Since its launch in 2008 as the fashion and style offshoot of New York magazine, The Cut has been focused on exploring “a modern woman’s world with intelligence, sophistication, and humor.” When it comes to social media, it makes no exception.
The Cut isn’t shy about testing social strategies to connect with its readership. This includes collaborations with photographers and hiring its first Instagram editor to grow engagement on the platform as well as build The Cut’s Snapchat coverage.
The Cut editorial director Stella Bugbee said Snapchat would be a major focus heading into New York Fashion Week this fall, and The Cut would cover the event news in real-time on Snapchat first before reporting on the web.
“As a brand, New York magazine strives to push the envelope with all of its content and reach for things that nobody has seen or done before,” Bugbee said. “We try to be surprising in format, who we collaborate with, or who we’re featuring.”
The Cut’s strategy is translating to results: A NewsWhip report out yesterday ranked the publisher No. 3 in engagement on Facebook and Twitter among fashion publications for May and June, behind HelloGiggles and Highsnobiety.
The Cut is known for its often-irreverent tone. In recent Instagram posts, it refers to the Olsen twins as “double trouble” and calls Amina Blue “fashion’s Kanye-approved, Carine Roitfeld-tested new ‘it’ model,” a tongue-in-cheek approach that is enjoyed by its nearly 270 thousand Instagram followers.
“We come from a place of knowledge about fashion, but it’s playful and refreshing,” Bugbee said. “It just sort of comes naturally. It’s a tone we’ve established, and we’re fun about it.”
Bugbee added that what sets The Cut apart is that while it may have a smaller number of followers on Facebook (The Cut currently has more than 650,000 compared to Vogue’s seven million), it has a loyal reader base that drives higher engagement than some of the larger fashion publications that didn’t make the list.
The Cut’s knack for experimenting has resulted in its now-recurring series, “Out of the Box,” which gives photographers and free rein to shoot whatever piques their interest. In May, The Cut partnered with students at the School of Visual Arts, giving them a day to style and shoot a box filled with spring fashions selected by The Cut and shared on the website and social channels.
For the fashion industry as a whole, Bugbee said Instagram has become an instrumental storytelling tool, which for The Cut has meant taking it “a little more seriously.”
“[Instagram’s] become such an important part of fashion news and the fashion world, and how people want to get their information. We’re meeting our audience there,” Bugbee said.