By Emma Clithero
Above Image: I-D Vice, 2016
4.0 Executive Summary 4.0 Introduction 4.1 Brand Origin 4.2 Brands Founding Year 4.3 Founding Designer Background 4.4 Initial Product Offer 4.5 Brand Extensions 6.0 Brand Equity and Visual Identity 6.1 Aakers Framework 6.1.1 Brand Personality/ Essence 6.1.2 Brand Values 6.1.3 Product Offer 6.1.4 Packaging and Display 6.1.5 Advertising and Promotion 6.2 Repositioning 7.0 Marketing Mix 7.1 Product Lifestyle 7.1.1 BCG Matrix 7.2 Price
7.3 Promotion 7.3.1 AIDA Model 7.4 Place
12.1.2 Issues impacting the brands marketing strategies 12.1.3 Responding to external impacting factors
9.0 Consumer Segmentation 9.1 Consumer Behaviour 9.1.1 Demographics and Psychographics 9.2 How has the brands consumer changed? 9.3 Maslowâ€™s Hierarchy of Needs 9.4 Visual consumer profile
14.0 SWOT Analysis 14.1 Strengths and Weaknesses 14.1.1 Opportunities and Challenges
11.0 Competitor Analysis with Brand Positioning Map 11.1 Brands Current Composition 11.1.1 Product Offer 11.1.2 Brand Personalities 11.1.3 USP 11.2 Brand Positioning Map 12.0 Micro and macro-economic factor analysis 12.1 Pestle Factors 12.1.1 Environmental Impacts
14.0 Recommendations 14.1 Developing/ Repositioning the brand 14.1.1 New Digital Marketing Strategies 14.1.2 New Emerging Market Segments 14.1.3 Responding to Critical Issues 15.0 Bibliography
Above image: The Menswear Insdustry Magzine, 2017
In this report I will be focusing on Craig Green and how he became one of London’s most avant-garde clothing conceptualists. I will also be analysing the brands visual identity, examining their marketing strategies, researching the consumers of the brand and more to create an in-depth insight to the brand.
Recently named British Menswear Designer of the Year, Craig Green established his eponymous in 2012, focusing on craftsmanship and storytelling translating into innovative garments with a utilitarian look and feel. Prior to this, following his BA studies, during which time he served an internship with Topman, Green went on to do a master’s degree under Louise Wilson on the Fashion course at Central Saint Martins. Green’s work, whilst originally designed as menswear, is noted for its unisex and gender neutral qualities. After recognising that women wore his clothes too, the designer included female models in his catwalk shows. For Autumn-Winter 2013, Green presented his first collection as part of a Topman/Fashion East initiative hosted by the British Fashion Council’s London Collections: Men event. His work was widely commended in the fashion press, although the wearable wooden sculptures he showed were made fun of in a Daily Mail headline, and his debut collection was publicly mocked on national television by the event ambassador, David Gandy (Lucy C arrellison, Business of Fashion). Despite this, Green returned to Spring-Summer 2014 with his first solo catwalk presentation, which led to even wider recognition from influential retailers such as Comme des Garçons, who allowed Green to showcase his work in the window of their London store, Dover Street Market. The initial product offer of the brand was menswear, however it was then described as unisex. Although Green’s designs are imbued with his fierce commitment to concept and challenging forms, the Londoner’s true genius lies his ability to parlay his cerebral inspirations into unique yet wearable clothing, often with utilitarian edge (Lucy Carrelliosn, Business of Fashion). Craig Green was remarked by the fashion industry with his bizarre yet wearable garments that evoke utilitarian clothing as well as exotic garments and strongly focus on materials and shape. He privileges fluid layering, playing on monochrome and compelling prints to raise political issues where war, society and the uniform mingle (The Red List). The menswear designer who wanted to become a painter or a sculptor at first clearly evokes his artistic background in his shows that reveal men hidden behind abstract and cubist forms while the prints of his garments display picturesque figurative patterns. Yet behind the sculptural adornments, remain minimal Japanese-like ensembles (The Red List). In 2016, at an even packed with the biggest names in the menswear business, Craig Green was announced as the winner of the BFC/GQ Designer Menswear Fund 2016, awarded a grant amounting to £150,000 in total, to help take him to the next stage in his business, and comes in addition to some high-level mentoring. Craig demonstrated incredible maturity, and showed he had a clear plan of how the fund will benefit his business and how the mentoring can assist in his business growth over the next three years.
