August 15, 2020

The Universal Expansion of Brands

We look into HighSnobiety’s quarterly insights on companies driving youth culture and market trends within the high fashion retail industry.

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It’s no surprise when brands like Off-White and Glossier are front and center of the consumer’s eye. It makes you question how they stay so relevant and push new trends loved by the masses. What if we told you it’s more than just brands brainstorming new campaigns? HighSnobiety’s Brands Aren’t Companies, They’re Universes explains the shift in focus to influential consumers in light of COVID-19. To win consumers’ hearts, these brands are starting to generate a massive universe of individualization, communication and relevancy.

The Rise of DTC

Move out of the way wholesalers, because these brands are on the hunt for the end customer. Direct-To-Consumer businesses, such as Casper and Warby Parker, aim to sell directly to their audience. As stated by HighSnobiety, remodeling your business strategy to DTC is a “dicey move for labels still in its infancy,” but it is now gaining popularity with consumers as they search for more communicative and authentic brands. Satisfy Running, Brice Partouche’s technical apparel company, decided to make the switch and don’t see themselves turning back anytime soon. Brands are starting to realize that to have full control, and they must take back their narratives and pave their own way through digital opportunities.

After understanding the benefits of a DTC brand strategy, we want to know what pushed this rise and why it seems so enticing to brands who are heavily reliant on wholesalers. Robert Burke Associates, a brand development company for Ralph Lauren and Marc Jacobs, realized that “the customer is really the one in control, not the retailers and editors.” He mentions that this is something that the fashion world refused to claim, and now it’s open for everyone to see.

How To Stay On The Good List

HighSnobiety states that, “forward-thinking brands are now increasingly looking beyond loyalty measuring clicks, engagement and conversions.” Brands need to start building a community to generate awareness from their product offerings. This means creating a brand culture that is inclusive and community-oriented. HighSnobiety especially highlights Supreme, Palace and Yeezy with how they can create a universe filled with the most loyal brand fanatics. These brands feed relevant content, build product hype and execute innovative marketing campaigns to satisfy these communities and remain in the game.

It’s Time To Expand The Universe

Brands are now using their platforms to reimagine their personalities and build their universe. HighSnobiety points out how The Row is successfully executing this. The collaboration of vintage designer goods and unique artworks of artists that fit their brand personality seems irresistible for potential customers interested in learning more about them. These brands combine their universes and attract double the population of consumers who love their personality, and most importantly, their products.

This increase in curated content, collaborations and community building leaves brands with new competitors in different markets they are entering. HighSnobiety states that, “No one seems to just want to be a fashion brand anymore,” and if you look at the online profiles of your favorite brands, this statement cannot be more accurate. Fashion brands, especially, have a keen eye on markets you would never have expected. Tommy Hilfiger stated that they are specifically interested in hospitality and travel, wellness and technology just to name a few. With a brand universe, their world is in their hands, and nothing is impossible anymore.


HighSnobiety. July 16, 2020. Special Report: Brands Aren’t Companies, They’re Universes.

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