Topshop, one of the big name in the world fashion’s industry has recently arrived in Vietnam on March 13th, 2013. Located in Bitexco Financial Tower, the iconic building of the dynamic Ho Chi Minh City, Topshop has received quite good attention to foreign visitors and Vietnamese, who have known about this famous brand. Its target customers are young, fashionable women with higher income, who can be either a young graduates, singers, actresses or even a full-time employees who love to be unique and trendy by dressing up. Offering to the market the most up-to-date fashion pieces, Topshop positions itself with the unique high street style collection range from clothing, accessories and shoes. Though its price is not low, Topshop is still relatively an affordable brand especially for the value they give to customers compared to other luxury brand.
Having the most successful retailing story, Topshop has been doing an IMC campaig in order to introduce itself to a new market such as Vietnam, increase awareness. They used a lot of IMC tools to reach the objectives either by online advertising, printed advertising or public relations with several events and sales promotion.
However, though they had quite good strategy with perfect touch points, Topshop still has some shortcomings in the way they performed the campaign, which still needs some improvements. The main weakness is they were a little picky on the channels used to communicate to the customers, which decreases the effectiveness of the IMC campaign. In addition, their existing information communicating tools (Facebook, online website,..) are still lack of details about the products in terms of price, quantity and size.
Therefore, the recommendation for Topshop is to increase their advertising budget, which is not a problem to such a big brand, to expand their marketing communication on more newspapers and magazines with full-page
advertisement continuously, enhancing the online materials with more details and also increase the effectiveness of direct marketing by sending out promotions through emails to customers more frequently. INTRODUCTION
1. Background Information
Founded in 1964, Topshop is now known as a major British style authority and one of the most successful brands of the world’s fashion industry. This multinational brand is very famous for high street fashion not only in terms of clothing but also accessories, shoes and make-ups recently. From the very first stand-alone store opened in 1970, Topshop has continuously grown up with 324 stores only inside UK and expanded to New Zealand, Australia, United States, South Africa,… with a further 148 international stores across 38 countries.
Lately, on March 15th 2013, with Mai Son Ltd (see Appendix 1), Topshop has finally come and opened its shiny doors for the very first time in Vietnam, which was immediately a buzz to Vietnamese fashionistas. Now, those customers can have their hands on the most trendy fashion pieces from the number one high street brand of the world without traveling or spending time and efforts to purchase online from overseas online stores. 2. Target Customer
As one of the most coveted high street fashion retailer, Topshop not only targets at young modern women aged from 15 to 30 , its niche market is the group of females who are driven by a desire to be fashionable and trendy, who love pubbing or clubbing, who want to keep up with the latest trend on fashion magazines. These experiencers and innovators are upper-class customers with middle to high level of income, who are willing to spend 60 dollars for a piece of cloth that can gives them a sense of fun. (Please refer to Appendix 2- Customer Segmentation Chart for more detailed information) 3. Positioning Map
4. IMC Campaign’s Objectives
Though Topshop is one of the most well-known British fashion stores, it is still at the introduction stage for the Vietnam market. Therefore, along
with the launch of Topshop in Vietnam, an IMC campaign has been done with these following purposes; Introducing the brand to the market.
Increasing the brand awareness.
Building customers relationship.
Expanding market shares.
II- TOPSHOP MARKETING MIXS AND ITS IMC CAMPAIGN
Topshop mainly focus on street fashion style with a wide variety of products range from bags, shoes, belt, glasses… for people to wear on their casual or formal occasions. Topshop’s products is famous for their design and they are widely known to young generation for their unique collection. With the currently popular Western Style wave rise among young generation in Vietnam. 2. Place:
Currently, Topshop uses direct marketing channel to promote their products which attract a lot of customers every day. There is only one shop which located on one of the most famous Building in HCMC, the Icon 68 Bitexco. Customers can also find Topshop’s products on their official webpage; however, online shopping is not yet available. 3. Price:
Being the middle-end fashion brand in the UK, however, Topshop is differentin Vietnamese consumer mind. In Vietnam, Topshop is considered as a higher-end with slightly higher price, that is why Maison JSC. applies value- based pricing, thatranges from 500,000VND to 3,000,000VND. 4. Promotions (Topshop IMC Campaign tools)
There are 4 main tools that TOPSHOP Vietnam used for this particular IMC Campaign: (please referto Appendix 3-TOPSHOP Other IMC tools for more information) 1) Advertising Maison Corporation chooses to advertise on both Online and Printed mediums: Online advertise:
Topshop tries to make itself available on websites as much as possible. Various and famous websites which have the most accesses in Vietnam such as zing.vn, kenh14.vn, vietnamexpress.vn (tintuc, 2013) were selected to reported about the event. On the other hand, to help customers have an overview of the store as well as product, a video last about 3 minutes were posted on Youtube which is the most popular video website in the world (ebizmba, 2012).
