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“ The Changing Landscape of Luxury Fashion in the Digital Age and the Quest for the Millennial Consumer


contents 04

Introduction

26

Bricks versus Clicks

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A Fresh Look for Flannels

106

Illustrations

06

The Kings of Couture

32

Meet the Millenials

62

The Consumer

109

References

10

Exclusively for Everybody

46

A Future for Flannels

68

Route to Consumer

113

Bibliography

20

Luxury 2.0

52

The Big Idea

100

Final Thoughts

122

Appendix

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LUXURY IN THE MODERN ERA

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elective and exclusive - this is how the concept of luxury, and luxury fashion in particular was traditionally defined (Chevalier and Mazzalovo, 2008). However, luxury is no longer the preserve of the wealthy and elite. The following report is an examination of the challenges faced by exclusive, luxury fashion brands - many of whom were established in the previous century - and the implications of today’s digital and social media landscape on their approach to sales and marketing. The paradox here is that, whilst new technology has enabled brands in other sectors to expand and grow globally - by satisfying the ‘want it, see it, buy it now’ needs of today’s consumer; this behaviour is very much at odds with the values of an industry whose origins were founded on the principles of bespoke and couture. As Pauline Brown, former chairwoman of LVMH, puts it; “When we talk about luxury, we have a problem. When people talk about luxury goods, we are talking about heritage, about a traditional way of storytelling, and all

of that is very antithetical to innovation, to technology, to efficiency” (Wells, 2017). The report will look in detail at the emergence and impact of the so called ‘Millennial’ consumer (those reaching adulthood in the early 21st century) and how their behaviour in particular is affecting brands today. After a close examination of the challenges and opportunities these factors create, the report goes on to outline a proposed marketing/brand strategy for British luxury retailer, Flannels. Established in the late 1970s, Flannels is a prime example of a brand operating in the luxury fashion sector that has had to radically rethink its approach - in order to meet the needs of today’s increasingly demanding consumer. The concepts and ideas presented herein, and in the accompanying visual guidelines and final year show, are designed to help Flannels compete successfully in this dynamic, challenging market and, ultimately, attract the new wave of millennial consumer.

introduction 05


“ From Louis XIV to Louis Vuitton: A brief history of luxury fashion

from louis xiv to louis v


THE KINGS OF COUTURE

fig. 1: Louis Vuitton, 2014

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he luxury fashion industry is one that has been built on the premise of exclusivity, unattainability and bespoke products and services (Lapka, 2016). It was once considered a niche sector, only available to society’s rich and elite. According to Berry (1994), luxury goods have often been classified as “objects of desire”, an association which was considered pernicious and harmful to individuals and society during the eighteenth century. It was not until the nineteenth century that the luxury fashion industry was considered to be a respectable business. The catalyst for this was Louis XIV. The King of France lived an extravagant lifestyle and, due to his penchant for the very best things money could buy, effectively created the luxury industry. This consequently reshaped France’s economic standing as Louis XIV believed luxury was a necessity in maintaining the economic health of the country and also the survival of the monarchy (Chrisman-Campbell, 2015). The “King of Couture” was the ultimate arbiter of style and the effect he had on France’s culture still endures today - earning Paris its rightful status as fashion capital of the world and the birthplace of luxury. This was the catalyst that sparked the creation of many Parisian-based luxury fashion brands, starting in 1854 with the establishment of Louis Vuitton which is credited as being the first luxury brand of its kind. Vuitton was then followed by the likes of Hermès and Cartier who were subsequently succeeded by Givenchy, Chanel and Dior in the twentieth century. During this period, luxury wasn’t simply a product, but rather “it denoted a history of tradition, superior quality, and often a pampered buying experience” (Thomas, 2007). Luxury products once 08

prided themselves on their family heritage, however, this completely altered during the 1980s as luxury brands were acquired by non-family owned conglomerates. The likes of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton and Richemont completely transformed luxury, taking it from a comparative niche concern and turning it into a billion dollar industry - where brand names became incredibly lucrative financial assets (Dauxe Consulting, 2013). It was the move from largely eponymous brands to corporate ownership that effectively caused the luxury goods industry to become more commoditised. Consumers beyond the super-wealthy were able to buy into luxury brands for the first time, whether this be through the purchase of a £2,500 Chanel 2.55 handbag or a £50 bottle of No. 5 perfume. During the 1950s, Galbraith argued society as a whole had become affluent as the majority of families could afford items previously considered to be luxuries; such as modern appliances and cars. Dewey interprets from this that, “As society becomes more affluent, private business must create consumer wants through advertising to create an artificial demand for products beyond the individual’s basic needs” (2009). This principle remains true today as the notion of a “basic need” is very much questionable within today’s society. Subsequently, definitions of luxury have become contentious - as standards of living increase, so do consumer expectations. This has coincided with huge technological developments within society. For example, twenty years ago, having a mobile phone was considered to be a luxury, even a status symbol. Today however, having a mobile phone is perceived to be a basic necessity (Rabo, 2016). As technology has advanced, so have the choices of today’s consumers - an outcome which seems only inevitable.

THE KINGS OF COUTURE

”The French invented the idea of luxe and have always been willing to pay for it“ Edmund White, 2015

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“ How modern culture and advancing technology are shaping the world of luxury retailing

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exclusively for everybody


EXCLUSIVELY FOR EVERYBODY

EXCLUSIVELY FOR EVERYBODY

fig. 2: Net-a-Porter Fall/Winter Campaign, 2017

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erhaps the biggest contributing factor to the democratisation of luxury was the introduction of e-commerce, as Oliver Rousteing comments, “Five years ago people said you can’t put luxury on the internet” (SHOWstudio, 2016). Despite such initial skepticism, technology has completely revolutionised the way we consume fashion. This began in 2001 with the establishment of Net-a-Porter, founded by Natalie Massanet. Previously, women had only bought clothes they had seen and touched. Net-a-Porter was the first of its kind to revolt against this “old luxury” approach by making high fashion commercially accessible, allowing customers to have a pair of Jimmy Choo’s delivered straight to their door - through just the click of a button. Critics believed this concept would never garner mainstream popularity as, according to Net-a-Porter’s Head of E-Commerce Ronan Tighe, “[Brands] wrongly assumed customers needed to touch and feel a product in order to want to buy it” (2016; appendix 7b). What has since become apparent is that luxury fashion is no different to other less indulgent purchases, with modern millennial consumers in particular seeing little or no distinction with what they buy online. Net-a-Porter has stood the test of time as, sixteen years since it went live, it continues to be a firm favourite with shoppers. Driven by constant product and service innovation, and technological development the brand has successfully implemented an ‘omnichannel’ strategy. Derived from the Latin “Omnis” for “every/ all” an omnichannel approach dictates that customers can interact with the brand across numerous digital or physical platforms and still experience the same core 12

brand values. In addition, Net-a-Porter cleverly utilises content and design not only to serve but to inspire women across all of the brand’s touch points including; ‘The Edit’, an online shop-able magazine, ‘Porter’ a physical glossy magazine and ‘The Net Set’, the brand’s very own social network. As a result, Net-a-Porter is the largest online luxury fashion retailer in the world and acquires a staggering six million visitors per month (Whatley, 2015). The brand has revolutionised the way in which luxury is consumed and, most telling of all, has sparked a plethora of copycat luxury e-commerce platforms such as Farfetch, Mode Operandi and Mytheresa. Responding to changes in society and technology is of paramount importance for brands, otherwise they face getting left behind, as Stephanie Phair, chief strategy officer at Farfetch, puts it; “Luxury brands have come around to [digital] over the past few years. It’s no longer a question of should they, but how should they” (Wells, 2017).

fig. 3: Celine Spring/Summer Campaign, 2017

”Five years ago people said you can’t put luxury on the internet“ Oliver Rousteing, 2015

One British brand with strong, traditional values has perhaps surprisingly been one of the industry’s digital pioneers. Burberry considers itself not just a fashion brand, but rather a media company too and continues to be a digital innovator within the industry. This has not been the case universally however as Céline, the French ready-to-wear and leather luxury goods brand, was famous for shunning social media altogether - very much the antithesis of Burberry. Until recently, the brand had no social media presence but this year made the decision to venture into the world of Instagram (Gustashaw, 2017) - a small feat in our digital world but a critical change for the luxury brand. 13


EXCLUSIVELY FOR EVERYBODY

EXCLUSIVELY FOR EVERYBODY

defining moments in pop culture & fashion

1956

1961

1991

2001

2006

2009

2014

2017

GRACE KELLY

TWIGGY

VERSACE FREEDOM 90’

NET-A-PORTER

THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA

ALEXA CHUNG

MARC JACOBS KENDALL JENNER

VETEMENTS

The inspiration behind the very first celebrity ‘It’ bag. The Kelly bag was first introduced in the 1930s but popularised by the princess as she used it to hide her pregnant belly from the paparazzi.

British model epitomised the swinging sixties and became not just a celebrity, but a cultural icon of fashion and pop culture.

Gianna Versace sent the ‘Supers’ down the runway, alluding to the infamous Freedom ‘90 music video by George Michael - an iconic moment in fashion and pop history.

Net-a-Porter, brainchild of Natalie Massenet, introduced luxury fashion to the internet - a complete revolution within fashion and e-commerce.

A parody ‘expose’ of the secluded world of highfashion, which established Anna Wintour‘s celebrity status and ice queen persona.

By the late noughties the fashion world had reached peak Alexa Chung - the ultimate “It girl”. Her impact on British fashion resulted in Mulberry dedicating a satchel bag in her honour.

Love them or hate them, the Kardashians managed to infiltrate the high fashion runway when Marc Jacobs made the controversial decision to feature Kendall Jenner in his Fall 2014 show.

Vetements’ satirical designs are the ultimate clash of luxury and pop culture. A Titanic hoodie and Juicy Couture-inspired velour tracksuit, anyone?

fig. 4: Pop Culture & Fashion Time Line, 2017

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EXCLUSIVELY FOR EVERYBODY

EXCLUSIVELY FOR EVERYBODY

top of the shops

fig. 5: Anya Hindmarch Counter Culture, 2014

The other major change within the luxury industry has been the merging of fashion and pop culture. Both industries are very much reliant on one another for survival - celebrity culture feeds fashion and vice versa. Fashion writer Martin Lerma comments, “Fashion has become a part of pop culture in a way that it has never been before and buying habits have changed dramatically as a result of technology, and brands are woefully behind in catching up” (2017; appendix 7a). Whilst this shift towards pop culture has been relatively slow, it is a factor that has been crucial in democratising the luxury industry and dramatically altering the way fashion is consumed. The fusion of luxury fashion and pop is the biggest statement a premium brand can make to say it is relevant to everyone – not just the privileged few – a theme emphasised by mainstream media. Vogue covers star are no longer restricted to high-fashion models but rather “It girls”, actresses and pop stars (fig. 6). Our obsession with celebrity culture and social media has blurred the notions of who is considered a fashion professional and who is a celebrity, there is no longer a distinction between the two which, according to Lerma has been “instrumental in bringing fashion into the mainstream” (2017). The industry has been made more visible through parody films such as ‘The Devil 16

Wears Prada’ resulting in an increased interest in the closed-off industry and the individuals who work within it. The medium of film sheds light onto those who would otherwise remain behind closed doors, effectively turning the likes of Anna Wintour into celebrities. A brand which has fully embraced the potential of pop culture in fashion and exploited it for its own gain is Tommy Hilfiger. Hilfiger has recognised the need to respond to culture and changing consumer behaviour, “I’ve always been inspired by pop culture from the aspect of fashion, art, entertainment and, today, social media and celebrity. Those are the drivers that our company is fuelled by. It’s really about listening to the consumer and being able to mould and shape our business around consumer needs through pop culture” (Sherman, 2016). This is most evident in his #TOMMYNOW 2016 Autumn runway show - a response to the new luxury world we now find ourselves in, catering to the changing consumer buying behaviours and technological advancements within the industry.

fig. 4

fig. 6: Kim & Kanye Vogue Cover, 2014

Ultimately, even those brands that have been slow to adopt any digital capabilities have, instead, found themselves succumbing to pop culture in some way or another, realising they can, for the short-term at least, hide from one of the market’s two primary drivers – but not both. 17


fig. 7: Tommy x Gigi, 2016

fig. 8: Tommy Pier, 2016


“ Online, off-line, through-the-line: We want it all and we want it now

luxury 2.0


LUXURY 2.0

LUXURY 2.0

the brits are coming

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espite previous predictions of strong growth for the sector (from 4% to 6%), 2016 was a turbulent year for fashion as it encountered a number of economic and social challenges; China’s volatile economy, political shifts in the UK and US and terrorist threats on key tourist cities (appendix 6). Achim Berg, a leader of McKinsey’s apparel, fashion and luxury practice says “The key message is that 2016 was a really bad year for the industry, probably the worst one since the financial crisis. That was especially true for the luxury part of the industry, which was surprising because we all knew 2016 was bad, but we didn’t expect it would be that bad” (2017). However, as if to underscore the sector’s resilience, the luxury industry is expected to grow from circa $225 billion - $295 billion by 2020 (Bain & Company, 2016), placing it amongst some of the strongest performing business sectors globally. What’s more, political and financial uncertainty are not always bad for business. In an unforeseen move, the UK has now become the “go-to” destination for luxury shopping as it is currently the world’s most affordable luxury market (Hendriksz, 2016). Brexit and the weaker pound have been the catalyst of this shift resulting in a boom within the UK luxury goods sector. Currently worth over £32 billion, luxury goods account for 8 percent of total UK exports and sales are growing at a rate of more than 10 percent every year (Ward, 2016). Whilst this has been driven in the short-term by the financial climate, such bullish growth is also due, in no small part, to British designers - Stella McCartney, Vivienne Westwood, Alexander McQueen and others - whose labels have been standard bearers for brand GB for many years.

