Tuesday, April 2, 2019
Abercrombie and Fitch Popularity Among Youths
Abercrombie and skunk Popularity Among YouthsThe study forget use consumer doings theories and merchandising models to explain and analyse why Abercrombie and Fitch (AF) is prevalent among unseasoned extension despite the impact of negative events. Abercrombie and Fitch Co, an Ameri evict retailer of sort and occasional robes tails at young masses, has already expanded to around European countries and Japan before 2010. AF has become a disputable bell ringer from the last decade, despite it caters to cool, inviting, means-conscious consumers by offering merchandise to meet their postulate through contrary life presents ( Hitt, Ireland, Hoskisson, 2009) and is high-achievement in gross sales per melodic lineance, it was elect the 9th the roughly hated companies in America in 2009 (RankingThe snitch, 2009). The company was criticized during 2002 by government issue t-shirt with words Wong Brothers Laundry Service Two Wongs Can develop It White and see to its w ith stereotype of Chinese multitude (Appendix 1) which was deemed to disregard Asian great deal In June 2003, several Hispanic, black and Asian plaintiffs complained that when they applied for jobs, they were steered non to sales positions out front, but to low-visibility, back-of-the- w arehousing jobs, stocking and cleaning up (Greenhouse, 2004). Moreover, AF overemphasizes appearance of its employees, sexual nip in commercial and strong perfume to a fault intrigue the near hearty concern.Based on these critical issues menti geniusd above, the place compose larn profit from the sales of trendy outfits.Brand identity serves to provide direction, purpose, and meaning for the betray (Aaker,2002,p68), and blemishing is often used by manufabtures as a federal agency of adding symbolic valuate to a item(Banister,Hogg,2002,p193). Besides, fit out is also deemed as a highly symbolic intersection category and its high visibility which path that people will often make asumpti ons just about others purely on the basis of their fit out (Banister, Hogg, 2002, p191).Therefore, numerous people wear specific modes of garments and blemishs in order to express their constitution and social status. The none temperament is gibe to peoples personality and characteristics to bring in its value and see,which can be accepted by or is attractive to the average public of one will not necessarily be recognized or found attractive to the average public of another culture (Mooij,2004) relating to Geert Hofstede Cultural Dimensions, Mooji(2004) also mentions that the different characteristics between individualist cultures and socialistic cultures the former consider the blade should unique and distinct but the latter mention that people tend to get a shuffling as being part of betray world. As AF is line of work from the individualistic culture, which define it egotism as an exclusive American unremarkable clothing stag which has been specially desig ned for college students of 18 to 22 years old and implies that you atomic number 18 young, beautiful, smart, and chic. Their raiment atomic number 18 worn with confidence and punch-drunk light some(prenominal)ness (Abecrombie4sale, 2010). With these personalities that AF emphasises and expresses by store decoration, commercials and appealing sexy salespeople(Appendix 2). Customers who wear the clothes can express their differentiation, lifestyle and show their good shapes even more, to adhereing what kind of lifestyle or status they would like to be. Humanizing a tarnish empowers it to play a more central role in the consumers life, potentially enabling the consumer to project an aspect of his or her self that world power be desirable for familys he or she seeks (Aaker 1997 Wallendorf and Arnould 1988). It is eventful for mark offs to position their identity clearly because the symbolism that consumers attach to these brands would become confused if contradictory mess ages were drawd (Hines, Bruce, 2002). AF clarify its target food marketing segment and identity its products ar as the best casual wears and outfits that combine style and elegance with comfort and relaxation(Abecrombie4sale,2010).Brand names be symbolic entities that can help consumers in signaling important dimensions to others (Belk 1988 impose 1959 Wallendorf and Arnould 1988).Brands also had many benefit for company. For example, brands can add product value as headspringhead as create client loyalty. In fact, one of important reasons for successful branding is to exhibit itself heterogeneous from others. AF, a fashion brand which is popular among its target consumer ages of 18 through 22, is always a trend leader these years. Fashion innovation is an ongoing process because consumer wants and ineluctably are unending and constantly changing(Mueller Smiley, 1995, p5) in that respectfore, keeping creative and attractive is the tenacious mission for fashion marketin g because the product life circle is short. Fads are an extreme form of fashion product, accentuating the rapid sales increase follow by the rapid dec pedigree(BrassingtonPettitt, 2006), but for a prominent brand which brings and leads market trend rather than be a follower. Although the frequent use of celebrities as spokespersons stems from a belief that pairing a product with a well-regarded laurels would improve consumers perceptions of the brand (Kamins Gupta, 1994), AF only hires models to endanger its products and moving-picture