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Fashion Research Assignment Help
This is a solution of fashion research assignment help in which we discuss fashion relate to present lifestyle. The apparel market of the world of valued around 3 trillion dollars and it present 2% in GDP
Fashion industry is the multi-billion dollar industry having its existence all over the world. Fashion is termed as the style preferred by the group of people over a period of time in the items of the apparels, footwear, accessories etc. The apparel market of the world is valued around 3 trillion dollars and it represents 2% in the global Gross Domestic Products (GDP) (Fashion United, 2016). The divisions of the fashion industry include the men’s wear, kids wear, sportswear, bridal wear along with the accessories. The renowned global companies and the world famous designers play an important role in creating interest among the people all over the world with their innovations and product lines. The most important consideration is the branding of the fashion products for creating differentiation and uniqueness in the market. Branding is the orchestrating of the values of the product for creating a permanent place in the mind of the customers in the way like promotion, placement, product quality, pricing etc. In the perspective of the fashion industry, style and preference is the key players which influence the profitability of the business. The people used to influence by the fashion brands mainly in the terms of uniqueness, quality, price, attracting designs, comfortable fibres etc. (Aspers, 2015). Thus majority of the fashion brands used to consider those parameters while developing and designing their products for attracting the people. The people used to prefer the brands personallity not only by the price but also the role of the endorser who influence the mind of the people in order to showcase their standard in the society.
The organization fixes their marketing strategy based on the niche market or differentiated market for influencing the target audience towards their brands. Mostly the luxury brands target the niche market where they attract a particular section in the market for increasing their sales turnover. Luxury brands showcase the “best” attribute in their product offering which is exclusive, mysterious, expensive and rare by nature. The people preferring the luxury brands are the richest section of the society whose standard and value is also very high. From that point of view, these people used to prefer the luxury brands for differentiating their value in the society. Luxury brands cannot be accessible to everyone in order to hold a high value in the market (Okonkwo, 2016). The fashion brands like Louis Vuitton, Rolex, Hermes and Gucci can fall under the category of the luxury brand with the features like exclusive design, high price and renowned fashion designer’s contribution. The brand value for Louis Vuitton is 27, 445 million dollars which is the dominant player in the luxury fashion brands.
The mass market strategy or market research is avoided by these brands in order to align the customer’s emotion in the society. The emotional value is given importance by the luxury fashion brands for acquiring the market effectively. On the other hand it is the “Premium brands” which represents the accessibility, modern, rational, design etc. For examples the brands like Addidas, Wrangler and Levis are the premium fashion brands available across the globe. Premium brands in the fashion industry used to deliver their value while creating a balance between the luxury and rational buying for attracting the other section of people who desire to get attention in the society. Fashion industry itself used to demonstrate customer’s emotion attached with the clothing, footwear and other accessories over a specific period of time. Thus the brands operating in the fashion industry used to target the audience by adopting several strategies which include the categories like luxury, premium, general etc. Elements attached with the luxury brands are the prestige and high value whereas premium brands demonstrate the value addition, rational buying, classy, design etc to target the people who are having high aspirations (Roumeliotis, 2012)
Social as well as behavioural psychology of the buyer influence the decision making process while considering the purchase. Personal factors like personality, motivations, desire, aspiration plays a major role to provoke the buyer for selecting the premium brands. It is also the social factors like interactions, sharing opinions, suggestions which influence a buyer to select the premium brands. Sophistication comes in the mind of the buyer who is having high aspiration in their life and has a role model (De Chernatony, 2015). It is the psychology that comes in the mind of the buyer to follow the role model which reflects in their purchase decisions. Sophistication comes in the mind of the customer when they relate the brand personally. The marketers of the premium brands like Wranglers, Levis focus their strategy towards Brand Personality. Brands who wants to meet the sophistication of the buyer need to align the high snob value in order to match the upper class people or people who want to fulfil the upper level needs of Maslow’s theory (Kornberger, 2010). The buyer’s sophistication is goal directed and this shows a differentiation in their buying process. Systematic manner is being followed in the perspective of purchase decision for the sophisticated buyers. Thus the fashion premium brands used to showcase their superior values, justification and promotion in a way which influence the dimension that is sophistication of the buyers towards the brands. On other hand the luxury brands will showcase their high emotional values which include prestige, high value and status to the buyers.
