Italy's Gucci is the hottest brand in fashion right now, based on an analysis of searches, page views, clicks, shares and word-of-mouth buzz on social media.
Online retailer Lyst and Business of Fashion teamed up for the Lyst Index, a compilation of the top fashion brands in the industry, ranked by popularity and buzz along with some of the top selling products. What the retailer and publication found was that the hottest brands were the ones that consistently used social media to appeal to Generation Z.
"The amazing thing about the fashion industry is that while we can use data to look back on results and analyze consumer behavior, there's really no telling what will happen next, and what makes a brand go from hot to not is totally out of our control," said Charlotte Austin, editor at Lyst, London.
"We're excited to keep tracking movement and changes to the list to see what next quarter's Lyst Index looks like," she said.
The fashion industry is home to many brands with massive followings.
As an aspirational industry, fashion makes its living off creating a lifestyle that customers want to emulate and that generates a lot of buzz.
To gauge exactly which brands are doing this the most effectively, Lyst and Business of Fashion came together to create the Lyst Index, ranking the top fashion brands in terms of buzz and hotness.
What they found was that the top five brands were all ones that are popular with Gen Z.
The top five brands are, in order, Gucci, Kanye West's Yeezy, Balenciaga, Vetements and Givenchy.
These brands are ones that have a huge following among young consumers, especially Yeezy and Vetements, which have deep connections to youth and streetwear cultures. As for Gucci, millennials and those in Gen Z now represent 50 percent of its consumer base due to the label's revitalization under Alessandro Michele and its digital tactics.
"The hottest brands index takes into account searches, page views, clicks and shares as well as sales figures," Lyst's Ms. Austin said.
"This gives us a real indication of the brands' popularity over the period," she said. "These are the labels everyone was talking about, lusting after and searching for last quarter.
"But only two of the top five brands, Gucci and Givenchy, appear in the best selling products list- which shows the difference between being the biggest and the hottest."
Hot or not
In addition to the hottest brands, Lyst also ranked the top selling luxury products of Q2 of 2017.
The research showed that tastes are changing and more consumers are interested in shoes than handbags.
"One interesting takeaway we noted while compiling the research was that shoes- sneakers and slides especially, seem to be the new handbags," Lyst's Ms. Austin said. "If we'd run the top products report a few years ago it's likely there would have been a lot more handbags in the results.
"As brands consider their product mix for next season it's definitely worth considering the power of a statement shoe," she said.
Brands need to pay attention to their social media presence if they want to continue capturing attention from young consumers.
While the vast majority of brands have a Twitter presence, almost half ignore customer requests or inquiries through Twitter because they do not have the proper resources needed to manage the platform.
This statistic is emblematic of a larger problem with social media among fashion retailers and brands, who invest in social media but not enough to get the full use out of them. This information comes from Fashionbi’s report, "How Are Brands Using Social For Customer Support and Care" (see story).
Those brands that came out on top of this list have demonstrated a commitment to social media as a way of keeping in close contact with customers.
"The top five have all successfully used marketing to reach huge global audiences, creating stand out brand moments last quarter that put them top of mind for customers and fans worldwide," Lyst's Ms. Austin said.