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a rejuvination strategy report for

Ralph Lauren By sohini k lakhani 2012

1 introduction

brand rationale what is luxury? success of the 90’s through the decade polo brand image brand Essence

2 methodology


research & findings

consumer generation x generation y consumer purchasing habits digital trends me-tail augmented reality offline retail environments luxury pop-ups social developments burberry case study campaign trends asian future rise of redheads males of the now females of the now


the rejuvination strategy objective strategy digital solutions RL magazine wardrobe feature polo art bar campaign brief i’m that man campaign


product extentions ‘you’ by polo


appendix list of references bibliography

Ralph Lauren



Ralph Lauren


rand rationale

Due to today’s diverse and unique fashion industry and an acceptance of international fashion designers and brands, luxury brands such as Ralph Lauren are now competing for the status of being truly exclusive and desirable by the leading generation Y, whose ideologies and taste are very different from those of generation X; the demographic Ralph Lauren aimed to target in the 90’s. The current fashion trend being based on the preppy authentic American fashion has put Polo Ralph Lauren in particular under pressure as the brand is known for its casual elegance. It is now placed with other premium-classed brands, making it more accessible and less exclusive. In addition to this, with other competitors elaborating on this casual trend, Ralph Lauren no longer has the upper hand over casual elegance due to its classic and simple nature, compared with the more current designers. It is therefore in their interest to review their current marketing strategies to rejuvenate the brand in order to reposition themselves to generation Y (see appendix1). Through the development of a repositioning strategy focusing on the interests of this new consumer and transforming the total retail experience, Polo Ralph Lauren will be placed at a better stance compared to its similarly dated competitors Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein & Gucci.

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This report aims to investigate what made Ralph Lauren a successful luxury brand in the 90’s and who they targeted compared to what could make them more successful now to the new leading generation. A conclusion will be made with a detailed strategy the brand could adopt to rejuvenate the reposition the brand.


lassic to me is something that’s timeless and enduring. The things that never go out of style. Polo, the kinds of clothes I design are the kinds of things I believe in, the kinds of things that last forever. I love things that stay.


(Mcdowell. 2002 :52)


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hat is luxury?

The term luxury is perceived differently to all individuals depending on personal upbringing and lifestyles. The term also differs between ages where materialistic goods are classed as luxury to some, whereas others yearn for the essence of time, family, and relaxation. What is it about luxury fashion brands that draw in the attention of consumers? With this answer it can be told whether the rejuvenation of Ralph Lauren could bring back its exclusivity to the leading generation. According to a survey conducted on 103 consumers over the age of 16, it is mainly the quality of the product and the high status symbol that goes along with purchasing luxury goods that appeals to consumers. Many luxury goods are classic pieces with the social longevity of the product being high for example a classic Burberry trench coat or a Mulberry bag sill holds an element of desire today. The idea that the product was desired and longed for over a period of time is another factor that lures consumers to luxury fashion brands.

a form of indulgence or a treat (Mintel. 2011, Online). Under 25’s classed as Generation Y are more likely according to Mintel to buy luxury goods for reasons relating to their image and social status. These consumers are also the most image conscious and fashion forward and whilst not having enough money to purchase luxury goods often, are most willing to spend a great deal on a brand or product for its label as they believe it is worth it. This being said, the nature of generation Y is that being brought up with technology in their hands, they are in search of more than a product when purchasing luxury. It is about the total retail experience, having something that is different and unique to them is something that concerns this generation.

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Those above the age of 25 either see luxury as being less materialistic such as holidays and essence of time due to having less disposable income, or they may see luxury fashion now being worth the price being high in quality and According to a report conducted purchasing products for life. in 2011 based on the attitudes (Mintel. 2011, Online). of consumers towards luxury brands, 67% of women and 55% For more questionaire results of men purchase luxury goods see Appendix 8. as


uccess of the 90’s

The 1990’s was a time when Ralph Lauren hit its peak especially amongst Generation X consumers. It was a decade of the brand going from strength to strength in all ways sales figures, new collections, public appearances and marketing with an additional bonus being Ralph Laurens 25th Anniversary allowing the PR team to take advantage of the celebration within the media as a form of self congratulation (Gross. 2003, Genuine Authentic). In the early years of the decade, there was a downturn in the economy; this meant the cutting of costs for most consumers. Although it officially lasted a year, the implications were the worst since the early 80’s. (BBC. 2008, Online). This gave rise to a rebellious attitude in fashion towards style and the idea of grunge became popular, which was noticed significantly in the UK. It was also a period of simplicity and comfort due to the lack of disposable income. This is where the casual American fashion became more prominent above extravagant couture. Brands embraced this and adapted to the economic climate, with lines such as AX for Armani & Calvin Klein’s CK and major competitor of the time Tommy Hilfiger. This also meant that Ralph Lauren whose brand at the time was purely about the idea of ‘casual elegance’ could soar. Ralph himself and his brand were seen as the “ultimate lifestyle purveyor” (Mc Dowell. 2002, Ralph Lauren: the man vision and style) taking consumers back to Anglo American roots. In 1995 a newly launched younger Ralph Lauren appeared on the seen blending the casual ideas formed by both Ralph Lauren and Calvin Klein. This was the very beginning of the popularised Abercrombie & Fitch we see today. Overall, the 90’s for Ralph Lauren was significant to its future popularity and its those garments such as the classic POLO and the Harrington Jackets, sweatshirts and Flannel shirts that were the hit of the decade and still are today. (Designer clothing. 2012, Online)


