Dubai Fashion League

Dubai Fashion League

Crisis: Last minute name change


The Case

Brand name changes are tricky to negotiate for any agency.

We were tasked with managing a name change for a fashion event that was heavily marketed with the name Dubai Fashion League, season 2.

To add to the challenge, the name had to be changed due to Government regulations, with less than a week to go before the actual event.



To unite the Asian and UAE fashion communities who use the fashion industry as a gateway to innovation, trends, and style.

Craft a new name that would retain the essence of the previous name.

Establish a system that would manage the task and get a ‘buy in’ with all the stakeholders including the media, sponsors, designers and celebrities.


  • After months of pre-event campaigning and with only a week to go, DFL was asked to drop the name ‘Dubai’ from its title


The Matrix team urgently got to work with emergency brainstorming sessions to come up with a new name.

Before long a new name was born, and a fresh campaign launched.

The new name being Fashion League Series, Dubai.



As part of a wider crisis communication strategy, the agency organized and coordinated a media relations outreach with activities targeted at key regional publications.

These included interviews, press releases and photo shoots.

The new name Fashion League Series, Dubai was made visible in all promotions. The change focused on positioning the event as a global one; thereby paving the way for it in other venues in the future.

Being transparent about the event and sharing interesting photos and videos on social media platforms. All responses to queries were personalized to keep the public, exhibitors and designers informed

Putting in place measures to ensure the campaign continued running as Fashion League Series, Dubai instead of Dubai Fashion League. This was done using a series of boomerang shots with 15 celebrities. The shots prominently featured Fashion League Series, Dubai in the background

Using small backstage clips showing the celebrities talking about their experiences with the Fashion League Series, Dubai

Pitching stories about the celebrities who would grace the runway to divert attention from the change. The celebrities were also used to reach out to the audience.

  • Honesty

  • Leverage Celebs presence

  • Distraction




  • In order to grab the audience’s attention, the agency bolted on the name change to a long-term strategy, which was to transform and transition the event from being regional to positioning it as a global event.

The Buzz

  • Celebrities taking part in the event were also used to create buzz around the event. This made it personal for the audience.

A New Name

  • All campaigns featured Fashion League Series, Dubai instead of Dubai Fashion League. To increase visibility the agency featured this in the background of all their promotions on social media and traditional media.



The event was a success with those in attendance posting short videos of the event on YouTube and other social media sites.

The campaign reached its target market and gained networking opportunities for the designers.

Tier 1 coverage

Front cover pages and double spread in leading print publications.

Transition to New Name

Interviews and clippings in leading TV channels all with the new identity of Fashion League Series, Dubai

Exposure for designers

Celebs and designers featured prominently in key media.

New Name

The new name stayed with the brand and the event has since been referred to by its new name.

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