As times change, so do consumer preferences. The clothing company Ralph Lauren is a firm that is feeling the effects of this shift along with the entire “aspirational luxury” industry. The selling point of these aspirational luxury items had previously been in their ability to convey a particular lifestyle. In the case of Ralph Lauren, the perception is one of upscale prep, and the idea behind the logo is that, although one might not be a member of an esteemed organization such as a polo club, by donning the Ralph Lauren moniker on your chest, you could at least look the part. Other similar aspirational luxury brands include Abercrombie and Fitch and Coach.
With this decline in interest for lifestyle brands, Ralph Lauren is looking to revitalize his company by seeking help from the very individual who is instrumental in eroding the foundation of these logo-driven marketing schemes. Lauren has decided to step down as CEO and will be succeeded by Stefan Larsson, the global president of Old Navy. Larsson is regarded as a wizard in the fast fashion world and his arrival sparks enthusiasm for the future of the company. While working at Old Navy and H&M, Larsson was able to showcase his talent and understanding for modern retailing trends and the desire of younger consumers to be unique.
It is becoming more evident that today’s shoppers are looking for products that will help them stand out, which is a complete reversal from the desires of consumers several years ago. Instead of spending large sums of money to embody a particular brand, consumers today seek to be their own brand. By recognizing this variation in retail spending, Ralph Lauren Corporation looks to rise from the ashes of aspirational luxury and make waves in the fashion industry like they have done for so many years.