Profiling TRAID – An alternative to Fast Fashion.

MY PP/D BUSINESS PROPOSAL

TRAID Treasures is an integrated marketing campaign designed to ELEVATE the TRAID brand to be understood as an ‘ALTERNATIVE ASPIRATIONAL RETAILER’  in the eyes of the INNOVATIVE YOUTH CONSUMER MARKET.

The campaign is structured through a CHARITY FESTIVAL PARTNERSHIP enabling a direct line of communication to a segment of this consumer population combined with VISUAL STORYTELLING framing TRAID products within an aspirational narrative.  The campaign will operate through three phases over the summer of 2016.

This framework is  designed to expose this market to the TRAID brand, and act as a HOOK funnelling FOOTFALL into the 12 TRAID stores across LONDON to drive SALES.

The LONG TERM GOAL this campaign is designed to kickstart is to shift the TRAID BRAND away from it’s either unknown or assumed ‘second-hand charity shop’ status, to reframe it as a competitive leader and innovator in the alternative retail market.

HOW IT RELATES TO MY 7003 RESEARCH

  • Extensive primary and secondary background research of TRAID to create this proposal.  Highlighted how TRAID presents an alternative retail outlet to the fast fashion high street model, such as that I wish to produce for my FMP. Therefore this research was equally relevant to my 7003 research contributing towards my FMP proposal.

RESEARCH MIX

The RESEARCH MIX underpinning this CONTEXT ANALYSIS consists of a combination of primary and secondary research resources.

PRIMARY RESEARCH involved participant observation and analysis of TRAID CLAPHAM and TRAID DALSTON. I additionally conducted informal questionnaires with a range of participants to gauge their understanding of the TRAID brand.

SECONDARY RESEARCH was primarily made up of information taken from the TRAID WEBSITE, alongside the TRAID blog and TWITTER FEED. TRAID monthly magazine ‘Behind the Seams’ archived on its website, and it’s yearly IMPACT reports also contributed.

THE CHARITY

The infographic I created for PP/C as one of my target company case studies focused on TRAID.  This was a conscious decision so I could use this research to equally inform 7003.

EXISTING PROMOTION

‘TRAID Vintage’ refers to vintage clothing acquired by the charity which is separated from their general second-hand products and visually merchandised as a separate collection in all twelve of TRAID’s London Stores.  In regards to the actual merchandise, primary research at TRAID CLAPHAM and DALSTON highlighted an impressive array of diverse, authentic and quality pieces. However despite it’s highly lucrative potential to attract footfall and sales in light of the increasingly dominant ‘vintage’ trend, the charity is currently focusing it’s external promotional efforts solely on TRAID Remade.  Consequently, PRIMARY and SECONDARY research has highlighted that many potential consumers are unaware of TRAID’s function as a vintage retailer, simply perceiving it as a ‘second-hand charity shop’. Reframing TRAID as an ‘aspirational alternative retailer’ in the eyes of the target consumer is what this integrated marketing campaign is designed to achieve.

TRAID Remade is the name for TRAID’s sustainable fashion line, which ‘collaborates with artists and designers to stop textile waste’, only using waste textiles and ethical labour.  As TRAID’s flagship product, with the highest markup and most distinctive USP, is it unsurprising that this is where there promotion efforts are focused.  Each annual collection is accompanied by a press release, a promotional imaging campaign and in-store visual merchandising.

Promotionally TRAID is renowned for it’s quirky window displays which are updated each season with something new.  These displays function to catch the attention of passing consumers who are not necessarily in the area to visit TRAID, to increase footfall and drive sales.  These window displays are successful in making it clear that TRAID is more than your generic  ‘second-hand charity shop’. However, whilst fun, vibrant and engaging, these displays are never targeted  except at times for TRAID Remade, and do little to promote TRAID VINTAGE.

The only promotion in specific reference to TRAID VINTAGE, was an outsourced Promotional Imaging Campaign, created in 2011 by RKCR/Y&R; a London advertising agency. The ads feature classic marble statues dressed in vintage second-hand clothing with the campaign line ‘classic vintage clothing’. The campaign comprised of national press, and outdoor and in-store activity across all it’s stores. However information in terms of it’s objectives, budget and success is not easily accessible.. What is clear is that it is no longer in circulation.

The lack of information on the legacy of this campaign, led me to conduct a BRIEF PRIMARY RESEARCH ANALYSIS to make a loose judgement on whether or not it can be considered successful.  I asked 50 people their opinions and received a luke-warm response. Whilst many felt the concept was clever and framed the TRAID VINTAGE products as timeless and classic, someone commented on how the use of statues robbed the products of life, personality and narrative. It is the vitality of these products and their real-life grounded connections which interweaves vintage clothing with value, and significance. This is why the vintage consumer, either disillusioned with the fast-paced and detached nature of modern life or seeking an alternative means to express themselves outside of ‘Fast Fashion’ , chooses to engage with ‘vintage’.

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