I am super excited to share some very big news with you – the British Fashion Council have announced a new digital strategy to engage fashion industry bloggers; a core part of this strategy is a Blogger Panel which includes yours truly.. This is a pivotal change for the industry which has been slow to really understand fashion bloggers. With the proliferation of fashion blogging in the UK and internationally, this represents a huge opportunity for the industry to genuinely work with bloggers and forge true, meaningful partnerships.
As old timer bloggers will know, we used to just attend London Fashion Week as accredited “press”. In February 2011, the BFC launched a separate “blogger” category to accreditation, since then the average rise in applications from bloggers has increased by 25% each season with over 2000 applications in February 2013. I know a lot of bloggers who were put out at having to disclose stats and other information during this process, without realising that London Fashion Week isn’t a free for all but a key trade event for the industry. That being said, it’s pretty obvious that bloggers need to be at fashion week, but this begs the questions: What makes a good blogger?
A “good blogger” is such an ambiguous term and something that will constantly change and evolve, which is something the industry hasn’t quite gotten to grips with just yet. This is something the Blogger Panel discussed with the BFC, along with best practice, the purpose of bloggers at fashion week and on-site facilities. This open channel of communication has already resulted in changes this season: The vetting process has been changed to take into account engagement and support of British designers as well as influence, this accredited blogger list will be distributed to PRs, the blog portal will be updated daily to include relevant information and images and onsite facilities will be bolstered with lockers, chargers and laptops. Accredited bloggers will receive a briefing pack for LFW while non-accredited bloggers will receive guidance on how to get involved and access to media packs and the blogger portal.
These changes are the first step of a huge change for the British Fashion Council and I’m so thrilled to be part of it. Here’s to a fantastic London Fashion Week SS14 and beyond. Keep your eyes peeled for more news and updates from the BFC Blogger Panel.