Final Project outline

Over the past 4 years there have been substantial and continuous developments in Instagram: from just pictures, to pictures and videos, to direct messaging, to collages, to being able to send a shared photo to another person. Companies can now promote on Instagram and pay to have their posts come up on peoples feeds. The feature of a “popular page” has also been added which allows you to access pictures from all over the world. With so much innovation already what is next for Instagram?

For my beat I have been looking at the role of Instagram in the fashion industry, specifically, and how much marketing has moved from TV, online and billboards to social media; Instagram in particular. For my final project I will research  the progression of Instagram as a marketing platform. I want to specifically examine the progression of BrandyMelville, a girls clothing company based out of Santa Monica, CA that exclusively advertises via social media. Through their success their models have become “Instagram famous” as well as a few of their photographers. A whole Instagram network now exists for “Brandy Girls” (their models) and their adventures. Victorias Secret was able to gain a huge following and build up this coveted image of a “Victorias Secret Angel” via extravagant commercials and broadcasted runway shows. Brandy Melville is establishing a similar but younger and  slightly more approachable “it girl” but exclusively though Instagram. I think this company really captures the future of Instagram and its marketing potential. Never before have photographers, models and bloggers been able to gain such a following and with so much less money being spent than if it were through advertisements on TV or billboards. Instagram is unique in the way it combines personal sharing amongst families and friends with following celebrities, models, athletes, clothing companies and news outlets. Where Facebook is primarily used to get in touch with people in your life, Instagram is used for both personal and public following and its constantly gaining momentum.

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Damsel in Dior

Screen Shot 2015-11-29 at 12.26.21 PMFashion blogging has become a major profession in the 21st century. 10 years ago the outlets didn’t exist for someone to make a living off of showing where they shop, what they wear, how they decorate their homes etc. but with Instagram, Pinterest and so much reliance on the internet, people have made full careers through lifestyle and fashion blogging. For this assignment I have chosen to do a bio on Jacey Duprie, LA native and founder of Damsel in Dior. According to Damsel in Dior’s “about page” “Jacey Duprie is the editor of Damsel in Dior, which is a website that encompasses fashion, lifestyle, travel and home decor. The name, Damsel in Dior, is not a misnomer, but symbolic of a lifestyle {to never feel like a damsel in distress!}.” In addition to a successful blog, Damsel in Dior has 257 thousand Instagram followers and a collaboration with the clothing line Splendid.

“Damsel in Dior first started out as a creative outlet for Jacey in 2009 and 2011 she turned her hobby into a full time job. The website has been featured in Huffington Post, Vanity Fair, WhoWhatWear, Forbes and E! News and has appeared in several ad campaigns for SAKS, GAP and Nordstrom. Jacey Duprie is a Journalism Major from DePaul University {Chicago}.” –http://damselindior.com/about/

Jacey is a successful example of someone who combined her love of fashion with her passion for journalism and the rise of social media to create a profession that has gained a major following.

I was able to contact Jaceys only employee besides her personal assistant. Emily Greenberg (20) is a student at Emory Universirty but originally from Los Angeles, CA. Emily is currently studying abroad in Rome, I was able to email her my questions and she sent me back responses.

MS: when did you start working for jacey?
EG: Summer 2014 part time! Full time January 2015!

MS: What did your job entail?

EG: Editorial Assistant, technically. I upload all photos and product to the back end of the Damsel in Dior blog, as well as read and analyze statistics on the blog and social media, and monitor sales. I also curate the shop page on the website!

MS: What is her regular routine, would you say that fashion blogging is a 24/7 job and she’s always working in some way even in her free/spare time?

EG: Yes. 24/7. She gets a flood of emails constantly and there’s never a moment where she’s not working. She wakes up at 7am to work every day and spends all day focusing on deals, phone calls, photos, blog posts, etc.
MS: Have you done any blogging yourself?

EG: No! But I do have an Instagram where I post photos I take, but it’s definitely got a blog.
MS: How do you think Instagram has changed blogging? Do you think it has had a positive affect?

EG: Yes absolutely. Most people don’t even look at Jacey’s actual blog, they just follow her on Instagram. Her fame stems mainly from Instagram. It’s been huge for blogging and I actually think it’s grown the business exponentially. It wouldn’t be what it is without Instagram.

