Gucci’s latest capsule courts eSports fans
Global – Expanding its efforts to connect with global eSports fans, Gucci has collaborated with gaming organisation 100 Thieves on a co-branded capsule collection. The first in a series of ongoing drops is a 200-piece, limited-edition range of backpacks, which feature both the Gucci monogram and the 100 Thieves logo. Practical elements like multiple straps and cargo pockets also allow wearers to carry controllers, mice and headphones.
Having worked directly with the team at 100 Thieves – and included gaming personalities in its supporting campaign – Gucci is targeting eSports fans in a way that reflects their needs and interests. The collaboration 'draws on the shared values of freedom and self-expression,’ says Gucci. This co-branded capsule collection therefore allows the luxury brand to create innovative gaming garments that go beyond superficial branding.
As the worlds of fashion and gaming continue to collide, brands are reaching consumers both in-game and offline. To respond to this growing demand, we can expect to see more branded product innovations that consider the practical and physiological needs of gamers.
Brands seeking to attract interest from groups such as gamers should work with industry experts to ensure their products – as well as associated communications and services – are aligning with true demands.
Tag Heuer’s interactive timepiece gamifies wellness
Switzerland – Breaking away from its conventional luxury aesthetic and tuning into the nostalgic interests of consumers, the watch brand has teamed up with gaming publisher Nintendo on a limited-edition Super Mario timepiece. Marking the start of a long-term collaboration between the brands, the interactive watch integrates gaming tropes to track the physical activity of wearers.
By merging the refined elegance of Tag Heuer's watches with a popular gaming character, the brand is reaching new audiences as it makes a foray into the wellness space. Frédéric Arnault, CEO of Tag Heuer, says: ‘The inspiration for this collaboration came from our desire to gamify and bring excitement to our new wellness application and Super Mario instantly came to our minds.’ In this way, the brand is appealing to a growing subset of affluent consumers that are pursuing more active lifestyles.
Looking to the wider sector, such pop culture collaborations also reflect the mindset shifts we began tracking in 2018 with our Uneasy Affluence macrotrend – indicating an ongoing demand for more accessible premium products.
While luxury consumers appreciate an element of heritage and tradition, high-end brands shouldn’t be afraid to take cues from mainstream behaviours as a way to broaden their appeal.
The Big Issue is bolstering next-gen journalism
London – The philanthropic, street-based publication is expanding its socially conscious efforts to support young people facing employment barriers in the media industry. In its Breakthrough programme the company will offer four places to aspiring journalists aged 18–24 who are from under-represented and less privileged backgrounds. Recruits will undergo training across all aspects of journalism, including video, audio, design and writing.
This scheme comes at a time when young people are faced with the burden of an unemployment epidemic – and are increasingly looking to brands to provide support when they’re out of work. Here, The Big Issue is recognising the highly competitive nature of journalism careers and is seizing the opportunity to provide guidance.
Careers in the media industry have also historically been reserved for more privileged groups – leading to a lack of diversity in the publishing sector. But Breakthrough demonstrates how media brands can create more equal opportunities while tapping into the rise of Out-of-work Networks, which are taking on an important role as young people face the brunt of an unemployment epidemic.
Media brands have a responsibility to ensure the next generation of talent is diverse and equally represented. Create incubator schemes that nurture and mentor young people while recognising the nuances of their personal backgrounds.
Stat: BNPL services are luring people to overspend
As e-commerce transactions continue to grow, buy-now, pay-later (BNPL) services provide an increasingly attractive spending method. But research by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) finds that sites such as Klarna, Clearpay and Laybuy have been leading consumers to spend beyond their means.
According to the research, one in six (16%) of BNPL users in the UK say such schemes have led to them to spend more than they can afford. There is also a mismatch between payment timelines, with BNPL platforms expecting payment after an average of 49 days, while the average consumer says it takes 261 days to pay. Interestingly, over one in eight (13%) of 18–24-year-olds say influencers encouraged their decision to use BNPL.
With this in mind, flexible payment services have a clear responsibility to offer more transparent advice and education about their offering and the impact on people’s personal finances.
Particularly when reaching younger audiences, BNPL services can develop influencer-led strategies that actively address the realities of upfront payments and offer guidance on effective money management.