Marketing Concepts – Marks and Spencers
Per Una believe they “deliver high quality style for the modern woman. ” This objective drives the company resulting in a turnover of more than ? 423. 5 million in 2006/2007. Per Una was detrimental to the revival of Marks and Spencer and it accounted for one quarter of their total women’s wear sales last year. Born from George Davis in 2001, the label tries to replicate the Italian catwalk trends through “safe fashion” that is “trendy and stylish. With this in mind is Per Una achieving and retaining their initial vision in this competitive fashion market? Procedure The information has been gathered from various sources and in different manners and media, in order to gain a wide variety of viewpoints and objectives to provide an accurate overview. Marketing Positioning and Segmentation Positioning The fact that “Marks & Spencer has a broad demographic appeal to both UK men and women, although it is primarily the “safe haven” for 45+.
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Of particular note is that M&S reports that the over 45 age group accounts for 75% of turnover”,( Mintel, 2007) thus the report, along with the information derived from mintel and its’ own primary research, has identified the key challenge for Per Una is to appeal to more 30’s through alteration of the brands positioning. The sub-branding, and fast fashion segmentations implicated will contribute to this objective. Sub-branding The M & S approach of segmenting the product offer insight that clear sub-brands can go some way towards enabling the retailer to cater across the trend spectrum without alienating anyone. ” (Mintel report, 2007). Per Una have distinctively sub-branded various garments in order to target specific segments of the market. This positioning exposes them to a hugely increased percentage of the market, with petite ranges, evening wear ranges, extra leg length ranges etc. Fast fashions For many people incremental time (and energy), now has more value than incremental money.
Thus in fashion, much of the independent sector still “expects to be placed six months in advance, yet fast fashion companies like Zara, Hennes & Mauritz and Topshop are aiming to cut lead times from design studio to store display to as little as 15 days, a model now being emulated by capsule collections from Marks & Spencer”, thus subsequently Per Una. This means that the label have segmented themselves in order to be in a position to compete with more “ youth – orientated” brands, who deliver a “disposable fashion” concept so popular with the younger market of today.
Product category extension As well focusing this branding technique upon the garments, Per Una has also created their own electrical range of products. Although this is an interesting move by a clothes brand, if the products can offer some sort of correlation in term of purchasing psychology, connection between the two types of products i. e time saving ethos, will greatly influence the purchasing decision. Appeal of “youth – orientated” brands simultaneously However, these brands that pose Per Una so much competition are also satisfying their older shoppers as well.
From the information which the report has derived from these 45 + consumers, it has discovered that the mature shopper will look to the younger segmented and positioned brands in order for an opportunity to keep in touch with “hot trends” and “catwalk styles”. Yet, currently the older shopper does not regard Per Una in this light, – as a pioneer of cheaper Italian fashion trends The report has managed to distinguish the segmentation of Per Una consumers based on the report’s primary and secondary research – 1. Middle-class, loyal 2. Convenient opportunist 3. Product intentional 4. Comparison customers 1.
This segment will have been shopping in M&S for years, just as their parents will have, thus subsequently trust and have become devoted to the Per Una label because of its’ associations. It is an integrated part of their shopping habit. 2. This segment can be identified by the unpredictable patterns of their purchasing in the Per Una stores. They perhaps shop there because they are passing through after visiting the food hall of M&S. 3. Product intentional consumers are shoppers who have a preconception of what they intent to purchase and their purchasing decision is difficult to be altered once a product is in mind. . Comparison customers are characterized by their tendency to shop around and analyze the competitors. These people are hard to please and are always looking for the most competitive prices. Marks & Spencer target these segments by very carefully selected advertising. 4 P’s of the organization Product Does Per Una have a distinctive style over its competitors? Is it really maintaining the level of “catwalk” style they say they achieve? Trend Analysis A trend analysis has been undertaken comparing stock lines from the Per Una collection against the key trend featured in Vogue. Fashion Vogue trends autumn/winter 2007 ww. vogue. co. uk (1)-(6) Per Una: Per Una effectively follows this trend but seems to add a mature edge onto styles. The results is dresses with a neckline that is slightly too high or mid length tops. The use of velvet does not enhance but hinder the designs. Per Una: Per Una has produced a glamorous evening collection yet the designs seem to be encased in a struggle; modern and on trend versus middle age mid calf length. The dramatic floor length gown has not been produced and even though many of the dresses are in the right fabrics and colours only a small minority of the collection oozes catwalk glamour.