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olo Brand Image

RRalph alph L Lauren auren

seven seven

Ralph Lauren established his brand as his own by ignoring the constant changes in fashion and dictatorship. Lauren has focused his brand POLO purely on classic American fashion and how it differentiates itself through its casual elegance and sportswear. The simplicity of the garments plus high quality craftsmanship is what gave Ralph Lauren its luxury title. In the words of the author who published about the live, style and brand of Ralph Lauren, Colin Mc Dowell, “He has taught us how to create our surroundings, he has educated our taste and he has revolutionised the way we shop.� (Mc Dowell, 2002, Ralph Lauren: the man, vision and style)

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Ralph alph Lauren auren

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Ralph Lauren



In terms of primary research, a survey was conducted on 103 randomly sampled consumers between the ages of 16-50+ in order to gain a personal insight into what the meaning of luxury is to these consumers. The survey was conducted online with a range of open and closed questions to give both qualitative and quantitative results. The survey helped identify why consumers buy into luxury fashion brands in addition to the decision making process prior to purchase that these consumers go through. The question was set out in a way to compare the results of Generation X to generation Y. For full results see appendix 8.

trip to the London flagship store on New Bond Street, in order to experience the service and atmosphere that could be altered when creating a new strategy targeting a new consumer. Although photographs were not permitted, it gave real feel for the brand and realistic imagination of the strategies that could be put into the place. Whilst there, a structured interview was carried out with sales consultant David Del’anna who shared his experience and answered questions regarding the type of consumers who purchased Ralph Lauren POLO, and how they currently target this demographic. This helped to Identify areas with could be further developed when considering generation Y.

Secondary research carried out included extensive research on the brands official website both US and UK versions, in addition to a range of articles and trend websites which gave a better insight into the two Another form of Primary research consumers types and their habits conducted involved a research and lifestyles. The trend

websites provided a range of new digital media and innovative marketing techniques in order to rejuvenate the brand and target generation Y as research into the consumer presented a need to use digital technology. Michael Gross, author of the Genuine Authentic based on the real life of Ralph Lauren and the development of the brand and his life was read which provided a realistic understanding of the designer himself and success achieved in the 90’s. Similar to this, a book called Ralph Lauren- the man, the vision, the style by Mc Dowell described the vision Lauren aimed to create for his overall brand and sub-brands. The official Ralph Lauren book created in 2007 gave a similar insight to the previous book however as it was created more recently it commented on more recent events .

Ralph Lauren


In order to complete the report, a range of both primary and secondary research was carried out to form a realistic understanding of the brand and its history, which will help inform a future repositioning strategy for the brands success.

research & findings


Ralph Lauren



eneration X

Generation X was stereotyped with the punk rock music that was released at the time and highlighted the feelings of this demographic, which was being alienated from society, leading to the minds set

that they could reject hard work and achievement. This also didn’t help reaching to adulthood during an economically challenging period. They were the first group of people to get familiar to the idea of technology with the rise of household computers, the internet, and the idea of websites to hold and direct content. The GenX population were highly educated however still remained to have a feeling of discontent and scepticism about the world and society. This made them passionate about politics and to get involved with the way society is run.

“They have nowhere to direct their anger, no one to assuage their fears, and no culture to replace their anomie...” (The independent. 2007, Online)

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Generation X also known as ‘Baby Bust, Slackers, Why Me Generation, and the Latchkey Generation; (Williams. 2010, 6) were the teens of the swinging sixties, born in the years between 1965 and 1980. There are roughly around 46million members in comparison to the 78million millennial (Generation Y’s) now, showing just how overpowering the new generation is. These consumers were brought up by their baby booming parents valuing family first, although they were the first generation to experience a rise in divorce ratings and violence.


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eneration Y

This demographic are roughly born between 1977 and 1994 and are seen as the next leading generation after the baby boomers. They will be ones who dictate how society should be run according to their beliefs and ideologies. They are a challenging demographic to reach as they have the power to dictate what they like and dislike and aren’t afraid to state their opinion. (WWD. 2011, Online) “ Classic works of practice are being infused with a hint of youngness to appeal to that all new consumer” (Boston Articles. 2012, Online) This is now leading to the fashion industry who have realised the importance of this demographic and the influential power they will hold in society. This generation are leading their lives with technology in their hands. In order for any brand to succeed it is important for them to engage with these consumers and to understand the role technology plays in their everyday lives. This has

lead to the loss of the idea of having someone’s undivided attention as it is fragmented across multiple devices on social platforms such as face book, twitter, social gaming, Tumblr and Pinterest. This is a common trait amongst Generation Y’s. (Wells, T. 2012, Online). They have grown up with Web 2.0 over 1.0 and the ability to be Prosumers in their own right. They can create content, edit content, and share content making this generation in control. This generation live transparent lives and are obsessed with the idea of them selves as icons through the use of social media sites such as twitter that are bringing consumers closer than ever to these high profiles. This has then led to them sharing their lives, music, friends, interests and style for the world to see, meaning that peer to peer influencing opportunities has dramatically increased. In terms of fashion with generation Y, they are no longer led by traditional fashion figures but more so by each

