The Vue on Sundays
Welcome to another edition of The Vue On Sundays, a bi-monthly feature of all the news that’s shaking up retail. Think of The Vue On Sundays as us catching up with the retail industry over coffee and cookies. Everything we discuss will be from the perspective of small-medium businesses and as always, we are open to feedback so please leave a comment or get in touch if you have anything to say! Without any further ado, here’s what we’re talking about this week –
Welcome to 2019!
Another year whizzes past. 2018 was momentous for retail. It signified the end of retail as we know it and ushered in the beginning of new retail – one that was experiential, fresh and focused on the customer. It was also brutal. Anyone and everyone who couldn’t keep up closed their shutters. What will 2019 bring? A lot more sales, we hope! Here’s our roundup of all the news and trends that for us, best represented the year gone by.
2018 May As Well Have Been the Year of the Influencer
I am going to start with Chiara Ferragni. The empress of influencers, with her 12 million following and engagement to multiplatinum selling Italian rockstar Fedez, had the wedding of a lifetime this year that was completely supplied by luxury brands across the world. It may have been inappropriate, perhaps even vulgar a few years ago for influencers to monetise their intimate moments, but not anymore. 2018 is the year influencers stopped being a marketing term and went on to become a $2 billion economy. Did you know that 70% of companies across the world invest in influencer marketing? This primer on how influencers shaped the fashion industry will blow you away. If you’re a small brand, rest assured that influencers will get you the kind of visibility that media ads won’t…provided you exercise due caution.
All Aboard The Orient Express!
Gone are the days when the target customers of luxury retail ooh-ed and aah-ed about exotic bags and shoes encrusted with diamonds. Today, it is experience that excites them. Customers, says Antonio Belluci of the LVMH group (that just went on a hotel buying spree in Europe) are “looking for travel experiences that are authentic and allow the discovery of the beautiful diversity of the world”. The lesson for the small retailer here is simple – experience is the future. Your product has to be more than just…product. Read all about reimagining the Orient Express on the Financial Times, here.
6 Trends and Travesties That Plagued 2018
A round-up in a round-up, yes, we know. But we wanted a solid takedown of everything that went wrong in the industry and this seemed like the perfect list. From the $100,000 Louis Vuitton toilet to the full on riot that happened at Build-A-Bear stores because of their discount campaign to the incredibly insensitive wines ‘inspired’ by the women of Handmaiden’s Tale that marketed rape…well, they all happened. Read the entire list on Retail Dive to refresh your memory and remind yourself to never go that route, ever.
The Chinese Workers Who Assemble Designer Bags in Tuscany
This is a somewhat old piece, but one that we found very relevant as we head towards a new year. The article is essentially a deep dive into Tuscan leather factories that are run by Chinese immigrants. It’s incredibly eye-opening, because the popular consensus is that Italian craftsmanship is the gold standard whereas the Chinese mass-produce. This gloriously reported piece in the New Yorker takes that idea and turns it on its head and will have you thinking about quality, originality, identity and authenticity – essential for anyone who owns a brand.
And that’s it from us this week! Here’s wishing you all a happy, healthy and prosperous 2019.