographic segments. For the fashion industry, Yashi provides targeting criteria specific to the kind of shopper brands are looking to reach, such as trendy, young, metropolitan, bohemian, etc. Knowing your current customer is a great place to start, but Yashi can help you learn who your unexpected fashion fans are.

An eyewear brand came to Yashi with a mission to serve their 15-second video ads to trendy, young-minded, fashion forward users who like nice things for a value. Ultimately their goal was to see these eager bodies walk through the doors of their 100+ Manhattan locations. Since there’s a direct correlation between online activity and in-store sales, the brand decided to use digital parameters to determine the campaign’s success. Yashi exceeded the advertisers campaign goals, yielding a 80.57% View Through Rate (VTR) and 0.32% Click Through Rate (CTR).  

Programmatic is changing the fashion game by allowing brands to connect with their dynamic audience in an efficient and cost-effective way. Smart targeting ensures that fashion brands are putting their video content in front of the receptive viewers, when they are open to the marketing message. The Fashion Industry, like many verticals, is seeing massive improvements in digital reach and since the Fashion is nothing if not trendy, it only makes sense they would add programmatic to their marketing wardrobe.