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I believe her Instagram grabs more attention. She grows 2-5k followers on Instagram a week, where as her blog stays pretty much the same in viewership weekly!!- Emily Greenberg

If Instagram is in Temple have we gone too far?

My photo story depicts the reliance on social media at my cousins Bar Mitzvah this past weekend. For an event as spiritual and meaningful as a Bar Mitzvah, there was still an underlying dependance and importance placed on picture taking and portrayal on social media. If hashtags are being created for Bar and Bat Mitzvahs, where isn’t Instagram prevalent? The following pictures depict people taking pictures, posing for pictures, posted Instagram’s and people even checking social media in temple.

FaceTune changing reality

My beat for this semester is the broad topic of Instagram, and more specifically its affect on the fashion industry and marketing. I personally believe that the most prominent technological innovation that affects Instagram is the iPhone. As the iPhone keeps getting new updates one of the things people look for is an improved camera with higher picture quality. As the fashion industry revolves more around social media promotion than magazines or TV commercials it is vital that their pictures can be of the highest quality. When comparing the first ever Instagram to Instagram posts from today it is clear that over the last 4 years picture quality has greatly improved.behold-the-first-ever-instagram-shot-c856b013e5
Screen Shot 2015-11-15 at 1.11.15 PM

 

 

 

 

There are also countless photo editing apps that have had an immense impact on Instagram. Apps such as ViscoCam, FaceTune and Afterlight allow users to put on filters, adjust lighting and even make their bodies and faces appear slimmer, smoother etc. As fashion has become so social media driven it is hard to tell what’s authentic and what has been edited on these apps. According to a review of Facetune by Daily Mail author Bianca London, “The ‘reshape’ and ‘resize’ tools let you modify your figure by lengthening your legs, sucking in your waist or trimming down your arms. It is, however, slightly obvious what you’re up to. One look at the background of the image and you can see the wall has a curve and is slightly distorted. Countless celebrities – including Beyonce, Kendall Jenner and Kim Kardashian – have been called out on mishaps like this by savvy social media users.” Instagram can end up being a deceiving, idealized representation of someones real life. Users love being able to see the behind the scenes of fashion shows, celebrities lives, clothing company photo shoots etc. but it isn’t guaranteed that the visuals they’re getting are authentic.

 

There are clear differences between the Instagramed photo that Kim Kardashian posted of herself verse a photo that was captured by paparazzi. Her waist and body in general is slimmer and smoother. The majority of Kim Kardashian’s 51.9 million Instagram followers will only see the picture she posted of herself and therefor can get away with editing her pictures. With that said, more and more people are realizing the editing that celebrities and fashion companies are doing to their pictures but I don’t see them stopping any time soon.

Data Visualization x Instagram

US Instagram User Estimates, by Age Group, 2013-2019
US Instagram User Estimates, by Age Group, 2013-2019

My topic of Instagram revolves completely on how reliant current society is on visual. As discussed in class, Instagram has completely changed our societies relationship with photography and sharing our everyday lives. As Instagram has grown in popularity so has the portrayal of data through visualization. The visual data graphic above shows the amount of Instagram users that check their account monthly, in the past present and future. The convenient part of data visualization is being able to summarize years worth of data into one clear concise visual. “Just as text, photos, and videos represent journalistic formats that inform and empower the public to make decisions, data visualization is fast joining the ranks as an equally important format.” – Visual Literacy in the Age of Data  Data visualization is  becoming increasingly more popular as society relies more on receiving information through visual outlets. It makes sense that Instagram and Data Visualization are increasing in popularity at the same time because both appeal to societies reliance on visualization.

social-media-users

Presenting information in a visual diagram like this really draws attention. People are intrigued by pictures and colors that give the reader straight facts. Someone can look at this graphic and instantly see how many million Instagram posts have been made in 2015 and what age groups are doing the majority of posting.

Society as a whole is in a digital era that relies heavily on all things visual wether its social media, journalism or data analysis. “Marry the large amounts of data with how our brains understand images faster than they do text and you get the bourgeoning world of data visualizations; it’s the most efficient way for us to understand and grasp buried patterns, relationships, and to find stories in the data.” – Visual Literacy in the Age of Data. Data Visualization is increasing simultaneously while we’re becoming more accustom to gaining information through images. The outcome of this increasingly visual age is completely up in the air and very fascinating.