shows that close to customers. The interial design and close are similar to the night club with dynamic music and to each one salesperson in stores are waggling with music that creates complete different shop experience for customers. As music provides a vehicle through which young people could express themselves according to their music taste with the appropriate forms of jell and fashion (Miles, 2000). Hence, exposure to exciting brands in fluences self-perceptions of hedonism, and exposure to competent brands induces higher self-ratings of mundanity (Fennis Pruyn, 2006). We are what we wear (Belk, 1988) to make their personality standout with pride and confidence. AF represents an identity which combines the come about fashion style and relaxing atmosphere that match and attract teens to get their purchasing activates. Following the writer will analyses the identity issues related to the late coverage and use Brand indistinguishability Prisom (Kapferer, 1997) to explain the internalization and extraneousisation factors of AF. individualism issues important in press coverage2-1 Cases for theses issuesIn fact, there are many controversial issues about the brand including its look insurance which is argued by relating to racial contrariety and sexual hint for customers that there are some examples listed below. However, people queue outside the AF stores in London and capital of Japan for shopping still more, it is common for Taiwanese teenagers to order AF products online. These situations involve the teenagers self-identity.(1). A US clothing company has been forced to pull a line of T-shirts from its shops after they triggered protests from Asians who complained they perpetuated racist caricatures.(BBCNEWS, 2002).(2). Clothing retailer Abercrombie Fitch hires a disproportionately discolour sales force, puts minorities in less-visible jobs and cultivates a virtually all-white image in its catalogs and elsewhere, a lawsuit charges(USA TODAY,2003).(3). Abercrombie failed to accommodate her religious beliefs by making an exception to the Look Policy. These actions constitute discrimination against Ms. Elauf on the basis of religion. (Gregory,2009).(4). Disabled histrion wins case for wrongful dismissal against Abercrombie Fitch(Guardian,2009).2-2 The influence of Brand Identity of AFBrand identity should help establish a relationship between the brand and customer (Aaker, 1996, p68), whi le brand identity means what the brand wishes to create or preserve and deliver to people depth and fullness(Aperia, Back, 2004) .Thus, when the controversial events occurred, we can examine and relate the brand by Brand Identity Trap (Aaker, 1996) (Appendix 3) there are four parts brand image trap, brand position trap, predict attribute trap and external thought trap.The Brand Image Trap Which means customer perceive the brand from the brand image rather than the identity the brand want to convey. As the discrimination scandal exploded, young, confident, smart, American casual and fashion impression was cover by discriminating people who are not Caucasian or disabled.The Brand Position Trap How strategists want the brand to be perceived(Aaker,1996) is misled to brand position which is a part of brand identity therefore, the information couldnt be transferred completely. The tendency to focus on product attribute is intensified that the coating becomes an advertising tag line but no room for brand personality,organizational associations and so on those are crucial to the brand- make(Aaker,1996).To AF, the focus and perception might come from the advertising with young people with good figure and more or less of them are half-naked with intimate body language which critics complained that its explicit images bordered on pornography (Dunlap,2007). Hence, if the incomplete information adds to negative issues from public media, it is more fractious to expand new market.Therefore, despite the fact that AF still submit many loyal customers,these scandals may make customer re-examine the brand.While AF continuely makes effort to manipulate its identity and use publice relation policy to reside good relationship with customers.The Product-Attribute Fixation Trap The part indicates a brand emphasizes on the product attributes and ignore other parts. According to Aaker (1996), a brand is more than a product, it includes much more characteristics or it may lose i ts competitive advantage. For AF, it not only emphasizes its product, but also includes other factors and spirit in the brand-Brand users young generation (18-22)-Country of origin America-Organizational associations Casual, Trendy, Caucasian-Brand personality Young, Beautiful, Smart, and Chic. juicy-Symbols Moose-Brand-customer relationships Using social media to communicate with customers, Discrimination-Emotional benefits egotism-expressive benefits modernity, style, slenderness and abstemious carrying,Based form the above, the Italics are the negative impression percived by some people form controversial news which impact on how people think of the brand. However, because of 2004 class-action settlement, Abercrombie Fitch agreed to add more blacks, Hispanics and Asians to its marketing materials (Steven, 2004).The remote Prospect Trap The trap means the firm fails to realise how important to communicate to customers what is the brand about. From this aspect, AF successful u se social media such as official website, blog and facebook (its fans has over one million on facebook) to communicate with customers, explain the idea and diffentiation from other brands. The policy can make the brand more close to the public and can deal with crisis more pronto and directly (Sherman, 2009).2-3. Why AF is so popular-In-group Out-groupSelf-identity which consists of whatever individuals consider to be theirs, including their body, family, stimulateions moods, emotions, conscience, attitudes, values, traits, and social position.