Ben Sherman Report Essay Example
Terms of Reference
This report has been written with the purpose of providing a clear market research for Ben Sherman which would take consideration of launching standalone womenswear outlets in the UK. Insights will be shown the business environment - the fashion retail market, marketplace and competitors analysis and STP. On the other hand, strategic direction and recommendation are provided by using theoretical models.
Background Information of the Brand
Ben Sherman has been created a great British icon over the world and the brand communicates with consumers through musicArthur Bernard Sugarman was back to Brighton from America in 1963 and established the company named as Ben Sherman.The brand became famous for being worn by well-known musicians. One of the most successful products is the famous Oxford button-down shirt, which became very fashionable for skinheads, mods, and suedeheads. Clothing designs some...
times feature the roundel and colours of the British Royal Air Force, and more recent shirts are often identified with unusual and complex designs, and the so-called Carnaby-style of fitted shirts.
Ben Sherman is now the fourth largest men's casual wear brand in the UK, with its main competitors, such as Ted Baker, French Connection and Timberland.
Firstly, I used search engines such as Yahoo, Google and Wikipedia for general research, which has given me a good understanding of the brand and who are its competitors. Then, I researched the womenswear marketing and retail marketing from Mintel and the Ben Sherman's official website.
Primary research was conducted by questionnaires(appendix2) about how consumers think about the brand, and what else can be improved.I went to the Ben Sherman store in Carnaby Street. I also went to its competitors stores for observational research
Staff at Ben Sherman have given me some general information about the brand and which helped me fill in my Marketing Mix.
- Half of women spend under £25 a month, emphasising the large number of budget fashion customers 32% of women spend £26-£50 per month in 2007
- Women who are 15-24s are the big spenders, as they spend up to £10 a month and 25% of them spend over £75.
- The 20-24 and 25-34 age groups, both of which are important to the fashion market, are set to grow, which is likely to boost spending on clothing.
- The current climate of celebrity culture has become a major driver of womenswear trends.
- Product innovation has been dominated by celebrity/designer collections in 2006 and 2007, but during 2008, retailers an brands are going to have to work harder to maintain the novelty factor in what is now a very crowed market, with a lot of 'names' shouting for attention.
- Premium collection will continue be a favoured area for development. The company will have to avoid looking too classic to attract women's interest.[Mintel, Womenswear - UK - March 2008]
- In most product areas, the proportion of women spending over £100 a year or more is rising, meaning more room for premium collections.
- Jeans and a casual top are at the core of a woman's wardrobe, no matter how keen a fashion consumer they are.
- Jeans and casual tops lead the market and jeans are mainly for those who are under-55s
- The number of 20-24s is rising, which is a core target group for clothing retailers.[Mintel, Clothing Retailing - UK - September 2007]
Strengths and Weaknesses in the
- Media and retailers spur interest in fashion
- Falling process change consumer attitudes, more impulse buying and disposability
- New retailers and collections which may widen the offer of sizes and styles
- Rising numbers of 20-24s
- Clothes shopping wins ground as leisure
- Intense price competition squeezing margins
- Current fashion trends and weather unhelpful
- Little on offer for the growing number of mature shoppers
- Competition from other products, such as technology and services
- Interest rate rises dampen demand, longer term outlook uncertain.
Ben Sherman has been expanding in America, Europe and Asia, but it has lost over one third of its UK sales. This is because of the brand is overexposed which causing in many stores refusing to stock it. The target market of the brand is 18 to 32 year old males.
The brand sells a wide portfolio of menswear and womenswear and has been aiming to increase its proportion of womenswear within the marketing mix up to around 30%. The company is known for its casualwear, especially shirts and t-shirts. It is a major player in the UK branded shirts market in menswear, although its share has been under pressure because of competition from larger retailers' own brands. The brand was opening a London flagship. Ben Sherman has since opened a second UK store and has plans for 20 new retail outlets in the UK.
Ben Sherman has been innovative in its marketing with its clothing featured in several electronic games - firstly as an advert on a football pitch side and then in an Atari game where players can kit out the characters in Ben Sherman clothing. Ben Sherman's latest adverts use stylish "reality" photographs
eg two young men waiting on a bench in a foyer, a suited male shot against an interior in an old library. The brand will be more popular due to its heritage in mod culture, which is trendy nowadays. In 2004, the brand was acquired by US based Oxford, which also make private-label clothing.(Mintel, Clothing Retailing - UK - September 2007)
Ben Sherman spent £1.7m on advertising in 2003, whereas they spent around £0.3m - £0.5m between 2004 and 2006. In 2007, the company increased their budget into £1.5m.(Mintel, Fashion Advertising - UK - November 2007)
Research of Primary Research
I found that there are not many womenswear items in the Ben Sherman store, which might be only maximum 20 items. Customers are less likely to notice that there is an available range of womenswear in store.
Questionnaires were completed by 20 participants in Carnaby Street. The findings from the questionnaires were that most of them do not know Ben Sherman has a range of womenswear or any womenswear products. I also found that more than half of them love listening to the music in their spear time and want to be fashionable. In addition, more than half of the participants want to have more womenswear garment and accessories in Ben Sherman store.
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