Old school brands
Back to school time is upon us! Uniforms are being prepped, snazzy lunch boxes are waiting to be filled, and people are flocking to Paperchase for the latest funky stationery.
Seeing kids gear up for the new school year got me thinking about some of the ‘in’ brands from my school days; all left back in the past along with BBM and Bebo: (Argh, I feel old! *starts weeping*)
Hoodies, jogging bottoms, and beach vibe stores. Everyone I knew loved shopping in Hollister. I can even remember queues coming out of the door during its peak. But today’s teens don’t share the same enthusiasm; it’s an expensive brand and, as savvy shoppers, they’d rather invest their money elsewhere. They connect more with brands that show realness and diversity in beauty – Hollister’s image comes across as a little too ‘perfect’.
Soggy footwear ruined by the rain is neither practical nor a good look; but we still wore UGGs whatever the weather. Unfortunately (maybe fortunately depending on how you look at it) cheaper, knock-off versions swept the market and soon everyone was wearing them, taking away their exclusive status and ruining the brand.
Despite the brand trying to make a comeback numerous times, teens shun UGG these days in favour of trainers and an everyday wardrobe of athleisure wear.
Sickly-sweet smells always dominated the school changing rooms. Every girl’s schoolbag had a can of Charlie or Impulse in there. Some still do in fact! Just last year, Impulse brought out a new range to satisfy a need for lighter fragrances in the form of mists. And these aren’t just for teens; luxury retailers have their own ranges as a cheaper, everyday alternative to perfume.
The PE bags! Everyone at my school used a plastic Jane Norman bag to carry their PE kit in. Even if you’d only bought one item from that store, you kept that bag and used it at least a hundred times until it was bruised and battered. You won’t find these bags around anymore; the retailer failed to keep up with changing trends and consumer demands leading to its administration in 2011.
So, what do brands need to know about the needs of today’s youth? They’re more demanding than ever and want brands that actually do something for them, making their life easier in some way [Uber]. They want to connect with brands but on a deeper level, feeding into product design and development [Glossier] And as we’ve heard several times, they like brands that demonstrate social responsibility [Lush].
Not much to ask for!