Per Una: Per Una has failed to replicate this trend in the collection. Per Una: Much of the knitwear collection is made up from one button cardigans. The designs are either plain Per Una: Per Una has combined the metallic trend with the trench coat to produce a garment that satisfies both trends. Per Una has also produced other metallic items yet the majority seems to be a combination of long sleeves or two piece items. Per Una: Per Una produced the leather dress which has become a must have item this season.
This dress was brought by Victoria Beckham creating a craze for the high street item that has rivaled many similar designer dresses. Findings: Per Una strives to be on trend yet in the team’s findings it is clear that they lack the edge for their designs to be considered on trend. Many of the designs have the hint of catwalk trends yet seem to cool down so that they appear as safer options for the consumer. The lengths of the skirts and dresses seem to be more fitting for the more mature woman and do not satisfy the younger market which Per Una is trying to target. Place
Marks and Spencer are expanding their overall space by “15-20% with new or extended stores out of town, on retail parks and in city centres” over the next five years. “The objective is to be in the right place with the right space for tomorrow’s customers. ” Per Una stores are branded by Italian city names and each brand gives a different combination of styling; Retail Store Analysis This year has seen Marks and Spencer modernise around 40% of their portfolio of stores with “radical changes” (Marks and Spencer 2007 Annual report pg22) paying attention to how the stores are laid out and how customers are guided through departments.
Per Una is always located on the ground floor and is the first department encountered by customers. Per una is in effect a shop within a shop, the hangers, decor and ticketing is different from all Marks and Spencer product. The graphics used on the Per Una department are different in all aspects to the Marks and Spencer graphics. The models, locations and images are all chosen to reflect the Italian roots of the brand. At present the images for the decor were shot in Venice. The Per Una department always has three mannequins styled at the forefront of the department and follows the new boutique layout.
The change in layout from original to boutique was undertaken to attract a younger customer through recognition of the boutique shopping trend. Price Per Una follows a relative pricing strategy keeping most products priced around the same margins. Therefore similar styles in the collection are priced around the same price points to keep maintain continuity throughout the brand. They want to attract middle class people so the prices are perfect for them. Per una is less catwalk-led, less expensive and more of a success. It is more influenced by street style than by fashion designer.
One range, called Check Mate, consists of tweed, herringbone and wool suits in a largely black, grey and cream palette, with smart and sexy single- and double-breasted jackets from ? 49. 50 and knee-skirts with flared hems for ? 39. 50. The more adventurous dresser can pick from the English Eccentric range, where the tailoring teams orange and brown or pink and green. Other collection of Per Una which is funky, concentrates on denims and tee-shirts starts from ? 15. The collection also includes co-ordinates shoes and accessories, fragrance and tights, including fishnets and textured are not very expensive.
This collection is affordable to all and specially the target market Per Una is trying to attract. Promotion Strategy Janet Innes from Per Una marketing executive department states that during this year Per Una has used an assembly of different promotion strategies. One of many this year is their collaborating with breast cancer in their nightwear collection. Per Una always have a monthly clearance sale so they can make room for new stock and trend. At the moment Per Una have a special offer online at 3 for 2. Special look books and press packs for national press and fashion journalists are also handed out.