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other and by other Generation Y fashion followers who are prominent in the blogosphere such as the Sartorialist or Fassy. It is these individuals that have made fashion “more influential, more accessible and more global” (Boston Articles. 2012, Online). They generally don’t care about the logo of a brand being bold on advertising or on clothing as they are more interested in the idea of ‘quiet Luxury’ (Lucy Norris. 2012, Lecture). Those that know it is a luxury good are the only ones worth knowing about it at all. The hopes and beliefs of this demographic are very aspirational they know what they want and will go out to get it however they have a strong attitude towards thing they don’t agree with and will voice their opinion with no fear. They are also of the belief that you only life once so they are risk takers. Therefore fashion brands should do the same in order to be accepted and appreciated by these consumers.


ifference in consumer buying habits

By understanding the difference in consumer purchasing habits it will be easier to identify areas that need to be assessed when rejuvenating the brand in order to target generation Y in a more direct way. According to an online survey conducted, the most important factors that attract consumers to luxury fashion brands are quality, high status & the idea of being a desired product. It was interesting to see that with the same question asked to both Generation X and Generation Y consumers ‘what is your main decision prior to

purchasing luxury fashion brands?’ the majority stated ‘can I afford this right now’ as their answer. For generation Y, luxury proves to be an impulse purchase, which could be achieved through strong and appealing marketing techniques. This being said the thought of how much the product will be used is definitely at the forefront of this demographics mind. Generation Xers search for related information to the product as reassurance that they are not being

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taken advantage of by marketers. They also look to the Internet to confirm their purchasing decisions though reviews and additional product information. Generation Y selects and consumes products that allows them to fit in with peers and they are reliant of the opinions of others. In order for Ralph Lauren to adapt, the utilisation of social media sites allows the opinions of consumers along with information to be shared benefiting both consumers.



“Lauren responds to the integrity of items of dress that have been developed as practical solutions to the problems of outdoor life “

(mc dowell. 2002, 65)

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Ralph Lauren

digital trends



ugmented reality

hugo boss

Augmented reality is increasingly being used by luxury brands to create a more interactive shopping experience for consumers. Brands are realising now that the retail environments are key for luxury brands as this is what differentiates luxury from high street. Hugo Boss as one example carried out an augmented reality experience outside their London store allowing views to hold up a postcard to start the catwalk and receive a personal message from Hugo Boss. By doing this the viewer is automatically entered into a competition to win vouchers. Hugo Boss was one of the first Luxury brands to create such an experience, however augmented reality was taken to the next level with Augmented fashion shows, in addition to the 4D experience Ralph Lauren created (see appendix 4) to launch their UK website. This technology is something that the brand should consider more to appeal more to the younger and digital savvy audience.

ralph lauren

ralph lauren


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digital trends

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ralph lauren

ralph lauren

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The idea of Me-tail has recently been developed as a personal online fitting room, however the overpowering idea of Me-tail looks at delivering to the connected customer. Since the development of web 2.0 and the changing technological platforms, the consumer has gained the power of voice on the web. This has led to the power of choice and freedom within fashion. This is what generation Y has been brought up with and they are constantly searching for way to differentiate them selves whilst still being associated with certain brands. So what are brands doing to keep up with the trend? (PRweb. 2011, Online)

With this idea in mind, in addition to the service already provided by Ralph Lauren, a further developed strategy has been created to incorporate Me-Tail in a more creative way for consumers. (See section 4)

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1. Nike id 2. Create your own polo 3. Design your own custom converses 4. Pandora charms 5. Personalise your Bogetta Venetta

digital trends


ffline retail environment

It is now common to see interactive projection displays within retail environments that take augmented reality to another level. This can prove a successful and interactive way for consumers to shop. The experience uses light and motion sensors to enhance the product. The sensor picks up movement of the product when it is physically held. The shoe example by Perch interactive is one of many examples that has recently been created but hasnt been used y luxury brands as yet so could be a future possibility.. (Mashable.2012, Online)


uxury Pop-Ups

Collaboration between French fashion house Hermes and Japanese architect Shiguru Ban created a pop up shop for a design exhibition in Tokyo where Hermes could showcase its home furnishings collection. The shop allowed people to walk around and experience the space along with the atmosphere created by the interiors. (Trendhunter. 2012, Online)


ocial Developments

The new social trend Pinterest , photo sharing website in the form of a pin board has been created with already 12 users from the UK and US (BBC. 2012, Online). Recently the development of Pinterest has increased with the new app available on Facebook to combine the best of both sites. The app allows members to view their Facebook as a pin board making it more visual with less text. This could be something for POLO Ralph Lauren to consider however with 65% of views being female dominated this may not be directly targeting the right consumer.


