Show organiser Pitti Immagine boosts digital strategy with e-Pitti virtual event platform
“We want to continue to strengthen our digital strategy. Our objective is to invest more and more on digital tools, to do better and more in this area,” said the CEO of Pitti Immagine, Raffaello Napoleone, speaking at a press conference on Wednesday. On this occasion, the Italian trade show organiser also revealed it has taken full control of FieraDigitale, the company which runs its e-Pitti virtual event.
FieraDigitale was created in 2011 by Francesco Bottigliero, who is still its CEO and who held a 25% stake in the company, which he has now sold to Pitti Immagine, already the holder of the remaining 75%. e-Pitti, which premièred in 2011, enables buyers to extend on the web their Pitti Uomo, Pitti Bimbo and Pitti Filati experience, one week after the shows close and for nearly 11 weeks. It also allows buyers to visit exhibitor stands and discover their products without actually going to the shows!
Nowadays, 26% of buyers visit the e-Pitti site only, without travelling to Florence, and are therefore additional to those who attend the physical shows. While exhibitor brands were initially sceptical, they are now fighting to be able to use this service, which is included in the price they pay to exhibit at the shows. But availability for e-Pitti is limited.
At the 15th session in June 2018, e-Pitti showcased a total of 1,366 brands, of which 910 for Pitti Uomo alone - i.e. 90% of the total number of exhibitors at the physical shows - and 8,134 products. More than 56,000 pictures were taken, and there were over 350,000 page views, of which 39% via smartphones.
Of the 105 countries represented, Italy had the lion share of visits with 44%, followed by Japan, Germany, the USA, Spain, the UK, France, Greece, Turkey and the Netherlands. Site visits were notably extensive in length, with up to 30 pages viewed per visit. For Pitti Bimbo in particular, buyers spent up to one hour on average on e-Pitti.
The Spring/Summer 2019 season was also marked by two new, highly appreciated initiatives. For the first time, e-Pitti opened early, enabling 200 exhibitors (from Pitti Uomo and Pitti Bimbo) to showcase their products on the web in parallel with the start of the physical events.
Also, the site’s content was augmented with the publication, during the shows, of about thirty looks lensed in a special photoshoot, highlighting the products of several brands. The operation was facilitated by making preparations, a month ahead of the start of Pitti Uomo, with a stylist and an external creative agency. “Over and above our usual catalogue, thanks to these photo-shoots we gave even greater visibility to exhibitors and we further helped buyers take their decisions. We boosted editorial content by also working on specific trends,” said Anna Mazzer, in charge of marketing and digital initiatives at FieraDigitale.
Finally, Pitti Immagine highlighted its international forum dedicated to fashion and digital tools, an event of which it took control last year after parting company with its partner Stylus, and which has been rechristened e-P Summit.
The forum will be held on November 20 and 21 in Milan and it will focus on five themes: culture, the retail trade, marketing data, innovation and inspiration. Among the participants expected, the CEO of Mulberry, Thierry Andretta, the business development director Italy of the Alibaba group, Christina Fontana; the managing director of Hugo Boss Textile Industries, Joachim Hensch; the vice-president Central Europe for Levi Strauss & Co., Lucia Marcuzzo; the CEO of Cesare Paciotti, Marco Calcinaro; the founder of footwear brand Velasca, Enrico Casati; and the marketing director of Launchmetrics, Alison Bringé.
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