News Brief

Retail on a Tight Leash

January 11, 2019
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Trends and Forecasts

Did you know that macro-environmental factors are refereeing the retail industry?

These outside forces govern the market and level the playing field for today’s top brands. To stay competitive, brands must be strategic as they maneuver through the following factors that influence the retail industry.

Political

No matter what industry you’re in—whether it's fashion or tech—government policies have a domino effect on the market as retail legislation continues to rise over the years. These laws serve two purposes 1) to prevent unfair competition and 2) to protect consumers and society from potentially unjust business practices.

Consumer purchasing power is also impacted by government action and, of course, a strong economy is almost always good for business. Low taxes typically increase consumer spending, and this heightened demand for your product is attractive to potential investors. However, in times of recession, the economy is restricted and high taxes equal less disposable income for consumers to contribute to the market. Retailers need to be conscious of these market variations in order to be able to anticipate potential challenges to effectively counteract.

"If you apply generational marketing too strictly, especially with an adoption curve that's cutting across generations, you will miss the mark… big time."

Generational

Money is just half the battle. With all these generations looming in the market, it can be challenging to decide which one would be the best fit for your product. Generational marketing is a bird’s-eye view of your audience but keep in mind that this technique should not be a crutch—doing so can diminish personalized experiences with your customers. Instead, this element should be an overview to a more detailed plan. According to Kate Hogenson, Senior Consultant at Kobie Marketing, "If you apply generational marketing too strictly, especially with an adoption curve that's cutting across generations, you will miss the mark… big time."

Generations often have overlapping interests. For example, Gen Z and Millennials both hold technology and efficiency in high regard, but Generational marketing could help determine your more responsive audience between the two. And from there, individualized tactics should be implemented so that you can effectively pique your audience’s interest.

Social

Consumers have to want your product. In result, the retail market is consistently changing as it adjusts to fluctuating consumer interests.

Retailers must study the population of their target audience. This requires a more in-depth analysis versus social shortcuts like stereotypes and demographics. Unlocking the “why” behind consumer buying decisions is ammunition for retailers to create a more accurate marketing strategy.

Retailers have a variety of factors to juggle. To this end, it takes a top-notch team to keep brands from striking out on any one of these key factors.


By KIRAH BRADLEY| Contributing Writer

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