The Value of Online-to-Offline Channel for Start-up Fashion Designer Brands: Lessons from China
Being a start-up fashion designer is more and more popular in China. In recent years, after receiving well education in fashion design, the increasing number of start-up fashion designers creates and sells new collections. However, with limited brand recognition, start-up designers may not have sufficient resources to find consumers. In China, the Showroom platform, a new business model in fashion industry, including both online and offline channels, particularly helps start-up designers in retailing. In this paper, the value of Showroom platform model was explored. According to expert interviews and desk data, the management status of designer brand’s offline-to-online (O2O) marketing model was analyzed. Through the questionnaire survey, fashion buyers’ intention and the development path of applying O2O were examined. Integrating the existing resources of the case enterprise, a Showroom O2O service platform serving for designer brands and fashion buyers was proposed and its profit model was discussed. We find that, in order to increase brand recognition and attract more consumers, start-up designers are particularly eager to find more outlets with the use of the internet. However, the O2O marketing model of select shops is just beginning with many potential challenges, such as the conflict between high-cost investment and low return. We find that launching new collections in the Showroom platform is beneficial for the start-up designers and more diversified online channels such as Web site, mobile applications, social media, and Wechat micro-shop can attract young consumers’ attention on start-up designers’ brands and collections.
KeywordsStart-up fashion designer Designer brand Fashion buyer O2O marketing model Showroom service platform
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