Top 10 Fall Styles You Can Expect to See in 2020

Top 10 Fall Styles You Can Expect to See in 2020

The crisp autumn air, pumpkin spice lattes, and apple cider donuts are starting to make their annual comeback. Summer may be coming to a close, but the good news is that with a new season comes new fashion trends to look forward to. 

As anyone who was asked, “Where do you see yourself in 5 years?” back in 2015 can attest to, 2020 isn’t what anyone expected it to be!  While the coronavirus pandemic continues to play out, the uncertainty in what the fall will bring hasn’t stopped designers from putting a new spin on your favorite fall wardrobe essentials – and then some. Fashion designers put their best fall booties forward, and discussed upcoming fall fashion trends via Zoom.

The Image Marketing team works with copious amounts of shopping centers around the United States, so it’s safe to say we have a solid idea as to what trends you can expect to see popping up on store shelves (and also appearing in your Instagram feed!) Our team came up with the 10 most trending styles to shop for this fall. Whether you are heading into the office, or just dressing up for your weekly Zoom meetings, there’s no reason why you can’t stay up-to-date on the latest fall fashion trends.

Want a sneak peek at what styles will be taking over your Instagram feed in the coming months? Check out the top 10 fall fashion trends for 2020 below:

1. Sheer Fabrics

LULUS –

Queen of Drama Black Organza Puff Sleeve Bodysuit

REVOLVE – 

Safari Sheer Wrap Top

H&M –

Puff-sleeved Mesh Dress

Sheer, skin-fabrics have been huge this past spring and summer, and the trend isn’t going anywhere for fall. You’ll find lots of sheer blouses and dresses;  The key to making this trend work for the autumn is layering: use sheer as an overlay to add dimensional layers to your outfits.

2. Faux Fur

H&M –

Teddy Bear Coat

FREE PEOPLE –

Tessa Teddy Coat

Ditch your basic fall coat, because faux fur is in! The trick to making faux fur on-trend for 2020 is juxtaposing its luxuriousness with your casual basics. Thinking about just wearing jeans and a basic, solid-colored top? Throw on a funky coat to dress it up!

3. Cropped Blazers

ASOS –

Weekday Dominique cropped blazer in khaki

ZARA – 

Short-Sleeve Blazer

Step up your office (or Zoom) meeting apparel with cropped blazers! It is an easy way to look polished in an instant.

4. Metallic / Sequins

NORDSTROM –

 Ramy Brook Rumi Metallic Wrap Front Top

ALO YOGA-

High-Waisted Glitter Biker Short

Looking to stand out from the crowd? Metallic and sequins will have you shining. Instead of waiting for the holidays to bring out your shimmery clothes, find metallic as your everyday wear. Check out Alo Yoga’s shimmery biker shorts!

5. Animal Print

FREE PEOPLE –

Nala Jacquard Hoodie

FRANCESCA’S –

Qupid Animal Print Accent Bootie

Animal prints have been a top trend for a few seasons now, and they don’t seem to be going away anytime soon! Expect anything from cheetah to snake prints, and even crocodile print for this fall. Make a statement in cute and comfy fall sweaters with your favorite animal print.

6. Fringe

URBAN OUTFITTERS –

Schott Leather Fringe Moto Jacket

As seen on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar, Rihanna seems to be all on board with the fringe trend this season.  (Expect to see deep yellow fashions this fall too!)

7. Prep

URBAN OUTFITTERS –

Cooperative Side-Pocket Mini Skirt

URBAN OUTFITTERS –

Daisy Street Plaid Pleated Mini Skirt

Channel your inner Blair Waldorf and embrace all-things preppy this fall season! Look for lots of plaid skirts and polished outfits.

8. Neutral Tones

MADEWELL –

Polo Sweater

TOPSHOP –

Ecru PU Shirt Dress

Expect to see fifty shades of neutral colors coming your way. Tans, beiges, browns – all of the basic autumn colors to accompany any skin tone.

9. Chunky Headbands

LULUS –

Crazy for You Pink and Pearl Braided Headband

J.CREW – 

Turban knot headband in plaid wool

Chunky and padded headbands have seen a +14,100% increase in 2020 alone! Watch for unique headbands with sequins, patterns, braids and especially pearls. Wear your favorite bold headband this fall to accessorize any outfit with ease!