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uxury brand Burberry is the perfect example of successful repositioning and rejuvenating of the brand to transform it from the negative connotations it was associated with after its overuse of the check print. Burberry is now at the forefront of digital technology and social media. Spending on traditional forms of advertising has been reduced and its online presence has increased, which has helped to target a larger audience with a more creative approach. Burberry appreciate that consumers are now living in a digital world surrounded by technology and they adapted to that as any brand should. The art of the trench The art of the trench website is one of many ways in which Burberry directly targets its consumers in a more interactive and direct manor. The website is all consumer based and allows them to share their pictures sporting the Burberry trench coat. The company describes the site as “A living document of the trench coat and the people who wear it�. The site has proved to be a valuable marketing and promotional opportunity that has positioned the brand in a new light.(Design Council. 2011, Online) Burberry World Live To celebrate the launch of the flagship store in Taiwan, Burberry has developed a 360 immersive experience showcasing the brands British heritage though the form of music fashion and digital weather. The multi-sensory experience brought the brand and British heritage to life in addition to taking fashion and technology to a whole new level. This event was created for the online community according to creative officer Christopher bailey, showing how important the online consumers and die-hard fans are to brands like this. Burberry Tweet talk Not only was Burberry the first luxury fashion brand to live stream their catwalk shows and sell live from the catwalk on an online store, but they were also tweeting the collection minutes before they were about to enter the catwalk. This allowed followers to see the collection before even front row guests. Images and descriptions were posted of each look, which led to Burberry being the third highest Twitter trend globally (Cartner- Morely. 2011, Online). Addition digital promotion tools: -3D holographic runway show for the China launch -Live streaming from Kensington Gardens on to 32m screen on Piccadilly circus -Instagram profile

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campaign trends


ampaign Trends

ASIAN FUTURE With the figures that China will to be the leading economy by 2015 marketers are constantly trying to adapt their work to appeal to this powerful consumer base. Campaigns are increasingly using the Asian model at the forefront of their shoot. In particular Ji Jing, who is signed with New York Models is making her presence known on catwalks along with Sui He and Jung Ma who walk the runway for many major shows including the Ralph Lauren Collection. The models themselves have noticed a trend towards their own culture within clothes and the models they walk with. This shows the acceptance and move towards a more cultural fashion world that’s adapting to the changing markets. Even the Ralph Lauren Fall 2011 show showed the blending of both Eastern and Western ideas with in the collection. (kent. 2010, Online)

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They were once the talk of the playground but have now found themselves wanted by top model agencies. The rise and acceptance of Red haired models is increasingly being used in campaigns creating a stand out look away from the traditional Blonde and Brunettes. This is said for both male and female models that have featured in wellknown campaigns such as the Mulberry S/S 2011 created by Tim walker and the Longchamp Audrey Marney S/S 2011 campaign. In addition to this males such as Bastien Bonizec and Lasse Pederson have been running the catwalk shows for designers such as Burberry, Dries Van Noten and D&G (interview Magazine, 2011. Online).

campaign trends


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campaign trends


emales of the now

cara delevingne

mila kunis

karlie kloss

freja beha ericson

jessica stroup

mirander kerr

nadja bender

lana del ray twenty-six

Ralph Lauren

ales of the now

campaign trends

M casey taylor adrian sahores

sean opry

david agbodji

gordon bothe

tom guinness

A selection of the hottest models of today including some well known hollywood faces were collated to give an insight into what ralph lauren could potentially be searching for when creating a younger and more edgy campaign (section 4). Many of the models are currently used by leading brands such as Calvin Klein, Versace, Prada and Burberry in addition to Gordon Bothe who is a well known red haired runway model for D&G. Others such as Lana Del Ray, Mila Kunis and Jessica Stroup are leading faces in the music and entertainment industry that have a distictive look or fashion about then that appeals to generation Y. Most the models chosen were selected from the top 50 models and newcomers from Models. com but were carefully selected with intent to being the next face of Polo Ralph Lauren.

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zhao lei

conclusion & Recommendations


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verall Brand Objective:

The aim of the strategy is to overall rejuvenate the POLO Ralph Lauren brand in order to reconnect with younger consumers (generation Y) to in which effectively makes it more exclusive and appealing to these fashion conscious individuals.



Intangible repositioning (see appendix 3) allows for the same product to be marketed to a different market segment. The messaging will directly speak to the desired target audience through a strong and consistent campaign that has the ability to go viral, in addition to a range of smaller digital strategies that will help create a highly visible brand both on and offline.

“When I create a collection, I approach it with a cinematic point of view—I am not designing clothes, I’m creating a world.”

