“Fashion is armour to escape everyday reality”- this is a phrase that sums up our entire existence. The boring monotonous lives have always been a constant, but it is fashion that is our ultimate escape from monotony and boredom. For Indian consumers, fashion has always been an evolving concept with diverse trends. The diversity seen in India is explicit especially in the fast fashion space which offers a varied number of brands and consumers of all ages and income. The brands not only cater to various lifestyles but have also found their niche within the various life-stages of the consumer.
Style and fashion have never been restrictive. Combine it with the rising spending power of the Indian middle class and that makes this industry one of the fastest growing in India. Hence with the latest trends and significant options to avail, the frequency of purchases has seen a hike especially among the average Indian consumers. It’s no doubt then that almost 75% of our buyers identify themselves as working professionals or business owners. It is with this hardworking (not-so) middle class section that the power of choice resides.
Today, the advent of technology has made everyone conversant with the fashion world. Through it, people have become aware of what’s in vogue and their alternatives. The right outfit speaks for itself and therefore many have been investing more in quality products. This has made the home-grown brands, like Baggit, to constantly be on their feet to come with new ideas and styles that can satiate the consumer’s requirements; without compromising on the promise of quality that comes with a made in India brand. The audience today is aware of the international markets that have set a precedent in their minds. Given this, indigenous brands are quickly becoming a favourite with this audience that is eager to ‘go back to their roots’.
The rising knowledge and consciousness of the people can be owed to social media. It has become the root of many latest trends. Social media today has become a virtual fashion magazine, providing all the details about the latest trends-from clothes to accessories, it covers everything. These platforms have the ultimate gurus that keep the consumer updated about their favourite celebrities and their style that everyone adorns. Aces of the fashion game, Instagram and Pinterest have become two of the most vital sources of fashion, both for the consumers and brands. They provide a platform that allows two-way conversations that help the brands to better engage and understand their consumers. And while brands get on the bandwagon of leveraging these fashion influencers, the real benefit lies in creating meaningful relationships which are weaved into the long-term strategies of the business.
Not just fashion, but environmentally conscious too
People’s awareness and liking towards fashion and the industry has been revolutionary. Consumers today value and opt for clean, environment-friendly products which do not only aid their fashion sense but also the society at large. All of this has resulted in the rise of slow fashion- an awareness and approach to fashion that ensures fair treatment of animals, planet and delivers quality products. It still might be slow and restricted to a niche of conscious consumers, but it is progressive. But what this really means for brands is to not fall in the trap of making this choice as part of a trend, but to help sustainability become a part of your core brand values and hence brand equity – like Baggit’s choice of being a vegan brand for the past 3 decades.
The essence that India and its people hold towards fashion is indefinable. Fashion is a dialect that people share irrespective of their different identities. With this kaleidoscope of fashion, consumers view everything in it – from expressionism to sustainability. And for brands it’s important to keep adding colour and patterns in this kaleidoscope to keep the societally-conscious consumer engaged.