Models walk the runway at the Michael Kors Fall 2012 fashion show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week at The Theatre at Lincoln Center in New York City. - 

As Fashion Week kicks off in New York, the enthusiasm for what’s coming down the runway may not be as meaty as the posts on social media. As designers converge, the digital frenzy could upstage the eight-day event that dates back to World War II.

The traditional runway show may not be cost effective for many designers who can’t afford not to turn it into a branding event, according Scott Galloway, a marketing professor at NYU’s Stern School of Business.

“I think brands have realized that and are trying to figure out a way to spread some of that fabulous across their customer base via social media,” Galloway says.

Bloggers share front-row seats now with fashion editors and celebrities. But that four-minute runway show just can’t be replaced says Eila Mell, the author of the book “New York Fashion Week.”

“You really don’t get the best sense unless you’re there in person to see the clothes and see how they move,” Mell says.

Small- and medium-sized designers may look at the financial cost, Galloway says, and decide it’s best to ignore Fashion Week altogether and focus on their core business. That discussion of who snubbed it might just be trending on social media.