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fig. 9: Burberry Spring/Summer Campaign, 2014

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LUXURY 2.0

LUXURY 2.0

a brave new world As a result of globalisation, economic shifts within the luxury industry and the emergence of a new ‘superconsumer’, (see later; ‘Meet the Millennials’), we are entering an entirely new luxury world. Luxury came in two waves; the first of which brought luxury fashion to the mass market via the online world. The second and current wave is concentrated around convenience, personalisation and rich buying experiences (Das, 2016). As consumers now use physical and online brand access interchangeably we are introduced to the concept of the ‘Digital Luxury Playground’ (Solca, 2015). The ubiquitous nature of digital has given rise to commerce in multiple formats, ranging from e-commerce, mobile and social. These are reshaping the retail landscape, resulting in an “always on” and fluid approach to shopping (Levey, 2016). Today’s luxury consumers demand seamless pathways to purchase through multiple touch points for ultimate convenience (appendix 5). According to YOOX Net-aPorter’s CIO, Alex Alexander, the luxury retail industry is at a “pinnacle point” where all these things are coming together and are radically transforming the sector (Rossi, 2016). Thus, the big opportunity and challenge for luxury brands is how to exploit the possibilities offered by digitalisation, e-commerce, omnichannel integration and in-store experiences (Business of Fashion and McKinsey & Company, 2016). Perhaps not surprisingly, the key challenge facing the luxury sector is changing consumer behaviours - luxury shoppers are now increasingly demanding, shrewd and less predictable as a result of new technologies (Business of Fashion, 2016). Despite the current fruitful state of the luxury industry, particularly within the UK, many brands have been struggling to embrace the new digital reality and balance this with their offline strategy – as they are more interested in maintaining an element of exclusivity. This has created a gap between what consumers are looking for and what luxury brands are delivering. “The question is no longer if and when luxury brands should embrace the digital opportunity, but how they should go about doing it” (Remy, Catena and Durand-Servoingt, 2015). fig. 10: Net-a-Porter Interactive Exhibit, 2016

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“ How are luxury consumers buying and where is the opportunity?

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bricks versus clicks


BRICKS VERSUS CLICKS

BRICKS VERSUS CLICKS

fig. 11: Chanel Rue Cambon Boutique, 2013

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echnological advancements and changes in consumer buying behaviour has opened the conversation regarding the importance of digital versus in-store experiences. Whilst the current buzzword within the retail industry is “omnichannel”, is there a clear breadwinner between online and in-store luxury sales? Since the introduction of e-commerce to the high-fashion world, the trend for physical and digital retailing has continued to oscillate. In the past, physical retail environments have always been the number one priority for luxury brands, choosing to focus their attention on creating outstanding flagship stores with exceptional customer service. Consumers have traditionally preferred “try before you buy”, particularly when parting with a vast some of money for a designer item, making a physical store presence advantageous (Fernandez, 2017). Thus, when the world was introduced to e-commerce, luxury brands were naturally hesitant to embrace digital due to fears that this would sound the death knell for traditional bricks-and-mortar retailing (Shearman, 2014), which had traditionally been the most fundamental aspect of their brand. In an interview with e-commerce Merchandising Manager at Anya Hindmarch, Amy Sillince, comments

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that brands also “[feared] not being able to translate luxury online” (2017; appendix 7c). These concerns illustrate why luxury brands have been slow in adopting new and emerging technologies as, in today’s world “brands don’t yet understand that speed is luxury and people gravitate toward online shopping because it allows them to do other things simultaneously” (Lerma, 2017). However, he goes on to say that, “[e-commerce] can never replace a phenomenal instore experience but the infrastructure must exist in the digital realm as well so that the brand ethos is translated seamlessly” (2017; appendix 7a) - the two must co-exist. Although online sales of luxury brands have doubled over the past five years they account for just 6 percent of the luxury goods market (Bloomberg Media, 2016) and, for the foreseeable future, the vast majority of sales will still happen in physical stores (Fernandez, 2017). In fact, 75 percent of luxury purchases will still occur in a physical store by 2025 (Parisi, 2017). This reinforces the reality that digital is very much just the tip of the iceberg, forming an integral part in a much wider retail strategy and brands need to focus their efforts both online and offline.

”E-commerce can never replace a phenomenal instore experience“ Martin Lerma, 2017

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BRICKS VERSUS CLICKS

The need for a seamless merging of physical and digital is the reason why department store retailers are struggling of late, as Lerma comments, “Individual brands can now team with new companies that specialise in this kind of digital transaction and the logistics that go with it enabling that brand to have far more control over its image and customer experience” (2017; appendix 7a). This is a considerable threat for multi-brand retailers as innovative stand-alone brands, such as Gucci, appear to be excelling by drawing in consumers with a “clever multimedia experience” (Centric Digital, 2016) which provides a wealth of content and consistently communicates a strong brand image across all its platforms. Gucci has reaped the rewards of implementing this strategy - last year the brand saw an astounding 17 percent rise in sales (Stothard and Thomas, 2016). It is now more important than ever to merge both the online and offline worlds for the ultimate consumer experience. According to Wittig, a “two-way communication between luxury brands and customers is now possible. Bricks and mortar stores give customers the opportunity to experience the brand’s philosophy, identity and values, whereas the internet has generated new opportunities for storytelling” (2014). This can be further explained by the framing theory as Goffman suggests how something is presented to an audience, otherwise known as ‘the frame’, influences the choices that they make (1986). This relates to the concept of ‘art without a frame’ in that the

BRICKS VERSUS CLICKS

frame helps to create value. In terms of luxury, the frame has traditionally been flagship stores or window displays. Today the frame is increasingly digital, consequently it is more important than ever for brands to convey value and their image both physically and digitally as consumers value both and use online and offline worlds interchangeably. Consumers tend to research online and buy offline - 69 percent surveyed said they research specific products online first before buying a product within store (appendix 9a). This is an overall trend within the sector as 60 percent of in store purchases are preceded by online searches (Solca, 2015) and nearly half of all luxury goods buying decisions are influenced by what consumers hear or see online (Schmidt et al, 2015). Additionally, British consumers are more likely to use search engines more than any other luxury consumers to find specific products (Schmidt et al, 2015). This notion is reinforced through the comparison of third party luxury e-commerce platforms, such as Net-a-Porter, Matches Fashion and Selfridges, as it is evident that consumers are directed to these websites as a result of searching for a specific product or brand (SimilarWeb, 2017). It seems that despite its growth, digital is still a complementary channel and not a replacement for bricks and mortar, but (luxury) brands ignore this at their peril as the emergence of a new ‘super-consumer’ threatens to change the game forever for everyone…

fig. 12: Gucci Website, 2017

fig. 13: Gucci Website, 2017

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“ Young, rich and unpredictable: How Generation Y are revolutionising luxury

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meet the millennials


�By 2035, millennials will have the potential to become the largest spending generation in history“ Gabrielle Rein, 2016

fig. 14: Millennials Front Row at Dolce & Gabbana, 2016


MEET THE MILLENNIALS

MEET THE MILLENNIALS

FACTS & STATS

2.3 billion millennials are alive today

A

s if the digital and retail revolution within the luxury industry were not enough to contend with, these seismic shifts also coincide with a huge demographic change - the emergence of Generation ‘Y’ or, as they are more commonly referred to, the millennials.

2020 the year they will hit their peak earning years

Millennials were born between the years 1980 to 2000 and there an estimated 2.3 billion alive today - almost twice as many as the 1.2 billion baby boomers (WilliamsGrut, 2017) which for so long have proved the target for brands across most sectors due to their high levels of disposable income and, compared to their forebears, high standard of living. They will have entered their peak earning years by 2020 and will have high levels of disposable income to spend on luxury goods. Most importantly, to this generation, luxury is not restricted to high-end clothing and accessories, but extends to luxury experiences. They expect shopping to be an experience within itself (Rein, 2016) and will not accept any brand that does not meet their exacting high standards. As such, millennials are a notoriously difficult market to crack, but are nonetheless a highly lucrative one and a key element of luxury growth - a demographic not to be ignored (Deloitte, 2016). Millennial’s purchasing and media habits have completely disrupted the luxury industry. These consumers are digital natives, hyper-connected and incredibly ubiquitous (Scarton, 2016). Their consumer decision journey is nonlinear as they quickly access a huge amount of crossplatform content but still demand a seamless experience both online and offline, expecting to have an ongoing dialogue with brands (Ben-Shabat, 2015). Their erratic and spontaneous behaviour means they have zero brand loyalty, preferring multi-brand and department stores, such as Selfridges and Net-a-Porter, when purchasing designer fashion (Mintel, 2015). Such brands offer the utmost “convenience”, by stocking a multitude of brands under one roof. According to millennial consumers, they are “an ideal one stop shop for all of your luxury fashion needs - the perfect outlet that houses a plethora of high fashion brands with accessible price ranges dependent on the product you’re looking for” (appendix 9a).

52% use online retailers to purchase luxury fashion

fig. 15: Gigi Hadid Fendi Backstage Selfie, 2016

Most would presume that the generation who lives online buys online, whilst this much is true, millennials still value the importance of bricks and mortar stores. Due to their highly aspirational nature, they expect the very best service and demand a retail ‘experience’ that becomes as important as the purchase itself. In their view, luxury brands are the best placed to offer this and as such they view a physical visit to a store as a treat, not a chore. As one participant commented, “I find actually going to the luxury brands shops is fun, as it is part of the experience” (appendix 9a). Tighe further explains this notion by stating that, because millennials are less affluent,“a premium purchase is considered special and therefore they want to enjoy full experience of buying in a luxury store”. Furthermore, because they are younger “they have more time to visit stores” as opposed to the cash-rich and time-poor traditional luxury consumers (2016; appendix 7b).

48% prefer to buy in store

67% value an overall pleasant in store experience over quick and easy returns

(appendix 9a)

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MEET THE MILLENNIALS

MEET THE MILLENNIALS

fig. 16: Dolce & Gabbana Spring/Summer Campaign, 2017

“The most successful brands have managed to connect with this audience through different verticals by harmoniously integrated digital strategies to evolve into store sales (Brinded, 2016). Eminent brands have attempted to win over this market and have begun to focus their efforts on millennials after realising their potential. Dolce & Gabbana’s Autumn/Winter 2017 runway show was an Insta-ready media panoply featuring millennial celebrities parading in Justin Bieber t-shirts. The brand’s most recent campaigns have been focused entirely on #DGMillennials and they continue to jockey for the demographic’s market share, labelling them “young influencers who, thanks to their discerning style and Instagram prowess, are challenging the norms of contemporary communication” (Dolce & Gabbana, 2017). Fendi has also decided to court a millennial audience by developing a new digital media platform ‘F is for Fendi’, as a way of communicating directly with this demographic (Jones, 2017). Some brands feel like this is a futile endeavour because, today, most young millennials remain aspirational luxury buyers (Jaekel, 2017), without the financial wherewithal to actually buy. However, by making such efforts to connect now, before the group reaches its peak spending power, the more edgy and digital-savvy luxury brands will be well placed for long-term success – ready to capitalise when this audience reaches financial maturity.

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fig. 18: Dolce & Gabbana Millennials Collage, 2017

fig. 17: Dolce & Gabbana Fall/Winter 2017

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fig. 19: F is For Fendi, 2017

fig. 20: F is for Fendi, 2017


MEET THE MILLENNIALS

”Millennials seek out modernity and contemporary relevance, preferring content that is innovative and inspirational“ Tammy Smulders, 2016

MEET THE MILLENNIALS

Overall, it seems that the main issue for luxury multibrands, whose heritage is rooted in physical retailing, is a matter of consistency and ensuring brand image is translated successfully offline and online. Whilst there is an obvious conflict between the traditional approach of luxury fashion brands and emerging new media, the benefit of being a long-established (cashrich) brand is that they have the power to hire talented creatives to help convey their image consistently and well across all of the brand’s communication channels. The “Gucci image”, for example resonates with millennial consumers, particularly via new media such as Instagram because it remains authentic and true to type. This is true of most of the luxury brands - Burberry, Gucci and Dior etc. - who have been successful in engaging consumers online (appendix 9e). Whilst it is difficult for multi-retailer and department stores to compete with this, as previously mentioned, they have an edge over mono brands, stocking a huge choice of labels that millennials can pick and choose from. However, many of these brands have been hesitant to refresh their brand image in order to appeal to this

fig. 21: Mean Girls x Vetements, 2016

new demographic. As Boykiv, states, “[brands] don’t need to deviate from heritage values, they can perform a brand audit among millennials and find new angles of the brand story to engage these consumers (2016). British luxury retailer, Browns, recently underwent a rebrand for the first time in forty years (Lyssens, 2016). Updates were made to the brand’s logo, website and store to create a seamless and integrated experience, with a more youthful edge. The brand has since collaborated with several Insta-famous artists, such as Benjamin Siedler, who has created a personalised artwork for the brand’s e-commerce platform. More recently, Browns launched their #CoolToBeKind campaign, in collaboration with street artist Andy Leek, the creative behind ‘Notes to Strangers’ (Conti, 2017). These small steps will no doubt help the brand to resonate with a younger audience and bring them through its doors.

fig. 22: Browns #CoolToBeKind, 2017

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Millennials seek out modernity and contemporary relevance, preferring content that is innovative and inspirational (Smulders, 2016). “Developing creative content is key and crucial in shifting perception from being luxury and therefore out of reach, into the hands of the powerful millennial audience” (Tan, 2017). Brands need re-shape the online experience to complement the bricks-and-mortar experience and vice versa. This should be done by creating a seamless consumer journey, delivering a consistent brand image, developing engaging content and producing beautiful packaging which increases tangibility - for the ‘whole package’ experience (Sharma, 2016).

fig. 23: Browns Re-brand, 2016

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key insights ”Traditional values and new media can co-exist - it’s consistency that counts“ Luxury fashion brands are facing the biggest challenge of their four hundred years plus history. Digital and social media, increasingly demanding consumers and ongoing globalization mean brands are facing pressure they would never imagined possible even ten years ago. Although, as highlighted, many of the biggest luxury brand names are now owned and run by large corporations, the values that shaped them; bespoke products and individual service are as important today as ever before. The challenge is how to deliver these core values consistently and on a large scale. Embracing new and emerging media will be critical for brands to succeed, those that don’t run the risk of being ignored, especially by an emerging group of consumers whose shared opinions and collective spending power could determine their fate.

fig. 24: Backstage at Victoria’s Secret Show, 2015

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“ From Saint Laurent to Sports Direct: Can the failing premium retail brand be rescued?

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a future for flannels


A FUTURE FOR FLANNELS

A FUTURE FOR FLANNELS

fig. 25 fig. 25: Flannels Nottingham, 2017

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ritish premium luxury retailer, Flannels, was established in 1976 by Neil Prosser, beginning life as a menswear store in Cheshire. Prosser nurtured the concept of quality customer service alongside high fashion designer product, introducing major UK and international designers to the North West for the very first time (Flannels, 2017). The brand now has stores in several major cities including Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool, Nottingham and Leeds. Flannels launched their own e-commerce platform, as an extension of the brand, in 2007 offering current season pieces that were available in-store, as well as a designer clearance selection. However, in recent years, the brand has been suffering. In 2011 Flannels suffered a loss of £310,450 and, as result, was forced to close many of its stores (Chesters, 2012). The following year Sports Direct, controlled by Mike Ashley, bought a majority 51% stake in Flannels, in order to “expand its premium lifestyle division” (Anon, 2012), as trading at its core Sports Direct stores suffered.

