What Brand Publishers Can Learn From The Coveteur’s Commerce Formula
Fashion and retail brands are building content left and right. Walk into H&M on Broadway and you can pick up a magazine; this issue’s theme is Paris chic. In a small East Village skater shop, hipster backpack-maker Herschel distributes copies of “The Journal,” a new bi-annual broadsheet filled with interviews and tales of adventure. It’s exciting to see brands both big and small investing in creative content.
But a relaunch in Fall 2012 made the Coveteur more than a collection of celebrity closets, as each spread became shoppable. With each piece, Coveteur members can “covet” photos and add their favorite pieces to their personal online closet. And within 14 days, members can actually purchase items similar to the ones featured on the shoot. This makes it easy for readers to get their hands on Rihanna’s rabbit ears or Pamela Love’s spike earrings.
The Coveteur’s consistent editorial formula allows them to keep readers coming back while also integrating collaborations with brands seamlessly, much like Buzzfeed’s listicle approach. Every subject gets a brief bio and interview, then a collage of photos with quotes. This allows a Coveteur post for J-Brand, for example, to feel the same as a profile of actor Jamie Chung. Though the subjects change, Coveteur’s form and overarching voice remain constant — a philosophy that many fashion brand publishers would be smart to adopt.
In a 2012 article, CEO Janet Bannister told Stylecaster the e-commerce aspect of the site was a challenge to build, but it was important that each transaction could take place totally onsite. Since then, however, The Coveteur has apparently outsourced the checkout process. Clicking on a pair of Prada ankle boots in a recent spread will take you to Saks Fifth Avenue’s online boutique. A different pair of boots will lead to ASOS.
This is where a brand publisher could do better than The Coveteur. With immediate access to inventory, it’d be much easier for brands to integrate fast, on-site purchasing that allows readers to stay within the flow of the story being told.
If you’re a fashion or retail brand looking for the smartest path forward, the Coveteur’s model is certainly worth a study.
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