Melbourne fashion week partners with IBM to enhance the digital experience

IBM innovation underpins personalised event experiences and strategic marketing operations for Melbourne’s iconic fashion event

In its second year of partnership, IBM and the City of Melbourne will use IBM’s technology to better understand customer needs, build awareness and engagement around the activities taking place across the city, and connect consumers with designers and retailers as part of Melbourne Spring Fashion Week 2015.

Throughout the event, IBM marketing and analytics solutions will be used to serve shoppers, runway addicts, fashion and retail bloggers the latest retail offers and social media buzz. The digital experiences will encourage event goers to digitally interact with the fashion event in new ways this season.

New to MSFW 2015, this year’s shoppers will have easy to view information on the latest retail offers, the latest social buzz and most popular shoe trends. The IBM Event Dashboards will assemble a combination of retail, event and social media information to display crowd sourced data, showcasing where the latest retail deals are being offered across the MSFW precinct at any given time. The Events Dashboard will also visualise the most popular social conversations being discussed online, providing attendees with a view of the topics generating the most buzz on social media.

The latest trends in shoes will also be captured at this year’s event courtesy of the MSFW Shoe Spotter. The booth, located at The Hub in the MFSW precinct, lets event-goers take photos of their favourite shoes and post them to social media. IBM visual analytics will analyse the posts to identify favourite shoe trends, styles and colours for this season and display the information on the event dashboards.

Using IBM analytics the City of Melbourne will monitor real-time social conversations around the event, offering greater insight into the activities and events that are trending with attendees, and how attendees are sharing social information. Behavioural analytics will also be used to discover personality insights of Melbourne’s most popular fashion and retail bloggers, enabling a deeper understanding and level of engagement with this important audience.

“We’re delighted that in the second year of our partnership with IBM, Melburnians, local businesses and designers alike can benefit from data driven insight," Chair of marketing Melbourne, Councillor Beverley Pinder-Mortimer, said. "Tracking the sentiments of event attendees is crucial as it informs the way we design and deliver MSFW."

Also new this year the City of Melbourne will use IBM Marketing Cloud to better understand each individual customer and deliver campaigns that are personalised to each recipient and delivered at precisely the right time and right channel. By presenting powerful and contextualised customer experiences across all channels, the City of Melbourne will increase engagement with the event, drive visitor numbers and deliver business to local retailers.

The social component of the campaign will leverage the IBM and Facebook partnership. By using existing customer insights with Facebook Custom Audiences and IBM’s deep analytics and design features, the City of Melbourne can tailor specific messages to recipients as well as a larger ‘Lookalike’ audience that fit the same characteristics, interests and more.

“Consumers are becoming more empowered and informed about how and when they want to access retail offers and information – a critical consideration for engaging fans, customers and audiences during large scale events like Melbourne Spring Fashion Week,” IBM Analytics vice president, Brock Douglas, said. “Our industry expertise and innovation helps organisations nurture brand loyalists and generate data driven insights from across digital, mobile and social sources of information, to create a dynamic, secure and interactive experience for consumers.”

Fashion week commences on Friday, August 28 with MSFW: Shop the City weekend

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO Australia conversation on LinkedIn: CMO Australia, join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+: google.com/+CmoAu

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