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supreme marketing report demi holmes


pre contents

pg 4 ) executive summary pg 5-6 ) background history pg 7-8 ) brand equity and visual identity pg 9-14 ) marketing mix - the 4 p’s - promotion and the AIDA model pg 15-20 ) consumer segmentation - consumer profile - emergering markets 21-22 )competitor analysis 23-26 ) micro and macro factor analysis 27-28 ) SWOT analysis and recommendations 10 ) bibliography


photo taken from

Photo taken from https://i-d.vice.com/fr/article/zmx7m4/on-vous-presente-la-bande-de-supreme-paris

executive summary This marketing report explores the Supreme brand as a whole. Discussing the brands current market position, brand equity, external factors affecting the brands success and a range of other factors. The audit then concludes by presenting several recommendations to which would help supreme to either develop or reposition itself within its existing market. To build on secondary research to create this report, I read a range of different books, journals, blogs and websites to gain a wide scope of research. As for primary research I conducted a survey to look further into who the supreme consumer is and I also visited the supreme store in London to gain some visual research.


Photo taken from https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/zmx7m4/meet-supremesfrench-team

April 1994 is the date that the supreme brand was born with the first store opening in New York forever becoming a symbolism of skate culture. Surrounded by the growth of skate culture but not at all interested in it himself, James Jebbia the man behind the brand created Supreme to attract the younger generation at the time. “It wasn’t part of my world, but I knew it was very rebellious. It felt right, and I liked it.” (Jebbia, 2012) stated Jebbia in discussion of the background of supreme. James kickstarted his career by moving to New York from London at the age of 19 where he immediately landed a job making backpacks. It was on from here that James decided to open his first store UNION in 1989 where he bonded


Backg h

and created a strong relationship with Shawn Stussy the designer of the brand stussy. Watching the stussy brand grow inspired James to build his own brand, acting as a catalyst for the creation of supreme. “At the time, a lot of young people were getting into skating and supreme was sort of a hangout for them” (Jebbia, 2013). Now the brand release a collection every Thursday of the new season and are often one of the most hyped events in the world of fashion with customers queuing for hours just to get their hands on the latest collection.

Whilst the brand started off as only small, over 18 years the brand has expanded and successfully evolved into a luxury streetwear brand that “encompasses fashion, music, skateboarding and art” (Rajendran,2012) and has became an embodiment of new york culture. The brand will continue to grow as they repeatedly collaborate with with a range of the words best known designers, artists and musicians to further propel the brands uniqueness and popularity amongst the younger generation. Since then supreme

ground history Photo taken from https://i.pinimg.com/originals/95/14/f1/9514f151d5e887afabfd838bb69b07e5.jpg

has also opened stores in Tokyo, London, and Paris and is viewed by GQ style as “the coolest streetwear brand in the world right now�. (Abbott, 2017)

Supreme are a streetwear brand that lead their own unique style and are purposely designed to fit urban teen culture creating a bond between the consumer and the brand. They are viewed as a cool, modern, unique and urban brand for the ‘cool kids’ and the limited quality production keeps the consumer wanting more. Their three aims are to appear both cool, cultural and exclusive. Exclusivity being one of their main aims, with the New York Times saying “no offence, but if you don’t know what supreme, maybe it’s because you’re not supposed to” (Williams, 2012).

2. Brand Position Supreme position their brand as a brand that encompasses hip hop culture, skate culture and urban city life.

3. Execution As discussed on the marketing mix chapter supreme use guerrilla marketing as their main source. Along with this they use fashion shows as a way of promotion, their Louis Vuitton fashion show was able to reach out to the luxury high end market and consumers of Louis Vuitton that perhaps would not usually buy from supreme. Supreme also promote new collections in skateboard magazines such as Grind and Sense to reach out to their original skateboarder consumer.

Brand equity and visual identity

1. Brand Identity

8. Brand Responsibility

Supreme has continued to be consistent over time continuing to be an exclusive brand that is aimed at skateboarders which was its original outcome. Along with this the brand has stuck to stocking limited quantities which is difficult for a brand economically, being consistent with this has helped the brands success.

Supreme ensure that the connection between the brand and the consumer is strong by leading their own style and adopting with street art culture, they do not follow fashion trends therefore making them unique in comparison to other mainstream brands. Along with this, products are designed to fit urban teen culture which creates a bond between the consumer and the brand. Supremes limited stock of products also create a need for the consumer making the loyal customers buy whatever they produce.

5. Brand system Products are firstly designed to match the needs of the target market and produced in low quantities. The latest collections are then promoted and released in store and online. Due to the limited amount of products being released people often sell the clothes on third party sites or forums for a higher profit to keep up to date with the up coming brands and styles.

