Wednesday, September 14, 2011

"Building Your Brand" at LuckyFABB

After Lucky FABB Conference opened with the inspiring discussion with Diane Von Furstenberg, the next panel was called "Building Your Brand." The panelists were designer Rebecca Minkoff, designer Rachel Roy, model Coco Rocha, founder of Essie Cosmetics, Essie Weingarten, and President of One Management, Scott Lipps.

I thought I would share some of the important thoughts that came out of this hour sorted by the person who said them.

Essie Weingarten started out her line as a young, passionate girl in 1981 with just 12 colors that had no name on the bottle. Now there are over 200 colors in the collection and new colors are released every 90 days, each with her name cast right into the bottle! She credits her company's success to always doing what she felt was right for the company as well as to her team. Essie believes that social media is the most important part of business today. That being said, it seemed that no one could find a proper Twitter handle for this lacquer guru.

Rachel Roy started her brand without a defined vision. She just knew that she needed to market well and set herself apart in a new way. So she got to know her customer and honed in on it.She believes passion is key for anything you do in life and that quality of life is everything. The key to that is kindness and working with people who are much smarter than she. Bloggers are entrepreneurs in Rachel's eyes and she had good advice for those of us who author blogs. We should stick to our point of view ("You can't be everything to everybody, who cares?"). Make sure you persue a great quality of life because that's all that matters at the end of the day. It was interesting to me that when someone brought up the topic of people copying her designs, she insisted that copying is the best form of flattery ("Thank God for Macy's and Zara because not everyone can afford things on the runway!"). And perhaps her advice that stuck with me the most was that you don't know what you're great at untill you're older so she encourages young people to experiment with as many thing at as young an age as possible.

Attendees glued to their Twitter streams during Lucky FABB panels
Attendees glued to their Twitter streams during Lucky FABB panels

When Coco Rocha started her modeling career, photographers were still using film and there weren't really any blogs just yet. She started blogging about her life in her POV and believes she was the first to do so. Coco believes all models should be savvy about the Internet ("Google+, I don't know if it's gonna work, but I'm there!"). When it comes to posting content that gets noticed, she said she loves videos but people seem to just jump straight to photos. That's why she suggests to take notice of what are reacting to and do more of it. As far as social media goes, she recommends you have all of them, but know that it will be a full time job and can probably take over your life. One funny thing was how she compared Tumblr followers to a cult.

Scott Lipps, president of One Management, a model agency-turned entertainment company and author of the Pop Lipps blog, believes that Twitter is is extremely relevant for online branding. When he's hiring a person, he always looks at a person's online presence and recommends everyone do the same. He also talked about how people can get a job simply because of their online presence (I can think of several who fall under this category besides myself). Scott thinks Tumblr is a great medium. 

The only awkward part of the day was during this panel where Essie brought up her opinion that bloggers need to expect their timelines better. She brought up how bloggers at Magic were talking about products that wouldn't be on sale for months, but because everyone is seeing it now, they're trying to buy it and getting frustrated when they can't. Rachel Roy was quick to disagree with this opinion and share her own by saying something to the effect of if you don't want people to talk about it, don't invite bloggers. It was really interesting to hear both sides of this issue though, really made me think!

I think this may have been my favorite panel of the day, but I still have lots more to recap on so keep checking back. And if you want more LuckyFABB now, check out my outfit, what I did in the suites and my recap of a conversation with Diane von Furstenberg!

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