Customers are increasingly pushing for more experiences - viewed as a luxury to share and embrace. Lifestyle brands need to give consumers bigger, better, bolder and more distinct experiences. Lifestyle branding is about: Storytelling and engaging with people in a conversational way. To enter or to remain consistent in the lifestyle branding category, brands must be clear about their values and personality to connect and produce the right experiences. Staying ahead of consumer changes and needs is achievable by adopting an agile brand strategy and considering trends, insights and forecasts as early as possible to predict behaviour and patterns. Lifestyle brands are evolving to keep pace and adapt with consumers.
Consumers choose brands such as: Airbnb, Rapha, Tesla – as they are brands that reflect their busy, mobile lives, brands that are quick, convenient and are offering services and experiences different to the rest of the market. The digital revolution is the number one influencer over lifestyle brands as it allows brands new ways to adapt, create and customise to connect with their target consumer.
Brands must push their personality to the forefront of their brand core to connect to consumers, in a way customers can still relate and engage. The future prediction is that intimacy and integration of lifestyle branding will grow to a whole new level. Social media is a factor that constantly changes and begins new trends, although this factor is then supported by premiumisation, customisation and the sharing economy, new trends are flourishing and growing into macro trends.
Want to become a lifestyle brand or adapt your strategy? These four principles will guide and help you achieve success.
Establish your Footprint
Desires, wants and needs of consumers have advanced – to stay ahead and be known as a future brand, brands need to be flexible and have a future-focused mindset. This can be achieved by continuously anticipating consumer needs before they happen and grow into a trend. Bringing new trends into fruition pushes brands into the limelight, by giving consumers something to be excited over, something to celebrate and be a part of. Experiences need to be marketed as aspirational, inspirational and educational. Amazon is successfully pioneering at anticipating consumer needs and wants with the services such as: Amazon Dash, Amazon Go and Now – making it the one stop brand of choice, allowing consumers to shop instantly and be satisfied quicker.
Evolve the story
Luxury commodities are no longer defined by products alone, the new desires on wish lists are to promote luxury through premium experiences and interactive, personalised services – brands that are adapting to this need are seeing growth and customer loyalty, speaking to consumers using new levels of dialogue through new experiences. From retina scanning, private exercise getaways, premium lounges and experiences – the more exclusive, the more its desired by consumers.
Transparency is required by brands, no longer do consumers want just a product and a logo – they want to buy into brands that have a personality and social values. Brands need to showcase their product journey, behind the scenes of the company culture and for brands to be open about products ethical values to gain customer loyalty. This has evolved because of growing products and service availability, leaving the consumer to choose a product to suit their lifestyle values.
Create a community
The sharing economy is thriving, influenced by the likes of Airbnb, Uber and Deliveroo. Brands should embrace this as it is a macro trend that has seen yearly consumer and brand growth for the last couple of years, showing no signs of slowing. Innovation is key to the community lifestyle, brands need to aim to connect to consumers’ lifestyles and adapt to their ethos and attitudes through analytics and behavioural learning. Consumers busy lifestyles make them thrive for connectivity and to belong to a community of like-minded individuals, whether this is achieved by social or experiences in reality – brands have the potential to utilise this growth and desire through Omni-channel interaction. Products are the core but to survive and create loyalty, brand extensions need to be evolving and experiences offered to cater to the needs and desires of consumers. Creating experiences that are unknown territory leaves an open marketplace to explore and capture a market, to creating and evolving a new community to connecting and interacting via a new platform the opportunities are endless.