Topshop has chosen two main magazines to public their brand on: Her World and Haper’s Bazaar, which are the top famous fashion magazines in Vietnam. They are just perfect touch points to use to reach its targeted segment.
Weaknesses: These advertisements were not held continuously (once on Haper’s Bazaar on March 2013 ( the month of opening) and 2 times with short notices about their sales promotions on Her World( May and June 2013) .Besides that, they did not stay on the magazine and online newspaper for international customers who live or travel in Vietnam.
2) Public Relation
Topshop Vietnam’s Facebook is well organizedto provide much information about the event, contest, promotions and their new fashion collection. In addition, Topshop frequently catch up with the Topshop’s event from other countries to update the fashion trend for followers who always love fashion. (Please refer to Appendix 4 for the reasons of using Facebook) Weaknesses: Topshop is the famous brand of foreign. Thus, many people believe that Topshop’s products are very expensive and unsuitable for Vietnamese as a result. However, Topshop did not give detail the price, size and color of product. Besides that, they are lack of English language for foreigner people.
As the first time to appear in Vietnam, Topshoporganized the fashion show on their opening day. To prepare for this show, Topshop used effectively media advertising tool to introduce their brand to youngfashion lovers. For example, there are some favorite websites of young people and magazine, such as yan news, 2Sao news, Dep magazine; Facebook…Moreover, Topshop has invited many fashionistas and celebrities. According to Shimp (2010), learning the media preferences and life style of the customer will help to choose the best contexts for your brand messages. It is realized thatTopshop choose the right context for the young customer as a new message with new brand, new styles, and the brand of youth.
3) Direct Marketing
With the support of its strong foundation, Topshop know just exactly how to reach their target customers. The store has send its information about launching, grand opening, sale promotion through email and text message of customers who owned a membership card of any Maison belonged brands. Moreover, in the first few months opening the brand, in order to reach their potential customers, Topshop has collected their clients’ personal contact information, right at the cashier area. Those contacts will also be sent updated event or promotion. Their integrated campaign so far has built quite a strong relationship between brand and their potential customers.
Topshop did not effectively using this tool with the mass customer information that they have. They did not use any images or other forms of electronic letters to communicate with the customers through emails. They lacked of using multi-language for different customers. 4) Sale Promotions
Even though Topshop was just opened for 4 months, they had 3 different sale promotion events at different times: Opening Sale Promotion (30% off) 30th April and 1st May Sale Promotion (50% on selected items) Final Reduction Sale Promotion in June (50% on selected items) `According to Shim (2010), theHierarchy of Marketing Communication Effects, TOPSHOP is on the trial stage. Therefore, it is a perfect way to get the customers try theirs products to influence their attitude and belief toward the brand. In result, at any sale events, customers were willing to wait in line to get a chance to shop at TOPSHOP.
Weaknesses: The sale events were only introduced to Maison’s customers through mobile messages, on facebook and its website, not enough notifications were given to customers.
As said by the marketing manager of Ford Company, we would like to be everywhere; we will go to the places where customers are (Shimp, 2010). With the analysis above, the main weakness of Topshop is that its advertisings(including sale, and events information) did not reach all of the touch points it can, therefore, we suggest: 1) Increase advertisingbudgets on Vietnamese, English newspapers and magazines. There are some suggestions that can touch Top Shop target customers: Mot , Style, Elle Vietnam, Hang Hieu, and Du Lich Magazine (Vietnamese Language). Travellive and heritage Magazine (English language).
2) They can also improve the existing touch points by:
Held the advertisements on existing channel continuously. (once a month on magazines, and twice a month on online newspaper). Adjustment in website and Facebook to more detail, such as adding price, color, size. Besides that, Website and Facebook need to give more information by English language to serve for the foreign people who live and travel in Vietnam. Sending direct marketing materials through customers emails with images, and the customers speaking languages.
