Shop ‘Til You Tweet and Drop

Can merchants, designers – and even a publisher — get penny-pinching consumers to change their ways despite the economic downturn?

An initiative, Fashion’s Night Out 2009, aims to do that and help revive NYC’s fashion industry. Taking place in at least 13 cities tonight, including NYC, the campaign taps Twitter and Facebook to develop buzz.

Many of the city’s retailers and designers are sponsoring special events. For instance, Gwen Stefani will appear at Bloomingdale’s and Third Eye Blind will perform at Nine West Shoes at 53rd and Fifth Avenue, New York. Both appearances were announced on Twitter.

Fashionistas were giddy. Wrote @symonedollface on Twitter: “ughh #FashionNightOut Zac Posen, Patricia Fields, Ms. J, and Pharrell in one night… I MAY LOSE MY MIND”

Vogue magazine’s publisher, Condé Nast, is behind the effort in a big way. It registered the URL, The site includes a directory of 700 participating merchants and a tool that lets a shopper check off her itinerary.

On, the mag publisher is offering a sweepstakes, including eight $5,000 shopping sprees. One hitch: participants must answer 16 questions on whether they’d like to opt in or out of getting special offers and other information from retailers and other event’s sponsors. Let’s make a deal!


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