The Rise of Clickbait Fashion

What is clickbait fashion?

Clickbait is a technique used by organisations and individuals to enthral customers to click on a certain link, designed to attract attention for reasons such as increasing traffic to websites or creating brand awareness. When applied to fashion, this could be companies and designers creating a product or clothing line which is rather ‘interesting’ and unique which can attract attention to the brand.



Who has been executing it well?

ASOS is an online store where you can find all the latest on-trend fashion items, and more. Their product portfolio ranges from clothing to games and home items. However, they are not unfamiliar with the weird and wonderful when it comes to some of their clothing line.

For example, one of their jackets has a similar resemblance to Joey in a scene from Friends where he is wearing multiple shirt. Other wacky items include their Cheeseburger Head Mask, which is essentially what the label says on the tin, a burger for your head. Imagine scoring your first modelling job and being told you had to pose with a giant burger covering your head.


Image Source: The Guardian

Even if some of the (as described by many) laughable, ugly and unwearable items, like the clear jeans and body bow, do not sell very well themselves, they do generate attention for the store and, therefore, attract sales for other items.

ASOS have created ‘out there’ products to draw in the audience for their more ‘standard’ range. And it has worked.  In this case, all publicity is good publicity.

These products have caused online influencers, such as Safiya Nygaard, to create content on them. For example, her video named ‘Wearing The Ugliest Shirt In The World For A Week’ got a huge 3.4million views. This proves that consumers are interested in the product and are likely to share the video, creating even more publicity.

It’s not just ASOS that are stirring up the fashion industry. Safiya Nygaard’s video ‘Wearing The Ugliest Jeans In The World For A Week’ creating even more buzz with a staggering 4.7million views. This pair of Topshop trousers consists of a rectangle cut out from each leg and replaced with clear plastic. However, this generated an increase in website traffic, drawing customers to more of their clothing lines.

Image Source: Safiya Nygaard

Designer brand Y/Project also compose collections of fashion items which push the boundaries of the norm. These items will no doubt cause heads to turn in the street. For example, the Grey Five Layer Sweatshirt can be worn forwards or backwards and is sold at an astounding $580CAD. Not forgetting to mention the denim jacket with incredibly long sleeves.

Finally, one unusual Y/Project item which has now hit the market is most definitely mind-boggling. The Janties. A combination of ‘panties’ and jeans. It is one hell of a look and hands down to anyone who can pull it off.


What is the future of marketing for fashion?

Marketing in the fashion industry has most definitely been making progress and changes to adapt to the advances in technology and consumer trends. Using social media channels to target their audience and throw all sorts at them is, of course, going to engrain the brand in their heads. And it’s not just looks and sale updates which they post. Organisations such as ASOS have thrown memes into the mix. Even if certain customers aren’t keen on them, it is, of course, reminding them that they are still there, creating a faint ghost of the brand, lurking in the customer’s heads.

Creating a media presence is great for companies to market their products and new ranges, no matter how wacky they are is a great way to market in the current day and foreseeable future.

An example of an organisation with a strong media presence is, once again, ASOS. On Twitter they posted a screenshot of a customer’s tweet saying how many pieces she had in her saved items, challenging consumers to beat this number. This creates an interaction between the target audience and the company itself. However, not all consumers are happy with the posts, one commenting saying how she followed the account for updates on sales, not the memes which suggest the normalisation of mass purchases and shopping addiction.

On the other hand, certain brands are using the memes customers are making as a way of creating publicity. As the vice-president of communication for Lyst, Katy Lubin, says, if a certain product goes viral, then the search for that product increases by over 1000%. This creates a rocketing in traffic for the organisation’s websites.



After watching social media go crazy over the eccentric items which fashion brands have been releasing, you can only expect brand awareness and traffic to go up, and hopefully, the sales too! Creating publicity for the company is a key consequence of these actions and, though opinions may be negative towards the clothing itself, there has been a general positive effect for them.



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