Global Fashion Management Conference 2015 Global Fashion Management Conference at Florence , Renaissance of Marketing and Management in Fashion (p.45-46)

FASHION IS “ME TOO” STYLE IS “ONLY ME”: CONSUMER PREFERENCES TOWARDS FAST FASHION AND LUXURY FASHION

키워드 :
luxury fashion,fashion industry,CNFU,Fashion-brand attitude,fashion consumer

초록

The fashion industry has been dramatically transformed during the last 20 years with the introduction of fast fashion: a style of instant cutting edge fashion at affordable prices (Sheridan, Moore, & Nobbs, 2006). The term, fast fashion, describes a business model characterized by rapid supply chains, merchandising techniques and retail technology all developed to respond to increasingly fast changing consumer demands (Kim, Choo, & Yoon, 2013). In contrast to this business format, luxury fashion brands have always held a superior position in the fashion industry through their quality, limited release and pricing policies. The contemporary fashion industry is now highly competitive, with this additional pressure coming from fast fashion companies constantly delivering original and “fresh” products at affordable prices (Cholachatpinyo, Fletcher, Padgett, & Crocker, 2002). Despite the apparent price discrepancy between fast fashion and luxury fashion products, both these two fashion styles appear to cater to a consumer’s need for uniqueness. Through the consumption of fashion this uniqueness factor becomes evident in the way in which consumers convey their individual identity and self-image to society. Intuitively, as the two styles of fashion are distinctive, the type of uniqueness component desired by their consumer will differ. Therefore, we ask: “what aspects of uniqueness are motivating consumers to choose between fast fashion and luxury fashion brands?” The paper answers this important research question through evaluating (1) the predictively of fashion-brand attitude and self-congruency on fashion style preferences and (2) the moderating role of consumers’ need for uniqueness (CNFU) in these direct relationships.

An online survey of 301 U.S. participants was conducted utilizing a quazi-experimental between-subjects design. All participants had experience with purchasing either fast fashion or luxury fashion clothing. Fashion-brand attitude and self-image congruency were treated as independent variable with preference for fashion style as the dependent variable. The three factors that constitute CNFU were treated as moderators. The results suggest that fashion style preference is determined more by the level of self-image congruency than positive attitudes towards fashion brands. More importantly, the different qualities of CNFU are capable of influencing individual consumers’ fashion preference within each fashion style. Collectively, the findings present strong supporting evidence that the differences in consumers’ need for uniqueness are likely to affect some fashion style preferences and not others. In particular, the majority of findings are consistent with the central argument that fashion consumers are uniqueness seekers and have their own ways of portraying their individuality to society (Workman & Caldwell, 2007). There was however inconsistent results obtained by treating CNFU as a single moderating construct, thus adding further support for Tain, Bearden and Hunter’s (2001) proposition that the consumers need for uniqueness consists of three distinct components, each specifying a unique personality trait.