(Mooji, 2004, p98) in other word, self-identity is an individual who thinks who he/she is or would like to be. Self, can divide into four part actual self, elevated self, social self and social ideal self (Mittal,2008).At least four different come on can be identified in self-identity studies that deal directly with product image (1) product image as it relates to the stereotypic image of the generalise product user (2) product image in direct the infer product user (3) sex-typed product image association with the self-concept(identity) (4) differentiated images(Sirgy,1982). To AF, the image is political party-loving jocks and bare-naked ladies living fantasy lives (Leung, 2004), with sexy model and sales people. The clothes are designed to show perfect body curve for each sexuality besides, the decoration, music, perfume and the style are well-recognized from others. Once the image matches to an individuals ideal self, the consumer demeanor of an individual will be directed toward enhancing self-concept through the consumption of goods as symbol (Grubb, Grathwohl, 1976).Group members and different cultures also can influence consumer behaviour. Consumers have stronger self brand connections to brands consistent with an in-group than brands inconsistent with an in-group and weaker self-brand connections to brands consistent with an out-group than brands inconsistent with out-group (Escalas, Bettman, 2005) .In- groups are usually characterized by similarities among members. Individuals have a sense of common sentence with members of the in-group out-groups are groups with which one has something to divide, groups that disagree on valued attributes(Mooji,2004.p160). Nevertheless, in collectivistic cultures in-groups influence members mutually more than individualistic culture because of more frequent and deep interaction. Mooji(2004) points out in-group relationships in collectivistic cultures are usually especial(a) to triad groups family, company and University in-group members of individualistic cultures have to invest epoch in friendship, and they belong to many specific in-groups that may change over time. To who from collectivistic cultures, choosing a brand or lifestyle are usually influenced by other in-group members to demonstrate they are belong to the groups, which would reducing the power for the external image damage of the brand. For people from individualistic cultures , individuals are intend to self-oriented, part and guarding their personal interests and even may oppose to sacrificing for the group or association (Mittal,2008,p230), individuals choose what they want and express rather than change their mind considerably by the public media. Due to the brand image, and identity are barely position for young people, those could be the factors why AF can still possess numerous supporters both in collectivistic and individualistic cultures.Brand identity-PrismThe heart and soul of a strong brand is that it is sufficiently differentiated to the extent that it cannot be easily replicated by its competitors (Fill, 2005, p356). Kapferer(1992) indicated that brand identity is the centre concept for building a brand and should be identified and managed by the brand owner. The brand identity prism(Kapferer,2004) is a shit to analyse a brand, which is consisted of vi internal and extrinsic facets Personality,Culture,Self-image,Physique,Relationship ,Reflection.The brand owner can use this model to be able to study the brand in depth, and find its strengths and weaknesses moreover, it gives the full picture of how the brand owner wants the target group to perceive the brands identity(Aperia,Back,2004).3-1. Brand Identity Prism and AFInternal facets(1).Personality- Human characteristics bestow on a brandAF displays the personality young, beautiful, smart, and chic. Their clothes are worn with confidence and carefree insouciance (Abecrombie4sale, 2010). In addition, it includes relaxed and sociable personality inside the brand as well as expresses modernity, style, slenderness and easy carrying those have been the most prominent features (Abecrombie4sale, 2010).(2).Culture-Values of a brandAF mainly represents people between 18 to 22 year-old American middle- to middle-upper class young Caucasian, with casual fashion style and encourage customer to show their body by wearing the AF clothes. It emphasizes the origin of New York me tropolis and America waste culture even some consider it also belong to the white gay men culture (Mcbride, 2005).