10. Patterned Face Masks

AMERICAN EAGLE –

 AEO Bandana Mask + Scrunchie

NATALIE MILLS –

Destiny Crystal Face Mask

Let’s ‘face’ it, there’s still a pandemic circling in the air. However, this doesn’t mean we can’t turn health and safety standards into a fashion statement! Shop American Eagle Outfitters matching face mask and scrunchie set, or Natalie Mill’s crystal mask collection. 

Interested in Becoming a Graphic Designer? Here’s What It Takes:

Interested in Becoming a Graphic Designer? Here’s What It Takes:

Ever think about the creativity behind all of the billboards, signs in shopping malls, or even the copious amounts of digital advertisements you see daily? Next time you’re out, take a look around. While you may think about how simple they can seem from the outside, there’s a lot of in-depth creativity and development behind-the-scenes. Take our two amazing graphic designers for instance: Ross Culliton and Loring Casarotto. Both of them started loving creativity and art at a young age and have a HUGE passion for coffee. However, our graphic designers understand the importance of strategy, and switching up a design when creating it to make sure all of the pieces fit together.. as well as having an ecstatic and thrilled client!

Keep reading to find out what it takes to be a graphic designer, and the best Spotify playlists to listen to to get in your creative zone!

A simple, yet effective graphic design that Ross created for our client Centennial, a retail development and management company. Image Marketing builds the social media presence for ten shopping centers, and creates fun and vivid designs for them!

A Day in the Life of Our Graphic Designers:

How do you start your mornings?

Ross:

COFFEE, COFFEE, COFFEE. An iced almond milk latte to be specific and for those wondering what to bring to our next meeting or to win my heart 🙂 

Loring:
This will come as a total shock to most,  I’m sure, but I can’t start the day without a giant iced coffee.

Why did you choose graphic design as your career? Did something or someone inspire you?

Ross:

Ever since I was little I was always curious about what it was like to create all the ads we would see on TV, in magazines, and around town. Being part of that strategy and creative development is what drives my passion to create unique and inspiring projects.

Loring:
I’ve always been a creative person who liked to draw, and when I was growing up I wanted to be an artist. When I was in highschool, a family member suggested I take his Intro to  Adobe Illustrator class, which exposed me to the world of digital design.

What’s your go-to song selection to listen to while you’re creating designs?

Ross: 

This is ever evolving for me. I usually have an ongoing playlist that evolves and grows as the weeks pass.. Usually at the beginning of a new season I start fresh and discover new music that will inspire my work. Currently I am between two playlists that I have made. Each have an eclectic mix of songs from all different genres. 

Here are links to the playlists: 

Social Iso Party: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/0s9uo15LCJGlgbQmqgn1oj?si=ePsi227ISV62GW0Jb9gi_A

Summer 2020

https://open.spotify.com/playlist/1EtPbS51XV56OtGZdw9Kk4?si=WV06qdu7QF2kgPjArrn6Fg

Loring:
This is a tough one. Thanks to COVID my music streaming habits have increased about 10 fold and my favorites span almost every genre; but if I was to make a top 5 “on repeat” list, it’d probably look like this (in no particular order):
1) Icarus (Automatic Mix) by Nigel Stanford
2) Twilight of the Thunder God by Amon Amarth
3) Go Your Own Way by Fleetwood Mac
4) Robot Stop by King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard
5) Serenity (Andrew Rayel Aether Remix) by Armin Van Buuren
(I couldn’t stop at 5)
6) Lost in the Dream by The War on Drugs
7) The Ageless Whisper by Soilwork

How do you get through challenging times at work?

Ross:

The toughest times for me are when the creativity is not flowing as strongly as usual. To get back into that flow I keep myself extra observant of the things around me to create new inspirations. Whether that is watching creative films, discovering new trends in design or just absorbing everything that is around me, I can be sure to find myself with new sparks of creativity. 

However, sometimes all it takes is taking a step back and watching something that will make me laugh like Schitt’s Creek. Guaranteed LOLs everytime. 

Loring:
Throw on some headphones, grab my coffee, focus up and hunker down. 

Is there a specific ‘aesthetic’ you lean towards?

Ross:

My overall mantra in my work is discovering how to share as much information as possible in the most simplistic way. Lately I have been keeping my designs bold, colorful and minimal. 

Loring:
Recently I’ve been using a lot of  color in my designs, and pushing towards a cleaner overall look with more white space. 

A billboard graphic created for our client, Connecticut Credit Union League, for Financial First Responders Day.

What advice would you give to those pursuing a career in graphic design?

