Blog Post Week 7 – Fashion Marketing and Brands

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Analysis of the Marketing Mix for my chosen store.

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Place: Leicester

Price: Illustrated Below

Product: Footwear

Promotion: “Bricks & Mortar Store”

Place

Clarks stores are usually located in the town centre on the high street or in shopping centres and outlet malls. Clarks also provides an excellent online service. However “Bricks & Mortar” shows off the brand as intended by its designers.

Display

The stores use spot lighting to draw attention to the product. Clarks store colour schemes are generally neutral to complement the widest possible variety of footwear colours and to let the shoes speak for themselves. This creates a modern chic and minimalism feel within the store and communicates to the customer that Clarks is current and on trend.

Layout

Women’s shoes are displayed at the front of the store as this is Clark’s key market. Men’s shoes are displayed to the far left next of the women’s range, potentially to appeal to a couple markets and occupy the men while the women shop in some cases. Children’s shoes are located in the far right, perhaps to limit kid’s from running in and out of the store while the parents try to sort out back to school shoes etc. E.g. Clarks Shop Leicester, Fosse Park.

Message

Clarks key message is that they are a family friendly store and design shoes for all ages.

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Price

Clarks provides a numerous range of shoes and bags for men, women and children.

The price points below tell us that Clarks target market ranges from high street to high end consumers. Clarks is not a low value brand, it is footwear for the upper end of middle value range footwear market.

The current A/W Clarks collections for Men and Women, projects the type of consumer who is young, modern, stylish and country chic as their target market.

Here are some price ranges for Clarks A/W 13 Collections:

          Fig.44  Fig.55

Women’s – £30-£140

Fig.66  Fig.77

Men’s-£30-£110

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Boy’s-£30-50 Girl’s-£20-70

Clarks Children’s A/W Collection 2013

The A/W collection for children shows kid’s being kid’s. But in a similar way to the adult’s, they are outdoors, modern and portraying country chic. This will appeal to the real customer the parents. However colours are used to draw the child’s eye along with treats as the product also has to appeal to the child in order for the parents to buy.

Promotions by Clarks 2013

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This promotion is about autumn season discounts, which will appeal to the back to school and Christmas markets. Two of the biggest markets in the industry.

Walk Clarks – Caring For Growing Feet.

TVAD. (2010). Clarks Shoes TV Ad [online video]. Available from: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XsOguvolh4s [Accessed 13/11/13].

Clarks SS13 – Londoner’s Weekender Away.

CLARKSSHOES. (2013). Clarks Women’s SS13 Collection [online video]. Available from: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8jXc2k_akqI[Accessed 13/11/13].

Clarks Autumn/Winter 2013 – Life In The Square.

CLARKSSHOES. (2013). Clarks Autumn / Winter – Introducing the Season 2013[online video]. Available from: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MsSLnlqJ90o[Accessed 13/11/13].

Current Slogan

Clarks – Shoes designed for living.

Target Customer

I would conclude from my research of Clarks that its target market is the higher earning working and business class man, woman or family. The brand is all about shoes made for a purpose, the working and business class is a market entirely about people who are looking for comfort, function and a fashion aspect. Fashion isn’t the most important aspect for these people, the shoe being fit for its intended purpose is what really matters. This target market has the income to pay a bit more for quality and is generally the market with the families, hence these are the people who are buying the back to school shoes for kids, the weekend away new pair of shoes and the out and about reliable town boot.

Clarks Brand Strategy

To offer a variety of orthopaedic, comfortable and supportive footwear i.e. sensible shoes, because there is no such thing as an average shoe shape. Here are some of the Clarks brand specialised foot care ranges: Clarks Originals, Clarks Unstructured, Clarks Wave, Clarks Active Air, Privo Soleassage, Bostonian and Indigos.

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Clarks A/W Collection 2013 Idea

Again Clarks is conveying shoes for outdoors, travel, exploration, and unusual locations. They are inspiring customers with idea’s, all about what they could do while wearing a pair of Clarks boots.

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Clarks A/W Collection 2013

Clarks are attracting both the child and parents attention with the use of coffee’s and cupcakes. Fun and inviting treats which people often indulge in in after a shop in town. This appealing visual is aimed to create a warm and inviting mood in the consumer whilst looking at the boots displayed, to encourage them to look more closely and to potentially buy them.

