Don’t Sell - Enlighten
1 February 2021
Author: Jasmie Waters
Brands and their products have become more than just a material purchase. Over recent years, businesses have started to gain awareness of why it’s important to create a community, have something to say that’s bigger than trying to sell a packaged product. According to the Business of Fashion, there is an extra layer of this strategy that few fashion brands have yet to tap into. Is fashion able to market something bigger than they are through the eyes of enlightenment?
What trends are we seeing?
The absence of physical meetings is apparent and taking its toll on many, and the postponing on mass gatherings has worked against brands over the past year. As a result, we’ve seen an increase in people being brought closer to belief, with Pew Research citing almost a quarter of US consumers have had this strengthened during the course of the pandemic. This kind of change is also reflected in the types of products maintaining a success rate, such as athleisure and loungewear that have strong links to wellness. There is now a strong change in consumer outlook in the broader picture that translates into how they behave and interact with brands.
Do we need a ‘spiritual’ way of selling?
Experts have seen a transition in the hierarchy of priority products, which after need-based commodities, distinctive good and services now includes a longer-lasting physical transformation. Many think that consumers will now look for something that isn’t as physically tangible, with divide between those that are still employed and those that aren’t highlighting a greater need for a brand to exist with purpose. As consumers now question if there is anything else, the stronger businesses will be the ones that can show there is more. If we’re interested in something, we’ll look to buy into it. We all want to belong to something that’s bigger than us, especially now. Breathing personable life into a product is something we’ve already known can create anything from short-term hype to long-term success. But now there could be an increased level of community devotion if a product says something about the person that buys it.
Take Gwyneth Paltrow’s GOOP brand as an example. As an extension of selling products, a newsletter offers ideas of how to live the kind of life that consumers are already trying to buy a small piece of. Those brands that sell similar versions of the same product can also stand out by committing to traits such as extreme brand transparency, making every part of the journey accessible. Taking that extra step to say something about who your consumer is now reflects the growing want. However, straying into a stronger set of principles also runs the risk of stronger criticism. Pushback can be found within and outside of communities, so knowing when to distance yourself from a situation that may cross a boundary is crucial. Heading into 2021, brands should work on how to enhance consumer interaction – B2C and between customers – keeping the balance between consumer and brand belief.
Image source: https://www.teachervision.com/