6. Brand Leverage Supreme has successfully expanded the brand by selling more products other than garments. This includes miscellaneous items such as pens, phone cases and even fire extinguishers. They have also expanded in store by building more shops across America, London, Paris and Japan and also now sell clothing online to help the consumer access their products much easier and quicker.

7. Tracking Brand Equity An example of supremes brand equality and their loyalty of their customers is the fact that the brand have created a cult like following with the consumers almost creating a community. Almost 250 customers lined up to buy supreme NY 2011 f/w collection with some fans camping outside for over 48 hours proving the brands success.

9. Brand Investment Supreme have invested in the brand to gain further success by collaborating with luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton to enter the luxury market therefore the luxury profit. The brand exertions discusses in brand Lee age have also helped to develop the brand economically making James Jebbia have a net worth of $40 million dollars.

photo taken from : https://i.pinimg.com/originals/63/89/61/63896199a1f412dbecec43b0ea791d0b.jpg

4. Consistency over time


BCG matrix

market m

In reference to the BCG matrix, I found from research that supremes star product is their supreme box logo t shirt as it acts as one of their most instantly recognisable pieces that a lot of consumers are eager to buy.

Their question mark products are the miscellaneous items they sell as these are the least purchased products of the brand.

As for their cash cow product, this would be be supreme logo hats as this again is another recognisable product which is classic As for the dog product, it is of the brand but perhaps does not their skate decks as these are the sell as much as their t shirts. foundation of the brand but again do not sell as much as their star and cash cow products.


photo taken from http://fuckingyoung.es/supreme-x-louis-vuitton-fw17-lookbook/

ting mix

photo taken from primary resarch, vistiting london supreme store

Regarding where supreme sells its products, garments are largely sold online as their online site proves to be more important than in store due to it being used to advertise and promote their upcoming collections. Their online website presents a minimalistic look as continued in store and offers a mailing list to send supreme news straight into the consumers mailbox. As for in store, all shops show to be boutique sized to suit the brand values of being small and exclusive and there are only a limited amount of shops world wide to again support their value of exclusivity. ‘If you are really a true fan of the brand and can afford it then you will travel to come to these stores’ is the message supreme try to push. From my research visiting the London supreme store I found that the shop is immediately aimed to grab the attention of their cool skater boy target market. The shop decor is very urban looking to meet the urban look of the consumer with walls being white, clean and minimalistic and the layout being designed open plan to allow skaters to skate in store which is the stereotypical market. Along with this I found that they play hip-hop music and show skate videos and interviews with famous skaters to meet the needs and likes of the consumer and create a strong and loyal connection with the brand and the consumer.




strategy I found that all products start off at a low and reasonable price to initially attract their target audience. As with the price being reasonable for the quality of the clothing the consumer is more eager to look into buying the products. Supreme prove to be a success with their strategy as they purposely have limited stock and never re stock any garment to make every collection appear limited edition. Limited edition leads to more hype of the brand, forcing more people to buy into it.

Researching into supreme’s pricing


tinued to grow.

Supreme offers luxury male streetwear, skateboard decks and miscellaneous items and according to the New York Times the brands look “channels various underground style currents: the punkiness of dogtown-era skate wear, the macho utilitarianism of military gear, the brash colours of ’80s hiphop and merges them into a singular aesthetic.” (Williams, 2012). They have expanded their brand by regularly doing collaborations with well known brands such as Comme Des Garçons, Louis Vuitton and Nike which is why their popularity has con-


the 4 p’s

Promotion and the AIDA model To create awareness supreme use guerrilla marketing which is a unique and out of the box way to attract their market. Posters are pasted all over the main cities (geographically where their target market is) using celebrity endorsement of rebellious icons such as Kate moss, mike tyson and kermit the frog to show the brand is versatile and can be worn by almost anyone. The posters are always in clusters together to catch the eye of the consumer and make them look twice, the logo is everywhere and repeated everywhere. Interest is built with the consumer/potential consumer as the celebrities all wear simple white tops that advertise the graphic supreme box logo to promote the brand rather than the fashion. Interest is therefore created as the logo and brand is typically associated with hip-hop artists or public figures which the stereotypical consumer has an interest in, rappers such as Kanye west and Tyler the creator are known for wearing the brand. Desire is then created as promoting through celebrity endorsement and product placement sends off the message that if you wear supreme you are just like a celebrity which a lot of people aspire to be like, people aim to be like their idols.

The action is that the potential consumer will then look on the website to find out more information, look at when the release dates are or look at purchasing from their site or from a 3rd party website because they aspire to be part of this brand.