Above Image: I-D Vice, 2017
When identifying the brands identity, we can look at the brand in four main perspectives. These are; Brand as a Product, Brand as an Organisation, Brand as a Person and Brand as a Symbol. Craig Green’s Brand as a product is a luxury designer menswear line at a high value and mainly worn by British people, or to achieve the British look. Craig Green prides himself on the quality of his clothes, making it high in value with a good reputation. The brand as a symbol and the brands personality is very unique and influential, which is one of the brands most signature aspects. Craig Green unveiled a five-part photo series for his 2017 Autumn/Winter collection. The campaign took inspiration from a number of sources, with work by Leonardo da Vinci and images of Hindu deities all influencing the creative direction. The key theme throughout all five images is a group of men uniting to become one strong force, something that is described as “synchronised limbs become cogs in a machine.” All of the images prominently feature water, which is focused on by Green for the way that it “connects all life on earth” as well as the fact that water serves as a key criterion for the possibility of life in outer space. The signature products the brand is most known for is the jackets, ranging from £350- £1,500. His visual identity in his clothing is very childlike creativity and the rigidity of military uniforms. His clothes are daring and artistic, but they are also always grounded in the wearable. The potential of his very definite aesthetic, ‘rooted in boyhood fantasy, the pursuit of adventure, and a certain D.I.Y masculinity’, has already caught the attention of long established brands. His show statements are always part of a creative expression grounded in a wearable reality. It is workwear that sits at the heart of his design. “There are 18 workwear jackets in different versions. You could describe it as relaxed tailoring. It’s not contoured to your body, so anyone can wear it. I like how functional it is, and how utilitarian. I wear one all the time”. Green debuted his first collection on models who’s faces were obscured by planks of wood. Craig is a designer who uses big brushstrokes to amplify his design aspiration. In an interview with Dazed, Craig green spoke about another one of his campaigns for his 2016 Autumn/Winter Collection (Ted Stansfield, 2016)a series of images and a slightly dizzying short films featuring groups of models sprawled out on a black sand beach. “We came up with the idea of shooting with a drone instead of a photographer so it almost felt like a documentation, rather than era-specific in any way”. When the brand was first established, it was sold in department stores and boutiques including Selfridges, Dover Street Market and Barneys. However, it was then a case of brand repositioning to suit the consumers, and it began to be sold online at Mr Porter.
