Fashion Tech Takeaways From SXSW Interactive 2013

Fashion Tech Takeaways From SXSW Interactive 2013

Disruption is the hottest buzzword in the startup world nowadays, and staying ahead of the curve is more important than ever. Figure out how to get your slice of the startup pie with these takeaways from SXSW Interactive 2013 and how it relates to the fashion tech space.

Take Your Connection Offline

Yes, you read that right: it might seem a bit counterintuitive, but it’s time to take fashion tech offline, and into the real world.

This is not to say that online communities and social media channels aren’t still important – they are. But use them to foster offline connections. Bring your loyal fans and followers to your brick-and-mortar pop-up shop. Launch an offline, printed version of your online editorial content. The possibilities are endless.

Be among the first to bring immersive, personal interaction back in this hyper-connected age. There’s no better way for your customer to experience your brand than in-person, so start thinking about the ways to bridge the gap.

Pass the App

Quick! How many apps do you have on your smartphone – and how many of them do you actually use?

The signs are pointing in the same direction: social and location-based apps are losing ground. The next generation, predicts SXSW, is all about data, feedback, and content – it’s no longer just about creating platforms, or reinventing them.

Take a cue from all the feedback, analytics, and prediction technology out there, and put your fashionable spin on it. It could be as easy as pinpointing color trends, or forecasting spending for the next quarter. Fashion tech isn’t just about bringing tech to fashion; it’s also about bringing fashion to tech.

When it comes to social media, put content back at the top of your priority list. People are looking to connect, to learn, and to use technology as a two-way street. Don’t just preach – use tech to tell your fashion story.

Who Run The World? Girls!

Obey the wise words of Queen B – twice as many women entrepreneurs are starting businesses than men, and are much more collaborative in their endeavors too.

In the fashion tech space, this little factoid probably comes at no surprise. Fashion, after all, is still very much a women’s world.

It’s crucial, however, to not disregard the male population while exploring the fashion tech world on your own terms. Include both genders in your thought process and your conversations. The role of men and women are changing, and there are endless resources out there to pinpoint you in the right direction when it comes to gender-specific statistics and analytics.

Celebrate the women, but don’t forget about the men. You want to strike a balance, not pick favorites.


(Many thanks to CultureMap Austin for summarizing the “Current Trends at SXSW” panel at SXSW Interactive. All extrapolations and analysis on the fashion tech space, however, are done by me.)

Jaclyn Siu was a Third Wave Fashion contributor. She’s currently a student at NYU, a fashion journalist, and the founder of You can follow her on Twitter here

Third Wave Fashion has been your fashion tech think tank since 2011. We publish the first ever printed fashion tech magazine, Third Wave.  Follow us on Twitter or subscribe to our newsletter to stay on top of the latest in fashion tech + wearables.

Image via Chicly USA.