(3). Self-image-A individuals internal reflect related to a brandWhen people are wearing AF clothes they might feel themselves belonging to middle- to middle-upper class, urban life as well as educated due to the targets are university students with confident, fashion, passionate, popular and enjoy party life.External facets(1).Physique- The sum of a brands basic characteristicsDecoration The decoration of each store is similar.The exterior of the modern canoe store is designed features white molding and black louvers, and interior is lit with murky ceiling lights and blemish lighting (Wikipedia).In entrance, customers can take picture with shirtless male models in trickily unbuttoned jeans s and big poster on the wall.As for the dim light which may influence customers to choose and judge clothes.Ambience With uncut male fragrance, which is one of the most popular products for the brand for many years, outflank around the store. Electronic dance music also permeate the store that make shopping as clubbing(Lane,2009).However, the negative side reveal that some people protest the loud music which may harmful for audition ability and the perfume is too strong as well as could include some unknowing toxic components.Employees Employees in AF are chosen according AFs look policy employees should represent AF with natural, classic American style consistent with the companys brand and look great while exhibiting individuality(Coraline,2009).They wear AF clothes to show their figure as well as dance with music. but the staff look could influence teenagers esthetic conception Thus, there are many controversial issues about hiring employees with discrimination standards those would attack AFs reputation.Product draw Jackets, underwear, swim shorts, t-shirts, and just about any other article of clothing that can be thought of are found among the man y Abercrombie Fitch products for males, females even kids, besides the perfumes are also included(Abecrombie4sale,2010).Logo The far-famed brand has a well-recognized logo-gray moose. The logo has been heavily printed on AF products including cap, fleece, and logo t-shirts, underwear and others to march on promote it (AlaDream, 2007-2008)(2).Relationship-The relationship between a brand and its customersAF try to remain friendly relationship with customers. Employees are train to have good interaction with customers and enjoy their shopping experience. Customer can use many bring for customer service and share their opinons via phones, websites and social media. Those are useful tool to examine the relationship and satisfaction with customers.(3).Reflection-What customers see a brand?What the customer see the brand are middle-to-middle-upper class, young, fashion and good shape furthermore, valuing leisure activities and enjoy life as well as popular casual American East Coast an d Caucasian styles. The negative reflection, racial discrimination or the brand for gay men may also display on customers reflection.Brand personality, culture and customers self-image are the invisible facets. These cannot be gotten at unless analysis methods focus on penetrating the consumers subconscious mind. Other three concepts, on the other hand, are explicit and fairly easy to ace in conventional studies (Aperia, Back, 2005).Though the tool is practical for analyses of brands, there are still some limitations. The dimensions may overlap and the factors inside the facets are different according to different perception for each customer. However, it is still an essential tool and cost to be utilized by brand owners to consider how to build a successful brand, attract the target segment and enhance the image as well as its reputation.ConclusionThe essay is to analyse why the famous American fashion brand-Abercrombie and Fitch is so popular among young people. With its mainta in of quality,consistent branding personality and identity, the stock trend are growing boilersuit during the decade except 2008, the period of globally economical recession, the stock impairment drop dramatically however, the stock price increases afterward (msnmoney,2010). From the analysis of its personality and identity, it successful builds a kingdom for people hope to fulfill his/her ideal self or even social ideal self. A mans Self is the sum total of all that he CAN call his, not only his body and his psychic powers, but his clothes (Belk, 1988). AF aims the third stage of the extended self possessions help adolescents and adults manage their identities (Belk, 1988) and using marketing system to make the brand become the index for young people in terms of fashion and lifestyle. Hence, the in-group members follow the trend who contributes to the market share. Because the brand origin is from a low power distance country- America(Appendix4) that the society are relatively e qual as well as encourage more people to fulfill what that want. Brand identity Prism, a model to analyse six facets of AF,is a pratical tool for understand a brand.limitationsDue to the limited time and word limitation, the writer cannot acquire more models to analyse the brand besides, wanting of enough information also confine the research which needs database about the influence of AFs negative events and opinions for the brand.Through sufficient source, the writer could apply more stainless and penatrating way to discuss those issues in depth.RecommendationFor future analysis, the writer should attribute sufficient time to implement and adopt more marketing and consumer behaviour models as well as theories, which could understand AF thoroughly.Though it is still a popular brand nowadays, some out-group members or segments suffered form unequal treatment form the brand are unwilling to purchase its product or decrease their deire. Such dissociative reference groups have for co nsumers self-brand connections, evaluations, and choices (Dahl, White, 2007) that can infuence others consumer behaviour. Therefore, it is proper to spike its CSR and communication with customers.