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Last year, the brand’s turnover was down by 19.9 percent as well as traffic share to the website, which was down by 13.43% (DueDil, 2017). In comparison to its competitors, Flannels appears to be falling short compared to the likes of Net-a-Porter, Matches Fashion and Selfridges, ranking far below them in terms of traffic share (appendix 9e). Whilst these brands have recognised the need for innovation, it appears that Flannels has become stagnant. Whilst Net-a-Porter continues to attract a young audience (Tan, 2017), primary research indicates that Flannels is struggling to engage with this core demographic as survey results showed that 50 percent of luxury millennial consumers were unaware of the brand and had not shopped with them (appendix 9d). For those that were aware of Flannels, common associations with the brand were largely negative: “Personally, Flannels to me feels a lot ‘chavier’ than what its original purpose was intended for” (appendix 9a). As the brand’s heritage originates from Cheshire and the “golden triangle”, it has also been associated with footballer’s wives (Jones, 2016). Naturally, this combination and its association with Sports Direct have diminished the brand’s luxury image and status.

fig. 26: Flannels Sunderland, 2016

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A FUTURE FOR FLANNELS

fig. 27: Flannels Plymouth, 2016

Thus, there is a disconnect between Flannels and millennial consumers, despite the brand stocking labels which appeal to a younger demographic, there is the misconception that the brand sell “last season” stock (Pierrepont, 2017; appendix 10c). Consumers also labelled Flannels “boring” stating that the branding “wouldn’t draw you in if you didn’t know the brand’s status beforehand” (appendix 9d). Consumers also felt the overall look of Flannels is very “masculine”, reinforced through ethnographic research which indicates the brand and its aesthetic is predominately aimed at men (appendix 9f). Additionally, the brand’s in-store experience was rated poorly and consumers have had “better experiences in better quality clothes stores” (appendix 9d). As a result, it appears Flannels needs to focus more on both genders and improve its in-store experience in order to bring in the fashionable millennial luxury consumers and to compete within the luxury market. Despite its shortcomings, Flannels has all the right capabilities to appeal to millennials. Customers praised the brand for its broad selection of designers, wide price architecture and its convenient location, allowing 50

them to access luxury on the high street (appendix 9d). Therefore, Flannels possesses great potential, especially after its recent acquisition of a £108 million flagship store on Oxford Street (Bowden, 2016). Previously, the brand has focused its efforts on conquering the North, choosing to shy away from London, despite its status as the pinnacle destination for luxury shopping. Therefore, a new strategy and a refreshed look is imperative in order for Flannels to break the South and to comply with the Oxford Street aesthetic. During the course of this investigation, www.flannels.com underwent a re-design, showcasing an improved aesthetic and user-interface. This proves that the brand recognises it needs to change in order to engage with a new, digitalsavvy younger audience. This is certainly possible with the right marketing and PR - an important driver of growth for luxury brands. Lack of brand investment, and a clear e-commerce strategy combined with low investment in the retail estate - especially a flagship store - are the main reasons as to why luxury brands have suffered in the past. This also indicates what could drive future growth of British luxury brands – and what would help overcome the hurdles they currently face (Berg, Brantberg and Zaharieva 2016).

A FUTURE FOR FLANNELS

”For some reason, there’s this association with Flannels that they are old fashioned“ Tom Pierrepont, 2017

51


“ Reposition the luxury retail fashion brand Flannels to attract digital-savvy, millennial consumers

�

the big idea


THE BIG IDEA

THE BIG IDEA

objectives:

why?

• Rejuvenate the Flannels brand and make it relevant to a new millennial audience • Develop a marketing and brand strategy to attract millennial consumers • Improve the brand’s saliency across its target groups.

strategy: • Establish a new youthful aesthetic and tone of voice for the brand • Create a seamless consumer journey, both online and offline • Deliver an omnichannel, ‘always-on’ customer experience.

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• The big idea works in relation to my key insights from the previously stated research. I tested this idea using multiple techniques including brainstorming (appendix 10a). A SWOT analysis was also conducted to validate my hypothesis (appendix 10c). • Research shows that consumers are dissatisfied with Flannels and the brand risks falling short of its competitors by failing to engage with a millennial audience. However, as the brand has recently been purchased by a large corporation, it has the money and resources to invest in a new brand strategy - so now is the time to act.

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a fresh look for flannels


A FRESH LOOK FOR FLANNELS

A FRESH LOOK FOR FLANNELS

hey, good lookin’

fig. 28: Flannels Visual Inspiration, 2017

fig. 29: Flannels Visual Inspiration, 2017

The first step in repositioning Flannels for a millennial audience is creating a new brand identity. In order to do so, the brand will partner with creative agency Wednesday. Wednesday specialises in the fashion, luxury and retail sectors and has a clientele of high end labels, such as Calvin Klein, Versus Versace, and Proenza Schouler. Branding for these clients is contemporary, consistently distinct and always commercially relevant. The agency will therefore be highly complementary for Flannels and will have the ability to initiate a modern, luxurious and highly professional branding system. Depicted is visual inspiration for the new brand identity. An alteration to the colour palette is needed as the 58

brand’s logo and collateral was purely monochromatic. The incorporation of pastel colours juxtaposes the predominately black visual codes and adds a youthful edge, coinciding with branding colour trends which resonate with millennials - in particular, “millennial pink” (Schwartzberg, 2017). Candy coloured hues are reminiscent of pick and mix sweets and liquorice all-sorts, which coincide with Flannels’ status as a multibrand retailer, allowing consumers to pick and choose from a broad range of designers. Additionally, graphical shapes have been incorporated using a circular motif to encase the brand’s logo, also symbolising how Flannels is a container for the myriad of brands it has to offer. 59


A FRESH LOOK FOR FLANNELS

A FRESH LOOK FOR FLANNELS

just my type

heart & soul Luxurious

ay Pl

Se le ct

e iv

ful

fig. Flannels Typography, 2017

idual v i Ind

Con t e m p o r a ry

Re f i n e

d

60

sible ces Ac

The typography has been updated to a friendly lowercase serif as opposed to the standoffish, capitalised sans-serif font originally used for the brand’s logo. Lowercase evokes more of an approachable and conversational tone of voice and symbolises the definition of the word “flannels”, which is “casual”, in order to appeal to a millennial audience. However, the serif font still evokes a sense of luxury and the date of establishment signifies the brand’s status as an established luxury retailer (see Flannels Visual Guidelines Creative Concept sketchbook for more details).

fig. 31: Brand Essence Model, 2017

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the consumer


THE CONSUMER

THE CONSUMER

the fickle fashionista

fig. 32: Consumer Profile, 2017

T

he consumer is broadly defined as a millennial, however, a more nuanced and ideal example of this consumer would be Heather LePrevost (appendix 11a). Heather is aged 20 and lives in Nottingham. She currently studies English Language and works part-time as a beauty consultant for Yves Saint Laurent. Her current income is spent on five star holidays and invested in small affordable luxuries such as handbags, accessories, jewellery and shoes. Unable to regularly afford high end labels, she mixes her luxury purchase with high street pieces from Zara and Whistles. She is a an aspirational luxury shopper, aspiring to own Chanel and Dolce & Gabanna in the future. In the meantime, her faux D&G lemon print swimsuit from Zara will do for her month long trip round Asia - who can tell the difference? She likes the convenience of being able to go into store when she has the time, or order online when she does not. She is busy yet constantly connected, with her phone glued to her hand 24/7. Post-purchase, she will immediately take a snapshot of her newest item for Instagram #treatyoself. Some may say the epitome of a “white girl”, but she doesn’t believe in labels - only the ones in her clothes. She demands freedom when shopping and is incredibly unpredictable and spontaneous with her brand preferences, which change from day to day. Give her the ultimate luxury - choice. 64

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THE CONSUMER

THE CONSUMER

saw it, bought it, over it EARLY MAJORITY

fig. 33: Consumer Profile, 2017

LATE MAJORITY

EARLY ADOPTERS

LAGGARDS INNOVATORS

fig. 34: Diffusion of Innovation, 2017

This consumer would fall in-between the early adopters and the early majority within Roger’s Diffusion of Innovations (Rogers, 2003). They are followers who are in influenced by mainstream fashions and the content they view on social media, but are driven by the desire for social prestige. They require seamlessness, convenience and their egos need to be rewarded with media coverage. (Robinson, 2012). Maintaining a relationship with these consumers is also integral due to their digital nativeness - they expect constant interaction from brands via a multitude of channels. This consumer is aware of Flannels but would not necessarily be their first 66

choice when shopping for luxury due to its reputation and current brand image (appendix 9d). As millennials have preference for multi-brand retailers, brands such as Net-a-Porter, Matches Fashion and Selfridges could be classified as competitors due to their established brand image and credentials (appendix 12a). Thus, in order for Flannels to connect with luxury millennial consumers, the brand must differentiate itself from the competition, through brand image, to engage the consumer and create a strategy which heightens brand awareness in order to make Flannels their number once choice when purchasing luxury. 67


route to consumer


ROUTE TO CONSUMER

ROUTE TO CONSUMER

the aim The primary objectives of the promotional strategy for Flannels are: • Increase brand awareness • Change consumer perceptions • Promote the opening of the new flagship store.

fig. 35: Flannels Valnetino Bag, 2017

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ROUTE TO CONSUMER

ROUTE TO CONSUMER

the perfect mix

I

n order to devise the most effective communication strategies to accomplish these objectives, a media consumption diary was produced. This helped build a cohesive picture of the consumer’s daily media habits (appendix 11b) and highlighted the most effective media channels to use. The findings of this research show that, during their daily routine, our consumer encounters a plethora of different media channels. It comes as no surprise that they are highly exposed to digital and social media and Instagram, with its visually-led, inspirational format, is a clear favourite. In addition to their reliance on social media and digital influencers, our audience also turns to special interest press occasionally, favouring high-end fashion magazines, and Vogue in particular. This is a highly regarded and prestigious source of information which our target group relies on to influence their style and brand choices (appendix 11a). It is important to utilise these channels when creating a promotional strategy for Flannels so the brand can connect with the consumer effectively and efficiently. The three core aspects of the millennial mindset are: uneasiness, urgency and uniqueness. Uneasiness refers to millennials being social shoppers, who share their desired items with peers to validate their choices. Urgency quite simply refers to the fact that millennials

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are quick to encounter and buy products, which means there is a narrower window of opportunity for brands and retailers to influence purchasing decisions. Finally, uniqueness refers to millennials’ need for personalisation as they crave products that align specifically to their own desires and values (D’Arpizio and Levato, 2017). All of these factors will be taken into consideration when creating a communications plan, to help position Flannels ‘front-of-mind’ with this discerning group. The promotional plan for Flannels will follow the earned, paid, owned, media model (Burcher, 2012) (appendix 12b) and will adopt integrated marketing communication methods to ensure all forms of communications are linked in a consistent and cohesive manner because “a unified message will have more impact than a myriad of disjointed messages” as, within our increasingly distracted society, a consistent message has a far greater chance of cutting through the noise and connecting with the millennials (Smith and Taylor, 2004) What’s more, establishing an appropriate tone-of- voice for the brand will be a critical step towards capturing the attention of our audience because how the brand ‘speaks’ is as important as what it actually says. Additionally, considering their average attention span is a mere eight seconds (Egan, 2016), a variety of succinct promotional strategies will be implemented pre-launch, launch and post-launch.

fig. 36: Consumer Touch Points, 2017

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ROUTE TO CONSUMER

ROUTE TO CONSUMER

marketing time line

june

july

august

september

NEW BRAND IDENTITY CREATED

SOCIAL MEDIA TEASERS

INFLUENCER MARKETING

LONDON FASHION WEEK

LOCATION MARKETING

DIRECT MARKETING WEBSITE RE-DESIGN LAUNCH

OXFORD STREET FLAGSHIP STORE LAUNCH PR & MEDIA COVERAGE

late-september

october

NEW IDENTITY IMPLEMENTED ACROSS ALL STORES

LOYALTY OFFERS AND NEWSLETTER

SOCIAL MEDIA ACTIVE PARTICIPATION

fig. 37: Marketing Time Line, 2017

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75


pre-launch


ROUTE TO CONSUMER

ROUTE TO CONSUMER

brand development As previously mentioned, despite its claims of being a “contemporary luxury retailer”, Flannels has failed to connect with a younger demographic. In order for Flannels to appeal to the consumer more effectively, a brand audit and image refresh is needed. Wednesday, a creative agency based in London, will be approached to perform a re-brand of the Flannels visual identity. Wednesday specialise in the fashion, luxury and retail sectors, and have a client base of high-end labels such as; Calvin Klein, Versus Versace, and Proenza Schouler. Branding for these clients is both contemporary and distinctive - exactly the sort of approach that would benefit Flannels. Part of the brief to Wednesday will be to create a comprehensive set of brand guidelines. This will help Flannels to maintain a consistent brand image across all communication channels, both online and offline, which will contribute to our objective of delivering a seamless consumer experience.

fig. 35

Brand guidelines play an integral role in managing a brand and the associations it generates. “For a brand to stay consistent and retain its integrity it needs guidelines for everyone who communicates about the brand to follow” (Harding, n.d.). By improving its brand image, Flannels can expect a wide range of benefits including improved consumer perception, increased marketing communication effectiveness and ultimately, greater customer loyalty (Hoffler and Keller, 2003). fig. 38: Visual Guidelines, 2017

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79


ROUTE TO CONSUMER

ROUTE TO CONSUMER

location, location, location To promote the opening of the Oxford Street store within London, Flannels’ new logo shall be implemented on the shop’s exterior in order to create a buzz prior to the store opening. The brand’s website will be displayed, as well as ‘#foundatflannels’ - an existing hash tag used by the brand (see more later). This will create interest in the shop opening and potentially drive traffic to the brand’s website whilst they eagerly await the store opening. As the flagship store will be located on Oxford Street, a busy tourist shopping destination, the use of tactical location marketing has the potential to reach a wide audience and attract new consumers, as Flannels has no stores or clientele based in London as of yet. By adopting this strategy, the consumer can be targeted during their commute or during their free time shopping, a time when their mind will be at rest and susceptible to new messages and marketing. This will be an inexpensive method of promotion and will play a key role in making consumers aware flagship store opening and location.

fig. 39: Oxford Street Store Exterior, 2017

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ROUTE TO CONSUMER

ROUTE TO CONSUMER

social media & e-marketing In comparison to its competitors, Flannels has a relatively small following on social media. The likes of Net-a-Porter has 2.8 million followers on Instagram, for example, and displays a strong visual identity which underpins all of their social media posts and communicates a consistent tone of voice. Therefore, social media will be used to promote Flannels’ new brand image and trail the opening of the new flagship store in London. By using targeted media, this will create millennial brand awareness and the brand should expect to see an increase in followers. By adopting a new visual identity and communicating in a fun and approachable tone of voice, this shall appeal to millennials. Instagram will play an integral role as 88 percent of millennials listed the platform among their top two social media channels (Smulders, 2016). Additionally, according to the consumer’s daily media habits, it was the most-used social media app (appendix 11b). Facebook will also be used to expose the new brand image and post details of the new store opening. However, it will not be a lead social media channel because millennials mainly see it as a resource to keep up to date with distant acquaintances - and do not engage with it regularly as they do not view it as a source of current news and information (appendix 11b). However, it is important to ensure the brand image is presented consistently across all media channels, so both channels will be used as part of a ‘drip-feed’ marketing strategy to reveal key messages over time. This ‘drip-feed’ technique will also apply to email and

@flannelswoman

20.8k 82

direct marketing which will be sent out to existing consumers to showcase the new branding and to update them about the flagship store opening. Multiple messages sent out over time will have more impact because each new message will build on the one before. According to Lewkowicz (2016), it can influence their choice to purchase (appendix 11b). All emails will be personalised, using information from the brand’s existing database, featuring the consumer’s name and items they have previously left in their basket or wish-list on the Flannels’ website. This will appeal to the “uniqueness” aspect of the millennial mindset as personalised content will be more engaging and help to build a personal connection between them and the brand.

fig. 40: Flannels Instagram Profile, 2017

Using social media and e-marketing together, will create high levels of consumer/brand interaction and encourage an immediate response from consumers. E-marketing is low-cost and very accountable, as all major broadcast email systems have built in tracking and analysis tools. This will show open rates, click-through rates (to the website) and how many emails have bounced or been marked as spam. This data will then be used to inform future e-marketing activity. Similarly, social activity will be monitored and measured. This can be done simply by tracking number of followers, likes, forwards and re-tweets and, budget permitting, a more sophisticated social media monitoring service, such as Pulsar, can provide very detailed feedback on how ‘Flannels’ or other key search terms are trending online.