Above Image: Backstage at Craig Green, Fall/Winrer, 2018
The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) Matrix is a method of analysing the market position of a firm’s existing products (Bruce D. Henderson, 1970). It can also help companies compare their products market size and growth in comparison to another company’s. It is used together with the product life cycle as part of the marketing planning process and the ‘what do we do next?’ question. We can use this to review Craig Green’s current product portfolio. A Product is anything that can be offered in a market for attention, acquisition, use, or consumption that might satisfy a need or want. The actual product is the Craig Green brand, which consists of menswear clothing, with high quality, unique designs and features. The augmented product is the nonphysical part of the product consisting of lots of added value. This is what sets the brand apart from its competitors. This includes product support, warranty and after-sale service. Looking at the BCG Matrix, I would say Craig Green is under the stars category as they have excellent products with high growth and high market share. The brand is also in it’s peak on the product life cycle. This is the third stage of the fashion cycle during which a style is at its height of popularity. Each retailer tries to persuade customers that its version of the style is the best. The pricing strategy that Craig Green uses is competitive pricing as well as psychological. Shirts and workwear jackets are the renowned products for the brand. Craig Green promotes through branding by creating campaigns, as well as promoting through fashion shows and online. Rihanna, Drake and Kanye West have all been seen as fans of Craig Green. “In the beginning I was cautious about celebrity, but it helps the outreach and visibility if the brand,” he admitted to Britain’s ES magazine. This links onto the AIDA Model (Elias St. Elmo Lewis, 1898). AIDA is an acronym that stands for; Attention, Interest, Desire, Action. It was first coined by advertising guru Elias St. Elmo Lewis in 1898. It tracks the movement of a consumer from brand awareness to purchasing. The process that tracks methods of making the unaware, aware of a brand/product, and the time it takes for them to buy. Therefore, when people see celebrities wearing a certain brand, it creates a desire and wants them to buy more to meet out psychological needs to stay ‘on trend’. This is an advertising strategy. I would class the brands typical promotion method as ‘above-the-line’. This shows that the brand advertising adheres to the AIDA model. The three traditional distribution channels for brands are; Independent fashion stores- where the brand is strongest, Department stores or Supermarkets, and Online- both direct or via agents/third parties. Craig Green is sold online by global boutiques as well as in Dover Street Market and Barney’s. Selling the products online makes it more much accessible for consumers and easier to buy. Being sold in Dover Street Market and Barney’s also gives it a good reputation as a high-end brand.
Above Images: Marcus Tondo, 2017
The consumers of Craig Green can be described as adventurous menswear consumers as the clothing is creative and outgoing. It is also worn by celebrities such as Kanye West and Rihanna, who are known for their signature, high fashion looks. This brings me to demographic segmentation, as the style and the advertising of the clothing can affect who buys it, depending on their age, race, ethnic background, income etc. Therefore, it is people who want the British look as it has a traditional British feel about it and it is advertised and worn on the catwalk by British models. This is again meeting the consumers esteem needs and motivates them to make the purchase as they want to feel fulfilled. We can tell that the consumers come from good backgrounds with a good income that can afford the brand. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is a theory in psychology proposed by Abraham Maslow in his 1943 paper “A Theory of Human Motivation” (Abraham Maslow, 1943). Maslow used the terms “psychological”, “safety”, “belonging and love”, “esteem”, “self-actualization”, and “self-transcendence” to describe the pattern that human motivations generally move through. The goal of Maslow’s Theory is to attain the sixth level or stage: self transcendent needs. When referring to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, consumers wearing Craig Green are made to feel respected with a sense of accomplishment, self actualisation and fulfilment. When looking at the psychographic segmentation, we can use lifestyles, values, personalities and/or psychological characteristics to split up markets. Craig Green targets stylish, innovative and modern consumers who like high value things with a creative lifestyle and therefore are willing to spend more money. The behaviour of the consumers can depend on how they buy, use and feel about products, and what benefits they want, or even their loyalty to the brand.
Above Photo: Laclaireur, 2016
One of Craig Green’s biggest competitors is Off White. There is a similar product offer in terms of menswear and womenswear specialising in jackets and some products even looking similar to workwear that Craig Green focuses on. The essence of both brands is very similar with creative, daring consumers who want something different but also strive to achieve the British/ American dream look. Both brand have very similar price points ranging from £300-£1000 for a jacket, therefore attracting consumers in the same income range, meaning they come from similar lifestyles. Both brands are popular with Kanye West, a fashion influencer and style icon, making people want to consume the brands more. Kanye West wearing both brands makes them competitors as they are both obviously sharing the same product offer. Another one of Craig Green’s competitors is Ralph Lauren. Although Ralph Lauren, like Off White, is American, it shares an effortless style which also resembles the ‘American Dream’ look, which both brands target in some way. Although Ralph Lauren is slightly cheaper than Craig Green, they still share the same price points on various products. However, I would say Craig Green’s unique selling point is slightly more gripping than Ralph Lauren’s, and jumps out more at the consumer. Ralph Lauren clothing could also be seen as workwear in some the pieces. Vetements is also another competitor, both sharing the use of luxurious materials and unexpected silhouettes with similar price points. Craig Green and Vetements also share the their product placement and where they sell, as neither have their own stores or website, but are sold by global boutiques. Acne Studios, Moncler, Fendi and Saint Laurent are more competitors due to their similar brand personalities, prices and product offer. Here is an illustration of where they are in the market on a positioning map.
