Friday, April 4, 2014

The 5th Annual Fashion 2.0 Awards

A couple weeks ago I had the fortune to attend the Fashion 2.0 awards. Since the launch 5 years ago, social media has changed drastically from something that brands never talked about to an integral part of marketing strategy and customer relations.

The Fashion 2.0 awards founded by the beautiful Yuli Ziv, the founder of Style Coalition and Fashion 2.0, are the first industry recognized distinction honoring fashion brands for outstanding achievements and communication strategies across a variety of digital media channels. When the awards first launched, DKNY's DKNY PR girl aka Aliza Litch was one of the only attendees and Foursquare was honored as the best start-up. Could we have dreamed then how much times would have changed? Today over 400 industry insiders helped celebrate the event at Merkin Concert Hall in New York City. 
The awards were hosted once more by the ever charming Robert Verdi with legendary designer Zac Posen invited to give a keynote speech. After he ended his speech he attempted to take an audience wide "selfie" but ended up leaving himself out of the picture. Host Robert Verdi later corrected the error in good fun and soon the entire room was standing to be a part of it!

As for some of the winners, Marc Jacobs won big, sweeping awards for best Instagram and Twitter. Nordstrom won for the Best Pinterest. DKNY won for best online campaign with DKNY Draft. The campaign featuring both models and football players for the Super Bowl taught us in the words of pioneer Aliza Litch that "Models can't throw for shit". Acustom Apparel won for best start-up
Eva Chen was honored by Fashion GPS with the online Navigator award and rushed in a little late after being caught in a heated ping pong match with the Warby Parker boys. The Fashion Navigator Award took into consideration the fact that ambitious women are not just bossy, ambitious women can become the boss. Eva Chen exemplifies this modern attitude.
Fashion expert Jeannie Mai presented the Visionary award to the Warby Parker boys, while telling a touching story about how the brand changed the life of one woman who had a life altering ordeal in which she no longer had the confidence to go shop in public. The award celebrates not only what fashion can do, but what fashion can do for others.
The beautiful and charming Coco Rocha presented the evenings top honor for Top Innovator to ASOS as she shared how this year both the internet and herself turned 25. "For decades, industry standards dictated that models be seen and not heard. This model is one with an opinion, not seen but heard. If you have a loud voice, have something to say. Social media has given me a voice to be someone beyond just a face".

After the awards ceremony let out, everyone hit the cocktail reception for some in-person socializing. It was a grand night with red carpet glamor and beautiful people celebrating the digital world. I wonder how the awards will change and change again in the next 5 years!

Special thanks to photographer Ken Arcara for the bottom three images.

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