This Christmas attractive gift bags for the beauty collection are launched. (Innes, J,2007) Per Una advertising The report has identified a small promotional film shot in Venice, displayed behind cash desk to entertain shoppers. More prolific advertising for M&S, which contains Per Una garments, does not credit the label for being a brand within a brand. Which subsequently contributes to the brand’s lost identity. The team believes the concept for the video originated from their Italian roots. This shows how an idea transpires into media.
At present our findings conclude that Per Una has not produced a national advertising campaign. SWOT ANALYSIS Strengths Among the internal capabilities that aid Per Una’s ability to achieve long and short-term objectives are: • Greater Brand Perception: The origins of the primary designs are derived from the Italian catwalks, thus Per Una have gained a perceived competitive edge regarding the level of fashion for the consumer. • Per Una provides a great diversity of products, inclusive of an electrical range of accessories. Moreover Per Una does everything right from jumpers to evening gowns and cocktail dresses. Value for Money spent assured: Per Una strictly adheres to its high quality standards. George Davies himself supervises every aspect of production. • Greater control over the supply process: Per Una controls every aspect of the supply chain including presentation and branding within the store. • A new model now being emulated by capsule collections from M & S aim to cut lead times from design studio to store display to as little as 15 days; in order to compete with the other trendy “fast fashion” companies like Zara, Hennes & Mauritz and Top Shop.
The strengths obtained from an overview of the companies current situational benefits, and key issues reflect back well on the mission statements. These are some major strength to rely on when implementing the marketing plan. Weakness • Lost customer identity: Per Una was targeting an age group of 25-35 year old but sadly the majority of shoppers are 35-55 year olds. Hence there is a huge problem regarding size and styles because the size and style of 30 year old wouldn’t be the right choice for 60 year olds. • Low Brand Awareness: Per Una is lacking behind in advertisements.
There is a low awareness among people about Per Una. • Damaged Reputation: Per Una is a part of a fashion famished brand M&S. There is a general idea among the young shoppers that M&S is not trendy and stylish. • Undifferentiated Products: Per Una’s product do not have any uniqueness about them. Its products are just same as that of its competitors (Next, Wallis, Principles, John Lewis and Monsoon). The prices are also not competitive enough particularly in this age of “disposable fashion”. These weaknesses were identified with particularly within the competitive context.
Opportunities It is recommended that Per Una exploit the following opportunities identified by the report; • Higher demand for “fast fashion”. • Growing interest in socially responsible products • A developing market such as the internet Threats Per Una must recognise and overcome the threats which the report has identified. • Intense competition • Market fragmentation • Price wars with competitors • Lack competitors established reputation Strategies needs to be improved Market penetration = existing products to customers in existing markets.
M&S is by far the leading retailer for the over 45 year-olds, and Per Una already has the strongest appeal among the 45 – 55 year-old age group; thus they are increasing unit and monetary sales and also simultaneously reinforcing the brands ( Per Una and M&S’s) strength in each market. Per Una also have to strengthen the consumer’s relationship with the brand by establishing more product ties. Product development = new products/product variants to customers in existing markets (this only works when you can develop a steady stream of product innovations appropriate for the needs of customers in those markets. Per Una have done this by creating an electrical accessory line, their petite range, and jewellery line as well as others. Marketing development = marketing existing products in NEW markets and segments. Such a strategy has been employed by Per Una – building on the popularity of the established name of Marks & Spencer and George David, and building on the popularity of their staple products, (jeans, underwear…. ) allowing the company to expand their customer base by segment; penetrating a younger market. Diversification = marketing new products in new markets or segments.
The findings, which the report has derived from store analysis, indicate the retail environment can be improved in a number of ways in order to improve customer satisfaction. The majority of Per Una customers questioned sourced a number of weaknesses with the actual layout of garments; the range of clothes cannot be easily sited due to overcrowding. This is a fundamental flaw. Recommendations By having their initial target customer age of 25 to 35 years, yet having actual customers of 45 years and over, it has confused them as a brand, and as a result they no longer have a clear identity.