@flannelsman

Flannels Fashion

@flannelsfashion

9k

86k

21.3k

fig. 41: Flannels Promotional E-mail, 2017

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ROUTE TO CONSUMER

ROUTE TO CONSUMER

e-commerce

fig. 43: Flannels Website Product Page, 2017

fig. 42: Flannels Website, 2017

Emails and social media posts will direct consumers to the Flannel’s website and app. Both platforms will feature options for consumers to share their potential purchases with friends via social media as, due to their deeprooted connection to mobile devices, millennials turn to technology to seek reassurance from peers when making a purchase (Bolton and Quinn, 2016). The website and the app will adopt the new branding to create a consistent overall brand image and the e-commerce platform will be redesigned to ensure shoppers receive the same quality service and personal attention online as they would in-store. All in all, these key developments will contribute toward a seamless brand journey, so desired by our target audience. Success can be measured through conversion rate as well as the amount of downloads the Flannels app receives on the app store. This strategy should be fairly low-cost as the technology is already in place - the aesthetic simply needs adjusting. fig. 44: Flannels App, 2017

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ROUTE TO CONSUMER

ROUTE TO CONSUMER

the influencers

fig. 45: Amelia Liana, 2016

fig. 46: Lydia Elise Millen, 2016

Over one third of millennial luxury consumers said they were influenced by celebrities and bloggers when making a purchase (appendix 9d). User-generated content is 35 percent more memorable and 50 percent more trusted than other types of media according to this demographic (Boykiv, 2016). Currently, Flannels brand is not affiliated with any popular fashion and lifestyle bloggers, which has been holding it back compared to its competitors, such as Net-a-Porter, who regularly partner with influencers to create relatable and engaging content for its social media platforms. Flannels would significantly benefit from influencer marketing to help it connect with a younger audience and increase its social media following. The brand currently has a mediocre social media following, as previously mentioned, so partnering with online influencers will help it increase its reach exponentially. Prior to the launch of the flagship store, chosen influencers will be sent selected pieces from Flannels, along with an exclusive press pack that explains what Flannels is trying

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fig. 47: Niomi Smart, 2015

to achieve and who the brand will appeal to. These will be individuals who are associated with luxury fashion such as Lydia Elsie Millen, Niomi Smart and Amelia Liana. Unboxing videos (where recipients literally unbox the goods sent to them live online), will also be an integral part of the pre-launch plan, as 62 percent of millennials watch unboxing videos online whilst researching a purchase (Donnelly, 2016). This also provides an opportunity to showcase the brand’s new visual identity via the packaging. These paid-for posts will feature the hash tag “Found at Flannels� which will increase brand awareness via improved social media and online visibility.

fig. 48: Lydia Elise Millen Flannels Ad, 2017

Whilst this form of marketing can be expensive, it can also be incredibly rewarding as, by tapping into influencers with a large, dedicated audience, it will allow Flannels to capitalise on the global media exposure they can offer.

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launch


ROUTE TO CONSUMER

ROUTE TO CONSUMER

flannels flagship

fig. 50: Flannels Swing Tag

fig. 49: Flannels Oxford Street Flagship, 2017

A primary issue the consumer has with Flannels is its underwhelming in-store experience (appendix 9d). Therefore, the Oxford Street flagship store will provide a spacious retail environment with great potential to experiment with in-store digital capabilities, which can then be implemented across all of Flannels’ stores should it be successful. To optimise the consumer shopping experience and brand engagement, mobile optimisation will be incredibly important. Millennials are increasingly turning to mobile technology to enhance their in-store experience as 96 percent of this demographic make purchases at stores at which they used their mobile devices to shop (Parisi, 2017). “The convergence of physical and digital continues to be important as consumers have come to expect an integrated experience allowing them to buy products through a variety of channels” (Howland, 2017).

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Therefore, within the store, items will feature branded Flannels swing tags featuring a QR code. This will enable consumers to scan the item on their mobile phone, which will bring up the item on the Flannels app offering the up-most convenience for consumers if a specific size has sold out or the customer wants to purchase the item at a later date - encourage future spending. The app will allow customers to share their purchases with friends and, using the #FoundatFlannels hash tag, share their most recent finds. Investing in in-store retail environments and technologies will be expensive, but as the brand has been taken over by a large corporation (Sports Direct) and invested over £100 million into the new Oxford Street store (Farrell, 2016), one would assume the brand would be able to budget for such expenditure.

fig. 51: Flannels In-store App, 2017

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ROUTE TO CONSUMER

ROUTE TO CONSUMER

party people

fig. 53: Laura Whitemore DJ, 2016

fig. 54: Niomi Smart, 2016

fig. 55: Jim Chapman, 2015

fig. 56: Celebrities with Goody Bags, 2017

fig. 52: Flannels Launch Event, 2017

To promote the opening of the flagship store, a launch event will be staged to provide an opportunity for influencers and press to interact and engage with the brand and with each other. Planned to coincide with the first week of London Fashion Week, the ‘Oxford Opening’ will be a huge opportunity to maximise interest and generate significant media and press coverage. Selected members of the press will be invited from publications such as Vogue, Elle and the Sunday Times Style magazine. Whilst the millennial consumer has a reliance on digital and social media, they still value the opinion of high-fashion magazines (appendix 11a).

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Influencers and celebrities who have partnered with the brand pre-launch will also be invited and they, as well as the media, will be given Flannels goody bags to encourage them to continue to post positive content on their respective (social) media channels using the #FoundatFlannels hash tag. They will also be encouraged to post content from the event during the night on Instagram and Snapchat. This will increase consumer interest and help to promote the brand without additional cost. Overall, the event is intended to help position Flannels= as a premium British and contemporary retailer.

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post-launch


ROUTE TO CONSUMER

ROUTE TO CONSUMER

sharing is caring

H

istorically, post-launch was the most important aspect of an event in terms of garnering coverage amongst the masses. The impact of digital has altered this completely, meaning this no longer the case. Events are now live-steamed and snap-chatted, thus coverage is instantaneous. Consumers can feel like they are part of the event as it is happening. Therefore, post-launch will have less emphasis as the most important factor will be building on brand advocates. This will be achieved through consumer’s actively participating with Flannels via social media. Consumers will be encouraged to hash tag their purchases, using #FoundatFlannels, in order to be featured/re-posted on the brand’s various social media channels. To encourage brand advocacy consumers need to remain active and feel connected and appreciated, when purchasing luxury, as though they are buying into a sense of community (Jones, 2017). This method will help to facilitate this in order to create a bond with consumers and provide Flannels with an influx of fresh content for their social media channels.

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fig. 57: #foundatflannels, 2017

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the consumer journey 8:00 AM

endorse

Receives email from Flannels about their updated image

awareness

10:30 AM Sees signage for the new shop during commute and visits Instagram page

1:00 PM

endorse

discovery

Visits the new website during lunch break, adds item to wish list

5:30 PM

engage

Sees content from the launch event and receives personalised email

10:00 PM

After seeing event coverage, the consumer visits the new store and uses mobile app when shopping. Posts new purchase on Instagram using the hashtag and the image is reposted on the brand’s social media. Loyalty is gained through regular email newsletters about new product releases and seasonal sales the consumer can exclusively shop before everyone else. Consumer becomes brand advocate and Flannels is their number one choice when shopping for luxury and continue to repurchase with the brand (appendix 12c).

Watches YouTube videos, influencers featuring the brand

fig. 58: Consumer Journey, 2017

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“ Evolution amongst the digital revolution is the key for long-term success

�

final thoughts


FINAL THOUGHTS

Power to the People: The new group of millennial ‘super’ consumer will become even more demanding as they age and gain more experience and wealth. Above all, millennials want choice and this is a huge opportunity, especially for multi-brand retailers to exploit. Ultimately, those brands that have already embraced technological change and are attuned to modern consumer needs are well placed to succeed for the next 100 years; those that resist could suffer the worst fate of any brand in any sector – that of being perceived as irrelevant by those they seek to attract and influence. Changing Media Means a Change of Approach: Digital and social media are at once an opportunity and a threat. On the one hand they offer the chance to communicate with millions of people, on the other they threaten to undermine the exclusive values that built these brands in the first place. Simply put, brands that want to succeed need to evolve and embrace the opportunities a digital world offers them. As we have explored, traditional values and modern communication mediums can co-exist. It’s less about the message itself and more about the consistency of message and, crucially, the experience across all platforms that counts. Get that right, and the future looks very bright indeed.

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illustrations Fig. 1: Lindbergh, P., 2014. The Spirit of Travel - Louis Vuitton [online image]. Available at: https://www. lvmh.com/houses/fashion-leather-goods/louis-vuitton/ [Accessed 20 April 2017]. Fig. 2: Harris, G., 2016. Net-a-Porter Fall/Winter Campaign, 2017 [online image]. Available at: http:// awake-smile.blogspot.co.uk/2016/08/ad-campaign-netporter-fallwinter.html [Accessed 18 April 2017]. Fig. 3: Chetrit, T., 2017. Celine Spring/Summer 2017 Campaign [online image]. Available at: https://www. celine.com/en/collections/spring/campaign [Accessed 30 April 2017]. Fig. 4: Own image, 2017. Pop Culture & Fashion Timeline. From left to right; Anon, 1956. Grace Kelly Hermés Bag [online image]. Available at: http://www.harpersbazaar.co.uk/fashion/ inside/news/g30060/fashion-moments-in-history-fromcoco-chanel-to-alexander-wang/ [Accessed 15 March 2017]. Betker, A., 1967. Twiggy [online image]. Available at: http://www.vogue.com/article/best-eyelashes-eyemakeup-for-holiday-parties [Accessed 15 March 2017]. Style.com, 1991. Versace Freedom 90’ Autumn/Winter [online image]. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=n1SpAepT8gM [Accessed 15 March 2017]. Anon, Net-a-Poter Packaging [online image]. Available at: http://justtoucheddown.com/?p=612 [Accessed 15 March 2017]. Adhav. L. and Feller, M., 2006. The Devil Wears Prada [online image]. Available at: http://www.cosmopolitan. com/entertainment/movies/a60776/devil-wears-pradatrivia/ [Accessed 15 March 2017]. Wallace, C., 2013. Mulberry Alexa Bag [online image]. Available at: http://littleplastichorses.over-blog. com/2013/11/alexa-chung-has-it.html [Accessed 15 March 2017]. Samotin, P., 2014. Kendall Jenner for Marc Jacobs [online image]. Available at: http://stylecaster.com/ kendall-jenner-marc-jacobs/ Antonioli, 2016. Vetements Titanic Hoodie [online image]. Available at: https://www.antonioli.eu/en/GB/ men/products/ss16tp16-blackprint Fig. 5: Mitchell, K., 2014. Anya Hindmarch Counter Culture [online image]. Available at: http://www. averysweetblog.com/2014/02/anya-hindmarch-counterculture.html [Accessed 18 April 2017]. Fig. 6: Leibovitz, A., 2014. Kim & Kanye Vogue Cover 106

illustrations [online image]. Available at: http://www.gossipcop. com/kim-kardashian-new-vogue-cover-without-kanyewest/ [Accessed 18 April 2017]. Fig. 7: Hilfiger, T., 2016. Gigi Hadid for Tommy Hilfiger [online image]. Available at: http://www.zhiboxs.com/ tommy-hilfiger-tommynow-fall-2016-women-fashion-show. html [Accessed 15 March 2017] Fig. 8: Hilfiger, T., 2016. Tommy Pier [online image]. Available at: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/ tommy-hilfiger-tommy-x-gigi-927148 [Accessed 15 March 2017]. Fig. 9: Testino, M., 2014. Burberry Spring/Summer Campaign [online image]. Available at: http:// www.starstyle.ph/2014/02/22/burberry-ss-2014-adcampaign-2/ [Accessed 18 April 2017]. Fig. 10: Big Motive, 2016. Net-a-Porter Interactive Exhibit at Art Basel, Miami [online image]. Available at: http:// bigmotive.com/projects/project/net-a-porter [Accessed 18 April 2017] Fig. 11: Anon., 2013. Chanel Boutique at 31 Rue Cambon [online image]. Available at: http://inside.chanel.com/ en/timeline/1918_31-rue-cambon [Accessed 15 March 2017]. Fig. 12: Gucci, 2017. Gucci Website [online image]. Available at: https://www.gucci.com [Accessed 15 March 2017]. Fig. 13: Gucci, 2017. Gucci Website [online image]. Available at: https://www.gucci.com [Accessed 15 March 2017]. Fig. 14: Lindig, S., 2016. Millennials Front Row at Gucci Spring 2017 Show [online image]. Available at: http:// www.elle.com/fashion/news/a39514/dolce-gabbanaspring-2017-front-row-millennials/ [Accessed 20 March 2017]. Fig. 15: Tsui, H., 2016. Gigi Hadid Selfie at Fendi Spring/ Summer 2017 [online image]. Available at: http://www. harpersbazaar.com.sg/54063/harrison-tsui-fendi-ss17backstage/ [Accessed 20 March 2017]. Fig. 16: Pagetti, F. and Dolce & Gabbana. Dolce & Gabbana Spring/Summer 2017 Campaign [online image]. Available at: http://lafaddist.com/2017/01/05/ dgmillennials-dolce-gabbana-spring-2017-campaign/ [Accessed 20 March 2017]. Fig. 17: Luu, C., 2017. Dolce & Gabbana Fall/Winter 2017 Justin Bieber T-shirt [online image]. Available at: http://www.refinery29.com/2017/02/142929/justinbieber-dolce-gabbana-milan-fashion-week [Accessed 20 March 2017].