There are many factors that can impact a brand. These are; Political, Economical, Social, Technical, Legal and Environmental (PESTLE). Conspicuous Consumption is a big issue that effects all of these factors in the fashion industry, especially the macro-economic and environmental factors. Conspicuous Consumption is the purchase of goods or services for the specific purpose of displaying one’s wealth (Thorstein Veblen, 1899). It is a means to show one’s social status, especially when the goods or services publicly displayed are too expensive for other members of a person’s class. This type of consumption is typically associated with the wealthy but can also apply to any economic class. The concept of consumerism stems from conspicuous consumption. That is, conspicuous displays of consumption and leisure were the means to demonstrate one’s superiority. Whether you were rich or poor everyone attempts to impress others and seek to gain advantage through ‘conspicuous consumption’ and the ability to engage in ‘conspicuous leisure’ (Thorstein Veblen, 1899). “We purchase things, not to fulfil our basic needs, but to fill some voids about our lives and make social statements about ourselves”. Corporations can survive only by constantly expanding production and profitability. But they can’t make profits unless they sell the ever-increasing volume of products they produce – and that’s why they spend billions to persuade us to buy more. If the trends continue without change — not redistributing from high-income to low-income consumers, not shifting from polluting to cleaner goods and production technologies, not promoting goods that empower poor producers, not shifting priority from consumption for conspicuous display to meeting basic needs — today’s problems of consumption and human development will worsen. Therefore, when referring to Craig Green, he will constantly need to expand his production to make profit. However, people are becoming aware of this and the effects. This will then effect the brands marketing strategies as Craig will need to make his advertising more environmentally friendly and respond to the external impacting factors by showing this in his campaigns. The technological factors towards the brand are that people are more likely to purchase more goods online than in stores as it is easier and effortless. They are also less likely to return unwanted goods if purchased online. Therefore, it is beneficial that Craig Green predominantly sells his products online as this will make more profit. Globalisation, an elusive phenomenon that has been receiving a vast amount of attention in the last two decades, can be defined as an ongoing process by which regional economies, societies, and cultures are becoming more integrated through economic, social, technological, political, cultural, and other exchanges (Robertson, 1992). For the luxury brand industry, the major consequence of globalisation and multicultural influences (Seo & Gao, 2014) has been a growing appreciation of global luxury brands (e.g. Louis Vuitton, Gucci, L’Oreal) by consumers in Asia and other developing countries (Kapferer, 2012). As a result of this trend, the customer base for luxury products is becoming more culturally diversified, bringing new opportunities and challenges for the managers of luxury brands.
Above Image: ason Lloyd-Evans, 2018
Based on my analysis of all of the above factors, I can conclude the strengths and weaknesses of the brand. Firstly, the strengths of Craig Green is that the brand has a good personality, which consumers warm to when looking for the artistic, unique look. The consumer look to the brand to achieve a sense of accomplishment and self esteem. The weaknesses of the brand could be the price points as there are political factors concerned such as how clothes in the fashion industry are made the how much the workers are getting paid for it, which doesn’t come close to the price of the final product. Leading on to possible opportunities, the brand could be expanding the products and creating footwear, a wider range of clothing, accessories and a womenswear line to give more product offer and more consumers. However, if this did not happen, the potential challenges it could face is if the supply chain fails to deliver, it’s the brand’s name that is impacted and the brand loyalty could be affected. Retailers and fashion brands have very long and sensitive supply chains. A number of variables can effect a brand’s quality or name. If items are either out of stock or simply not manufactured or if a brand is reported for treating workers unfairly then people may shop elsewhere and criticise the brand on social media and tell their friends (Laila Beswick, 2016). Also as I previously spoke about, Most big fashion brand websites today display something about corporate responsibility and sustainability. Today’s big brands need to be seen implementing some form of sustainability strategy. Consumers are aware of how brands operate regarding their water consumption, waste disposal, acceptable labor practices, health and safety standards, treatment of workers, etc. If Craig Green’s name is related to any of these topics in a negative way, it will be effected.