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Unique Selling Points About Clarks

Diversity

Clarks shoes are designed to be simple for both men and women. They tend to be a chunky and plain in design. However it is the collections of classic designs which give Clarks its signature quality and craftsmanship which is Clarks unique selling point. Clarks shoes can be worn easily by the older adult. But at the same time by the younger generation who wear the shoes to fit their own unique style.

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History

Clarks is a shoe company which has been designing manufacturing and providing footwear to the high street since 1825 and has been a serious contender in footwear for over 150 years and since its revamp in recent years. Involving collaborations with designers such as Mary Portas and Eley Kishimoto. The appeal to buy Clarks shoes couldn’t be stronger.

Customer Service

One thing that can always be said about Clarks shoes stores is there impeccable service, having been in the shoe industry for so long they seem to have cracked what I think customers want when they shop ‘a happy and reasonably memorable experience’. Back to school at Calrks is always made easier by the service, they measure the kid’s feet, check what width shoes they need and find the appropriate inner soles when needed for the shoes to fit. This is because customer satisfaction matters to Clarks. Another example of this impeccable service would be Clarks ‘Baby’s First Pair of Shoes Service’. The idea being you come to Clarks for your baby’s first pair of shoes, Clarks give you there impeccable service and when baby’s first shoes are picked, they take a picture of you and your little angel to mark the occasion. A service which parents tend to repeat as they like to create the same experience for each of their children, as and when they come along. Clarks offers ‘a happy and reasonably memorable experience’ through its impeccable customer service.

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References:

Books:

BICKLE, M.C. (2011) Fashion Marketing: Theory, Principles, &Practice. New York, Fairchild Books.

SUTTON, G.B. (1979) A history of making shoes in Street, Somerset: C. and J. Clark 1833-1907. York: Sessions.

JOBBER, D. (2007) Fashion Marketing. Oxford, Butterworth-Heinemann.

Websites:

C&J CLARK INTERNATIONAL. (2013).Clarks Originals Our Story [Online].Available from: http://www.clarks.co.uk/originals/story [Accessed 13/11/13].

C&J CLARK INTERNATIONAL. (2013).Clarks Online Store Homepage [Online].Available from: http://www.clarks.co.uk/?cm_mmc=google-_-trademark-_-tm%20-%20hvk%20-%20exact-_-%5Bclarks%5D&tmcampid=8&tmad=c&tmplaceref=google_desktop&tmclickref=%5Bclarks%5D [Accessed 13/11/13].

Digital Images:

Fig.1 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Slogan. Digital Image.

Fig.2 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Shop Display. Digital Image.

Fig.3 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Shop Display Women’s. Digital Image.

Fig.4 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Window Display Women’s. Digital Image.

Fig.5 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Window Display Women’s. Digital Image.

Fig.6 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Window Display Men’s. Digital Image.

Fig.7 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Window Display Men’s. Digital Image.

Fig.8 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Window Display Children’s. Digital Image.

Fig.9 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Window Display Promotional Advertisement. Digital Image.

Fig.10 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Window Display Women’s. Digital Image.

Fig.11 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Window Display Women’s. Digital Image.

Fig.12GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Window Display Children’s. Digital Image.

Fig.13 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Window Display Children’s. Digital Image.

Fig.14 GEORGIABATTELL (2013). Clarks Window Display Men’s. Digital Image.

Blog Post Week 6 – Gender and Fashion


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Fig.1

Gender and Fashion

I have chosen to discuss the iconic skinny jeans, one of the most widely worn garments today. Worn by both the male and female sex’s in today society.                                                                    

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The Skinny Jeans Development

Skinny Jeans is not actually the correct name for these pants; it is a modern day slang name for what were once called slim-fit pants. This garment was designed in the 1800’s by Levi Strauss along with other jean cut styles such as roomy.

Slim-fits were reintroduced in the 1950’s by Levi, and took full flight in their fashion iconism through the countercultures and beatnik generation. In following years they became key features of both the rock and punk fashion scene. Hype faded in the 90’s for the trend, but it came back even stronger in new millennium in retaliation to the baggy jean trend of the 90’s. This is when slim-fits became known as the modernised skinny Jeans. In recent years skinnies have been developed further and designed in more flattering figure shapes for the individual and in a diverse range of colours, textures and patterns.