High level of competition is exists in the fashion industries. There are many stories in the fashion industry which decline the business due to the negligence and sound market research of the people’s taste and preference. Thus investment plays a major role which brings difference among the brands operating in the premium and luxury segment. For example, premium brands like Loro Piana having their items which includes cashmere fabrics and woollen garments that are operating their business successfully across the globe. The sales turnover of this brand has increased from 243 million Euros to 512 Euros despite of the recession period (Tungate, 2012). It is due to the direct business model which involves the extraction of the raw material from the remote areas by taking the lease in order to utilise the resources effectively and also to reduce the operational cost which includes the supplier.
The strategy of the brand is to display the differentiation, appeal and relevance in the market for creating a unique place in the mind of the customers. People with high aspiration will like to address the essence of the luxury, classy and value addition in the premium brands like Lee, Wranglar etc. The promotion made by the premium brands is based on the quality, design, authenticity of the fibers etc. for attracting the high aspirer group (McKee, 2014). Detailed market research, exclusive designers, creative research and development teams are hired by the organisations like VF Corporation to appeal the market effectively. The customers having strong desires will like to link the brand with the functional and emotional benefits before considering the purchase. Thus the value of the premium brands should align the desire of the premium customers who wants to fulfil their strong desires. The marketers prefer the integrated approach in the marketing promotion for creating awareness towards the brand. The value is being communicated to the people in the form of promotion or campaigns. If the premium brands fail to communicate the value based on the differentiation, relevance and appeal then the brand equity will fall definitely. The premium customers are having the sound financial stability to afford the same alternative in the market. Thus they will not move to the cheaper products due to the presence of the strong aspiration and sophistication (Burmann and Zeplin, 2014). The emotional attributes plays a major role in this area which provoke the customers to find other alternative of the premium brands available in the market. It is the actual mentality of the people to move towards the upper level as prescribed by Maslow’s Need theory where the motivation of the people are increased as soon as the needs are fulfilled. Thus cheaper alternatives will be rejected by the people and for that the premium brands needs to focus their strategy towards differentiation and appeal for remaining in the high competition market of fashion industry. Brand recognition plays a major role in this area where the brands needs to create a bridge between the values they are delivering with the target audience in order to aware the customers (Whan, MacInnis and Iacobucci, 2010).
Unique is an important attribute that the premium brands like Zara wants to focus for attracting the people all over the world. The uniqueness will only establish if the elements like creativity as well as rationality mixes with each other. Focusing on the innovation, engineering, design is the main area that the premium brands used to consider for increasing the level of acceptability among the customers (Cillo, De Luca, and Troilo, 2010). Team of the creative designers used to analyse the market before developing a new design for the products line of the organisation. Innovation is justified in order to stop the activities like copying the design by other small brands and place the products in the market at a less price than the premium brands like Zara. It has been observed that the millennial customers prefer the innovative design and fashion in their garments or other accessories rather than the origin of the brand. Almost half of the population are the millennial and they are increasing at an average rate of 2% per year which is alarming. Based on that, the premium brands are giving more focus to their innovation designs to attract and retain the customers effectively and also to restrict the easy copying of the products. In some countries like US, laws are there which brings restrictions in the act of copying. On the other hand Quick turnaround times enhance the premium brands to restrict the copying and attract the customers effectively. For example, premium brand like Zara adopted the integrated and controlled mechanism to fit the “fast fashion”. Significant portion of the production are stocked in-house and also ensure a reserve that is around 85% in the terms of capacity during the seasonal adjustments. This process of in-house production by Zara enables flexibility in developing new launches, frequency and operations (Tokatli, 2012). The store managers used to conduct the market research for the customers regarding their taste and preference which are conveyed to the top management to bring modification in the development process. Inventory optimisation model is being followed by Zara which forecast the actual quantity needed by the particular retail store. Equally distributing the stocks are focus in order to restrict the effect of the unpopular stock. This quick-season turnaround process of Zara will restrict other brands for copying the design and produces it to the market.
History and heritage sets luxury settings in the mind of the people which increases the customer’s attraction and fortify the brand’s identity and demand in the market. For example, premium brand like Levis was founded by Levi Strauss in the year 1853 and the main product is jeans. It is an old premium brand which represents the heritage and history but it is not only the factor that ensures the success of the brand. It is the innovation in their designs which has makes them a premium jeans brand across the world till now (McKee, 2014). Customers are now considered to be the king and to satisfy the king the premium brands holds the heritage value along with the functional benefits which jointly provokes the customers to consider the purchase. The premium customers consider both the emotional values and functional benefits before taking the purchase decision. They will try to align the historic values with the functional utility provided by the brands in order to match their requirements. Customers constantly changes their mind and decision based on different factors. For example, new premium brands like Tommy Hilfiger focus their strategy to the new and authentic designs towards the people all over the globe. In this case requirement of the heritage value does not matter if the product suits the customer’s requirements. The customers will pay the price premium or refer to a friend or relative when only the value proposition meets the requirements. Thus both the historic and functional values are needed to be granted for the premium brands in order to increase the brand equity.