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appendix 122

1

Critical Path

2

Cultural Calander

3

Tutorial Record Sheets

4

Methodology Table

5

Cartogram

6

PEST Analysis

7 a) b) c) d)

Expert Interviews: Martin Lerma Ronan Tighe Amy Sillince Attempted Contact

9 a) b) c) d) e) f) g)

Primary Research: Luxury Fashion Questionnaire Experiment Instagram Netography Flannels Questionnaire SimilarWeb Statistics Luxury E-Tailers Case Study Dolly Jones Lecture

10 a) b) c)

Big Idea: Brainstorms & Testing Consumer & Expert Interview; Tom Pierrepoint SWOT Analysis

11 a) b)

Consumer: Interview; Heather LePrevost Media Consumption Diary

12 a) b) c)

Route to Consumer: Perceptual Map Paid, Owned, Earned Media Model Loyalty Loop

13

Visual Draft Feedback

14 a) b) c)

Ethics: Consent Forms Ethical Clearance Declaration Form

123


1. critical path

2. cultural calander october

february

9th - 26th February 2017: You Say You Want a Revolution? Records and Rebels 1966-1970 - V&A

1st: An Evening with Alexandra Shulman, how to: Academy - CondĂŠ Nast College of Fashion & Design

15th October - 15th January 2017: Marguerite Humeau - Nottingham Contemporary

6th - 15th: Tokyo Trip

13th - 5th February 2017: The Vulgar Barbican

24th - 24th February 2018: Princess Diana: Her Fashion Story - Kensington Palace

17th - 21st: London Fashion Week

21st - 19th March 2017: Sprung a Leak 2016 - Tate Liverpool 24th - 16th November 2016: Mert & Marcus: Works 2001 - 2014 - Phillips

november

march

2nd - 12th March 2017: Hair by Sam McKnight - Somerset House

19th March - 1st January 2019: A History of Fashion in 100 Objects - Fashion Museum Bath

14th: Elsie Live Event - Antenna 23rd: Raw Print - The Lacehouse

25th March - 22nd October 2017: House Style - Chatsworth House

24th - 23rd April 2017: Fear and Love: Reactions to a Complex World - Design Museum

december

2nd - 6th: The Clothes Show - NEC Birmingham

january 18th - 22nd: London Art Fair - Business Design Centre

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may 11th - 13th Luxury Brand Show - London Biggin Hill Airport 26th - 1st October 2017: The World of Anna Sui - Fashion and Textile Museum 27th - 18th February 2018 : Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion - V&A

125


3. tutorial record sheets

126

127


128

129


4. methodology table

Method

130

Sample

Aim

Strengths

Weaknesses

Outcomes

Effectiveness

Online Questionnaire

50 consumers of luxury fashion, ages 18 - 50+

Gain insight into the general opinions of luxury fashion consumers and their purchasing and media habits, as well as identifying a potential gap/issue within the luxury market.

Large sample size, easy to conduct and provided quantitive data which was therefore easy to generalise. Participants answers highlighted issues to further investigate through secondary research.

Questions quite general and need to be more specific to gain more insightful and detailed answers. Need to specifically define what is meant by “luxury fashion” and the level of luxury as this meaning varied amongst participants. Questionnaire shared on Facebook resulting in a very broad sample and potentially less accurate from friends and family.

Correlation betweens consumer ages and their purchasing habits, younger participants purchased luxury more regularly and tend to research products before buying. Both online and in store shopping was favoured almost equally by all participants.

Effective starting point which highlighted key traits of luxury shoppers, however need to specifically define market level of luxury for more insightful answers during further research.

Interview

Ronan Tighe, Head of ECommerce at YOOX Net-aPorter

Gain insight from an industry professional within luxury and ecommerce sector and help to identify a gap or problem within the luxury market to direct further research.

Valued opinion from industry professional associated with a highly regarded luxury etailer. Provided a link to Neta-Porter’s five year plan which provided insightful information about the future of the company and ecommerce.

Questions were too detailed, making them difficult to answer as the participant was under time constraints, therefore would need to be shorter and more specific in hindsight.

Highlighted that customers don’t always need to touch objects to fuel desire for them to want to buy it. Also raised the issue that customers now don’t distinguish between online and offline, reinforcing the need for synergy across all platforms.

Overall fairly effective and very credible opinion from a prestigious luxury company to quote within project. However, not as insightful as initially hoped because of participants time constraints.

Experiment

30 participants between 18 and 25, men and women

Establish what luxury means to people and words most commonly associated with the term.

Easy to conduct, engaged System 1 thinking so participants answers were unprimed and provided qualitative data in contrast to initial questionnaire, therefore focusing on participants thoughts and feelings.

Created an artificial situation therefore natural human response difficult to measure and may not to be a truly honest answer. Participants may have also felt the need to please myself, as the conductor of the research.

Most common associations with luxury were; treat, high quality, special, one off.

Very effective and provided key words/ terminology to further research which should be implemented within my potential concepts and big idea.

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132

Ethnographic

16 shoppers at Flannels, Nottingham

Establish and visualise consumers of luxury fashion, in terms of age, gender and style, by noting who leaves the Flannels store having made a purchase.

Insightful results through observation, which was easy to conduct, enabling a ďŹ rsthand visualisation of luxury consumers and an insight into their purchasing habits.

Need to carry out the research for a longer period of time for more reliable results.

Predominate shoppers at Flannels were young consumers, around ages 18 - 25, which demonstrated millennial spending power. Shopping with groups of friends, a shared and enjoyable experience. Most seen carrying one bag, signiďŹ es a one off/ treat purchase.

Very useful method in gaining insight to the types of consumers who purchase luxury but would need to be carried out on a multitude of stores for increased accuracy.

Netography

Luxury brand Instragram accounts; Burberry, Gucci, Dior, Harvey Nichols, Net-aPorter and Matches Fashion

Investigate how luxury brands engage with consumers and encourage synergy and shop-ability.

Easy to conduct and the data could be easily measured by observing the amounts of new followers and likes each post received.

Research was conducted around the post-Christmas sale period, therefore most brands posts were more sales driven providing less reliable results.

Results showed that Gucci was most consistent in posting content, along with Net-a-Porter and Dior. These brands received the most likes and follows, demonstrating that consistency is key in engaging with consumers, particularly millennial Instagram users.

Effective method in showing how both luxury brands and luxury third party retailers use social media and how their strategies differ, highlighting which were most consistent and, as a result, most successful.

Case Study/ Deep Dive

Net-a-Porter Matches Farfetch Very Exclusive

Establish USPs of online luxury brands to potentially identify a gap in the market for my big idea.

Provided insight into how these companies operate and how they differentiates themselves. Also able to identify how they have adapted over the years to meet with the changing industry landscape.

For more accurate results consumer and expert opinion with regard to the brands would be needed, in order to more effectively establish their success.

Despite all being online luxury retailers, each brand had differing USPs and highlighted what is already being done within the luxury e-commerce market.

Very effective in gaining insight into established luxury e-commerce sites within the market and their company history.

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134

Interview

Amy Sillince, Ecommerce Merchandising Manager at Anya Hindmarch

Gain insight from an industry professional within luxury and ecommerce sector and test my potential big idea.

Valued opinion from industry professional who has worked with a multitude of luxury brands in developing their e-commerce. Provided very insightful and detailed answers.

May need to rethink my initial big idea as this could be too ambitious and futuristic as the technology is not yet developed to recreate the in store experience online. Advice is from purely an ecommerce perspective so answers may be potentially biased.

Many things to consider and possibilities which have yet to be explored. Has encouraged me to refine my big idea. Focusing purely on ecommerce does not allow me to explore different outcomes, too narrow an was contradicting some of my research.

Very effective method from a highly credible source within the luxury industry, providing detailed answers.

Ethnographic

Designer stores in Tokyo: Jimmy Choo, Dover Street Market, Beams, Prada, Marc Jacobs and Pendule

Investigate luxury brand’s in store environments experiences.

Gained more of a global perspective on how luxury brands operate. Sample also consisted of both brand flagship and designer department stores, providing a broader scope and reliable results.

Unable to take photos in most stores as it was against company policy. Images would’ve provided useful visuals for creative concept.

A welcoming and interactive environment would enhance experience, many stores felt empty and hostile. Interaction and personalisation is therefore very important, as well as packing and service which added to the overall luxury experience.

Effective method as being immersed within in store environments provided a contrast to earlier research which had predominately focused on just online experiences.

Interview

Martin Lerma, Editorial Fashion Writer and Consultant at Slate Studios New York

Obtain the opinion of a luxury expert, outside of the ecommerce industry and test my refined big idea.

Very detailed and knowledgable answers from a less digital and more global perspective, which has given my research more breadth and variety.

Personal opinion may be biased due to having worked with a number of luxury brands.

Highlighted that pop culture has shaped the luxury fashion industry and provided points for further contextual research. Provided good advice for my big idea and choosing a specific brand to focus on.

Extremely effective and incredibly helpful contact who is reliable to contact in the future for further guidance.

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136

Online Questionnaire

15 millennial luxury fashion consumers

Obtain the opinions of millennial luxury consumers about Flannels in order to test my big idea and gain further consumer and brand insight.

Easy to conduct amongst a fairly large sample size, provided quantitive and qualitative data.

Shared on Facebook so likely that friends and family have answered, could have provided potentially biased results. Some answers were less developed, therefore it would’ve been useful to speak to some of these consumers face to face.

General consensus that brand needs updating or refreshing as it lacks a high end image. Flannels needs more of the right marketing and many were unaware of the store and those that had encountered it were left underwhelmed by the experience

Very effective as I know have a brand to underpin my big idea so it is easier to obtain specific opinions of consumers.

Interview

Tom Pierrepont, Freelance Director of Photography

Test my big idea with a consumer of Flannels and an industry professional.

Tom has worked with a multitude of high fashion brands as is experience within the creative field. An ideal consumer archetype who shops at Flannels and other luxury brands. Awareness of the current industry, avid social media user, tapped in and very subjective.

Participant bias - talking face to face he may feel the need to agree with my idea as to not offend.

Highlighted Flannels pitfalls and identified other more successful luxury brands and how Flannels can learn from these Encouraged me to look into the sportswear sector for inspiration for innovative communication strategies.

Overall extremely effective method speaking to a consumer and expert directly, provided professional and commercial advice and opinion.

Interview

Heather In-depth consumer LeProvost, Luxury interview to identify Consumer the overall preferences of the core Flannels consumer.

A multitude of questions about a variety of subjects, outside of fashion helped to identify general consumer preferences to build a cohesive picture about the consumer.

Questions were very short and required one-word answers, therefore need to draw out further insight from these.

Highlighted favourite social media apps and touch points in order to create a specific route to consumer strategy when executing.

Effective method by speaking to the consumer directly.

Interview

Heather Obtain insights with LeProvost, Luxury regard to the Consumer consumer’s media consumption through a media diary.

Provided insights into the types of media channels used by the consumer throughout their everyday routine.

Participant may have not accurately filled out the media diary and could have forgotten to take note of all the touch points they came into contact with throughout the day. Therefore the diary may not be entirely accurate.

Highlighted the importance of social media in general when creating a route to consumer strategy. Instagram will play a key role in connecting with the consumer as they engaged with the platform the most.

The media diary method was effective order to gain an understanding of the consumer’s media habits.

137


DRIVERS

IMPACTS

CONSEQUENCES

FUTURES

5. cartogram

138 139


6. PEST analysis

7a) expert interview; martin lerma, editorial fashion writer and consultant

POLITICAL Brexit - uncertainity and instability within the UK Fear of terrorism, impacting fashion and tourism industry within France and other European cities US election

SOCIAL Consumers more demanding and savvy than ever before - need instant gratification “See now, buy now” and changes to the fashion calander

140

ECONOMIC Slowdown of China’s economic activity Millenials have biggest spending power, begnining to enter their peak earning years Fluctuations in the euro and pound - buying aborad is now less attrative

TECHNOLOGICAL Developments in virtual and augmented reality Luxury brands branching out into e-commerce for the first time Buzzword “omnichannel” - strategey to create a seamless consumer joruney

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143

143


1. How do you think the luxury fashion industry has changed within recent years? Have their been any defining moments in your opinion? 1. I think there are two critical changes that have had more impact than anything else--1) Fashion has become a part of pop culture in a way that it has never been before and 2) buying habits have changed dramatically as a result of technology and retailers/brands are woefully behind in catching up. To expand on point 1: I think the process of fashion becoming integrated with pop culture was slow to start but ended up having an outsized impact. If you look back to the early 2000s, as silly as it sounds, shows like Project Runway were instrumental in bringing fashion into the mainstream and made celebrities of designers like Michael Kors. Fashion-based films like The Devils Wears Prada became huge and entered popular canon while increasing curiosity about Anna Wintour and the fashion world in general. Though there had been fashion documentaries in the past (Catwalk and Unzipped in the 90s for just two examples) a new spate of them in that same early aughts period, like Valentino: The Last Emperor and The September Issue, made big critical and commercial splashes that brought increased attention to figures like Grace Coddington who had spent decades in relative obscurity. The same can be said of Karl Lagerfeld and the explosion of his presence after Signe Chanel and Lagerfeld Confidential, not to mention his collaboration with Coca-Cola and H&M. All of this changed the way average people consume fashion and pretty soon it was difficult to tell who was the celebrity and who was the fashion professional. When Marc Jacobs put Kendall Jenner in his Fall 2014 show, it was a critical shift because not only was fashion courting celebrity for endorsements or press coverage, but welcoming them into the most exclusive fashion circles as peers. I think this only increased the design houses’ focus on making things Instagram ready at the expense of genuine innovation. It’s also made the runways shows spectacles of flashing cameras and makeshift runways while the clothes themselves grow more tired. Point 2: Brands have been slow to embrace digital technology as a legitimate place to sell their goods. Some are simply old fashioned in their thinking, but others are having difficulty learning how to translate the luxury experience if a customer never enters a store. Chanel has been especially slow in this regard but they are finally preparing to have their garments available online. I think one thing brands don’t yet understand is that, in today’s world, speed is luxury. People gravitate toward online shopping because it allows them to do other things simultaneously. It can never replace a phenomenal instore experience but the infrastructure must exist in the digital realm as well so that the brand ethos is translated seamlessly. This is why department store retailers are struggling--individual brands can now team with new companies that specialize in this kind of digital transaction and the logistics that go with it enabling that brand to have far more control over its image and customer experience. 2. How important is it for luxury brands to remain relevant within today’s increasingly digital culture? 2. Very. But how that’s expressed is going to be different for every label. Comme des Garçons has a strong Instagram presence (as does Dover Street Market), but doesn’t really have a strong digital retail arm and, for now, that’s ok. It’s a way for people to feel connected and that’s the most critical thing for any brand. 3. Are there any particular luxury brands who you feel have managed to to this well - and if so

done this?

how have they

3. I think Manolo Blahnik is operating beautifully, or at least appears so. The revamped website with e-commerce that was done in collaboration with Farfetch looks fantastic, is easy to navigate and simply looks wonderful. Blahnik’s Instagram page is one of the best around with posts that are smart and witty or just glamorous and fun. And it all seems to be of a piece and not as segregated as it can be with other brands. The photography throughout is very consistent with rich colors and brilliant use of patterns or the immediate environment. It all comes across as luxurious and irreverent--just as it should be.