Ralph Lauren


(Ralph Lauren,2012. Online)

campaign brief

Campaign: IM THAT MAN Every successful brand will have a successful campaign. Many of which are interactive, realistic and tell a bit of a story, which can be conveyed and synergised through more than one platform. This can be through the form of visual image, video, individual webpage & through social media. The following UK campaign has an edgy take on the POLO Ralph Lauren brand incorporating real life situations and people, which is in keeping with the original essence of the brand being of a practical nature but is very different from any other campaign done before. ADVERTISING OBJECTIVE: To make POLO consumers reconsider their man hood and to see the brand in a more realistic and appealing way. Consumers should feel directly spoken to in this campaign. It is also hoped that it pushes the boundaries of fashion photography in addition to the Ralph Lauren brand itself. CREATIVE IDEA: The full campaign is challenging men and their stereotypical practical abilities in everyday life in addition to sporting challenges. The real life ambassadors used will carry out a series of challenges to test their man hood such as putting together a set of wall shelves, making a golf hole in one, putting up a tent, riding a unicycle, saving a cat from a tree & swinging over the rugby cross bar. These challenges will be filmed and edited with a fading soundtrack to complete the look of the outfit and the brand. They will then be made viral on a dedicated YouTube page allowing people to share and add comments. An individual webpage within the site will be created dedicated to the campaign. In terms of the still image two carefully selected models will perform the activities that will form the new campaign. The campaign is in keeping with the brands essence whist still challenging the norm. TONE OF VOICE: Whilst the campaign has a quirky tone, images should come across professional yet fun. TARGET CONSUMER: Ages between 16-27. LOCATION: The location of the campaign will be based on the practical activities conducted in well-lit areas natural to the activity being done. MODEL CASTING: A range of naturally casted individuals will be chosen to carry out the activities needed for the campaign all with a typical Ralph Lauren preppy look but a younger and more edgier feel. The leading ambassador of the campaign will be Casey Taylor, a canadian model with strong links in the fashion industry. Whilst haveing run and advertised for major designers, Casey Taylor has strong distingtive features perfect for the role. STYLIST: Robert Verdi PHOTOGRAPHER: Solve Sundsbo. Being fashion photographer for high listed magazines such as Love, ID & Vogue and for some of the best campaigns for luxury brands like Chanel, YSL, Louis Vuitton. Steven Meisel has also photographed for Sports wear brand Nike where he was known to capture the movement and emotions of the model with the garments. MEASURE OF SUCCESS: As the campaign will be followed through on all platforms, video views, Facebook shares, number of Facebook likes, Twitter retweets and more traditionally sales of featured items are all ways in which the brand can measure the campaigns success. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Shots used should be creative and natural, clearly indicating the activities conducted with a clear view of the garments being warn.


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I try to design into a world that is constantly moving, and moving me. (Ralph Lauren. 2012, Online)


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digital soltions


igital Solutions

RL MAGAZINE To digitally incorporate the campaign within POLO stores and to publicise the RL magazine further, a hard copy print of the magazine will be available in stores with an augmented reality feature allowing users to flick through the magazine and in areas that that be viewed interactively as a video a Polo pony will be available that viewers can hold over the icon using their smart phone and view the videos through their phone. For this campaign the videos of the campaign activities can be viewed but for a future extension this can be used to incorporate videos within their quarterly magazine in stores. A full analysis of the idea with an alternative see Appendix 6.

WARDROBE FEATURE A concept that incorporates and benefits the fast-paced lifestyle led by Generation Y has been created. Though advances in technology have enhanced our online browsing experience, inefficiencies still exist with relation to finding a product online and actually purchasing the right size and product within stores. A physical visit is not enough for these consumers and neither is online shopping for some, therefore this concept allows for consumers to get the best of both. While browsing on the POLO Ralph Lauren website, in addition to the ‘add to basket’ option, viewers will also have the option to ‘wardrobe’ the item. This will then appear in a list when clicking on the button on the right hand side of the screen. By ‘wardrobing’ items, you are able to in essence reserve those items in a chosen store’s changing room ready to try on. While this may disrupt or ruin the normal shopping experience, it does make the process quicker and easier for consumers and also allows them to browse the store for anything else they may want in addition. The service also comes with a stylist pick (recommendation) that may match or compliment items chosen therefore making a more intimate and interactive shopping experience. POLO ART BAR Recent guerrilla marketing strategies adopted by brands such as the Hermes pop up shop as previously mentioned have proved to be a successful strategy due to the unexpected and spontaneity of the experience. Although Ralph Lauren has already launched a Restaurant & Bar in both the US and Paris (See Appendix 5), they are not present in the UK as a service, therefore a new pop up art bar concept has been developed. A collaboration with Chinese architect Wang Shu, winner of the Pritzker Architecture award this year could benefit the brand as they are being associated with something more contemporary and new, in addition to the architect who will get a live showcase of his work. The collaboration will consist of Wang Shu creating a space for Ralph Lauren incorporating a contemporary version of the brands heritage through the use of the wooden Ralph Lauren home furnishings. The Pop up bar will be advertised prior to its launch in Covent Garden and will last for 3 weeks.

