Now a day, it has been seen that people have started taking more interest in improving their life styles. They are taking interest in what they are wearing and what suits them. On the other hand, technology is changing day by day and many garments/Clothing companies are coming with new ideas which attract the people to become their customers and buy the product.
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The topic which I have selected for my project is about the consumer acceptance of Garments/Clothing Brands in UK. There are many companies producing Garments/Clothing for all the genders and for every age customers. Zara, Debenhams, M & S, New look, River Island are the most popular brands of Garments/Clothing products and have excellent image in the market. Different marketing strategies are being adopted to satisfy the customers and to market their products.
A huge competition between these companies can be seen. My aim is to study those strategies which they have adopted to attract the customers and the responses they are getting through these strategies. Marketing activities is very important for these products. At what extent they are working to satisfy the needs and wants of the customers. I will be also helpful in analysing the behaviour of the customers on the purchase of the Garments/Clothing products.
Further, description is given regarding the background of the research and the ways of utilizing the academic teachings related to the topic.
1.2 Background of the Research:
As a student of business management I have created research topic that will covers the major areas of my studies. The knowledge which I have gained throughout my course is to be use efficiently in the research project. This research will be focused on the branding and the consumer preference which will be discussed in detail in literature review. The sector which is taken for this project is garments/clothing and this sector have a huge market. Some of the most popular companies and their strategies for market their product will be discussed.
Moreover, brand preference and loyalty towards a specific brand will be assessed by conducting a survey with the help of the questionnaires. This will be helpful in achieving the target of the topic. Customer interest and reasons for preferring a specific brand will be analysed which will be helpful for companies to identify their weakness and threats. Performance of the garments companies can also be measurable through this research. This report will be useful on the practical and theoretical basis for the companies to justify their overall responses.
1.3 Importance of the Project:
This study and an analysis will play an important role to identify they level of interest of the customers among major companies. This will show how effective are the plans, strategies and marketing policies of the different companies. If a company is getting negative response on a certain product then what are the areas to be taken in consideration. It is also to identify how much people prefer these companies product as compare to local brands such as Primark etc. If a company is spending huge amount of money in the promotion activities, are they getting suitable response and achieving their targets. If not, then what should be done to capture the maximum market. This research will also be helpful in reading the minds of the customers. Needs and wants of the customers can be identified and it would also be helpful to measure them.
2: Aims and Objectives of the Project
The basic aim of this project is to identify the image and beliefs of the people for the brands in garments/clothing sector. There are thousands of companies all over the world who are spending large amount of money on their marketing activities. It is to develop better images of their products to the customers. In this present world the job of marketers is not just marketing the products but they also examine the needs and wants of the customers. For this purpose researches are done through different tactics to identify the weak area. Through these activities they can fulfil the requirements of the customers. This research will also have the same objectives and are given below.
This research will be covering all the major areas of branding and customers preference as studied. For this, certain objectives are developed that will cover the requirements of the project topic. They are:
To evaluate the brand image that customers have in the minds for the garments/clothing.
To assess the reasons for buying a specific brand for garments/clothing.
To identify the expectations that consumers have for the brand they prefer.
To determine the major point that makes the consumer loyal towards the brands of garments/clothing.
After achieving all the objectives then recommendations will be given related to the weakness of strategies and planningââ‚¬â„¢s done by the garments/clothing companies.
3: Literature Review of Project
The literature review will focus on the branding of the products and the consumer behaviour. Branding is basically a promise which is made to the customers by the companies which makes them feel that they can make expectation from the product. Products can be differentiated by branding. It can become an identity to the entire corporate and to their product name. Furthermore, it can helpful for describes the brand image of the product.
The literature review will be done in reference of the books, websites and e-journals. It will cover branding, consumer behaviour and details about the brands that exist in the market. There is a huge competitive market of garments/clothing where an effective brand strategy plays an important role. Brand image is actually a general perception that is found in the minds of customers.
Brand is well defined as a promise, an idea and the expectation which the customers have for a product and the company of the product. Customers believe on the Satisfaction of the brand to whom they trust, than they buy them, and fall in love with them. By this process they become loyal to the brand. (Wheeler 2006)
Brand name of the product can also be used as a trademark. This will help the brand to get protected and no one can use the same. There are authorized agencies mostly government agencies which provide or give approval for the trademark to protect them. (Bitpipe.com, 2010)
Furthermore, literature review will also describe the consumer behaviour. It is maintained by the companies through learning from customer or group of customers. There is a procedure which companies adopt to select, protect, utilize or set out products, services, experience to give the desired benefits to the customers.
It has been well defined that consumer behaviour is based on the selection of the goods till the consumption which satisfy their needs and wants. Consumer behaviour has different processes starting from the desires or needs then selecting those which fulfil the requirements best. Next step is estimating how much to spend then comparison of prices is done and finally purchase is done.
There are certain factors that influence the purchase of the customers. Those factors are cultural, social, personal and psychological. Cultural factor includes subculture and social class where as social factor involves different references group, family and status. On the other hand personal factor have age, occupation, economic Situation, lifestyle and personality. Psychological factors are motivation, perception beliefs and attitudes.