How is this item gendered?

‘Jeans came about by chance, when an American pioneer in search of a strong pair of trousers happened to meet an immigrant…to make his fortune.’

Jeans were created for labour work. They were designed with the American miner, cattle herder and rail tracks layer in mind. All of which were male based society jobs at the time.

It wasn’t until World War I and more so in World War II that women began to wear this durable piece of clothing designed nearly 100 years earlier.

Since then this garment has become a unisex piece of attire.

The fashion edge to this garment wasn’t fully explored or introduced until the 1950’s when Levi chose to modernize the garment to suit the developing subculture trends at this time.

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Is this the same in all countries?

America is where the trend truly began and in the following years during the 1950’s, the garments interest was carried across to European countries through the use of film, music and television.

This in turn embedded skinnies (slim-fit) worldwide in the fashion industry, where they remain today.

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Designers who may have challenged the items original gender convention?

The brand that created the skinny (slim-fit) as always been its developer.

The Levi brand under the leadership of Walter Haas Jr., Peter Haas, Ed Combs, and Mel Bacharach, challenged the skinny jeans original image. In particular during the 1950’s, 1960’s and the 1970’s, with developments such as white wash jeans.

What does it mean to be ‘feminine’ or ‘masculine’ in our contemporary culture?

The differentiation between feminine and masculine in our contemporary culture has in my opinion become entirely perceptional. What one person sees as feminine, another sees as masculine, the gender perception is all about your own perspective. If you see something as feminine, then it is and vice versa because gender today is based on the individual’s opinion. What used to be by a definition defined by the majority is now being redefined by the minority.

Feminine and masculine gender today is what we, ourselves make it.
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Fig.6

Has the meaning changed?

The meaning has changed drastically since we as people decided to create these divisions.

For example blue was originally for girls and pink for boys as babies, but today pink is for girls and blue for boys. Gender in this respect has done a complete 360 turn around.

In my opinion gender will always have basic ideas, but will never stop diversifying, because the perception of  gender develops  as people’s individual opinions  develop.

Book References:

MENDES, V. & DE LA HAYE (1999) Twentieth Century Fashion. London, Thames &

Hudson.

DAMME VAN, R. (1995) JEANS, The Stuff of American history. London: Viking.

Website References:

PAULA COCOZZA (2013) Skinny jeans: the fashion trend that refuses to die. The Gaurdian [Online]. Available from: http://www.theguardian.com/fashion/2013/jan/09/skinny-jeans-fashion-trend-refuses-to-die  [Accessed 6/11/13]

SKINNYJEANSME (2010) Skinny Jeans History [Online]. Available from: http://skinnyjeansme.wordpress.com/skinny-jeans-history/ [Accessed 6/11/13]

WIKIPEDIA (2013) Slim-fit Pants [Online]. Available from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slim-fit_pants [Accessed 6/11/13]

Online Images:

Fig.1 OVERTHERAINBOWLTD (2013) Art of Denim: Histiry of Skinny Jeans [Online image]. Available From: http://insiderainbow.com/art-of-denim-history-of-skinny-jeans/ [Accessed 7/11/13].

Fig.2 PRIYA408 (2011) History of Levi Jeans/Levi Strauss Picture [Online image]. Available From: http://priya408.wordpress.com/day-2-history-of-levis-jeans/ [Accessed 7/11/13].

Fig.3 WIKIPEDIA (2013) Slim-fit Pants Picture 1 [Online image]. Available From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slim-fit_pants [Accessed 7/11/13].

Fig.4 WIKIPEDIA (2013) Slim-fit Pants Picture 2 [Online image]. Available From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slim-fit_pants [Accessed 7/11/13].

Fig.5 SKINNYJEANSME (2010) Skinny Jeans History [Online image]. Available From: http://skinnyjeansme.wordpress.com/skinny-jeans-history/ [Accessed 7/11/13].

Fig.6 THEGAURDIAN (2011) The fashion fixers: our advice for jeans [Online image]. Available From: http://www.theguardian.com/fashion/fashion-blog/2011/aug/26/fashion-fixers-advice-jeans [Accessed 7/11/13].