Buying behaviour

Supreme’s target demographic is 16-35 year old males and “hasn’t strayed much from male teenage skaters”(Williams, 2012). The brand began only targeting males but over time the consumer has developed and females are now purchasing from the brand due to the rise in female skate culture.


C segm

“I enjoy keeping up to date with street style and reading fashion blogs”

From doing a survey I found that the typical supreme consumer has an interest in urban hip hop music and listens to the likes of Kanye West, ASAP Rocky and Frank Ocean. Along with this, they tend to have a creative personality often interested in both art and fashion. With the demographic being the younger generation, consumers are also often tech savvy and enjoy instagramming and scrolling through social media.

“I love the exclusivity, owning something rare and limited that hardly anyone has their hands on” (survey)

Consumers buy from supreme to then sell on a few months later to purchase the new line. Supreme will promote their new collections using celebrity endorsement which forces the consumer to buy more into the brand. The customer wants to appear up to do date and cool and they know supreme can offer that, therefore building trust between the brand and the consumer. In relation to maslows hierarchy of needs, people buy from the brand for both self esteem needs and self actualisation needs. Meaning that the customer buys from supreme as a form of fulfilment, self accomplishment and personal growth because they believe that owning a product from a luxury streetwear brand that is expensive, exclusive and is something that not everyone owns is an achievement.

Photo taken from 5/14/ https://i.pinimg.com/originals/9 7e5.jpg f1/9514f151d5e887afabfd838bb69b0


“theres something about it, its so badass and raw, but still kinda fashion. Their shit isn’t that different but there something about it that makes it the coolest”. (Rajendran, 2012).

Consumer mentation 16.

customer profile

tyler the creator five guys london train ticket kanye west album cover north face urban new york skateboard skater art gallery


Emerging markets Potential emerging consumers of supreme would be the Chinese market. There are currently no supreme stores in China however with the new collaboration is Louis Vuitton this could gain popularity for supreme in China as China contribute to more than half of the global market industry due to the rise in the average income. If supreme continue to collaborate with more luxury brands China could be a potential market for the brand.


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competitor analysis

Vans, Nike, OBEY, huf, Stussy, Palace and Anti social social club are all competitors of supreme as they all offer mens streetwear clothing. When researching into supremes target market I found that these brands were also brands liked and purchased by the typical supreme consumer. Supreme is the most exclusive and one of the most fashion forward against its competitors which is why to proves to be more of a success in comparison to some of its competitors.

fashion forward


mass market




micr macro f

feminism/change in gender perceptions : in the past women were expected to wear stereotypically feminine clothes and men were expected to wear masculine clothes. With the change in this, both men and women are dressing much more freely which is useful for a menswear brand like supreme as it means they also now attract female consumers because a lot of menswear is now ‘acceptable’ for women to also wear.


being ethical : with world tensions around brands being ethical due to recent ethical issues, its important that all fashion brands now prove to be ethical by recycling and creating the least amount of waste and pollution as possible.


individualism : there is a massive spread of individualism across the world with people trying to be as creative and unique as possible with clothing and lifestyle choices. Therefore making it important for fashion brands like supreme to appear unique and attractive to those who wish to be different. Supreme being an ‘exclusive’ brand successful attracts this sort of consumer.


celebrities : celebrities wearing clothes by supreme could either effect the brand negatively or positively. A well known and well liked celebrity wearing their clothing could increase sales for the brand as some consumers feel the need to mimic celebrity fashion. However if a disliked celebrity with a bad reputation wears the brand it could ruin the brand and turn potential consumers away.

ro and factors

photo taken from https://piffmpls.com

photo taken by https://hypebeast.com/2016/9/gosha-rubchinskiy-supreme-2016-popeye-editorial

Technological social media : with the increasing use of social media it means that brands can no longer hide away from hiding negatives or complaints online as people now tend to post complaints on social media sites such as twitter to publicly shame a brand. online forums : hyper beast believe online forums “paved the way for streetwear brands” “each forum had a very important and unique contribution to the rise and relevancy of streetwear”(Peng,2018). The forums work as a marketplace for finding desired streetwear products and discussing release dates. Other online brands : the internet has led to competition in price between retailers. Online shopping means the consumer can search the internet for the best price for a product meaning brands are in competition of being that best price but still upholding their brand values.

come for people meaning people are more likely to be buying more clothes and even luxury clothing. 2015 $57,330 to 2016 $59,039 per year (Amadeo, 2018) there also shows to be a rise in UK household income 2016 26,400 to 2017 £27,00 per year (Thomas, 2018)


counterfeits : counterfeit products are becoming more common for the consumers need to get an exact replica for a much more reasonable price or due to their need to purchase someone that appears ‘luxury’ to feel much more empowered and at least feel like they can afford it. Supreme counterfeits are extremely popular due to it being a hyped brand right now, luckily for supreme that are websites that helps consumers spot whether a product is a counterfeit or not to solve half of the problem.

online shopping : the improvement of technology and with the majority of the millennial generation having phones in western countries, people are much more likely to shop online rather than going to buy from a shop. For supreme is it useful because they have an online shop that people can buy from, it does however mean that people are much less likely to go into store.