5. Is it necessary for brands to balance the exclusivity of luxury with the open nature of digital channels? 5. Absolutely, but that balance can be difficult to manage. The business side of brands are naturally going to want certain styles available everywhere if they sell well, but if they become omnipresent, they stop being special and customers can smell that a mile away. And there does seem to be something old fashioned about the waiting lists that were so common only a few years ago. It really comes down to having a drip feed of quality designs that are available for those who want them but never plentiful enough that they languish on shelves or go to the digital ‘sale’ section. 6. How do you see the luxury fashion industry developing in the future and are there any key issues you feel need to be addressed? 6. That’s tough. Fashion, along with becoming a part of pop culture, has become big business. If you listen to stories from people in the industry over forty-five, you’ll often hear that so-and-so was working a sales counter at Barneys when a young designer walked, liked what they were wearing, made them an offer to join their creative team and twenty years later they’re the CEO of a major brand or some such thing. It’s far harder for young people, especially young people who don’t come from abundant means, to even enter the industry any more and I’m concerned that will lead to a further homogenization of the most prominent voices. When people with strictly business backgrounds who have no understanding of creative people or how great creativity feeds healthy businesses, it can be horrible for the industry at large. My hope is that more people with different experiences enter fashion and show people things they never knew they wanted. 7. With regard to the Dolce & Gabbana Autumn/Winter 2017 show and the brand’s most recent campaigns, how important do you feel millennials are for luxury brands - in other words, is this a wake-up call for other luxury brands to recognise the potential power of millennials? 7. Millennials are hugely important in that they are the largest generation ever, but brands must be careful to not cater only to them. The truth is, despite fashion’s obsession with youth and youth culture, most of the people actually buying into it are approaching or beyond middle age as they are largely the only ones who have the means to do so at this point. And I think we must be careful not to confuse showcasing Millennials with actually understand their needs and desires. Putting them on the runway is great, but how many people of that age group would actually go out and buy something from Dolce & Gabbana if they could afford to? What felt more interesting was including people of many different ethnic backgrounds in the presentation since fashion is, though few will admit it, an incredibly racist industry despite many of its otherwise progressive ideals. 8. My idea for my project is to create a marketing campaign for an existing luxury brand and make it relevant to a new millennial audience. What are your thoughts on this and do you have any advice in taking my project futher? 8. I think the first thing you should do is pick a brand you either really love or really hate. Both present unique challenges and will get you fired up in one way or another. Whatever you do, keep things organic. When I was starting out, I would do research on what was relevant or try to find new things that were happening until I realized something very important---I grew up looking to resources for information and ideas, but I was now in the role of the professional disseminating my creativity and had to flip my mindset to look inward instead; I was now the one helping to highlight new happenings. Keeping up-to-date with industry news in super important, but once you choose your brand, think about how you and your friends use media. What posts do you find interesting? What things come off as fake? What looks good on Snapchat vs Instagram? Why do you share the things that you do? What feels authentic within the context of that brand and its heritage? How do people buy it? Who’s buying it? Once you work through that, you should have something pretty interesting on your hands. Hope this helps! All my best, Martin

4. Do you think luxury bricks and mortar stores still have value or is digital more important? 4. Good brick-and-mortar stores are critical for brands that have or want them. Just like holding a Céline leather coat in person is different from looking at a picture of it online, physical stores play an important role. But they must evolve. People today are struck with too much choice and stores should be well-edited with operators who actually speak with customers and understand their needs beyond what is presented on the sales spreadsheet. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked through Bergdorfs shocked that they still carry certain labels since there seems to be little interest in them from either customers or the press. Also, they should be well integrated with their digital counterpart so that items can be ordered and shipped with minimal effort if a customer isn’t able to find what he or she needs in-store. As rudimentary as that sounds, it often isn’t the case. 144

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7b) expert interview; ronan tighe, head of e-commerce at yoox net-a-porter group

From: Rosie Spence <rosie.spence@btinternet.com> Subject: Luxury Fashion and eCommerce Dissertation Date: 17 November 2016 at 15:53:14 GMT To: Ronan Tighe <ronan.tighe@net-a-porter.com> Hi Ronan, Thank you very much for your time and consideration. Having first-hand input from leading industry figures is invaluable in terms of my research. All information will only be used towards my dissertation. 1. Is a bricks and mortar shop necessary for a business with an online focus? 2. Is there a difference in the profile of customers who are happy to buy a premium product online as opposed to those who shop in-store? 3. How does Net-a-Porter meet the differing needs of its consumer base through eCommerce? 4. In your opinion, why have luxury brands been rather slow in adopting an eCommerce strategy? 5. How has an omni-channel approach benefited Net-a-Porter and do you think itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s necessary for other luxury brands to adopt a similar approach? 6. Are there any challenges youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve had to overcome in being an online-only retailer? 7. How do you see Net-a-Porter growing and developing over the next five years in terms of eCommerce? 8. What does the future hold for eCommerce and luxury fashion? 148

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From: Rosie Spence <rosie.spence@btinternet.com> Subject: Luxury Fashion and eCommerce Dissertation Date: 17 November 2016 at 15:53:14 GMT To: Ronan Tighe <ronan.tighe@net-a-porter.com> Hi Ronan, Thank you very much for your time and consideration. Having first-hand input from leading industry figures is invaluable in terms of my research. All information will only be used towards my dissertation. 1. Is a bricks and mortar shop necessary for a business with an online focus? 2. Is there a difference in the profile of customers who are happy to buy a premium product online as opposed to those who shop in-store? 3. How does Net-a-Porter meet the differing needs of its consumer base through eCommerce? 4. In your opinion, why have luxury brands been rather slow in adopting an eCommerce strategy? 5. How has an omni-channel approach benefited Net-a-Porter and do you think it’s necessary for other luxury brands to adopt a similar approach? 6. Are there any challenges you’ve had to overcome in being an online-only retailer? 7. How do you see Net-a-Porter growing and developing over the next five years in terms of eCommerce? 8. What does the future hold for eCommerce and luxury fashion? 9. With the increasing convergence of media channels, do you think that the concept of an ‘online brand’ will eventually become redundant? In other words because online usage is so prevalent will consumers no longer make a distinction between the two? Kind regards, Rosie Spence From: Ronan Tighe <ronan.tighe@net-a-porter.com> Subject: Re: Luxury Fashion and eCommerce Dissertation Date: 17 November 2016 at 16:29:14 GMT To: Rosie Spence <rosie.spene@btinternet.com>

a luxury store. Online shoppers tend to lead busier lives, are more confident shoppers or don’t want the hassle of going into stores as they are famous. 3. How does Net-a-Porter meet the differing needs of its consumer base through eCommerce? Needs vary based on shopping scenario (eg they know exactly what they want vs needing to be inspired), by location (we offer different languages, shipping options and payment methods for different countries) and by customer type (we have special features only available to our most valuable customers).   4. In your opinion, why have luxury brands been rather slow in adopting an eCommerce strategy? Last 15 years has seen massive growth offline in luxury so they didn’t need to focus on eCommerce in order to grow their business while now they do. Also, they wrongly assumed customers needed to touch and feel a product in order to want to buy it.   5. How has an omni-channel approach benefited Net-a-Porter and do you think it’s necessary for other luxury brands to adopt a similar approach? 6. Are there any challenges you’ve had to overcome in being an online-only retailer? I can’t think of any challenges due to being online only. To date, this focus has been a strength for the brand.   7. How do you see Net-a-Porter growing and developing over the next five years in terms of eCommerce? You can read our published 5 year plan here: http://cdn3.yoox.biz/cloud/ynap/uploads/doc/2016/YNAP_ CMD2016_Presentation_vPUBLISHED.pdf   8. What does the future hold for eCommerce and luxury fashion? 9. With the increasing convergence of media channels, do you think that the concept of an ‘online brand’ will eventually become redundant? In other words because online usage is so prevalent will consumers no longer make a distinction between the two? I don’t think consumers do make a distinction between the two now.     Kind regards, Rosie Spence

On 17 Nov 2016, at 16:29, Ronan Tighe <ronan.tighe@net-a-porter.com> wrote: NET-A-PORTER.COM Hi Rosie, Lots of questions below! I’ve tried to answer them as best I can in the limited time I have before my next meeting!   Best of luck,   Ronan   From: Rosie Spence [mailto:rosie.spence@btinternet.com] Sent: 17 November 2016 16:54 To: Ronan Tighe Subject: Luxury Fashion and eCommerce Dissertation   Hi Ronan,   Thank you very much for your time and consideration. Having first-hand input from leading industry figures is invaluable in terms of my research. All information will only be used towards my dissertation.

CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE The information in this email is confidential and is intended solely for the addressee. Access to this email by anyone else is unauthorised. If you are not the intended recipient, you must not read, use or disseminate the information. Any views expressed in this message are those of the individual sender, except where the sender specifically states them to be the views of Net-A-Porter Group Limited. The Net-A-Porter Group Limited is a company registered in England & Wales Number: 3820604 Registered Office: 1 The Village Offices, Westfield, Ariel Way, London, W12 7GF

1. Is a bricks and mortar shop necessary for a business with an online focus? Not necessarily, it really depends on the brand, business model, the product that is being sold and the customer. Certain business model based on price would not be viable with the cost base of a b&m shop, certain products are best sold offline or benefit from being seen in person (eg items that needs to be customised or are complex to explain), while some customers needed to be engaged with offline. 2. Is there a difference in the profile of customers who are happy to buy a premium product online as opposed to those who shop in-store? Yes, offline only are likely to be either older (less confident buying online), younger (more time to visit stores) or less affluent (premium purchase is a special purchase and therefore they want to enjoy full experience of buying in 150

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From: Rosie Spence <rosie.spence@btinternet.com> Subject: Re: Luxury Fashion and eCommerce Dissertation Date: 18 November 2016 at 11:27:53 GMT To: Ronan Tighe <ronan.tighe@net-a-porter.com> Hi Ronan, Thanks so much for your response, it is very much appreciated as I understand you must be very busy! Your answers will be extremely helpful.  I’ve attached a consent form as all the research I conduct must be ethical. No need to fill it in but if you wouldn’t mind just stating in your reply that you give consent for me to use your answers, just so I have proof, that would be fantastic.  Thank you once again.  All the best, Rosie From: Ronan Tighe <ronan.tighe@net-a-porter.com> Subject: Re: Luxury Fashion and eCommerce Dissertation Date: 18 November 2016 at 11:45:26 GMT To: Rosie Spence <rosie.spene@btinternet.com> On 18 Nov 2016, at 11:45, Ronan Tighe <ronan.tighe@net-a-porter.com> wrote: Hi Rosie,   I give consent for you to use my answers.   Good luck with the rest of your project.   Ronan

7b) expert interview; amy sillince, e-commerce merchandising manager at anya hindmarch On 31 Jan 2017, at 19:02, Rosie Spence <donotreply@wordpress.com> wrote: Name: Rosie Spence Email: rosie.spence@btinternet.com Message: Dear Amy, My name is Rosie Spence and I am a final year Fashion Communication and Promotion student at Nottingham Trent University. I am currently undertaking research for a project regarding the future of e-commerce and luxury fashion. It would be greatly appreciated if I could ask your thoughts on the subject to gain some insight, particularly from the perspective of an industry professional such as yourself. I understand you must be inundated with these sorts of requests, but if you have a few minutes spare, would you be willing to answer some questions via email at a time convenient for yourself. Kindest regards, Rosie Time: January 31, 2017 at 7:02 pm IP Address: 86.9.6.87 Contact Form URL: https://amysillince.com/contact/ Sent by an unverified visitor to your site. From: Amy Sillince <asillince@gmail.com> Subject: Re: Message via amysillince.com Date: 31 January 2017 at 19:11:34 GMT To: Rosie Spence <rosie.spence@btinternet.com>

NET-A-PORTER.COM Hi Rosie, CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE The information in this email is confidential and is intended solely for the addressee. Access to this email by anyone else is unauthorised. If you are not the intended recipient, you must not read, use or disseminate the information. Any views expressed in this message are those of the individual sender, except where the sender specifically states them to be the views of Net-A-Porter Group Limited. The Net-A-Porter Group Limited is a company registered in England & Wales Number: 3820604 Registered Office: 1 The Village Offices, Westfield, Ariel Way, London, W12 7GF

Thanks for getting in touch! I’d be happy to answer questions, but I can’t quote any specifics figures regarding the brands I’ve worked for. Is it for some research or a dissertation? I’d appreciate to know what my answers might be used for.  Best wishes, Amy From: Btinternet <rosie.spence@btinternet.com> Subject: Re: Message via amysillince.com Date: 31 January 2017 at 19:54:31 GMT To: Amy Sillince <asillince@gmail.com> Hi Amy, Thank you so much for getting back to me! Of course, that’s completely understandable. I wouldn’t need any specific figures from the brands you’ve worked for, so that’s absolutely fine.  It’s for my dissertation which involves asking industry experts about my chosen subject area for some general insights in order to justify my project ideas. Your answers would be included in my dissertation appendix and wouldn’t be published anywhere. Would that be acceptable? If you’re happy to answer a few short questions, I will also send over a consent form for you to sign to ensure everything is ethical.  All the best, Rosie

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On 31 Jan 2017, at 21:03, Amy Sillince <asillince@gmail.com> wrote: Hi Rosie, I’d be happy to answer your questions, I always like to help out fashion students... I was there once!

From: Amy Sillince <asillince@gmail.com> Subject: Re: Message via amysillince.com Date: 3 February 2017 at 09:29:37 GMT To: Btinternet <rosie.spence@btinternet.com>

Please feel free to send across when you’re ready!

Hi Rosie,

Best wishes, Amy

Please find my answers below! Just let me know if you have any other questions, I’ll be happy to help.

