Blockchain, the word is everywhere. This new type of database, mainly used in the finance sector because of its safety features, can also be used in many ways. In the fashion industry, it has been a way to address the issues regarding traceability and transparency, which have become real preoccupations since the rise of fast fashion, as explained in our previous article.
But there are multiple possibilities of usage when it comes to blockchain. At a time where the luxury and fashion markets are always willing to go further in terms of storytelling and where customer experience becomes more and more immersive; Shanghai Fashion Week showed us a good example of how to use this technology. For its Spring Summer 2017 collection, Babyghost, a young Chinese-New Yorker label, worked with BitSE, a company specialised in blockchain, and its VeChain project, an anti-counterfeiting application that works with this kind of distributed database.
Each item in the collection was equipped with an NFC chip and a QR code located on the label, enabling the customer to receive informations about it directly on its smartphone. As a result, traceability is made easier and you can fight counterfeiting more efficiently. But the real innovation of this collaboration is to use Blockchain as a way to enrich customer experience. Telling the story of a piece of clothing on a smartphone can become a real immersive way of communication. 20 models walked the catwalk with items equipped with this technology, each one of them linked to an exclusive content on the application, telling the story of its conception. The customer can also be a part of this by adding its own story with the garment before selling it second hand. 80 bags have also been presented, each one having its own story: they all were linked to an emblematic photograph of the brand history, creating a real storytelling.
Sunny Lu, BitSE COO, finds that this innovation shows that you have to give more than a product to the consumer and to be customer-centric : “The customer wants to know that the connection between them and the brand is real, and that their products are real”. The Blockchain technology offers the possibility for the client to become a part of the traceability system in an entertaining way, while building a real brand universe.
If the use of this technology in order to enrich the customer experience still is at an early stage, there is no doubt on the fact that the possibilities it offers will seduce other brands for next seasons.
Do you believe in tech providing an enhanced experience for consumers? Let us know what you think of blockchain in fashion & share your thoughts in the commentary section below ;-)
You can also watch our panel talk at Numa Paris, where we had the chance to speak with Thibaut Schaeffer, Blockchain Engineer at Provenance (a startup using Blockchain for a more transparent supply chain)!