There's a lot, 10 actually, great 2013 consumer trends highlighted in this video. I decided to focus on #4.) Predictive Personalization. Primarily due to the immediate high profit-driven results with low initial costs impact. Before I go delve deeper into the financial windfall offered by paying attention to the Predictive Personalization trend, let me take a moment to explain...a bit more...what "is" predictive personalization...what it means to you, the designer, the manufacturer, the retailer.
The concept is not new...and has been around since the beginnings of Quick Response (Q/R) and Just In Time (JIT) manufacturing processes. It involves the basic tenets of Q/R...link back to my Fast Fashion Is A Collaborative Process post.
Click on the link above and had a chance to do a quick review? Great..so you noted that the three basic tenets are: Control, Communication, and Collaboration. Real simple, right? Yes, it can be with the use of computerized technology, such as POS, EDI, PDM, internet, email, etc...(you getting the picture), as well as building strong partnerships with your supply chains from the beginning (textiles) to the end (retailer), and working together to communicate changes as they happen. If haven't already, then you may have to invest in a little computerized technology (hence the low initial cost impact), but the rest only cost you "time."
The time it takes to establish open channel relationships with your key vendors and customers. There are lots of ways to work to link information...but that's for another blog posts. Let's just focus on why "you" should be paying attention to Predictive Personalization..now.
So as I mentioned before, old concept developed during the 80s...but now has been given a face-lift due to our ever-changing, always demanding consumers. So now Predictive Personalization is telling, not "asking" us to expand our periphery of control to include the voice of the consumer.
You've probably heard about crowd-sourcing...well, the idea now is to understand how to mine crowd-sourcing resources such as Polyvore or Pinterest to create specialized merchandise offerings for your most loyal and fanatic consumers. The best success story that comes to my mind is ModCloth. If you have a better example, then let me know. There are many different ways to give over a little control to your consumers, but crowd-sourcing is currently one of the more popular options.
The cool thing about giving consumers more control in the design process is that you also open the channels of communication...and yes, we get great POS information about our consumers from our retail partners, but we don't get to "know" our customers in terms of their wants, needs, hobbies, life-style choices, likes and dislikes...and when we open the lines of communication to our consumers we also open the potential to offer more personalized product offerings that more fully address the needs of our consumers...which makes us "Super Stars" in the eyes of our customers.
The end result is a collaborative process linking the design process and retail experience back to our target market's desires. A simple win-win. You can pull ahead of the competition by giving your customers more of a voice in the product development process; creating loyalty, fresh offerings, strong stock turns, lower markdowns, and high profit margins. Winning;)!
I would love to continue this discussion. Leave me a comment or contact me directly. Fashion Freelance Works! Find out how I can work for you by submitting your contact information on this website. Happy New Year!