Ross:

Train yourself to be able to look at things at multiple angles/perspectives. Don’t allow yourself to get into a wormhole of just one idea. There are many directions to take for just one project but you won’t know which is the best until you try them all out. Be patient and allow yourself to discover that creative perfection. It is truly one of the best feelings in this line of work when your work  just clicked into place and all the pieces of the puzzle fit.

Loring:
Always be experimenting, especially when you’re in school. Challenge yourself to do different things on every project and don’t use the same things that worked previously. Play with texture, shapes, color, fonts, etc. Whenever you see cool designs out “in the wild” like magazines and websites, try to figure out how it was done, or pick something about it you really like and use it in a project of your own.

Share one of your favorite designs:

Ross:

The favorite question for me on any topic is never an easy question for me to answer. It is forever changing depending on my mood, especially when it comes to food. Current projects I am working on often are my favorite since they are in the forefront of my mind and where I am channeling my creativity.  However I do have a type of work that is my favorite. 

Large format print projects have always been a favorite of mine. From the larger than life  murals I have done at Wells Fargo across the country (Example) or the recent installation of  the CT Post Thank You to the Superheros banners (video: https://vimeo.com/441077378) is just a range of examples. Thinking  of how it will interact in the environment the work will be displayed in and the impact it will have on people viewing it creates an extra level of inspiration for me in my work that translates into the final product.

Ross’s graphic design mural for Wells Fargo.

Loring:
I don’t have a specific design by someone else, but I wanted to mention the branding stuff that we’ve done for ASG Information Technologies. We did a complete branding overhaul for them and I’m very proud of how all of that came out. 

A preview of the website design created by Loring and Ross. Check the full view out at ASG Information Technologies.

Our graphic design team at Image Marketing Consultants are always fun to work with! They assist other team members, like our social media and public relations team, with any creative graphic design needs for clients.

Want to learn more about our graphic designers? Visit us at ImageMarketingConsultants.com, and follow us on Instagram and Facebook!

Now Is the Time to Start Focusing On Your Public Relations

Most businesses in 2020 understand the power of social media in building a relationship with customers, but have you ever considered how public relations can impact your marketing results? While social media marketing helps to build brand awareness, a public relations strategy will complement your social media efforts to further build trust between you and your customers.

As a public relations agency in Connecticut, we help build, maintain and manage the reputation of our clients. Recently, with COVID-19 saturating the news, it seems many businesses need to plan their marketing strategies day-by-day, rather than building out long-term campaigns. With so much uncertainty, it can be difficult to find an angle when it comes to pitching a newsworthy story to the media. This leads to the question: Why is NOW the time to start focusing on public relations in Connecticut?

Fact: Public Relations is 30% to 50% more cost effective than advertising. (Source: Strategic Vision PR Group)

Paid Media Versus Earned Media

First, let’s cover the basics. You’ve probably heard that Public Relations is all about “earned” media, but what does that really mean? It’s easiest to understand when you compare paid media versus earned media. Paid media efforts can be an important component of a well-rounded marketing campaign. Simply put, paid media refers to all the promotional opportunities your brand needs to pay for, from traditional print advertising and event sponsorship, to digital ad buys and social media targeting. On the other hand, earned media includes results from unpaid coverage received from outside media outlets, influencers, and even customers themselves. Earned media Public Relations efforts provide valuable visibility for your company – when a third-party shares content on your company’s behalf, it adds a level of trust and credibility that paid media simply can’t provide.

Incorporate Positive News

With the coronavirus still top-of-mind, more and more people are consuming news media on a more frequent basis, looking to stay informed on the current status of the pandemic. Because the news is so saturated with all things COVID-19, now is the time to be strategic with the lens through which your company shares its content. For example, think of all the ways your business has changed in response to COVID-19. From new business procedures to new product lines, consumers are interested in hearing from Connecticut businesses that are leading the way in finding news ways to adapt and thrive in our changing world. Furthermore, the media is also seeking out positive, human-interest stories to help balance out the daily “bad news” reporting surrounding the pandemic. Now is the time to pitch those uplifting, human interest stories about your business that can provide the public with some much needed positive news coverage to digest.