Blog Post Week 5 – Semiotic Analysis of a Fashion Advertising Campaign

Ralph Lauren Advertising Campaign Spring Summer 2011

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What does it symbolise?

The ad symbolises sophisticated outdoor fashion, lifetime investment pieces, classic and timeless fashion pieces, modern day western cowgirl chic.

What does the brand say about the people who wear it?

It tells us that they’re outgoing, unique, intellectual, practical, hardworking, fashion conscious, self-assured people.

How does the advert convey the identity of the brand?

Well made, quality, American, timeless/classic, quality leather goods.

Brand Message

Natural quality materials used to create classic fashion pieces.

The heels, belts and bags specialist.

What signifiers/symbols does the advert contain?

White background– the sole focus in the ad is the quality of the clothes.

Brown– writing American Western Heritage feel.

Model– Signifies the prospective customer and gives the message that people who wear these cloths are confident, elegant and not afraid to work.

Belt Buckle Designs– Show creativity, quality, and the brands heritage influence.

What do these signifiers stand for?

They stand for the brand image Ralph Lauren wants to promote to his target market.

How effectively is the ‘brand message’ communicated?

I think the brand image is communicated clearly.

When you hear the name Ralph Lauren, I personally believe you look at the brand logo and think Texas chic, timeless fashion pieces and intellectual hardworking customers.

Composition

Text & Position: The text is kept to a minimum and placed in the bottom, top and in painting contexts the golden section of the composition. The sole focus is the brand merchandise.

Typography: Brush Script and Times New Roman. This communicates the elegant and timeless quality of the brand, they don’t need to make a flashy ad the product speaks for itself.

Colours: Browns, creams, beige’s, whites and metallic. Classic timeless colours that never go out of style. They also communicate the natural, earthy, ethnic, western and tribal inspiration for the AW11 Spring Summer Collection.

The Pose of the model:

The pose of the model is very versatile; she has been dressed naturally to enable the customer of the brand to picture themself wearing the cloths. I think this is done so you can interpret the brand in whatever way you want. To me she depicts class, confidence, individuality, intellect, wealth, a fashion forward mind and country chic.

Story line interpretation:

When I see this ad I picture the model getting ready for the day. The classic old reliable shoes are on the bed waiting to be strapped on for the day to come. Her bag is in the hall ready for the day reliable, stylish and durable. The belt buckles are on the dresser and she has just picked her look for the day. She is posed as if looking into a mirror having decided she is now ready to face the future. This figure is calm, confident, real and natural. All of which are key qualities and aspects within Ralph Lauren products in my opinion.

Video Reference

RHALPH LAUREN (2011) Spring Summer [Online Video]. Available From: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kCA7REwFyh0 [Accessed 1/11/13]

Book Referenced

LAURIE, A. (2000) The language of clothes. New York: Henry Holt.

LAUREN, R. (2007) Ralph Lauren/Ralph Lauren New York: Rizzoli.

Images for ad link

Fig.1-3 MYFASHIONDATABASE (2011) Ralph Lauren Collection Ad Campaign [Online Images].Available from: https://www.myfdb.com/campaigns/9222-ralph-lauren-collection-ad-campaign-spring-summer-2011[Accessed 1/11/13]

Fig.4 MYFASHIONDATABASE (2011) Ralph Lauren Collection Ad Campaign Pictures [Online Images].Available from: https://www.myfdb.com/campaigns/9222-ralph-lauren-collection-ad-campaign-spring-summer-2011/image/318484[Accessed 1/11/13]

MYFASHIONDATABASE (2011) Ad Model info [Online].Available from: https://www.myfdb.com/people/2192-anna-selezneva[Accessed 1/11/13]

CLASSIQ (2011) Summer Styles Ralph Lauren Summer 2011 [Online].Available from: http://classiq.me/page/9[Accessed 1/11/13]

WOMENSMANAGEMENT (2011) Ralph Lauren Collection Spring 2011 info [Online].Available from: http://womenmanagement.blogspot.co.uk/2011/02/ralph-lauren-collection-spring-2011.html[Accessed 1/11/13]