With the Oscars just days away, designers have the chance to get their product seen on one of the world’s biggest stages. To put that into perspective, last year, despite being the least-watched broadcast in history, 26.5 million viewers still tuned in.
To give further context, this year, 18.6 million watched the Golden Globe Awards, while the Grammys drew 19.9 million viewers.
Whether it’s about increasing brand awareness or driving sales, the red carpet is a crucial part of business for fashion companies. Many have teams dedicated to pursuing placement on celebrities, and the impact is evident.
“Celebrities wearing my shoes on the red carpet definitely helps raise brand awareness,” said designer Tabitha Simmons. “Those images typically circulate within the press and on social media, which has certainly spiked sales in the past.” She added, “I believe [red carpets] are all equally important, as each is geared toward a different industry. The movie industry is of course the Oscars, the Met [Gala] is fashion, the Grammys is music, Emmys is TV and so on. Each award show is majorly important for the industry it celebrates.”
For Roger Vivier GM Camilla Schiavone, the Oscars still reign supreme.
She said, “The Oscars are the most anticipated and respected awards in the world. The red carpet has become a primary communication tool in the Roger Vivier strategy to generate brand awareness and to position it alongside a celebrity. I think consumers nowadays [have become] experts, and they would know if it is organic or not for a large majority. Having said that, it allows the brand to show its products on another platform and be seen by people in a different way than an advertisement or a post.”
Designer Chloe Gosselin has also seen the benefits of the red carpet, which is why she started to design celebrity-inspired shoes that consumers could wear in their daily lives.
She said, “Red carpet looks are typically more evening or extravagant than street-style looks. I feel like people love to look at them, but it might not connect as much as the everyday styling that celebrities wear. That is why we design some celebrity-oriented styles in different heel heights or fabrics so our consumer can adapt the styles they love on the red carpet [to wear] in their everyday lives.”
This awards season Oscar nominees Yalitza Aparicio, Melissa McCarthy, Angela Sarafyan and Connie Britton have worn her heels.
For Gosselin, the Met Gala red carpet is critical.
“It shows fashion at its finest and also blends fashion, cinema and music talents in one place,” she said. “I love the celebration around it and that it celebrates fashion as an art.”
However, some brands, such as Sergio Rossi and Olgana Paris, see results off the red carpet.
Riccardo Sciutto, CEO of Sergio Rossi, explained that while numerous red carpet moments have been important to the brand, seeing stars wear Sergio Rossi in their daily lives has been rewarding.
Added Olgana Paris’ Olgana Djanguirov, “We have seen just as much impact through social media and street style as we have the red carpet.”
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