I recorded a podcast with two professors at Parsons a few days ago. They asked me to discuss how COVID-19 might affect luxury consumer buying behavior. In preparation, I was reminded of something consumer behaviour expert Michael Solomon and I addressed in our book, Why Fashion Brands Die .
A mentor told me that early in my marketing career. And although the message might be a bit blunt for some, the idea is sound: You can’t help people who won’t listen to good sense. As a grizzled old veteran, he’d seen otherwise smart executives do dumb things.
A well-known voice recently suggested that luxury fashion brands should “go into hibernation” during this current crisis. In his editorial, he builds a decent case for why.
I’ve worked with plenty of brands big and small over the years. Some catered to legitimately poor consumers and others appealed to multi-millionaires who just considered themselves poor. For a while, I even worked closely with a billionaire who loved Cuban cigars and Dilbert cartoons.
If you look closely, you might notice something… the best brands are starting to focus less on the crisis and more on what comes next. Some are even choosing to see opportunity.
Brands everywhere are seeing massive revenue drops right now. Some are cutting costs to the bone to make ends meet. Others are discounting hard to create cashflow.
During a Chicagoland radio interview last week, the host asked me what fashion brands could do to keep on going in the face of social distancing. As a discretionary category, our industry has been especially hit hard. Sales of some brands have already seen sales plummet.
In just a few short weeks, COVID-19 has forced us to change the way we do business. Fashion sales have cratered. Supply chains are in chaos. And we might well be headed for a global recession.
The Coronavirus has clearly turned the fashion world on its head. Fashion brands are announcing massive revenue drops. Luxury conglomerates down double digits.
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