Social Media Plan for the Textile Industry

Social Media Plan for the Textile Industry

Jose M. Lavin (Cesine, Spain) and Alfonso de la Mora - San Miguel (Cesine, Spain)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-1859-5.ch013
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Throughout this chapter, the authors analyse the steps that must be taken when drawing up a social media plan for a company in the textile sector. In the first place, the designation of the target public and the social platforms in which the bulk of the company's public is located will be the first step. Subsequently, the objectives will be elaborated following the SMART formulation strategy. Having defined the objectives, the next step will be to design concrete actions to promote the company in particular, as well as the designation of specific actions that help create a powerful brand in social media, as well as the content of the messages and the tone in which they should be written.
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The importance of the textile sector in the global economy as a whole is not something to be missed. By 2016, they accounted for 5% of world trade in manufactured goods, the fourth most representative industry (Mira, 2018).

This importance is not recent: textile agreements have been an essential part of international trade since 1986 with the Uruguay Round of the extinct General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), now the World Trade Organization (WTO), with the Multi-Fiber Agreement, now replaced by the WTO Agreement on Textiles and Clothing 1995-2004.

In addition, the textile industry has helped many emerging economies get rid of their dependence on primary goods and start exporting items with higher added value.

However, this importance is translating into fierce competition between countries and companies at various levels. The complexity of the textile and retail business has spread worldwide with the entry of a number of companies that take advantage of the benefits of globalization to better enter the markets.

Strong competition has meant that a number of companies have made a strong commitment to internationalization as a means of growth and, in some cases, survival.

In the case of retail and due to the high competitiveness of the markets, there has also been a reconversion in all the processes of the companies (Iannone et al., 2013) since only the big companies can base their strategy on having many points of sale and on using them as advertising tools. To this must be added the constant need to reinvent oneself, which requires a highly flexible business model that, on many occasions, can only be sustained in a completely vertical integration of the business (Design, produce, distribute and sell always within the company) (Alonso Álvarez, 2000). Here Inditex S.A.’s advantage is evident over Punto Fa S.L., operating as Mango, and Hennes & Mauritz AB, or simply H&M, which do not manufacture their products, although they do so at low cost.

Inditex S.A. uses, especially for its star brand Zara, the location of its stores in the best streets and commercial avenues around the world, from Ginza in Tokyo to the Champs-Elysées in Paris, passing through Fifth Avenue in New York. This will be joined by a constant product rotation that will become a sales phenomenon in itself, which will be called Fast fashion, as will be seen below. The choice of points of sale will not be casual but will look for the largest possible location. In the case of Inditex and Zara, there is a renewal of garments every two weeks in the five continents.

In this scheme, the store is the point of union between client and company (Castellano Ríos, 2002). It will not only be a place of sale and advertising but also the point of collection of information for the company about what the market wants. But it is not going to be an indiscriminate growth of stores as has been seen: Inditex is seeking to open fewer stores, but better located (Cuesta and Veloso, 2018).

The business model used is called Fast fashion, as mentioned above, a name that comes from the equation with Fast food. Historically, retail only offered two seasons a year.

In the eighties, there is the transition from department stores and multi-brand stores to the establishments of each brand by the mid-80s, mango opened its first store in Barcelona which forever changed the concept of brand. This type of stores found its perfect habitat in shopping centers and was gradually developing until the beginning of the twenty-first century (Muñoz Vita, 2018).

Combined with this, the entry into action of the Internet as a sales and advertising channel and the increase in consumerism has transformed production, making it dizzy and much less expensive. A large company with this model can produce up to fifty collections a year, at affordable prices and in a prolonged manner throughout the cycle. This dizzying rotation of clothing, with rapid production and affordable prices. The origin of this type of production is Zara (Crofton and Dopico, 2007).

This large number of collections has also led to a transformation in consumption: This consumerist trend has meant that the average use of a new garment is only seven times before it is discarded and that, in the last 20 years, there has been a 400% increase in clothing consumption on the planet (Mira, 2018).

This phenomenon has also made the survival of smaller companies threatened by the difficulty of competing with large companies.

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