APPENDIX 1- MAISON JSC. Company
Topshop is launched by Maison JSC, who is known as the top fashion retail company in Vietnam with 15 brands in its portfolio such as Mango, Charles & Keith, Christian Louboutin…
According to Maison (2013), Maison JSC is among the top fashion retail companies in Vietnam introducing some of the most recognizable international fashion brands to Vietnam. Since its establishment in 2002, the company has acquired 15 brands in its portfolio: Christian Louboutin, Jimmy Choo, Karen Millen, Coast, Maison Boutique, bebe, Topshop Topman, Pedro, Oasis, Mango, Charles & Keith, Warehouse, Accessorize, Suite Blanco, Havaianas (Maison Store).To date, the company there are 600 employees with 38 shops, 26 in HCMC and 12 in Hanoi.
APPENDIX 2-TOPSHOP MARKET SEGMENTATION TABLE
TYPE OF SEGMENTATION
People who live and stay in Ho Chi Minh City
Age: Generation Y( 1977-1994) and tennagers ( from 15 to 30 years old). Social status: middle to upper class
Income: middle to high income (more than 6 million/month)
Experiencers: the youngest of all the segments, with a median age of 25 who are spending heavily on clothing, fast-foods, music, and other youthful favorites, with particular emphasis on new products and services.
Innovators: are successful, sophisticated, take-charge people with high self-esteem. Their purchases reflect cultivated tastes for upscale, niche products.
Benefit sought: look for quality, and fashionable designs. User status: non-users, potential users, current users, and pass users.
+Non-occasion: simply buy clothes to wear daily
+ Occasion: people who buy clothes for special occasion: celebrating Birthday, traveling..etc
Loyalty status: Range from Not Loyal to Completely loyal
Readiness stage: aware (people who know about TOPSHOP), unaware (people who never know about TOPSHOP before)
APPENDIX 3- TOPSHOP OTHER IMC TOOLS:
1) Personal Selling
Like any other fashion retails, TOPSHOP also trained their staffs to sell the products to the customers personally. Customers will be welcomed by the door and the staffs will actively serve the customers, either to advise the customers on what the fashion trends are going on, or simply helping them in choosing, sizes, colors and mix- matching. When the customers try clothes on in the fitting room, if they need to find a different size or color, staffs will wait for them in front and assist them right away. 2) Packaging
TOPSHOP Vietnam shopping bag, even though it is adopted from the world, has a very unique style, and color with a big logo of TOPSHOP, that can easily captures the eyes of any shopper who pass by. It is very different from the design of other fashion brands shopping bags in Vietnam. They usually only have plain colors and the brands written on them so when people see a person carrying a TOPSHOP shopping bag, it is a sign for them that TOPSHOP is now available in Vietnam. APPENDIX 4- REASONS FOR USING FACEBOOK
According to Facebook for Business (n.d.), there are approximately 3.2billion timesthat people click in Comments on Facebook every day. Facebook is seemly a place to connect and share information of everyone in the world. This is the chance of low-cost-advertising with the business brandfor those who have the own business.
Topshop Vietnam take the advantage from the huge existing and potential customer on Facebook to introduce their brand to Vietnamese people for the first appearance in Vietnam and also engage the brand awareness(Queensland Government,2013) by customersby sharing information, pictures, videos and personal ideas about the product each other.This is of great effective not only because it is a low-cost way to advertise but also it focuses really well on the touch point ( Facebook) of the targeted segment. According to YanGroup (2013), in the photo contest, the customer will come to Topshop outlet to catch the picture and upload on Facebook for other customer voting. At the end of the contest, the winner who had the highest Like from Facebook will receive 5 million dong.
Citinews 2013, ‘Fashionista hội tụ tại khai trương Topshop,Topman’, Citinews , 19th March 2013, viewed 6th July 2013 Ebizmba 2013, Top 15 Most Popular Video Websites, viewed 7thJuly, 2013 Facebook for business 2013, Step for business success, Facebook.com, viewed 7th March 2013 Maison 2013, Shopping-DJ-Bartender-Mocktail: Chi Co Tai Topshop TopMan, Maison , viewed 6th July 2013 Queenland Government 2013, Benefits of Facebook for business, Queenland Government, viewed 7th July 2013 Shimp, T A 2010, Integrated marketing communication in advertising and promotion, 8thedn, Cengage Learning, South Western, Australia, pp. 11-14 Tintuc 2013, 100 website được truy cập nhiều nhất từ Việt Nam, viewed 7thJuly, 2013 TOP SHOP VIETNAM FACEBOOK
Yangroup 2013, ‘Vòng bình chọn “Photo Me” của Topshop bắt đầu’, Yahoo .com, 20th March, viewed 6th July 2013