From: Btinternet <rosie.spence@btinternet.com> Subject: Re: Message via amysillince.com Date: 31 January 2017 at 21:38:30 GMT To: Amy Sillince <asillince@gmail.com>

Please consider this my consent to use my responses in your dissertation.   Best wishes, and good luck!  Amy On 31 Jan 2017, at 21:38, Btinternet <rosie.spence@btinternet.com> wrote:

Hi Amy,

Hi Amy,

Thank you so much, that is very kind of you! I haven’t had much luck thus far with getting replies from industry professionals, so I sincerely appreciate you taking the time to help me out.

Thank you so much, that is very kind of you! I haven’t had much luck thus far with getting replies from industry professionals, so I sincerely appreciate you taking the time to help me out.

My dissertation project is about the future of luxury fashion brands in today’s digital landscape. Naturally, e-commerce has completely revolutionised the luxury market, in terms of the way we shop and how physical and online stores are now increasingly convergent.

My dissertation project is about the future of luxury fashion brands in today’s digital landscape. Naturally, e-commerce has completely revolutionised the luxury market, in terms of the way we shop and how physical and online stores are now increasingly convergent.

1. It seems luxury brands are now increasingly looking into making their digital spaces feel more physical and their physical stores feel more digital. Would you agree?

1. It seems luxury brands are now increasingly looking into making their digital spaces feel more physical and their physical stores feel more digital. Would you agree? I’m not sure about the former - I think there was a time that people tried to mimic the in store experience online, but they quickly realised it was contrived. But the store space is definitely becoming a more digital experience with the installation of technology to create a more seamless customer experience.

2. Has e-commerce devalued in store shopping experiences in any way? Or are both equally values and appreciated by luxury consumers?  3. Is there a difference in the profile/demographic of customers who are happy to buy a premium product online as opposed to those who shop in-store?  4. How can luxury brands balance exclusivity with the open nature of digital channels and how can digital interaction enhance a luxury buyer’s experience?   5. In your opinion, how do you see luxury e-commerce developing within the future?  6. a) My potential idea for my dissertation is to make the virtual window as luxurious as possible by attempting replicate the same feelings and experiences that take place within shopping in store - essentially making the luxury digital space feel more physical for a luxury brand or e-tailer.  b) What are your thoughts on this and do you have any advice?  Feel free to answer these at your leisure! I’ve also attached a consent form which you may sign if you wish, otherwise you may simply state that you give consent for me to use your answers within my dissertation and I can include the email within my appendix - whichever is most convenient for you. All the best,  Rosie <Consent Form.png>

2. Has e-commerce devalued in store shopping experiences in any way? Or are both equally values and appreciated by luxury consumers? People who work in ecom would say no, and people who work in retail would say yes to that - stores often feel like a website ‘steals’ their sales because because it came along long after they were established. The truth is that both serve an entirely different purposes for the customer - online often to research and the physical store to place an order, and vice versa depending on the market or the product. The ultimate goal is to make the sale for the business, and brands need to consider that both channels assist each other.   3. Is there a difference in the profile/demographic of customers who are happy to buy a premium product online as opposed to those who shop in-store?  I think it probably depends on the brand. There’s certainly a general trend that younger people are more are more comfortable with buying anything online. But with luxury it’s also about availability - in some areas or countries the website is their only way to access that brand.  4. How can luxury brands balance exclusivity with the open nature of digital channels and how can digital interaction enhance a luxury buyer’s experience? Online exclusive products.m is an easy one. And loyalty programs - offering early access to sales and new products. It’s so much easier to gather accurate data about your customer online so you can really personalise their experience on the website, which i believe makes it a luxurious one.    5. In your opinion, how do you see luxury e-commerce developing within the future?  It will continue to become more personalised, in every aspect. Personalised/made to order products, custom content, visual merchandising that shows the customer what they’re looking for, offers tailored to the customer, customer service who know who you are and your purchase history when you call...  That all takes a huge amount of effort though, so it’ll take a while to really see it happen. 

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6. a) My potential idea for my dissertation is to make the virtual window as luxurious as possible by attempting replicate the same feelings and experiences that take place within shopping in store - essentially making the luxury digital space feel more physical for a luxury brand or e-tailer.

7d) attempted contact

b) What are your thoughts on this and do you have any advice? I think this is a challenge that no one has succeeded at yet! I always hear people say that the homepage is “our shop window” but we have to remember that it’s also the door, if that’s where someone arrives at the site. Would you put a mannequin in the doorway of a physical shop? Try not to think of the two as the same because the user behaviour is very different.  Also consider that not everyone arrives at a website on the homepage - the majority probably land elsewhere on the site on a product category page or something. So what’s their entrance into the website from that point? What’s their shop window in this case? Consider the website navigation, as this is often a constant access point across the site to help the customer find what they’re looking for.  In the same vein, think about the search function on the website - people that use the search bar are twice as likely to go on to buy, on average. This function really lets the customer get straight to what they’re looking for, which perhaps a sales associate would do for them in store!  From: Rosie Spence <rosie.spence@btinternet.com> Subject: Re: Message via amysillince.com Date: 9 February 2017 at 14:59:11 GMT To: Amy Sillince <asillince@gmail.com>

Hi Amy, Thank you so much for your reply! Your answers are extremely helpful and will be incredibly useful for my dissertation - thank you for the feedback with regard to my idea. Sincerest apologies for the delayed reply also, I’ve been in Tokyo on a trip with my university.  It was so kind of you to help me out and it is very much appreciated. If you know anyone who might be of use to me also or could recommend anyone else to speak to for further research regarding my dissertation, that would be fantastic - not to worry if no one springs to mind though!  Thank you once again and wishing you the very best. Rosie

Neil Borer, E-commerce Director at Harrods Nicolas Pickaerts, E-commerce Director at MATCHESFASHION.COM Lindsay Clifford-Smith, Director Global E-commerce & Omnichannel at Jimmy Choo Ira Chan, Trading Assistant at Style.com Kirsty Glenne, Head of E-commerce at Alexander McQueen Isabelle Jones, Sales Assistant at Burberry Heathrow Pandora Skyes, Fashion Features Editor at The Sunday Times Style Anna Ogundehin, Marketing & Communications Director at Browns José Neves, CEO at Farfetch Alice Delahunt, Global Director of Digital Marketing at Burberry Emma Rose Billingham, E-commerce at J.W.Anderson Amy Linda, Global Talent Lead, Millennials at The Estée Lauder Companies Inc. Laura Klentze, Team Lead Content & Campaign Strategy at mytheresa. com Florence Trott, Editor of FLANNELS.com Abi McEwan, Marketing Assistant at FLANNELS.com Bijou Karman, Fashion Illustrator

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9a) luxury fashion questionairre

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9b) experiment

What is your opinion of fashion retailers who stock a multitude of luxury brands? “A great outlet for selling to a wider audience with great service and additional platforms. Offering personal shopping etc I love them! Could browse all day long” “Brilliant” “Convenient” “Can be overwhelming” “Convenient to use and browse different brands in the same place” “Good idea as don’t have to shop around as they are all in one place” “Good to have various brands under one roof” “Great choice and wide variety” “Excellent” “Easy and reliable finding good brands” “Great, makes my life easier!” “Helpful and easy to use; essentially and online department store” “Helpful - it’s nice to see a range of designers all in one place” 160

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9c) instagram netography Day 1 (31/12/16) Burberry: 8.3 million followers, most recent post: get the look for NYE tutorial/video, links to products, #BurberryGifts to promote, cohesive look Gucci: 12 million followers, #GucciGift campaign, stills make one image, cohesive look, all red for the holiday season, videos Dior: 13.1million followers, most recent post: party make-up look/video featuring Bella Hadid, #DiorHoliday, keeps up with current evens (passing of Franca Sozzani), campaign and product images Harvey Nichols: 310k follows, one new post; opening of new cafe, promotion or sales, fairly cohesive look Net-a-Poter: 2.5 million followers, campaign for NYE/video, promoting party wear, cohesive look, same border, # for designer brands they are promoting Matches Fashion: 368k followers, most recent post: promoting New Year, clothing, promote content and products

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Day 2 (1/1/17) Burberry: 1 new image Happy New Year post, #Burberry, each post receives around 25,000 to 100,000 likes Gucci: 6 new posts promoting new collection #GucciCruise17, animated video for Happy 2017 Dior: 1 new video, heritage of Dior, perfume, Lady Dior bag, New Look, #Happy 2017, 70 years of Dior Harvey Nichols: 1 new post promoting YSL Beauty new collection by Lloyd Simmonds, tagged YSL beauty, around 800 likes Net-a-Poter: 2 new posts, promoting trends, user generated content from bloggers, tagged designers, how to get the look Matches Fashion: 3 new posts, gym wear promotion (relevant to New Year), links in bio, shoppable, interiors image, whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s on their radar, more general

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Day 3 (2/1/17) Burberry: No new posts Gucci: 3 new posts; Gucci editorials in Vogue, Harperâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Bazaar, etc. #GucciCruise17 Dior: 4 new videos promoting the new Dreamskin beauty collection featuring Eva Herzigova #skinofmydreams, receives around 100,000 to 200,000 views for each video Harvey Nichols: 1 new post for latest Aquazzura shoes, tagged the brand in the post, around 1,700 likes Net-a-Poter: 2 new posts, promoting Chloe bag worn by blogger and Gucci bag using #SeeitBuyitLoveit, 10,000 to 14,000 likes Matches Fashion: 369k followers increase, 4 new posts; vacation wear, shoes, Chloe campaign and content from The Style Report, 900 to 4,000 likes

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Day 4 (3/1/17) Burberry: No new posts Gucci: 4 new posts; Gucci editorials #GucciCruise17, #AlessandroMichele, receives around 50,000 to 80,000 likes Dior: 3 new videos for the Dreamskin campaign and a video from the latest Vogue Japan cover story featuring Dior #MariaGraziaChiuriâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s first collection for the brand Harvey Nichols: 3 new posts; promoting homeware, Lanvin jewellery, Sophia Webster bag promoting specific products, 500 to 1,000 likes Net-a-Poter: 3 new posts bloggers wearing Gucci #SeeitBuyitLoveit, promoting nutrition line sold by the brand; Super Elixir Matches Fashion: 2 new posts; new designer Kalmar interview, image from The Style Report, 600 to 1,000 likes

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Day 5 (4/1/17) Burberry: 8.4 million followers, 3 new videos for Burberry Kids, #Burberry, around 50,000 to 70,000 views Gucci: 12.1 million followers, 3 behind-the-scenes images from #GucciCruise17 Dior: 13.2 million followers, Natalie Portman wearing Dior, Nicole Kidman in Dior for Vogue Australia, 100,000 likes Harvey Nichols: Image of Tory Burch jumper, promoting Charlotte Tilbury masterclass, 900 to 1,000 likes Net-a-Poter: 1 new post; Saint Laurent boots, #SeeItBuyItLoveIt Matches Fashion: Activewear, The Drake Hotel image (promoting travel), new Chloe bag (link to shop in the bio) â&#x20AC;&#x153;new 24/7 bagâ&#x20AC;?

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Day 6 (5/1/17) Burberry: Image of Burberry Patchwork bag, #BurberryGifts Gucci: 3 campaign images released, 50,000 to 70,000 likes, images promoting exhibition and artist which inspired the collection Dior: 2 new videos for new make-up campaign by Peter Philips, 200,000 to 300,000 views Harvey Nichols: Image promoting Jo Malone being available in store, re-promoting Charlotte Tilbury masterclass,#HNBeautyLounge, 60% off sale image, Chanel sunglasses Net-a-Poter: The Edit photography from newest campaign, Chloe dress Matches Fashion: The Style Report content teaser, new Valentino collection, Vietnam image

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Day 7 (6/1/17) Burberry: 5 new posts; Golden Globes red carpet, The Amazons acoustic session #BurberryAcoustic Gucci: No new posts Dior: 4 new posts; Golden Globes red carpet Harvey Nichols: No new posts Net-a-Poter: 1 new post; Gucci shoes, #SeeItBuyItLoveIt Matches Fashion: Blogger promotion, teaser interview for The Style Report with pilates instructor

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9d) flannels questionnaire

Where is your favourite place to shop for designer fashion and why? “Selfridges” “Nottingham - local and good range of designer brands” “Net-a-Porter, sometimes Flannels - I like having a broad selection of designers and products to choose from. It’s nice having them all under one roof which makes it convenient” “Chanel. Well recognised brand - signifies wealth”

What are your reasons for shopping with/not shopping with Flannels? “Never heard of them” “Old fashioned” “Convenient location and choice” “Reputation” “They are in a convenient location for myself, on the high street. They have great sales and a considered selection of items and the most current designers” “Not somewhere thought of going” “Quality and choice” 180

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What do you like the most about Flannels?

Do you follow Flannels on any form of social media?

“Not very much”

“Facebook”

“Don’t normally shop there”

“Yes, I follow them on Instagram”

“Never been in”

96% said no

“The brands they stock” “Assistants and range of classic and new designers” “Choice of products” “Being able to go in store and try on” “Good in-store selection compared to rivals” “Broad selection of brands and products and they have an online and physical presence”

What is the worst aspect of the brand?

What is your opinion of the Flannels branding?

“Range of sizes”

“Very boring”

“Snobbish atmosphere”

“Sophisticated, minimalist. Wouldn’t draw you in if you didn’t know the brand’s status beforehand.”

“It looks stuffy and too fashionable. I would feel out of place” “Expensive” “Shop front” “Uninspiring interior” “Men’s trainers” “In-store experience is very underwhelming and the overall look is very unwelcoming”

“Simplistic” “Simple, stylish and timeless” “Simple but ambiguous” “Rather masculine” “Need to modernise the branding and promote more” “Very serious and standoff-ish. Some like that works for because they are so established but it feels very masculine and dull for that kind of brand. Monochromatic colour scheme is very uninspiring too. Branding is clearly a secondary thought.” “Boring and last year”

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9e) similarweb statistics

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9f) luxury e-tailers case study

Net-a-Porter, founded by Natalie Massenet in London during 2000, is the largest online luxury fashion retailer in the world, acquiring 6million visitors a month. It was the first site Chanel did an e-commerce endeavour with. The average spend of customers is ÂŁ500. The brand merged with Italian e-commerce site YOOX in September 2016. USP: Net-a-Porter is a website designed in a magazine editorial format and cleverly utilises content and design to generate inspiration among women. They publish their own psychical glossy magazine, Porter, as well as their online shoppable magazine, The Edit - fusing together digital and print. They offer their VIP and most exclusive customers special offers and invitations to private events.

