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Posted by Ben Voyer @drbenvoyer at 6:20 - 0 Comments

On the eve of New York Fashion Week, the eyes of the fashion world will be fixed on Los Angeles, where Saint Laurent is presenting a bumper AW16 men's and women's show. It marks a significant shift from its usual home at Paris Fashion Week, which will only have a small show this year, but is just another in a line of bold and innovative moves by its creative director Hedi Slimane.

Slimane has transformed the French fashion house - quite literally stripping the first name of its celebrated founder "Yves" from the company's ready-to-wear line - since taking charge in 2012. The brand's rise has been meteoric under his direction.

Posted by Ben Voyer @drbenvoyer at 5:54 - 1 Comments

Every year, seasonal promotions come back, and every year, consumers wonder: should I buy or should I not?

Originally a Northern American concept, gravitating around the Thanksgiving holiday, Black Friday is now synonymous with sales even in parts of the world that do not celebrate Thanksgiving. Why? Primarily because consumers are always savvy and looking for discounts and sales. In fact, most consumers find it difficult to resist discounts. The larger the discount, the more consumers will consider a product or service, even if they do not really need the product. There is also a social influence component to explain the success of these types of sales. Buying is often related to displaying one's power and status. Therefore, if every one else is buying, that is displaying their power and status, one will certainly want to compete and do the same!

Posted by Ben Voyer @drbenvoyer at 8:37 - 0 Comments

After decades fighting to be the cheapest, many supermarkets chains need to reinvent their model. With a grocery market increasingly divided between deal-savvy consumers, and those who can afford premium brands and shop from premium supermarkets, mid-range supermarkets in the UK (e.g. Tesco, Sainsbury's, Morrisons or Asda) are in a difficult position. Part of the problem comes from a change in consumers' shopping habits. Consumers are becoming more binary, going either for price or quality. Price sensitive consumers tend to shop at hard-discount stores, or even off-price retailers (e.g. Pound shops). For quality, they would go for more upscale supermarkets (Waitrose, Department stores food halls, or organic supermarkets). It therefore leaves mid-range supermarkets in a rather difficult position; close to what is called 'confused positioning' in marketing, with a message trying to emphasise price and quality.

Posted by Ben Voyer @drbenvoyer at 4:37 - 0 Comments

How far are consumers ready to go to show their love to brands? Consumers are increasingly engaged with their brands, and the latest trend discussed by the BBC is that some of them are ready to commit to their favourite brands for life using tattoos! 

Tattoos reveal a lot about our societies, and have become recently 'de-marginalised'. They went from being a sign of rebellion to being more mainstream and accepted by the masses and the consumer-culture. Branded tattoos are thus a sign that companies and their brands are now playing major roles of identity provider in contemporary societies.

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