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The more creative twist to the experience is the art aspect, which allows visitors to draw on the design wall of the bar on to the Ralph Lauren POLO to create your own POLO shirt. This allows artists to take their talents to a new level, which can then be photographed and shared on social media sites.

product extentions


ou by Polo

With the increase in personalised shopping and the idea of ‘Me-tail’ as previously mentioned, POLO could introduce a feature allowing consumers to fully personalise the classic polo’s further than the option currently provided by the brand, called ‘Create your own’. What is currently provided by the brand is simply the consumer choosing the initials, colour and pony colour for the polo shirt. ‘You by Polo’ allows consumers to choose the colour of the polo, colour of the collars, shoulder pad area, chest quarter, colour of the four segments of the polo, sleeve rims and up to 8 letters to personalise it. By extending this feature, consumers are able to get a more personal and unique item from the brand, whist still having the logo and colour palette of the original options. The newer options are more in keeping with current trends seen on the catwalk. The colours and patterns available should be updated depanding on the season. The figure below highlights the areas that could be ammended. For further future product extensions see appendix 7.


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summary references bibliography



After analysing the core POLO brand, and identifying current trends within the industry, a SWOT analysis was carried out which allowed the strengths and weaknesses of the new strategy to be analysed in terms of what could pose to be a future opportunity and threat (see appendix 2). This highlighted that fact that whilst the fashion industry is constantly moving, so is technology and consumer needs, therfore it is important to create strategies that can be altered to suit the consumer whilst being long term to avoid costs. Therefore the strategies that were identified gave a mix of long term and short term outcomes that could all be measured success. The aim was to stay true to the essence of the brand whislt being slightly more adventurous and innovativewith its strategies . The research carried out on consumers idea of luxury helped to identify areasa that needed to e considered and the current digital advcancements gave rise to ideas the combined society and the way generation Y live with the brand to place Ralph Lauren at the heart of its consumers.


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WORDS: 2,996

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with less choice of on trend fashions.


4.With the use of a well-known profile as the ambassador of the brand, it will make the campaigns and therefore product more appealing to both consumers and to the media, which will in tern generate more interest for the brand if done correctly. 5.By revitalising the Polo brand, it will increase the brand lifestyle to intern increase sales and help build up the hold it had over consumers in the 90’s. 6.Revitalising an existing popular brand can be highly profitable as the built up awareness and name recognition already exists. Emotionally loyal consumers such as GenX have already connected with the brand, GenY may be aware of the brand often having a reputation of reliability that newer brands cannot equal up to. Weaknesses

APPENDIX 2 SWOT analysis for rejuvenating the brand aiming at a younger market Strengths 1.Generation Y are the next leading generation who dictate how life and fashion will be in the future, these consumers are also the most fashion conscious. It is therefore beneficial to Ralph Lauren to target these consumers with marketing techniques tailored to them such as aspects of digital technology, which will also help keep the brand in line with its current and potential competitors. 2.By rejuvenating the brand it allows for the company to analyse its current marketing position and current works of practice that may be old and dated for employees. It allows for the brand to re-establish its values and essence and to portray this again to its consumers. 3.With the current trend being of a casual preppy lifestyle, Polo Ralph Lauren should rejuvenate the brand to stay ahead of newfound competitors and to position the brand as exclusive and classic in consumers mind. Currently the perception of the brand to consumers is that it is similar to high street brands however at a higher price point and

2.There is always a weakness when trying to target a younger consumer, which is that it may leave those consumers who were continuously loyal to the brand disappointed as they may feel as if their brand is changing its beliefs or that the clothes no longer suit the consumer. 3.There is an issue of a backlash, when rejuvenating a brand, which could have inverse effects on sales and brand image. For example the change of consumer base for Burberry when the use of the symbolic Burberry cross hatch. This then took a lot of work on the brands side to make consumers gain back their trust in the brand. Opportunities 1.By appealing to a newer and fresher demographic, it will open up more product extensions the brand can embrace on that competitors have not yet picked up. 2.Places the brand in a prominent stance on the web as this is where the target consumer spend most their time. By introducing a range of digital features that synergise with the experience with in stores, consumers overall memory of the brand will increase and this allows for them to share their experience on the web. 3.By researching Generation Y in detail it allows for the brand to find a collaboration opportunity for Polo and an area that appeals to the needs of those consumers, such as music.

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Above, is a postitioning map created to compre the perceptios of POLO in terms of itss competitos both directly and indirectly. The two axis’ compare the brands luxury staus with its digital stance, which has recently seen a link as consumers are yerning for more than a product or servce from these luxury brands. The map highlights Ralph Laurens current position being classed as mid luxury as it is more afforable than the likes of chanel, and with a traditional representation despite the odd strategies used. The hope is that thebrand will be repostitoned as highly digital which will highlight and boost its luxurious status amongst its consumers.

1.By developing a new strategy for the brand, it may mean the loss of the original identity of this brand. In this case the Polo sub-brand. With the many sub-brands Ralph Lauren currently having, it may mean less of a differentiation for each brand, which could confuse consumers. It is therefore important to maintain Polo’s original brand identity being of Casual American necessities.