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Matches is the second largest online luxury fashion retailer in the world, with more than 2million visitors every month, and is owned by Ruth and Tom Chapman. They opened the first Matches store in 1989 and then launched the website in 2007. Matches stocks more than 400 brands and ships to more than 170 countries. It was the first UK retailer to carry Prada and, more recently, Vetements. Average basket spend on the site is ÂŁ485. USP: Matches supports emerging British talent and has more than five bricks and mortar shops within London, as well as their e-commerce site. This personal touch aspect differentiates the brand from other luxury e-commerce retailers - it is a truly multiplatform business.

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Farfetch is a Portuguese international fashion website that stocks designer clothing from around the world - originally founded in 2008 by JosĂŠ Neves. The website was set up in order to enable small, independent boutiques to compete in the marketplace while retaining their â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;bricks and mortarâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; stores and their own visual identity. The company ships to over 190 countries worldwide. Farfetch acquired iconic London-based boutique retailer Browns in May 2015 with the aim of developing and testing innovations in retail technology. USP: The company operates bespoke, local-language websites for international markets in English, French, Japanese, Mandarin, Portuguese, Korean, German, Russian and Spanish. Farfetch partners with established luxury brands as well as new and interesting designers worldwide, meaning customers can shop expertly curated pieces from around the globe.

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Operated by very.co.uk, Very Exclusive is an accessible luxury website launched in 2015 by Sarah Curran. The brand was established in order to bringing midmarket luxury labels to a new consumer, primarily women in their 20s and 30s. The site provides rich editorial experience that will guides women through the season’s collections, trends and key looks. USP: Very Exclusive democratises highfashion fashion by mixing high street and luxury. It’s “take three” payment plan also allows shoppers to pay in three instalments.

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9g) dolly jones, condé nast digital strategy director lecture

10a) big idea: brainstorms & testing

19/04/2017 Nottingham Trent University Digital storytelling, need to tell stories Share-ability from the outset: this is important Mobile first operation: the focus has changed, therefore responsive design is key Brands need a unique take and strategy Content is king then context is country Data can be amusing: Cara and Tweezers correlation on Google But needs continual analysis: Google analytics, Hitwise, social reach and engagement Instagram stories can now provide a journalistic angle, more so than Instagram allows Digital you can change and learn from mistakes Want digitally informed people: commercial and editorial Vogue editor: decision underpinned by who had the best digital reputation currently Personalisation is the future but don’t fall into the trap in telling people what they think they want Being unique through social media, maintaining voice of authority Social media challenged aspirational nature #TodayI’mWearing initaited Twitter #FashionForecast is a Vogue authority but helpful and unique Miss Vogue: commercially difficult because of competitors Teen Vogue: political platform, Miss Vogue: more beauty, fashion and gossip - difficult market to crack but has huge appeal, evident in the success of Glamour Magazine Balancing premium with salaciousness: how to deal with this; need a strong brand identity, clear understanding, deviate mindfully, Glamour more celebrity driven, can’t be all things to all people Under 80,000 followers, very engaged audience, valuable to brands, consumer engagement goes down the more followers you have Influencers: still want Vogue, old money, great heritage, legitimacy being coverage by Vogue, both beneficial to each other, get them to share content on social media too, beneficial Vogue thrives on competition Vogue in the future: bigger, more expensive, coffee table book, digital budget will be bigger Millennial priorities: creating a following on social media style.com sitting amongst Matches, Farfetch, new and hard to judge Matches - transformation from bricks and mortars, same contextual strategy Website as afterthought, digital became central, stores are PR Conde Nast is content, huge audiences for content, couldn’t guarantee sales style.com - huge confidence they will lead the way Marry up engagement in content and people buying product, not interested in content, more interested in shopping Who are you talking to on platforms, people behave differently Hit headlines by doing new things and be agile, authoritative and quick online Digital has opened up the fashion world and welcomes others in 194

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10 b) consumer & expert interview; tom pierrepont Tom Pierrepont, 26, Freelance Director of Photography, Nottingham Rosie: So I know you shop at Flannels and I just wanted to get your opinion on my idea for my project, which is to rebrand Flannels. What are your thoughts on this? Tom: Yeah, I think it’s a great idea and would definitely work. They need updating, they’re falling behind brands like Selfridges. Like I went to London the other week and went to Selfridges and the whole experience is amazing. They’ve got everything under one roof, the whole atmosphere is great, high quality, the visual merchandising is great. But Flannels isn’t really delivering. Like I’d go to Selfridges over Flannels now any day, even though it’s a quite a distance. Rosie: Yeah. So what do you think of Flannels current branding and overall vibe?

Rosie: Yes, I saw that film, it was great, really different for a luxury brand to do something like that. Tom: Yeah yeah. I mean, I’ve worked with brands before who say they want to make something go viral and it just doesn’t work. You can’t make something happen like that, it just happens. But really, personality and consistency are key, like those things are most important, not something going viral. Brands don’t need original content each day, just something good and consistent. Like it’s super important to have the same colour and filters for Instagram, like having a theme. Like there’s this cafe in Hackney which I follow on Instagram, and they’ve got the same colour and filter each time. They use memes and have fun but make it the right colour for the brand. Like the account for Tokyo Fashion Week too, I follow that and it’s content people want to see. It’s street style images and I really like that sort of stuff.

Tom: For some reason there’s just that association with them that they are old fashioned and sell last season’s stuff - which they don’t. They sell everything, all the brands I like and all the latest stuff but it doesn’t come across. They need some personality, there’s no faces attached to the brand. It’s just so boring. Like if you go onto their website it’s all product shots, I mean, that works because it’s cheap and yeah it looks good, but are there any bloggers affiliated with the brand? No. Why not? Faces sell and you can relate to them. Like why aren’t they giving bloggers free stuff and then using #FlannelsAd. It’s all about influencer marketing. Like the reason I buy designer clothes is because I see other people wearing it and I think “that looks good”, so I’d go out and buy it. Why do so many girls want that Gucci belt? Because bloggers are wearing them.

Rosie: And what do you think of Flannels website?

Rosie: Yeah exactly. So do you follow Flannels on any social media?

Rosie: Yeah, so you think Flannels could have taken a leaf from their book?

Tom: No, but I’ve just had a look at it and it’s pretty bad. The men’s Instagram account is awful. Really boring. I get their emails but like the main reason for that is to know about when they’ve got a sale and the only reason I’d follow them on something like Instagram would be for seeing people in the stuff, which they don’t have. So why would anyone follow them really? There’s nothing really to bring people in. Like I’ve just had a quick look at their Twitter and that’s so bad (laughing) there’s nothing even on there, hardly any content.

Tom: Yeah definitely. Like sportswear brands do stuff like that really well. Like everyone is all about sportswear at the minute and collaborations and all that sort of stuff. Like the Louis Vuitton and Supreme collaboration, that was really good. Supreme created limited edition metro cards in New York that you could buy from the ticket machines and people went absolutely nuts for it. There were huge queues just so people could have one and then people were selling them on eBay for $100 after. So clearly that worked really well. Like do Flannels want people through their door or do they want them online? And I think they need to focus on both. So you could like say you working for a creative agency, like I’ve worked with some like We Are Village and they do some really cool stuff for designer brands. Like Flannels need to but put on the radar using the right person.

Rosie: Definitely, yeah, like noting makes them stand out, there’s no interesting content. Tom: Yeah, yeah. Like with some of the fashion brands I’ve worked for and this is the case with most brands in general, all they are interesting in is throwaway content. So once it’s gone on your Instagram it’s gone for good and forgotten about. They are interested in a quick turnaround which naturally impacts the quality but it’s decent enough quality and simple to generate content for social media… Which is probably what Flannels need to do more of. So, with much bigger designer brands, they’ll do one massive campaign once a year and put loads of money into, like millions, and all of their effort but in 2017, and the age we live in know, that stuff is quickly forgotten about. It’s not relevant. Like Kenzo did an amazing film which was done by Spike Jones. Essentially it was a remake of a Fatboy Slim music video but it got people’s attention. No one knew it was for, there was no product placement or logo. Like it’s so simple but shot so well and yeah it must of cost a lot of money to get the shots they did but it created a buzz and made the brand more interesting and fun. Everyone shared it and people went crazy for it. Like everyone in my industry was like, “Wow, have you see this, who is it, who’s done it?” No one knew it was for a fashion brand. 206

Tom: Again, it’s all product shots, there’s no faces, no personality. Like my most recent experience with the brand was waiting on the website for the Yeezy’s. With something like limited edition stock, there needs to be a clean and seamless experience otherwise people don’t get what they want. I went on their website and I just couldn’t do it, I couldn’t buy them. They weren’t being promoted on the homepage at all and when I searched for them I couldn’t even find them. But was Adidas did was so much better, they entered you into this raffle to buy them, so it was fair but still really cool and you waited for your turn to buy them. That experience was so much better.

Rosie: Great, thank you!

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10 c) SWOT analysis

STRENGTHS Appeals to a highly lucrative market millennial luxury consumers Timely and relevant as it adopts omnichannel trend within retail and marketing

11 a) consumer interview; heather leprevost, age 20, student, nottingham WEAKNESSES Alienates other consumer demographics Some consumers are more aspirational luxury shoppers - how can Flannels retain interest of these consumers?

1. What’s your favourite colour? Coral 2. What’s your favourite alcoholic beverage? Gin and tonic 3. Where is your favourite restaurant? Yamas tapas bar, Nottingham 4. Where is your favourite cocktail bar? Hemmingways, Prague 5. What is your favourite luxury fashion brand? Chanel 6. What is your favourite piece of designer fashion you own? Paul Smith bag 7. What is your most treasured item? My phone 8. What’s your favourite film? Anything by Tarantino 9. What’s your favourite book? Catcher In The Rye 10. What’s your favourite magazine? Vogue 11. What’s your favourite song? George Michael - Freedom ‘90 12. Where is your favourite holiday destination? Goa, India 13. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why? France because bread

OPPORTUNITIES Parternship with millennial influencers Increased interest in the brand because of London flagship store opening

THREATS Other luxury brands are recognising the potential of millennials e.g. Dolce & Gabbana More established luxury brands have bigger budgets and celebrity endorsements to create campaigns which engage millennials

wine and cheese 14. What are you doing right now? Watching Broadchurch in bed 15. What would you like to be doing right now? Dancing 16. What would be your dream job? Cook book author 17. What makes you happy? Dogs and snacks 18. What gives you confidence? A radiant skin day 19. If you had £10,000 how would you spend it? Chanel bags 20. What’s the last message on your phone that you sent to someone? “I’m a grandma” 21. What’s your favourite/most-used emoji? The cat with love heart eyes 22. What are your most-used apps? Instagram and Uber 23. Who do you follow on Instagram? Give a few examples of your favourite people. Millie Mackintosh, Mollie King, Liza Golden, Doutzen Kroes, Paris Hilton (!!!) 24. Who’s your favourite celebrity and why? George Michael because he was the only stable male figure throughout my whole life and I’ve laughed and cried and lived to his music 25. What’s always in your handbag? Lipstick!!

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11 b) media consumption diary

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12 a) perceptual map

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12 b) earned, paid, owned media model

SHARES MENTIONS REPOSTS REVIEWS

12 c) loyalty loop

PR ADVERTISING PAID INFLUENCERS

consider

earned

paid advocate

interact

bond

enjoy

owned

evaluate engage

purchase

WEBSITE MOBILE SITE APP SOCIAL MEDIA

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13) visual draft feedback

STUDENT FEEDBACK FORM Course: Fashion Communication and Promotion Module title: Negotiated Project Module code: FASH30108 Credits: 120 Project: Self-devised draft context and big idea visual report

13) addressing the feedback

STUDENT: Rosie Spence TUTOR: Rose Davison ASSESSMENT DATE: April 2017

Feedback on formative / summative assessment Tutors comments: Please also refer to feedback corrections, annotations and comments throughout the printed report. Areas of strength You have included a good range of research references and referenced a variety of individuals in your report. The references are up to date. You have a detailed methodology table, including some good primary research, such as your interview. You have structured a good flow of points and issues through the report. The document is well designed and structured. The content of the report shows that you have a good understanding of the subject – I can see this from how you have collected and collated your research and references. You have included theory and models, in particular the Frame Theory – this shows you are connecting theory and practice/ business and academia. Your appendix is really detailed and comprehensive, there is a lot in there! Great to see a variety of methods (evident in the methodology table) Areas to improve Although there is a good range of references and research, make sure your voice doesn’t get lost – ensure you weave in your responses and personal insights. There is a flow to your writing, but try to avoid a structure of moving from reference to quotation to reference to quotation to……. – this is linked to the point above; don’t make your report too much about what other people have said. Can you make more links to economic situations? – think about what the consumer on the street feels about their disposable income? What are their current financial concerns? As above; you are missing some of the voice of the consumer; what do they think/ say/ do? Can you use their responses to justify ideas?

In order to address the feedback for my visual draft I revisited my report and added; My own opinion, thoughts and insights: My references and quotes from experts were clouding my own person opinion, therefore my report lacked my own distinct voice. To remedy this I incorporated my own insights in response to quotes from others. This also addressed the issue with the flow to my writing and made my report more fluid when reading. This also addressed the “missing spark” within my essay. Links to current economic situation: Although my report included a PEST analysis of the current state of society and the industry in general, more analysis was needed within my report, for credibility and importance. Therefore, in my final report, I touch on how the issues spoken about will impact the luxury goods industry in the future and why the issues touched upon in my report are of significant importance and should be taken into consideration by other luxury retailers. The consumer: Within my draft I had not included a consumer profile due to time restraints. Therefore within my final report, I interviewed my consumer in depth in order to create a detailed consumer profile. I based the profile on a real life consumer in order to make it convincing and believable. The responses given within the interview and media consumption diary influenced the decisions and choices made within the route to consumer, in order to appeal to their personal preferences and engage them using relevant media channels. Figure referencing: Again, time constraints meant I was unable to include figure referencing within my report. Therefore, within my final report, I ensured figure referencing was completed.

This is a strong report so far, but it is missing a ‘spark’ – there should be more of an engaging tone to your writing to capture and convince the reader. Ensure that Harvard referencing is used correctly throughout, in particular, complete your figure referencing. Who is the consumer? Root the profiles in reality and refer back to primary research so that the profiles are convincing and believable. Summative grades: subject to ratification by the examination/progression board Formative grades: this is an indication of current performance only

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14) consent forms

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14 b) ethical clearance

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14 c) declaration form

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Rosie Spence N0566156 Fashion Communication & Promotion Negotiated Project Word count: 8,860

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Flannels.com - Repositioning a Luxury Brand for the Digital Age  

A self-devised, year-long project entitled, ‘The Changing Landscape of Luxury Fashion in the Digital Age and the Quest for the Millennial Co...

Flannels.com - Repositioning a Luxury Brand for the Digital Age  

A self-devised, year-long project entitled, ‘The Changing Landscape of Luxury Fashion in the Digital Age and the Quest for the Millennial Co...

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