How to Pitch to Fashion Media in a Pandemic?

How to Pitch to Fashion Media in a Pandemic?

Especially during quarantine fashion media needs to churn out content: viewers & readers still want to know the latest must-have shoes, hair care, and skin-care products. But for brand PR reps, talent, and small businesses, pitching editors these days at magazines, websites and blogs require more finesse after all Fashion magazines have pages to fill; online influencers have beauty trends to discover.

We search the web to find PR and Editors who give advice on which pitches are working — and which aren't.

Thinking about using the coronavirus as an angle to push shoppers to buy your beauty products or natural hand sanitizer? What about repositioning apparel as “WFH style” or insisting there’s no better time to invest in luxury pajamas or blasting out images of Chrissy Teigen in self-quarantine, just to make sure everyone knows what brand her robe is and where they can buy it? Maybe just reminding people that they can get all the fashion they want online and delivered while they’re stuck at home? 

For the sake of consumers now going through unprecedented global events started by a true pandemic, not to mention the future reputation of the brand you operate or represent, don’t do it. And stop doing it if you’re among the scores of brands already essentially crop-dusting shoppers, editors and the public at large with product promotions, dubious claims and all of the things we can and should be buying online “while social distancing.”

The sheer number of brands e-mailing, often repeatedly, is also working against everyone that’s decided to do so. Inboxes are flooded with a mix of messages. Some are even signed by company chief executive officers and leadership, trying to seem empathetic, typically in bland, unaffecting terms. Some try to do that while mentioning how important it is to keep supporting business at a time like this (i.e. shop and spend money). Ultimately, it’s very likely for naught. Not least given that millions of people are already facing layoffs and an economic recession, at least in the U.S., is almost a certainty at this point.

Beauty and wellness brands have been all over the map in terms of their marketing strategies in the past week alone. There was LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton’s decision to scrap luxury perfume production and make hand sanitizer — seen as a good call all around and one subsequently followed by L’Oréal and Coty.  

Some fashion brands and designers are already shifting production to medical face masks and soon hospital gowns, while other companies like Alibaba, Apple, Nike, The Estée Lauder Cos., Facebook and many Italian fashion brands are donating millions of dollars and millions of masks and other medical supplies needed by hospital workers facing a critical shortage. While these efforts are not being pitched explicitly as marketing, doing something with a humanitarian bent certainly can create a positive halo effect for a brand. Facebook, having dealt with little but bad press for more than two years over its mishandling of user data, has even created a grant program for small businesses forced to close over coronavirus measures and the company said more efforts are in the works. For better or worse, companies are presented with an opportunity to generate a positive message and feeling around their business, if the moves strike consumers as genuine and not generated by self-interest.   

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