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The End Of An Era Fashion House Revolve Rethinks Coachella Camps And Influencer Trips


The End Of An Era? Fashion House Revolve Rethinks Coachella Camps And Influencer Trips

Revolve once made an all-in bet on influencer marketing and scored big. Known for its influencer events like its signature annual festival at Coachella, the fashion e-tailer is adjusting its strategy as its business shows signs of decline.

Revolve pioneered influencer trips and Coachella activations in the early 2010s, generating aspirational content that drove sales. Its Revolve Festival grew into a separate multi-day music festival attracting big names like Cardi B and Travis Scott. However, Gen Z audiences have recently resisted some influencer excess.

As The Business of Fashion reports, recent data shows cracks appearing in Revolve’s influencer-centric approach. The company’s net sales dipped 3% in 2022 to just over $1 billion. According to influencer marketing platform Creator IQ, the 2023 Revolve Festival generated only about half the online attention value compared to 2019. 

The company’s marketing spending decreased from $181 million in 2022 to $171 million in 2023, per SEC filings. “We do have some trips and events already planned, but I don’t know if we’re going to do as much as we did last year,” Revolve’s Chief Brand Officer Raissa Gerona told BoF.

The changes follow scrutiny, and the declining impact of the Instagram aesthetic Revolve helped create. “This trend for festivals and big festival brands is similar to the emerging consensus around influencer trips: they drive [attention] for the brands in question, but there’s more negative sentiment,” Alex Rawitz of Creator IQ told BoF.

Revolve is responding by expanding beyond festival and vacation apparel to focus on everyday categories like office wear and beauty.

High-growth categories like menswear, home, and beauty saw 49% year-over-year sales increases last quarter. “We traveled a ton in the last decade…but now it’s also trying to think about, ‘Okay, there are so many different categories that we sell on Revolve,’” said Gerona.

However, Revolve insists festival activations remain key: “Festival will always be a signature and just a part of what we do because we’ve been doing it for so long,” said Gerona. According to BoF, the company is launching its first influencer event at Stagecoach, the country music festival following Coachella.

TD Cowen analysts see “early signs of improvement” in Revolve’s new direction but caution the company “will need to execute on reaching new customers while retaining their existing Gen-Z and Millennial base as they grow older” to reignite growth.

Cecilia Carloni, Interview Manager at Influence Weekly and writer for NetInfluencer. Coming from beautiful Argentina, Ceci has spent years chatting with big names in the influencer world, making friends and learning insider info along the way. When she’s not deep in interviews or writing, she's enjoying life with her two daughters. Ceci’s stories give a peek behind the curtain of influencer life, sharing the real and interesting tales from her many conversations with movers and shakers in the space.

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