Here’s the social media metric luxury fashion brands don’t care about

Published by Engagement Labs on February 19, 2015

The post-Valentine’s day period may signify the approach of spring for many, but for others it signifies a time when the who’s-who of the fashion industry gathers for fall/winter fashion shows. Luxury brands who show their collections in Milan, Paris, London, or NY have a discernible impact on fashion trends and eventually on the assortment that will be available in retail stores as it distils to the masses. Worldwide sales of personal luxury goods are estimated to have reached more than $249 billion in 2014, a 5% increase from 2013 according to the New York Times.

Luxury fashion brands have a cult following both on social and in real life. They have brand association, history, and recognizable brand power. Customers demand the highest level of service and response when they purchase from luxury brands in real life, but do they require that native behaviour on social?

A brand’s overall eValue score is made up of the metrics of Engagement, Impact, and Responsiveness. The Engagement score measures how engaged your followers are with your posts; the Impact score measures the size of the total audience (reach) exposed at least once to content posted by the channels administrator; and the Responsiveness score measures how quickly and often you’re responding to users and your interaction with them. Used in unison, these metrics tell a compelling story of where your brand currently stands and provide a snapshot of your social strategy in action. However, a single metric can hold weight of its own.

Not all metrics are created equal

While social media best practices dictate having an overall holistic strategy (consistent posts, responding to your followers online, and keeping them engaged to help drive ROI efforts), it may not always be necessary to rigidly follow best practices, depending on the industry in which you compete.

The consumer segment that purchases from luxury brands usually want that one-on-one intimate service. They may have personal shoppers or assistants and will not engage with the brand online. These brands likely will not see revenue driven from social. The data confirms this argument. Brands like Kenzo, Rebecca Minkoff, Burberry, and Calvin Klein have responsiveness rate scores of zero, meaning they’ve consciously decided not to include this in their strategy.

But when you look at the luxury brands referenced in this eValue example, one metric dominates: Impact. Check out Calvin Klein’s score of 87.87 — whatever they post still garners attention and reach. Consumers appreciate the significance and history of what they’re buying, and brands must deliver impactful content that reflects their history, to stay relevant in the social sphere.
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Luxury brands versus mass-market fashion

When we look at a brand like Forever 21, whose focus is selling runway-inspired looks at a low price point, we see how their results differ per metric. Forever 21 has a Responsiveness rate of 46.75, an Impact score of 86.31, and an Engagement score of 29.34. Forever 21’s key target is the digital age cohort/younger millennial. This shopper has less personal income, likely does their own shopping, and expects brands to engage with them on social. Forever 21 needs to respond to their followers in order to build organic conversation and drive users to their retail stores or e-commerce site.

Calvin Klein’s overall eValue score is lower than Forever 21. Nevertheless, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as they boost their Impact metric with resonating content.


All fashion brands, luxury or otherwise, should strive for a social strategy that adequately meets the needs of their target segment’s native social behaviour. If your audience isn’t interested in engaging on social, trying to engage with them is a waste of one of your greatest resources: your community management team’s time.

Find out how the eValue Analytics Suite can help your brand bring valuable data to your social strategy.