Research is the only way that can give insight in to a well defined situation or problem. The approach of the research can be of two types which are (Jonker and Pennink, 2010):
- Primary Research: It is the procedure, where the responses are collected directly from the respondents in the form like interview, opinion sharing, observation, survey etc.
- Secondary Research: It is the procedure where the responses are already exist in the secondary sources like books, websites, publication works etc.
In order to make the discussion more relevant, both the approaches of the research are taken granted in order to determine a relation between the roles of the premium brands in the fashion industry with the attitude, culture and lifestyles of the customers.
Primary research is done by conducting a small interview in the form of the open-ended questionnaire (Appendix 1) with the customers preferring the premium fashion brands, suppliers and also my observations are considered for this study. The findings are as follows:
- As per my observation as well as my relatives who are the customers of the premium brands, the buyer’s sophistication is the considerable factor which affects the purchase of the premium brand product. For example my role model is my own relative who is the owner of a steel industry in UK. This provokes me to consider the purchase of the fashion premium brands due to high aspirations in my life.
- Based on my observation the investments are the key areas which are given major focus by the premium brands in order to achieve the competitive advantage and attract the customers effectively across the globe.
- All the respondents including me is agreed in the area that customers with high aspiration will not purchase the cheaper alternative if they are not aware of some other brand’s appealing attributes due to the emotional values. This type of customers will focus on upper level and will follow the role model and thus they will not go for the cheap alternatives
- Innovation and quick turnaround can only ensure success of the brand as well as restrict the copying activity. The customers will automatically aware of the brands that bring innovative designs in the market and on the other hand quick turnaround will enhances the operation of the organisation which prohibits the copying activities. But as per my observation there should be a legal framework which can also restrict the copying activities.
- As per my view historic and heritage values are not required for the premium brands. As the customers like us will like to address the value, sophistication, design and quality. But some of my relative also includes the importance of heritage in the premium brands which represent the feeling of classy when they wear those items.
In case of Secondary research, websites, journals are being followed in order to understand the behaviour of the consumer regarding the brands which can determine the success of the brand. The findings which came out from the secondary sources are as follows:
- It is the Brand Equity which affects the decision making process of a buyer regarding the premium brands. The distinguishable factors, high level of attachment with the brand influence the buyer towards the premium brands. As a result the buyer is comfortable to pay a price premium and also refer to other for that brand (Keller, Parameswaran and Jacob, 2011).
- Consumers are the king which is accepted by all the retail organisations. From that point of view a customers who prefers to buy a premium brand will not shift to other cheaper alternative due to high aspiration and sophistication. They will find other alternative on same price or bit higher in order to hold their emotional attachment with the premium brands.
- Premium brands like Zara focus their strategy towards innovation and quick turnaround in order to achieve the competitive advantages as well as to restrict the copying activities.
- Levis is a premium brand which was established by Levi Strauss in the year 1853 and the main product is jeans. The brand holds a heritage and historic value till date but they have adopted the change or modifications to match their designs with the customer’s taste and preference. But new premium brands like Tommy Hilfiger who used to focus on the design in order to attract the market. Tommy Hilfiger caters both the men and women section with new designs and collections across the globe which contradicts the requirements of the heritage values in the fashion brands.
From the discussion based on different sources it is clear that there is a difference between the luxury and premium brands in the fashion industry. Brands operating in the fashion industry used to target the audience by adopting different strategies which include the categories like luxury, premium, general etc. Elements attached with the luxury brands are the prestige and high value whereas premium brands demonstrate the value addition, rational buying, classy, design, cost benefit etc to target the people who are having high aspirations. It is the brand which creates an impact on the mind of the customers by focusing on the areas like brand personality, brand association in order to influence the buyer’s decision making process.
Aspers, P., (2015). Using design for upgrading in the fashion industry. Journal of Economic Geography, p.lbp030.
Burmann, C. and Zeplin, S., (2014). Building brand commitment: A behavioural approach to internal brand management. Journal of brand management, 12(4), pp.279-300.
Christodoulides, G. and De Chernatony, L., (2010). Consumer-based brand equity conceptualization and measurement: A literature review. International journal of research in marketing, 52(1), pp.43-66.
Cillo, P., De Luca, L.M. and Troilo, G., (2010). Market information approaches, product innovativeness, and firm performance: An empirical study in the fashion industry. Research Policy, 39(9), pp.1242-1252.