Have a Crisis Communications Plan

While the news media is seeking softer, positive news stories to counterbalance the hard news reporting on the pandemic, it is also important to consider the importance of having a crisis communications plan in place. A crisis can be defined as any threat to your business’ operations, finances or reputation that has the potential for negative consequences if not managed properly. Creating a crisis communications plan helps minimize any negative impacts, so that your company can regain control of the conversation and ultimately protect your business and stakeholders from further backlash. A strong crisis communications plan that incorporates proactive PR responses will help your business confidently navigate through the coronavirus.

Flashback: In the days prior to COVID-19 and social distancing, we managed the event coordination & publicity for an event with Mark Wahlberg (and 2,000+ happy fans!) for our client @westfieldtru – We had a blast welcoming Mark and his crew to Connecticut’s first Wahlburgers!

Art of the Pitch

Considering the state of the world, it is critical to think through your news pitch. What is the angle or viewpoint you are bringing to the table? Focus on how your business can be of benefit to both the media outlet, and to their viewers/readers. 

Don’t forget to think outside the box when it comes to drafting your media pitch list, too. Beyond traditional broadcast and print outlets, there’s digital magazines, blogs, influencers and community groups to consider. Get creative with how you share your message!

Long Term Benefits

Pitching your business’ stories in the Connecticut media market has many long term benefits. You start to build relationships with the local reporters and journalists that cover your industry and local community. Your brand can authentically build a strong rapport with the public. Ultimately, this increases your overall brand awareness and engagement – potentially transforming into additional sales, leads, clients, etc. – positively impacting your bottom line. (Because isn’t that what we all want?)

Why You Should Contact Image Marketing Consultants

President Kate Terricciano is an expert when it comes to securing valuable PR coverage for her clients in Connecticut. If you’re seeing insufficient results from your marketing efforts, consider the value a strategic PR plan can bring to your company. Word-of-mouth and earned media coverage are great ways to generate brand awareness, and there’s no better time than the present to tell your company’s story. Contact us to see how public relations can benefit your CT company right now.

4 Simple Social Media Techniques to Attract New Leads

Most people look to social media to keep in touch with friends, find photo inspiration, and to stay on top of current trends and events. As a business, consumer engagement (likes, comments, shares) is likely the metric you track the most. However, it doesn’t only matter how many likes and comments you are receiving on your Instagram and Facebook posts.

An important question to ask is:
Are you generating actual sales or leads? While social media is primarily a tool for building brand equity and deepening relationships with your customers, it can actually be a great way to drive new business as well. Listed below are four simple tips to optimize your social media pages for maximum impact on your brand’s bottom line:

Optimize Your Profile

Optimizing your social media profile should be one of the first things you do when creating a page – whether it is for Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok, etc. Improving your social media profile will help build brand awareness and recognition, and it’s one of the easiest ways to make your business stand out. Below are a few tactics you can use to ensure your brand’s profile attracts potential customers.

Logo

Make sure the profile picture you use is your company’s logo or a branded image. This is the first visual customers will see on social media, so it is important they immediately recognize your account when searching for updates on your profile. 

Bio

Does your bio description accurately describe your company’s brand? Try to use as few words as possible, to keep it short, sweet, and relevant.

Link to Website & Other Pages

At Image Marketing, using a LinkTree in our Instagram profile is an effective way we’re able to include multiple pieces of content right in our bio.  This is especially important if you want to keep a link to your website in your bio at all times, while also directing social media users to additional information like blog articles, other social media websites, or product pages.

Use Hashtags

Just as you would hashtags in a social media post to be a part of trending conversations, you can also use hashtags in your profile. This is a great way to briefly describe your company’s page in just a few key hashtags. You can also add your company’s branded hashtag in your bio to share your community and encourage others to participate in it as well.

Use Paid Advertising

There are some initial strategies to think through before creating an Instagram or Facebook ad, or boosting a social media post:

  1. Know Your Audience

Make sure you have a specific and defined target audience. You should have a clear picture in mind of who the exact person is that you are targeting: what is their gender? Age? Hobbies? What other brands do they follow on social media? What is their profession, etc.?  Facebook and Instagram allow you to define these specific demographics and characteristics about your audience when creating any ad for smarter targeting.

  1. Look at Your Insights

Not sure where to start when it comes to defining a target audience? Facebook and Instagram make it easy with their business “Insights” page, where you’ll find analytics on the social media users visiting and interacting with your page. Staying up-to-date on your Insights page data can help give you a general idea of where most of your audience is located, their age, gender, when they’re likely to be online, and more. These key insights will not only help you come up with defined target audiences, but can also help develop your content calendar and posting schedule. 