In this fast fashion world, designers are competing on their marketing strategies. Fast fashion brands have good performance due to quick action in adopting the new trends of production and marketing them as compare to other brands. An article shows that there are two framework of competing in clothing sector. First framework is focusing on the moulding of fashion trend and the other is to compete in the latest fashion. Most of the well known retailers such as Zara, Hennes & Mauritz (H&M) and Next originated from Europe and have the same strategy.
Other researches also indicated the importance of brand in the fashion market. The growth of this market shows the volume of acceptance among the consumers. The satisfaction and the price variation they are getting make them in different segments. Young guys and girls prefer jeans from the branded shop that makes them comfortable, it is due to their experiences.(Emerald,1996)
To find out about the companies, it will be not enough to get literature from internet. So interviews will to be conduct with the marketing and sales departments of the above mentioned companies. This will help in generating the idea that how much company is doing and what responses they are getting.
4: Research Methodology:
According to Crotty (1998), methodology is a set of plans that are made for an action, keeping in mind the strategies to carry out a process which helps in the getting the required result and achievement for the task. Mostly it has been seen that to conduct a research there are two ways designed to collect the data and they are questionnaire and interview.
For all researches, it is well described by Kotler.P(1996), that there are two types of research qualitative and quantitative. For this research, quantitative method will be adopted. By using this method it would be easier to know the needs and wants of the customers. There will be a specific form of survey that would be been done to collect the data from the consumers of the garments/clothing brands. Conducting an outdoor survey is much more effective for getting the direct responses from the customers. In this way there will no need of waiting for the responses and printing cost will be less. On the other hand, data that would be collected will reflect the interest on the respondents.
To conduct any survey it is very necessary to have a set of questions. There are several types of surveys depending on the nature of the research. Certain ways of conducting surveys are through sending questionnaires through e-mail or by post, face to face interview are also conducted and getting questionnaires filled by the people gives effective results. By asking question by using the means of telecommunication is also effective.
It has been seen that most of the researchers prefer to do face to face survey. It is because it cost less and easy to give description to the people to fulfil the actual requirements. If there would be any quarry it can be solved out at the same time. It is cost saving as well as time saving as there is no need to wait for the reply. In addition to this, there would be a perfect control over questionnaires and more better chance to get the more appropriate replies.
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For this research also, it is very necessary to have a set of questions which should be answered by people from different parts of London, UK. This will help in identifying the image of the company and behaviour of the customers in purchasing Clothing products. Approximately 50 people will be asked to fill the questioner and then this data will be analysis through SPSS. So data from different parts of London, UK will be generated with views of Garments/Clothing customers.
According to the Kent (1999), the outcome from the questionnaires and the surveys conducted in statements form are the pure reflection of the perceptions, images, views, beliefs and knowledge among different people.
4.2 Designing a Questionnaire:
Each and every survey method there is a well structured questionnaire. This is the key factor of the survey to designing a questionnaire is to keep in mind the topic of the research. Questions that will be presented in the questionnaire will be related to the literature review and covers all the necessary points. General questionnaires will be developed that would be easily filled by the consumers. 20 to 25 questions will be made and 50 customers from 4 different locations will be asked to fill out them.
There will be two parts in the questionnaire. Questions that will be included in first part will focus on the brands prefered by the consumers, does brand name affect the choice and customer consideration towards quality will be measured. Customersââ‚¬â„¢ wants can be easily judged and reasons for their preference can be measured. In addition to this, loyalty towards specific brands can also be measured. In the second part general questions will be asked for example age, gender, occupation and status. First draft of the questionnaire will be used as a sampling purpose. Questionnaires will be the easiest way and most economical form of gathering data. It will give sufficient amount of facts and figures which can be analysis easily.
4.3 Data Analysis:
For this project, SPSS 17Vi computer software will be used to analyse the data that will be gathered from the 50 questionnaires. The results will be taken into two parts. In first part there will be a description of the findings and second part will be of the discussion on those findings. There will be frequencies which will be calculated for each question of the questionnaire. This will help in assessing the responses given by the respondents for each questions of the questionnaire. There will be some cross tab and charts also. SPSS will provide all the necessary information related to the consumers and help in achieving the main task of the project.
5: Project Timetable and Problems
5.1 Time schedule for the Project
For this research report an estimated time schedule has been made to utilize maximum time for getting the most appropriate data which can fulfil the requirement of this report.
Form the month of January the work for literature review and data related to companies will be done.
From February questioners will be made and interviews with the small and large retailers will be conducted. Arrangements for formal interviews with marketing and sales departments will be carried out.
In March, data analysis will be done through SPSS. Data generated from questioners.
March end will be the compilation of the whole gathered data into a report form.
5.2 Expected Problems
While conducting a survey there might be some problems to be faced. For the ethical issue, ethical form will be submitted and special care will be carried out to avoid any issue. Normally it has been seen that people avoid in taking part in such surveys. Sometime people might miss behave but one should have control himself and avoid them. Some extra copies of the questionnaires should be present during the survey so if any respondent might make any mistake so he/she can be given another one.
There will be a problem in reaching different spots for the survey but it would be easy if the spots will be visited before conducting a survey. The most important is the permission from the retail stores to conduct the survey in front of their stores. For this purpose permission letter will be made to get the permission. At the end full efforts will be made to gather the information from the consumers without hurting their emotions.
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