Should Your Independent Fashion Brand Stand for Political and Environmental Issues?

Want to be inspired with some new ways of thinking about your branding, your brand voice, and what is important to you?

Having difficulty coming up with your brand DNA, knowing what’s going to resonate with your customers and how to incorporate brand values?

I would love to be able to have my hands on your brand DNA to shape a product and a brand that is not only market worthy and price effective, but that really stands for something.

If it’s in alignment with your brand DNA, you absolutely should stand for issues.

  1. Customers are craving authenticity and a clear connection with the brands that they are purchasing from.
  2. It’s a winning value proposition.

1. Customers are craving authenticity and a clear connection with the brands that they are purchasing from.

How can this be effective and be a good case for your independent fashion brand to start to implement these things?

  • It’s a crowded marketplace.
  • Every moment you spend on Instagram, you’re bombarded with new advertisements, new images.
  • Every time you get an email from Coveteur or Vogue or Refinery, there’s always talk of things that are happening in the world.
  • Both visual, from a fashion standpoint, and then also political and environmental.

We’ve seen consumers respond very positively to a lot of these different values, and really finding themselves pledging allegiance to the brands that are able to embody a lot of these different brand values.

You do need to take a look internally at your independent fashion brand and say,

  • Do we actually stand for these things?
  • How far deep does this connect to our brand?
  • How far deep does this connect to our CEO? To our founders?
  • Is this something that we can actually stand behind?
  • Or are we simply using it as a marketing push?

Fem-vertising, where people are jumping on the girl power, girl boss movement, just to simply use it for advertising purposes. It’s not a good idea to appropriate things and then just send it out there in a consumer-friendly package. I do believe that your brand needs to take a stand.

  • You need to be able to incorporate diversity.
  • You need to be able to incorporate fair labor practices right from the beginning.
  • Make sure that you do believe in it.
  • Make sure that it actually is reflective in your business structure, in your organization, in your products in some way, shape, or form.

2. It’s a winning value proposition.

It is very difficult to compete on other different areas of marketing.

  • If you’re not going into fast fashion, you’re not competing against speed to market.
  • If you’re not knocking off and coming up with the most fresh, let’s say copying Zara for example, copying designs straight off the runway, producing their stuff wherever they want to produce it, speed to market, it’s cheap. It is cheaper than buying that designer product.

If you’re not going to be competing on pricing and you’re not competing on speed to market, you have to ask yourself:

  • What does my independent fashion brand actually offer my customer?
    – Is it thoughtful, well-produced, well designed, slow fashion?
    – Is it working on seasonal cycles, but you’re working on certain trends, on certain values?
    – Is it global?

Whatever your value propositions are, you want to make sure you stay on it because, again, it is a crowded marketplace and people are owning different parts, and different voices in the fashion space.

You need to really identify, what is your voice and what is your space?

Now, if you’re launching a new business and environmental issues and political issues are a core piece of that, you will find that customers who do love your independent fashion brand and love your product will be extremely brand loyal, and will stick with you. Even if that means slower delivery cycles, even if that means you’re not advertising as much.

Brand loyalists – These are the people who you do convert and capture.

We don’t necessarily need to go around advertising all the things that we do on a philanthropic or even on a charitable basis.

It is important to our clients, when we do talk about that, that they see that we are actively engaged in what we do talk about.

When you’re ready to unpack these issues in a much deeper way, please check out our blog post on why Millennials and Gen Zs are going crazy over eco-conscious brands, and check out our download about creating a customer empathy map.

This is a really important tool. It’s very much going to help guide who your customers are, what’s important to them, and help you create a brand that really satisfies a need in the psychological marketplace.

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