Craig Green could develop or reposition his brand within a new or existing market by expanding his products and creating a wider range, as I said before. The brand could also create their own stores expression the brands personality through the decor and feel of the store, bringing in more consumers who will want to visit the stores, and also those who prefer to shop in stores rather than online. More digital marketing strategies could be used such as social media advertisements and pop ups. Craig Green could respond to a range of impacting critical issues by creating more effective campaigns, and lowering prices.
Above Photo: Amelia Karlsen, 2018
Abraham Maslow, 1943, “A Theory of Human Motivation”, Psychological Review Adam Katz Sinding, 2007-2018, https://le21eme.com/category/event/backstage-at-craig-green-fallwinter-20182019/ Alexander Fury, 2016, https://www.vogue.com/fashion-shows/spring-2017-menswear/craig-green/slideshow/collection#5 Bruce D. Henderson, 1970, Boston Consulting Group (BCG) Matrix, Portfolio Diagram Charlie Robin Jones, 2018, http://www.anothermanmag.com/style-grooming/10119/how-craig-green-became-a-mainstay-of-london-menswear
Chloé Le Drezen, 2016, http://www.dazeddigital.com/fashion/gallery/21155/17/craig-green-aw16 Craig Green Catwalk Show, 2018, http://www.londonfashionweekmens.com/designers_profile.aspx?designerID=2051 Elias St. Elmo Lewis, 1898, Oft-cited marketing concept of AIDA Jason Lloyd-Evans , 2018, Photography, https://www.wallpaper.com/fashion/fashionweeks/menswear-ss-2018/london/craig-green-ss-2018 Kapferer, J.N. 2012, “Abundant rarity: the key to luxury growth”, Business Horizons , Vol. 55 No. 5, pp. 453-462 Laila Beswick, 2016, http://www.gtnexus.com/resources/blog-posts/top-5-challenges-fashion-apparel-supply-chains Laura Hawkins, 2017, https://www.wallpaper.com/fashion/fashionweeks/menswear-ss-2018/london/craig-green-ss-2018 Leclaireur, 2016, https://www.leclaireur.com/en-fr/magazine/articles/craig-green/ Logo, http://www.harrolds.com.au/brands/ Lucy Carrellison, Craig Green Biography, https://www.businessoffashion.com/community/people/craig-green Lula Ososki, 2016, https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/wj5m8z/craig-greens-breathtaking-new-campaign-was-shot-by-drones Robertson, R. 1992, Globalization: Social theory and Global Culture , Vol. 16, Sage Publications Ltd, London Seo, Y. and Gao, H. 2014, “Towards a value-based perspective of consumer multicultural orientation”, European Management Journal Stephen Garner, 2017, http://www.mr-mag.com/moncler-taps-craig-green-new-collection/ Steve Salter, 2017, https://i-d.vice.com/en_au/article/mbb7yq/craig-green-autumn-winter-17-campaign-interview Ted Stansfield, 2016, http://www.dazeddigital.com/fashion/article/31185/1/craig-green-wins-bfc-gq-designer-menswear-fund The Red List, https://theredlist.com/wiki-2-23-1249-244970-view-2010s-6-profile-craig-green-1.html Thorstein Veblen, 1899, Novel, “The Theory of the Leisure Class”, Macmillan
Above Images: ChloĂŠ Le Drezen, 2016