4.Changing consumer’s tastes allows for continuous opportunities to please consumers through product extensions and digital strategies. This is further mentioned in future product extensions section. 5.With continuous technological advancements and the development of Web 2.0 the brand can keep up to date with new platforms such as flicker board, Pinterest with target consumers and be where their consumers are. Threats 1.The main threats at the moment are the competition. Not only in fashion but also in all areas of retail and technology. Brands are continuously trying to add value to their brands and products by providing an extra service or experience to their brand to directly target their consumers. 2. Not being able to keep up with the market demand which is constantly changing, and could be coslty to the brand if needed to consistantly adapt marketng techniques globally.

The RL (restaurant) in the United States is located next to the largest POLO store in Chicago and opened in 1999, allowing Ralph Lauren to put his vision and décor to a real life situation. The food is inspired by American classics such as steaks, sandwiches & seafood, and the dress code is smart business casual. (RL restaurant. 2012, Online). This idea is what is aimed to be achieved with the ‘The pop up art bar’ in that consumers get a closer and more personal insight into the brand, placing it at the forefront of their minds. The idea to incorporate Art is to appeal to generation Y who are looking for more of an experience in fashion brands. APPPENDIX 6- RL Magazine The benefits of an interactive RL magazine is that it makes the campaign more public in addition to the magazine but mostly the experience of interacting with the magazine and not just flicking though it is more appealing to consumers. The whole in store experience is increased to not just interiors based around the heritage but to give consumers a more memorable and personal experience of the brand and store. As an alternative to consumers having to scan the POLO ponies on their Smartphone and watching the campaign on a small screen, there is a possibility for there to be a provided screen that the Pony symbol from the hard copy of the magazine can be held up to play the campaign on a larger screen. By doing this is can change the atmosphere of the store and make it more current a relevant to the campaign. This also makes it more enjoyable and easier for consumers to focus on the actual videos than on a smaller screen on a mobile phone.

APPENDIX 3 – Repositioning Strategy Model

APPENDIX 7- Photo Booth

APPENDIX 4- Ralph Lauren 4D experience In order to celebrate the launch of the solo UK Ralph Lauren website and the 10th anniversary of, the brand created a 4D experience for viewers in both the UK and the US flagship stores. The digital experience was not only something new and unseen for the brand but was a groundbreaking fusion of Art, fashion, and technology. The experience created 3D projections over the 3 story high building that transforms and disappears before your eyes to reveal the POLO ponies and then to later on creating a 4d fashion show that appear out of the transformed building. This is one feature that incorporated the digital technologies need for the brand to succeed.

Another way in which POLO could rejuvenate the brand and target a younger consumer is through the use of a in store photo booth allowing consumers to go inside and take a picture of themselves in a typical Ralph Lauren style campaign. The image can then be shared on Twitter, Facebook or Pinterest and an automatic location tag in will be made on face book stating the location of the Ralph Lauren store. By doing this consumers feel closer to the brand itself and have a memory to take away with them. This also generates interests of the brand and experience to other Facebook users.


APPENDIX 5- Ralph Lauren Bar and Restaurant

Ralph Lauren

Ralph Lauren


APPENDIX 8 Survey Results

LIST OF REFERENCES 1. (Mcdowell. 2002 :52) 2. (Mintel. 2011, Online). 3. (Mintel. 2011, Online). 4. (Gross. 2003, Genuine Authentic) 5. (BBC. 2008, Online) 6. (Mc Dowell. 2002, Ralph Lauren: the man vision and style) 7. (Designer clothing. 2012, Online) 8. (Mc Dowell, 2002, Ralph Lauren: the man, vision and style) 9. (Williams. 2010, 6) 10. (The independent. 2007, Online) 11. (WWD. 2011, Online) 12. (Boston Articles. 2012, Online) 13. (Wells, T. 2012, Online) 14. (Boston Articles. 2012, Online) 15. (Lucy Norris. 2012, Lecture) 16. (mc dowell. 2002, 65) 17. (PRweb. 2011, Online) 18. (Mashable.2012, Online) 19. (Trendhunter. 2012, Online) 20. (BBC. 2012, Online) 21. (Design Council. 2011, Online) 22. (Cartner- Morely. 2011, Online). 23. (kent. 2010, Online) 24. (interview Magazine, 2011. Online) 25. (Ralph Lauren. 2012, Online) LIST OF FIGURES


figure 1. Luxury Wordle, Own image (2012) figure 2. Brand Essence Model, Own image (2012) figure 3. Generation Y moodboard Own Image (2012) figure 4. Ralph Lauren 4D experience still 1 by Ralph Lauren (2010) Available at: figure 5. Ralph Lauren 4D experience still 2 by Ralph Lauren (2010) Available at: figure 6. Ralph Lauren 4D experience still 3 by Ralph Lauren (2010) Available at: figure 7. Ralph Lauren 4D experience still 4 by Ralph Lauren (2010) Available at: figure 8. Hugo Boss Augmented Reality postcard by Hugo Boss (2009) Available at: figure 9. Hugo Boss Augmented Reality by Hugo Boss (2009) Available at: figure 10. Sui He by Ralph Lauren Availabe at: figure 11. Mulberry, s/s 2011 campaign by Tim walker. Available at: figure 12. Longchamp, s/s 2012 campaign by Longchamp Available at: figure 13. Lasse Pederson by Burberry (2010) Available at: figure 14. Bastien Bonizec by (2012)

