May 19, 2016
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Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia uses social media to lure overseas buyers

May 19, 2016

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia is using social media to attract overseas buyers to the Resort collection schedule in Sydney this week. 

Romance Was Born Resort collection, MBFWA - MBFWA

While the number of local buyers to attend Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia has decreased considerably in recent years - just 24 buyers are due to make an appearance this season - shifts in digital offering have made it easy for overseas buyers to tap new fashion offerings; either watching them from the front row via social media or online.

Event organisers have streamed shows all week online, broadcasting live to an estimated 2500 buyers across the world.

But, social media has been the biggest lure for foreign shoppers, according to Bing Xun, a Shanghai-based retailer and buyer who owns a boutique in inner Sydney. 

Xun, who sells mainly to consumers in mainland China and Chinese expatriates in Australia, said - in an interview with broadcaster SBS, that bloggers and social media platforms such as Instagram are the biggest influencers on the Chinese fashion-forward.

"It used to be I would have to buy from showrooms, but this is so much better now because I can see things and take videos to show my clients, using Chinese social media and they see it on the people," Xun told SBS.

Fashion influencer Margaret Zhang, who has 751K followers on Instagram, has been seen front row at several shows during the week.

People like Zhang are the top target for newer labels nowadays, invaluable for their wide reach.

Zhang has already posted images on her Instagram of favourite looks. This includes Australian designer Dion Lee and design duo, Romance Was Born.

The latter, known for its eccentricity and unique styling, left Zhang compelled to share her approval with followers post-show: "Tears of joy: thank you for your celestial magic @romancewasborn.

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