Economical household income : with the rise in household income in America over the past few years this means there is an increase in disposable in-

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Strengths :

-successful and unique way of marketing/promoting known as guerrilla marketing. - cheap and creative way of marketing that continues to attract the target audience. -use of celebrity endorsement heightens the consumers need to buy the brands products to mimic their favourite celebrities. It also reaches out to those who have not heard of the brand before. -products are produced in small batches to tighten its exclusivity which the target audience likes. Also making almost everything sell out right away. -supreme successfully collaborates with a range of other popular brands such as vans and nike to again appeal to their target audience. -also regularly collaborates with mainstream brands such as Comme des Garçons, Levi’s and Louis Vuitton -they have strong partnerships with other similar brands that they collaborate with. -their use of unique advertising is like no other brand. -supreme are becoming a high fashion brand unlike their skater brand competitors such as vans and nike. Meaning they can appeal to more of an audience rather than just skateboarders. -supreme is not age of gender specific meaning they can appeal to a wide range of people unlike other brands/their competitors.

Weaknesses :

-there are only 6 supreme shops worldwide which are all small boutique shops making it much more difficult for customers to buy their products. -due to the small production of products it makes it highly difficult for customers to find products they have previously seen and liked. -when releasing new products supreme issue their release date very close to the time meaning many customers miss out on buying from the brand.

Threats :

-the products are much more expensive than its competitors, especially when resold. —products are highly difficult to get hold of. -the brand could lose from its competitors who are cheaper and easier to by from. -there are a large amount of counterfeits on the market making the brand appear less exclusive and also damaging the brand economically.

S an

photo taken from : http://www.appnova.com/grumpy-old-rockershow-supreme-educates-its-disciples/

SWOT nalysis

Although during the SWOT analysis I discussed the fact that the low stock of products and lack of stores was a weakness, these weaknesses uphold supremes brand value of being exclusive and therefore should remain and not be changed or improved on.

More luxury collaborations : Collaborating with more brands such as Gosha Rubchinskiy will make the brand strive further in the luxury market as Gosha is a new upcoming hyped about brand that targets a similar consumer to Supreme.

Expansion by releasing a women’s range : The rise in women’s skate culture means a rise in women wanting to wear and purchase skate wear. Releasing womenswear would further the brands success as it is expanding their target market but still remaining exclusive by only aiming the brand at a certain type of woman.


Opportunities :

-increasing the online availability meaning that customers can easily get all the products they desire at retail price and on the release day which customers currently struggle to do. -they could build more stores worldwide preferably in shopping centres to make it much more accessible for people to buy from the brand. This however may make the brand appear less exclusive which is one of its important brand values. -to reach out further to the female clientele.


Sup bibliography

Abbott, Jeremy. (2010, October 14), Supreme genius James Jebbia on creating the coolest streetwear brand, Retrieved from http://www.gq-magazine.co.uk/article/supreme-james-jebbia-interview. Business of fashion. (2012, January 10), Inside Supreme: Anatomy of a Global Streetwear Cult Part I, retrieved from https://www.businessoffashion.com/ articles/intelligence/inside-supremeanatomy-of-a-global-streetwear-cult-—part-i. Hypebeast. (2018), How forums paved the way for streetwear, Retrieved from https://hypebeast.com/2018/1/forums-nike-bape-supreme-internet-communities. Idle man. Who Is James Jebbia?, retrieved from https://theidleman.com/ manual/life/who-is-james-jebbia/.

Rajendran, Mayan. 2012, The development of streetwear and the role of New York city, London and supreme NY, digital commons @ ryerson, volume 1 (issue 1). Williams, Alex. (2012, November 21), Guerrilla Fashion: The Story of Supreme, Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/22/fashion/guerrilla-fashion-the-story-of-supreme.html. photos

photo taken by https://hypebeast.com/2016/9/gosha-rubchinskiy-supreme-2016-popeye-editorial photo taken from primary resarch, vistiting london supreme store

Photo taken from https://i-d.vice.com/fr/article/zmx7m4/on-vouspresente-la-bande-de-supreme-paris


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