Not only does this restrict the staff from moving forward on what can be done to improve the company, but it also means that particular customers, for example the younger target customer base, are reluctant to shop there as they assume Per Una is for the older women. There are several options that could be considered to re-establish their identity. 1. Firstly, they could simply change their target customer age to 45 years and over. However, this is likely to alienate their existing and potential younger customers.
Furthermore, by doing this it is quite unlikely they would attract any new customers just by changing their target age. 2. Secondly, they could change the style of their clothing so that it would appeal more to a younger customer aged 25 – 35 years old rather than 45 and upwards. Though, this opposite approach to the first suggestion would then alienate the huge percentage of older female customers. Therefore this is unlikely to be a successful change to the company. 3. Finally, Per Una could try and change the shape and fit of some of their clothes to appeal to younger women.
In addition to this, include advertising over both young and older women modeling Per Una together, so that both type of customer base can be satisfied. By choosing this third option, it could draw in further sales and profit from their initial target customer who Per Una were not satisfying previously, without alienating the customers they already have. Having done this, Per Una would have a clear impression of who their target customers are, and how to meet their different needs. Appendix Marketing Audit: Pestle Analysis This table represents the macro factors that pose threats to Per Una and Marks and Spencer. Political |Textile restriction law | |Environmental |Fair Trade | | |Organic products | | |Recyclable/bio degradable products and packaging | | |Global warming | |Social |Size zero debate | | |Demographic changes | | |Consumer shopping habits | |Technological |Internet | | |Improved transport links | |Legal |New employment laws: | | |(1) Rise in minimum wage | | |(2) Change to holiday entitlements | | |(3) Change to maternity and adoption leave | |Economical |Interest rate rises | | |Consumer debt | | |Strength of the UK pound | Spicc Analysis
Below is an analysis of the macro factors that are closer to Per Una as a brand and that affect their business. |Suppliers |Per Una suppliers have been kept secret due to contractual agreements | |Publics |Financial publics: the financial situation of M&S | | |Media publics: all media published that contains any reference to Per Una| | |as brand or M&S as a company | | |Government publics: development of product safety, truth in advertising | | |etc. | |General public: This opinion affects the consumers buying habits within | | |the brand | | |Internal publics: George Davis | |Intermediaries |Marks and Spencer- stocks range and host store for brand | |Consumers |Consumer needs: quality, value, on trend clothing in desired size | |Competition |Next Directory- home shopping | | |Primark- disposable fashion | Micro Environment
The below is an analysis of Per Una’s micro-environment. |Men |Approximately 75,000 staff at Marks and Spencer within 520 UK stores. | | |Unable to clarify number of staff working for Per Una only as they are employed by | | |Marks and Spencer within one company. | | |Productivity, (“the number of individual items sold per full-time member of staff in| | |clothing and home”) increased by 12. 2% during the year. ” | |Money |423. million sales for Per Una in 2006/07 | | |Last year sales rose by 9. 7% to ? 7. 98bn | |Machines |Sourcing offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai covering China and the Far East. | |Material |‘Look behind the label’ campaign – showed how Marks & Spencer were guarantee all | | |products were being produced responsibly | | |Plan A – “5 year ? 00m ‘eco plan’ launched in January 2007”, 100 commitments made | | |across 5 areas, including; | | |“Becoming carbon neutral” | | |“Sending no waste to landfill” | | |“Cutting our packaging by a quarter” | | |“Only using fish and wood from sustainable sources” | | |Working “closely with local communities through our ‘Marks & Start work experience | | |program” | |Management |George Davies founded Per Una in September 2001, but sold the brand to M&S in 2006 | | |for ? 125m. Though still a designer for the company. | | |Stuart Rose is the Chief executive of Marks & Spencer. | |Marketing |(See Marketing Mix) | (Marks and Spencer’s annual report 2007)