Mobile Marketer has re-launched! Click here to learn more!

People StyleWatch matches shoppers with celebrity fashion twins via mobile

By scanning a QR code from the print magazine, tapping on the tablet edition or accessing a mobile Web site, shoppers can tap on product images to determine their look, which is then matched to a celebrity, and shop for related products. The project shows how mobile can can be leveraged to guide consumers in matters of personal taste, such as fashion.

?The goal was to create a highly engaging digital experience for print readers, while enabling advertisers to participate in a more native way,? said Karen Macumber, chief marketing officer with ShopAdvisor, the Concord, MA-based platform supporting the People StyleWatch mobile shopping experience. 

?People StyleWatch does not have its own website, and readers are in the demographic of strong mobile usage. So the mobile platform was natural,? she said. ?It can be launched directly from print, or used as a stand-alone mobile Web experience.?

Engaging consumers
The fashion-shopping event also is a way for People StyleWatch, an extension of People magazine introduced in 2002 by New York-based parent Time Inc., to leverage mobile to extend the value of print editorial and advertising. 

The fashion, accessories and beauty products offered for purchase in the experience are based on editorial content and fashion and beauty advertisements contained in the September issue of People StyleWatch.

The project builds consumer engagement through the various ways it lets shoppers explore a celebrity look. Shoppers can browse products by brands, looks or function. They also can learn more about each product in terms of its description, price and available retailers.

They also have the option to share their look across social-media platforms.

Shoppers? style preferences are matched to one of 10 members of People Stylewatch?s Celebrity Style Council, including actress-model Nikki Reed and fashion designer-actress Kristin Cavallari. 

Helping mobile users find a look that cooks.

Fashion brands are no strangers to mobile. Instagram is particularly popular with brands from Kate Spade to Coach, which have used the video site to promote some type of product, cause or occasion and in turn offer coupons, prizes or recognition from the brand.

In the past, Chloé launched an iPhone-optimized Web site and an app to let fashion-savvy consumers stay connected with the apparel and accessories brand even while on the go.

The PeopleStyleWatch shopping experience addresses the challenges that traditional publishers face in providing value to readers and advertisers on mobile, which accounts for more than 60 percent of content consumption.

Paradigm shift
For traditional media companies, a major paradigm shift is necessary, both to create, organize and display content, and monetize it beyond fractions of a penny for banners, experts say.  

?This is contextual and personalized for the shopper,? Ms. Macumber said of the PeopleStyle Watch project. ?The anchor to a celebrity provides context that is completely on brand for People StyleWatch. 

?That context then makes it fun and easy for the shopper to find the right products, and create collections to achieve the right look. It is like they have their own celebrity stylist.?

Final Take
Michael Barris is staff reporter for Mobile Marketer, New York.