  1. Set a Budget

Paid advertising on social media allows you to choose the budget you want to spend. With driving new business or lead generation as the goal, you’ll know your overall cost per lead (CPL), along with the bottom line revenue goal for your ad campaign. The question then becomes: “To generate $x in sales (or x new customers) this month, what budget do we need to spend on social media ads?” For example, if you spent $500 and acquired 25 new leads, your CPL is $20. Having a specific target audience will help keep your overall CPL low, and further maximize your overall campaign results.

Offer Incentives

Enter-to-win sweepstakes, product giveaways, and unique offer incentives are all great tactics for driving new leads to your social media pages, as it is standard practice to require someone to follow your page to be entered to win. At Image Marketing we typically recommend doing no more than one enter-to-win offer each month per platform, but it is a great way to incentivize potential new leads to follow your page and ultimately learn more about your business. 

Analyze Metrics

Analyzing your metrics is one of the most important steps to take when managing any brand’s social media pages. Knowing what posts received the most reach and engagement, as well as the types of profiles you are attracting to your page is valuable intel. Understanding what works and what doesn’t helps as you continue to build out engaging content.

Ask yourself some of these questions:


Is my social media page’s tone of voice and aesthetic conveying the brand image I want to promote?

Am I attracting the right target audience, or do I need to change the type of the content I am generating?

Are images or videos working better?

Am I gaining or losing followers every month?

Have I generated any leads by promoting my company on social media?

Having trouble accomplishing all of this on your own? Head to Image Marketing Consultants, and let the experts help generate leads for you on social media! The team at Image Marketing Consultants includes expert social media content creators, skilled at crafting engaging content for any business.

Join Our Team: Image Marketing is Looking for a Social Content Creator

Good news: the Image Marketing Consultants team continues to grow! We’re currently looking to hire a full-time social content creator. Interested applicants can apply by sending a resume and examples of previous work to info@imagemarketingconsultants.com.

About the Job

Image Marketing Consultants seeks a full-time social content manager to join our Southington-based agency team. The ideal candidate will be driven and looking to lead the creative process of original content creation for a variety of clients, primarily with a focus on the shopping center/retail industry. 

Strong visual and writing skills and a sharp editorial eye are required, as is a deep understanding and love for the evolving world of social and digital media. The ability to work creatively with both our internal team and external clients to lead the ideation process of content production is key for this role. This position will report to the Director of Client Services and will work closely with the Social Media Account management team. 

Who You Are

  • You have 2+ years experience creating digital content, ideally growing and managing multiple social channels either as an independent influencer or for a brand.
  • You are a content creator at heart with stellar copywriting skills, a knack for storytelling, and a talent for producing stunning visual content.
  • You know how to create high-quality content in a variety of formats from photo imagery to graphics, GIFs, video and more.
  • You have a passion for all things fashion and lifestyle, and preferably some experience working in the retail/shopping center space.
  • You live and breathe social media. You’re up to date the latest social trends and best practices, you’re the first to test out new platforms and features when they launch, and you follow best-in class brands to stay inspired.
  • You understand how to connect with an audience, using data to help shape strategy and deliver more of what your audience wants.
  • You’re a highly organized, self-starter who can manage projects independently from end to end.
  • You’re comfortable working at a very fast pace, have a collaborative attitude, and enjoy wearing many hats.
  • You’re an excellent written and verbal communicator who presents ideas clearly, concisely and with context.
  • You maintain high standards in every aspect of your work and continually raise the bar.
  • You are highly creative and full of ideas, with a good balance of strategic thinking.

What You’ll Do

  • Develop and execute our organic social content strategies for clients (primarily Instagram and Facebook accounts in the shopping center industry) to drive brand awareness, audience growth, traffic, and sales.
  • Partner with clients and our internal social team to develop overall content strategies and KPI’s, with a focus on driving brand awareness, audience growth and engagement
  • In partnership with clients and our internal social account managers, play an active role in the day-to-day social media planning and execution including copywriting, curating UGC, and creation of unique content
  • Create engaging, on-brand content with a consistent aesthetic that is tailored to each channel in a variety of formats from photo imagery to graphics, GIFs, video and more.
  • Analyze content performance and make adjustments and recommendations for improvement based on data.
  • Consistently find new ways to engage and delight our clients’ social audiences while sharing each brand’s core marketing messages in an organic way.

Think you’re the right fit? Please send your resume and examples of previous work to: info@imagemarketingconsultants.com