Fostering connections with Gen Z; the Luxury Fashion way!
Couture fashion has been in existence for centuries, designed by the local fashion-savvy artisans, who specialized in designing unique costumes as well as accessories for the royalties, during ceremonial events. Over time, these artisans acquired in-depth knowledge of the technique and gained years of experience. They established distinct names & codes for their fashion houses, to differentiate themselves from each other. To name a few, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Christian Dior, Balenciaga, Rolex, are some of the most popular heritage luxury fashion brands.
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“Heritage luxury fashion brands are built upon traditions, values, and experiences, being passed over generations”.
The high brand perception is not merely based on the rarity and the quality craftsmanship of the products, but, the founder’s history and geographical background, further convey authenticity, strengthening the brand perception and convincing people to pay a premium price.
In early days, only the well-established affluent individuals could afford to buy from these luxury brands. In contrast, today’s Gen Z constitutes to be a significant portion of the fashion luxury buyers. Reports state that Gen Zers (63%) and millennials (63%) purchased more luxury items than their elders (45% for Gen Xers and 25% for Baby Boomers) in the past 12 months, as part of their goal toward adopting a sustainable lifestyle, with the “buy less, but better” mindset.
So why do Gen Z prefer heritage luxury fashion?
If you were wondering, why Gen Z prefers heritage luxury fashion brands, despite there being several upcoming modern brands, we have listed down a few reasons
- The biggest factor that makes luxury brands so desirable is their rarity. They often launch “limited edition” merchandise by collaborating with other big names in the fashion industry. This restricted supply of products creates the fear of missing out amongst the Gen Z; hence, they are willing to pay a premium price for owning exclusive collections.
- Luxury brands bank on celebrity endorsements to construct their brand personality, add credibility and acquire a superior brand position. Famous celebrities flaunt their luxury fashion purchases, which creates a “bandwagon effect”, encouraging Gen Z to increase their purchases and to be a part of their reference groups.
- “Conspicuous consumption” is another big factor that motivates Gen Z to purchase from these luxury brands. The marketing mix of heritage luxury fashion brands expands beyond the product quality and price. They have carefully curated visual brand identities for themselves, such as the name, the logo, and the codes of house, which stay consistent throughout. The brand imagery creates a visual language that helps the brands communicate their aesthetics to the consumers. It is different for every brand and assists consumers in differentiating between the numerous luxury brands. Gen Z believes the products of these luxury brands are a status symbol that helps them express their economic status to their family, friends, and colleagues. Consequently, the Gen Z initially buys iconic products from these heritage luxury fashion brands, such as the Chanel’s No.5 perfume, Hermès’ Birkin / Kelly bag, Christian Dior’s New Look, which are easily recognizable by people of any age globally, who can associate these Gen Z buyers with those brands.
- Moreover, global travel has gained immense popularity among the Gen Z, who hopes to travel the world at such a young age. The mesmerizing ambiance and the personalized store experience of these luxury brands, at their flagship stores located in high-end fashion streets in popular cities of Europe and New York, further entice Gen Z to purchase from them.
Luxury fashion brands have been spending copious amounts of money on their social media management, with the singular aim of fostering connections with the Gen Z. It is so because the Gen Z are dominant influencers and inspirations of fashion for many families. Targeting them would additionally increase awareness amongst the older generations, thereby leading to a growth in the overall purchases.
Here is how heritage luxury brands are fostering connections with the Gen Z and what small businesses can learn from them?
Gen Z has been financially and emotionally affected by Covid – 19. They do not appreciate losing an important year of their development and hence, feel sad, frustrated, and pessimistic about their future. Luxury brands have incorporated social listening and are trying to comprehend Gen Z’s feelings about the situation. They are approaching Gen Z with empathy and inspiring content, that focus on personal development. Curating book lists, posting fitness videos, as well as tapping the Gen Z’s creative instincts, by encouraging them to make reels while being involved in their favorite hobbies such as art, dance, music, baking, etc.
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- Luxury brands are also vocal about the current global issues, to stay relevant with the present times. They are showing their concern towards the state of matters that are currently at top of the minds of Gen Z, with the hope of influencing Gen Z’s opinions towards them. They are doing so, by communicating about their fair policies and equal treatment at work, as well as showcasing the manufacturing process of their products to emphasize the local craftsmanship. As soon as the Coronavirus outbreak hit the luxury brands, they immediately took advantage of social media, to convey to the world, about their positive initiatives in contributing to the global pandemic, with the hope of earning some goodwill. Most of them, LVMH, Prada, Chanel, have donated millions of money to hospitals, manufactured masks and other medical clothing for the doctors and nursing staff. They also communicated about how they will still be paying remuneration to their employees, despite being shut down, in order to help their employees sustain the pandemic.
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- Gen Z has been trying to seek purpose in their existence since the lockdown. As they spent more on more time on the internet, it has made them realize their role in being a responsible citizen of the earth, and therefore, have changed their attitudes towards the way of living life. With the extensive availability of information, Gen Z has become more knowledgeable plus powerful, since they are capable of evaluating information to make informed choices at the snap of a mouse. They choose to be environmentally friendly and have a sustainable lifestyle. Luxury fashion brands are communicating about their inventory management, delivery transparency, and other sustainable practices, to make Gen Z feel like a part of the movement.
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Since Gen Z is addicted to social media in a way that they cannot imagine a life without it, luxury brands have channeled their efforts toward posting content online, that immediately grabs Gen Z’s attention. The above-mentioned methods have worked well in their favor. In case you’re a small business, researching effective ways to stay connected with the younger audience, we’ve summarized a few successfully proven strategies, that you can adopt from the heritage luxury fashion marketing:
And don’t worry, they are budget-friendly, we’ve got your back!
We cannot wait for you to implement these strategies in your small businesses, building a large customer base of young individuals!
Since 2004 Netgains has been building fashion e-commerce website & running effective fashion digital marketing campaigns for fast-growing as well as established fashion brands. Our expertise in fashion eCommerce ensures that your brand and products are delivered to your customers in a way that makes them buy. Get in touch today!