Fashion – an emphasized visual industry based on images and vision, increasingly uses the power of voice as a tool for building the brand’s universe. We tell how the main fashion houses today turn to podcasts and give a new meaning to the concept of “loyal audience”.
Podcasts became a new stage in the development of audio blogging, which appeared back in the 1980s. In 2004, with the creation of the compact iPod, audio recordings of radio programs began to gain more and more popularity, and by the end of the 2010s the number of English-speaking podcasts alone exceeded 100 thousand. At its core, a podcast is an audio recording, usually a conversation of two or more people on various topics. The lion's share of podcasts related to fashion is created by the media as a logical continuation and addition of editorial content. However, in the modern industry, the boundaries between brands and media are blurring: the former produce more and more of their own editorial content, while the latter sell clothing and accessories, so entering large luxury brands into the cozy podcast industry was only a matter of time. For them, this is an opportunity to immerse everyone in the brand’s universe, open the veil of exclusivity and convey the values of the company in a new form in order to further fall in love with the audience.
Chanel – 3.55
Of all the big Chanel fashion houses, digitalization is extremely cautious, so the launch of the 3.55 podcast in 2017 was a big step for them to meet a new audience. Since then, they have already released 13 mini-seasons of the podcast, which tells not only about the brand, but about its values and the expanded universe. The episodes are recorded in the former apartments of Gabrielle Chanel, the couture atelier of the House of Métiers d’Art, as well as during various events – brand shows, Cannes Film Festival, Hyères International Fashion and Photography Festival and accompanying the world-made Mademoiselle Privé exhibition. Like the Chanel design codes, their podcast is timeless and trendy and represents dialogues and reflections of creative personalities such as performer and producer Farrell Williams, director Sofia Coppola, actresses Kristen Stewart and Marion Cotillard. Especially valuable today is the recording of a podcast with the already late Karl Lagerfeld, where he talks about his creative process.
Christian Dior – Dior Talks
Dior Talks was launched in early March 2020 as a continuation and development of the brand’s interaction with the art world. The creative director of the House, Maria Grazia Curie, in collections often addresses issues of feminism in art and the lack of female names in the list of great artists of the world, and the podcast is designed to become a platform for their support. The host and interviewer for the first season of Dior Talks was Katie Hessel, an artist and art historian from London who spoke with artists, friends of the brand and like-minded people on topics relevant to modern feminism. Since the launch, Tracey Emin, Tomaso Binga and Paola Ugolini have already visited the podcast. The second podcast season started at the end of April and focuses on the history of Dior House and the life of Christian himself.
Gucci – Gucci Podcast
The Italian brand Gucci is often most willingly and actively experimenting with new formats for interacting with the audience and in 2018 added a podcast to its digital communication tools. Like the collections of the House, the podcast turned out to be eclectic, rich and with lots of entertaining stories that will appeal to the hedonists and tell a little more about the Gucci universe. Talk about fashion, collecting and music between Sir Elton John and creative director of the brand Alessandro Michele, the story of legendary tailor Dapper Dan about creating single-piece outfits for hip-hop stars of the 80s and 90s, a discussion between the actress Gugu Mbata Rowe and the writer and activist Scarlett Curtis about feminism and cultural issues in modern society – this is not a complete list of interesting conversations. The latest episodes of the podcast include celebrity chefs Massimo Bottour and Karime Lopez, who run the Gucci Osteria restaurants in Los Angeles and Florence respectively, and the release with Karime will delight the cozy and soothing ASMR sounds of his kitchen.
Maison Margiela – The memory of … With John Galliano
Since its launch, the conceptual Belgian brand has always been extremely concise in communications and to this day remains one of the most closed fashion houses. Its current creative director, John Galliano, unlike other designers, never goes to the bow in the finale of the show – like Martin Margela, who has not given almost a single interview in his entire career, and there are still only a couple of him on the Web old photos. For Galliano, the podcast has become a way of communicating with the brand’s audience, and each issue is timed to coincide with the release of a new collection. In fairly short (10-15 minutes), but information-rich monologues, the designer discusses the concept of the collection, and also shares his thoughts on the various cultural and social phenomena that underlie it.
Miu Miu – Miu Miu Musings
A lively discussion of bright and interesting women sitting at the same table in a restaurant – in the Miu Miu Musings podcast embodied what we all dream about in the era of social distance. Launched in January 2020, the podcast currently includes three episodes that were recorded in restaurants in London, New York and Beijing. At its core, it is a friendly debate balancing between sparkling humor and serious discussions of issues such as the idea of authenticity, the detrimental role of mobile phones in modern society, as well as the pros and cons of motion effects in photography. Influencers such as Susie Lau, Veronica Heilbrunner, Tessa Thompson, Haley Gates and others were involved in the discussion, and each meeting ended with a vote and a verdict.
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TEXT: Maria Mokhovaya