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How mass market Fashion Brands Adapt to the Post-Covid Reality

Natasha Binar

Since the outbreak of Covid, the majority of the luxury, mass market fashion, and beauty industries have undergone significant changes. With consumption on hold for a few weeks and stores temporarily closed, there was a widespread slow-down. Now, stores are beginning to reopen and consumers are eager to go shopping again and enjoy the new normal. 

The challenge for mass market fashion brands to maintain customer loyalty and survive through an uncertain period was also fueled by the consumers’ mindset shift. 

In our latest report Marketing Reset: The Voices Impacting Brand Performance after Covid-19, we discovered that customers were no longer looking for content to fuel escapism, but were at home and searching for information to understand what was happening around the world. The question now, is what the future of the industry will look like, and what type of marketing strategies will shape it? Although no one is able to anticipate, Launchmetrics’ newest data from before, during, and at the early stage of the subsequent recovery period, allows us to forecast certain predictions.  

In this article, we look at the Voices and strategies that have contributed to activating customer attention, maintaining an online community, and keeping brands such as H&M, Scotch & Soda, and Gina Tricot relevant. 

H&M

In the first quarter of 2020, the Swedish fashion giant maintained a high performing Media Impact Value™, generating $395.2M in MIV®, a significant increase of 21% compared to the first three months of 2019. In the intensive weeks of lockdown in March, their MIV® remained strong – $109M in 2020 vs $89M in the previous year for the same months. The biggest portion of the value was generated by Media (+12% increase) and Mid-Tier Influencers (+6 % increase). 

One of the biggest mentions was a YouTube video by Ellen Min and Brian Li and their K-Pop dance cover ITZY’s ‘WANNABE’ with 8 different outfits including H&M outerwear and white shirts. The video was posted on March 14th and generated  $430K in MIV® in the first week of lockdown in Europe, with over 32 Million views.

In April, the brands’ Owned Media via Instagram generated the highest MIV® of $323K with the post celebrating summer and friendships, inviting users to tag someone they miss. 

 

View this post on Instagram

 

We’re counting down the days until we can hang out with our bffs. Tag someone you miss! 💞 @anitaxjane @chloevero #HM

A post shared by H&M (@hm) on

In May, just a showroom picture with new summer dresses was worth  $322K, proof that relatable timely content is always key:

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Our spring dresses are hanging tight. #HM #AtHomeWithHM

A post shared by H&M (@hm) on

Scotch & Soda

The 35-year-old Dutch mass market fashion company has been in the news lately –  all for positive reasons during Covid. Their “I am smiling” non-medical facemasks were released in the first weeks in lockdown and aimed to benefit The Hunger Project, a global, non-profit organization committed to the sustainable end of world hunger. 

The brand has also released rainbow merchandise to celebrate the spirit of Pride Month, a move highly acknowledged by the press and by the LGBTQ community. 

Media was the Voice that grew up to 21% in MIV® as compared to the previous year for the brand – all thanks to Instagram stories and social initiatives like these. The brand’s total MIV® in the first quarter of 2020 reached over $5M. 

Gina Tricot

Gina Tricot is a Swedish-based fashion chain “offering exciting, feminine fashion to women in over 30 countries.” The brand has focused its core strategy during the past months on both locally and globally known Mega and Mid-Tier Influencers. The MIV® evolution may be less significant from the previous year, counting a 6% increase from $4.6M to $4.9M; however, has shown that the strategy to team up with specific types of influencers works well. 

Their home-wear collection was pushed through a collaboration with Swedish All-Star influencer Janni Olsson Delér, who is a resident of Monaco with 1.3M followers who emulates the voice of the young, fashion-interested audience of the brand. 

The Self Care campaign entitled #ginamyway was promoted through her post and resulted in the highest MIV® – over $90K in March – reaching out to 1.4 viewers. 

In April, the brand collaborated with Victoria Törnegren who calls herself a “Swedish mommy, fashion and travel-influencer”, to promote the mini-collection for grown-ups and kids using the hashtag #ginamyway again. The post resulted in $50K in MIV® and over 30K likes. 

The control over their own storyline and use of both Owned Media and Influencer Voices during Covid seems key for each of the mass market fashion brands mentioned. Our Marketing Reset report brought to the surface that in trying times, maintaining brand equity is fundamental and, as the landscape changes, consumers are looking for relatable stories and information. The significant shift in the performance of the specific Voices observed further demonstrates this  – which is why understanding the role they play, is crucial for building successful reset strategies. 

mass market fashion Covid

Natasha BinarCommunication Manager Northern Europe & Middle East

London-Berlin-Munich. With her background in media management, Natasha launched projects for creative industries in East London, collaborating with the finest British talents. She also worked as Producer with British Sky Broadcasting in developing and implementing their content strategy for Sky Interactive. In Berlin, Natasha continued her consultancy work focussing on business development, digital strategies and branding. Her first book Berlin Catwalks has been released in 2011. Natasha is a senior lecturer in the Academy of Fashion and Design in Munich. She also holds a Master’s degree in Organizational and Social Psychology from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).

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