Marketing fads and fashions - exploring digital marketing practices and emerging organisational fields

Abstract: The use of social media such as blogs has grown remarkably in Sweden during recent years. The largest segment of blogs consists of fashion blogs, i.e. blogs that focus on fashion brands, fashion products and fashion e-commerce. Using a netnographic approach, the purpose of this thesis is to analyse the emergence of the fashion blogging phenomenon, and how commercial actors operate in the realm of the fashion blogger. Drawing upon a systemic perspective on fashion, new institutional theory is used in order to study how institutional entrepreneurship can be applied as a way of studying changes within the fashion system. Here, the research question consists of answering how prosumption activities can become involved in the creation of institutionalised fields and create opportunities for institutional entrepreneurship? The thesis illustrates how consumers, by using new technology, have become able to create distribution channels for communicating fashion information which in many ways competes with traditional fashion journalism. Through the practice of blogging, bloggers take part in the construction of fashion by influencing the diffusion of new trends throughout the fashion system. It shows how consumers are able, by engaging in prosumption activities, to exert a high degree of influence and act as institutional entrepreneurs. Here, it can be argued that the social practices created by influential fashion bloggers have provided the key element from which the value creation processes of the organisational field take their point of departure. Consumers and prosumers have thus played a pivotal role in creating new channels for fashion marketing.

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