Fashion And Luxury Branding In The Retail Marketplace
Fashion and luxury are often used interchangeably but are they? Are they similar enough to be interchangeable? Is one more refined and upscale than the other? Or, are they two separate categories with their own distinctive characteristics?
Luxury and fashion are, in many ways, similar to each other but on a grander scale. They are both driven by a desire for distinction. Both are highly individualized and tend to speak a language of style, form, perfection, and exclusivity that has transcended into the popular culture and even the industry of fashion and luxury marketing. Thus, this is particularly true when it come to the highest echelons of the upper-marketing sector: The higher-end, exclusive brands.
However, the once clear division between luxury and fashion is slowly becoming less clear. There are several signs, from high profile celebrities to the design of some of our favorite high-fashion labels, that luxury brands are beginning to combine elements of both. It’s no longer uncommon to see celebrities visiting high-end fashion shows wearing top-shelf labels. Luxury brands are making this move as well, and some of them are successfully doing so. In fact, there is an entire sub-brand industry based on the combining of high-end brands with e-commerce capabilities: Private label products.
However, the lines separating luxury marketing and fashion marketing are becoming blurred yet again. Lately, some of the luxury marketplaces have begun selling fashion brands themselves. These brand-sponsored sites, which may include independently owned sites like boutiques and online auction sites, are beginning to offer a taste of what the private label market is all about. Private label products still tend to be made with the high-end consumer in mind, but they are not strictly meant to be the next “It” brand. Private labels provide consumers with a variety of options when they want to expand their tastes beyond the mass-produced “branded” items.
There are several different types of business models that have emerged within the fashion and luxury sectors in recent years. The two most common business models are direct selling and affiliate marketing. Direct selling is similar to a traditional retail outlet, where business owners market the products of other companies through their own personal Websites or by traveling door-to-door. Affiliate marketing, on the other hand, requires an Internet connection and the ability to promote a product, typically one that is not necessarily manufactured by a large, well-known company, via a “backend” site.
Both direct selling and affiliate marketing are relatively inexpensive and can bring significant rewards to savvy entrepreneurs. They also give potential customers a chance to purchase items at a discount, which can be a substantial incentive for buying high-end fashion or luxury goods. The key to fashion and luxury brands is to make them easily accessible and affordable, while still maintaining the “wow” factor that attracts those who appreciate quality and style. By using a combination of direct selling and affiliate marketing, luxury brands can attract a larger customer base and increase their overall profit margin, while lowering their brand value.
Social media has become a popular tool for communicating the fashion and luxury brands that are available through independent agents and independent distributors. Social media websites are quickly becoming an important part of everyday life, and many people rely on them when shopping for clothes and accessories. A luxury brand that makes use of social media in a strategic way can establish a strong social media presence and increase its market share. Many luxury brands, including Chanel, Dior, Calvin Klein, Giorgio Armani and Louis Vuitton, have begun posting pictures and videos of themselves on YouTube, Facebook and other social media sites. While this may seem like a small step, it opens up the company to a whole new audience of potential consumers.
Luxury fashion brands have also begun offering discounted gifts and favors for retailers who will promote their products. This is a strategy that is both inexpensive and yet provides a great benefit to the customer. Recipients of these gifts and favors are often more likely to buy a product if it is presented as a gift or favor, rather than simply because they cannot afford the item on its own. When considering a luxury brand for your next clothing purchase, it’s important to talk with both your local independent distributor and a consultant from an external agency. These experts can help you find the best match for your budget and your image.