Available at: figure 15. Im that man Campaign moodboard, Own Image (2012) figure 16. ‘You by Polo’, Own Image (2012) BIBLIOGRAPHY Books Cafarelli, E, 1980. Developing new products and repositioning mature brands, John Wiley & sons: New York Gross, M, 2003. Genuine Authentic: The real life of Ralph Lauren, Harper Collins: New York McDowell, C, 2002. Ralph Lauren. Octopus Publishing Group ltd: London Articles Atkinson, L, 2012. Back To the 90’s Style magazine Accessed: 15 April 2012 Websites Art and Commerce, 2012. Solve Sundsbo portfolio. Available at: BBC, 2008. 1992 Recession Article. Available at: http:// Accessed 6 May 2012 BBC, 2012. BBC news Pinterest article. Available at: Accessed 3 May 2012 Cartner-Morely, J, 2011. The guardian. Available at: Accessed 2 May 2012 Claer Barrett and Tim Bradshaw, 2009. Financial Times Newspaper. Available at: cms/s/0/70689408-d3f2-1e0-b7eb-00144feab49a. html#axzz1tiNAGOTK Accessed 25 April 2012 Design Council, 2011. The art of the Trench article. Avialable at: Types-of-design/Fashion-and-textile-design/Burberry/ Accessed 2 May 2012 Designerclothing, 2012. Available at: Accessed 8 April 2012 FashionPhotography, 2012. Top 10 fashion Photographers. Available at: http://www.fashionphotographyblog. com/2008/12/my-top-10-favorite-fashion-photographers/ Accessed 3 May 2012-05-03

Ralph Lauren

GeNYU, 2012. How Generation Y is changing fashion now, Available at: Accessed 25 April 2012 Guardian, 2012. Wang Shu Article. Available at: http:// Accessed 3 May 2012

RL resturant, 2012. RL official website. Available at: Accessed 1 May 2012 Samantha Critchell, 2012.Boston Article. Available at: Accessed 25 April 2012

Interview Magazine, 2011. Redheads running the catwalk. Available at: fashion/runway-traffic-redheads#_ Accessed 9 May 2012.

Signature 9, 2012. Will Generation Y sustain luxury fashion?, Available at: Accessed 25 April 2012

Kent, J, 2010. CNN news article. Available at: http:// luxury.brands/index.html Accessed 3 May 2012

Slideshare, 2012. Repositioning strategy. Available at: Accessed 2 May 2012

Huffington Post, 2011 The best of Digital Innovation. Available at: http://www.huffingtonpost. html Accessed 2 May 2012

Stephy, MJ, 2008. Time Magazine Article, Available at:,8599,1731528,00.html Accessed 26 April 2012

Independent, 2007. Generation X article. Available at: Accessed 26 April 2012 mashable, 2012. Social Media News. Available at: http:// Accessed 6 May 2012 Mediapost, 2011. Macy’s revamping its bid for Gen Y. Availabe at: article/170818/macys-revamping-its-bid-for-gen-y.html Accessed 25th April 2012 Mielach, D, 2011. Business news Daily. Available at: Accessed 2 May 2012. Mintel, 2011. Attitudes of consumers towards luxury. Available at:, 2012. Model Castings. Available at: http:// Accessed 25 April 2012 Model, 2012. Top 50 Models. Available at: http:// cfm?fnumber=30&lnumber=26 Accessed April 20 2012 New York Times, 2012. Chevy hunts Generation Y, with help from MTV. Available at: http://wheels.blogs. Accessed 25 April 2012 PRweb, 2011. Me-tail Article. Available at: http://www. Accessed 25 April 2012

Taylors, 2012. Impact of Branding, Available at: SEARCH%20Vol%201/Rosaline(k)79-95.pdf Accessed 25 April 2012 The New York Egoist, 2012, Fast Fashion / Gen Y Available at: march/28/fast-fashion-gen-y-consumption-face-fashionmarketing Accessed 25 April 2012 Trend Hunter, 2012. Trend Hunter technology trends. Available at: Accessed 6 May 2012 WWD, 2011. Business Insider Media Conference talks Gen Y. Available at: social-studies-5407787 Accessed 25 April 2012 Wells, T, 2012. Generation Y trends. Available at: http:// Accessed 24 April 2012 Journals KC Williams, 2010. Journal of behavioural studies. Marketing to the generations: page 6 Lectures Norris, L, 2012. The New Generation Y part 1. April 23. (Lecture) Nottingham: Nottingham Trent University Norris, L, 2012. The New Generation Y part 2. April 24. (Lecture) Nottingham: Nottingham Trent University Videos 2002, Sex and Fashion : inside Gucci channel 4, Planel wild Accessed: 2 April 2012

Ralph Lauren

Ralph Lauren Rejuvination Strategy  

A rejuvination of Ralph Lauren to suit generation Y

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