The fashion industry is filled with legendary brands like Coco Chanel. This company was founded within the first half of the last century and enjoyed worldwide success in the fashion industry. It is a premium Frech fashion label recognized in the international market for fashionable and luxurious items. The brand also provides the Chanel target audience with premium ready-to-wear clothes. Chanel caters to the rich and famous elite class, and you can easily distinguish its products by how smooth the touch and feel of its material is. Chanel gives proper attention to the littlest details in its products, which is quite awe-inspiring to its consumers.
Those with a genuine appreciation for exclusive products usually don’t have to go far from Chanel to achieve this. Chanel’s innovative styles and combination of comfort and elegance are some things the company is successful for. However, another critical factor in its success is targeting the right market. The Chanel target market is a massive factor in its growth, and the company shapes its marketing strategies around them. Therefore, in this article, we’ll be exploring the Chanel target market, history, and the marketing strategies utilized by this brand to become such a success in the global fashion market.
Chanel Target Market – How the Luxury Brand Came to Be
When you think of Chanel, what comes to mind is a glamorous and classy premium brand. Chanel has successfully taken over the beauty industry with cosmetics, jewelry, fashion, and luxury fragrances. However, no one knows how Chanel came to be. Chanel was founded in 1909. However, the brand’s story began in 1883 when Gabrielle Coco Chanel was born.
Coco Chanel’s Youth
To fully understand the Chanel target market, it is essential first to understand its founder and history. Decades after her death, Coco Chanel is still known as one of the most revolutionary stylists of the 1900s. Although the brand is luxurious today, Coco’s life didn’t begin with luxury and premium clothing. Her mother died quite early, and her father abandoned her right after, which led her to an orphanage known as ‘The Sisters of the Sacred Heart’ in France. She was raised by nuns here and had no idea what luxury was. Chanel was continually surrounded by women dressed in plain black and white clothes. Although there was no luxury in her life initially, her humble beginning became the inspiration behind her fashion career in the future.
The Start of Chanel
Coco Chanel left the orphanage and had a short career as a singer in a café she worked. When she turned 18, she grew a real interest in fashion. This was in 1909 when she was the mistress of a businessman named Ettiene Balsan. He provided her with the financial support she required to begin a hat-making shop in Paris. A wealthy friend of Balson known as Arthur Capel also had a considerable influence in her fashion venture. Over the years, she began to open more shops to produce clothes. Her first successful clothing venture came from a dress she created out of an old jersey when it was cold in Deauville. Many people would ask her where she purchased the dress, and she always responded with an offer to make one for them. It was during this time that the House of Chanel was born.
Coco’s designs were always simple and elegant. She understood women’s taste for elegance and showcased it in her suits and dresses. Moreover, the focus of all her clothing was simplicity. Coco also used a lot of masculine colors like navy blue and grey. As such, these features set Coco Chanel apart from other designers in the 19th century. At this time, the fashion industry featured over-designed, constrictive, and luxurious clothes. Coco’s outfits were a welcome distinction from the norm.
Chanel’s Rise in Popularity and Production of Iconic Products
Chanel’s target market proliferated, making the House of Chanel a success in the 1920s due to her outfits’ simplicity and sophistication. This style icon always paired her outfits with great accessories, giving them a luxurious feel. She introduced the little black dress, Chanel suit, and the perfume Chanel no 5, making her the first prominent fashion designer to create her own perfume. At the same time, Chanel stood out by redesigning the typical perfume packaging. She provided Chanel no 5 in a simple and sleek bottle that people came to love.
In 1925, Coco Chanel introduced the Chanel Suit to the public. It was a revolutionary design as no one had seen anything like it before on women. Women in this period mainly wore confining, uncomfortable outfits like corsets. However, the Chanel suit featured elements of men’s wear and brought comfort to women’s clothing. The Chanel suit featured a collarless jacket and a fitting skirt to complement it. In 1926, Channel introduced the little black dress, a fashion item far ahead of its time. In those days, black was synonymous with mourning. However, Coco Chanel showed that it could be more, and women could use it as chic evening wear. Today, little black dress variations are available almost everywhere, and black is a staple in everyone’s wardrobe.
Chanel Association With the Nazis
Coco Chanel brought modernity to the fashion world by placing functionality over ostentation. Everything was great for the House of Chanel for a long time. She even designed clothes exclusively for movie stars in Hollywood. By 1935, Chanel owned five boutiques and employed over 4000 workers. However, the international economic depression affected the House of Chanel. Things got worse when World War II began in 1939. Chanel was associated with a Nazi officer, which allowed her to retain her apartment in Paris in the Hotel Ritz, also a German military headquarters.
Although there were no collaborator charges against her, most people considered her actions betraying after the war ended. She had to shut down her stores and fire all employees at the House of Chanel. She also left the country and moved to Switzerland, far away from the fashion world.
Chanel Target Market – Her Return to the Fashion World
After being away for over a decade from the fashion world, Chanel returned to open the couture house in 1954. At this point, she was already 71 years old. Critics were unsparing in the reviews of her company. However, her design won over the hearts of the Chanel target market once again. She retained the simple and classic look and introduced more Chanel suits. Coco Chanel also released bell-bottomed pants and several other sophisticated innovations.
In addition to fashionable clothing, Coco began to produce handbags which took over the world after their release. Since Chanel’s designs focused on comfort, it was no surprise that Chanel bags featured a longer strap that allowed women to free their hands to do other things. The Classic Flap bag is still one of the most iconic fashion items available today. This bag was both practical and sophisticated, making it well sought after.
Chanel Target Market and Demographic Segmentation
Market segmentation involves dividing the market into different segments. A market segment is a set of people or organizations sharing characteristics that make them purchase similar products. People today have different needs, and companies like Chanel try to meet the needs of some of these segments. The Chanel target market and demographic segmentation are how the brand became successful in the fashion industry.
Chanel utilizes a mix of demographic and psychographic segmentation to make its products available to the Chanel target market. The company uses a selective targeting strategy to promote its products by focusing on a select customer group. The brand has successfully positioned itself as several luxury product companies do. It uses a value-based positioning strategy to succeed in the global fashion market.
Chanel started out targeting women who wanted to be classy and fabulous. Therefore, Coco Chanel began with the little black dress and the Chanel suit. However, the Chanel target market is diverse today due to its extensive list of products. There’s almost something available for everyone. Additionally, Chanel has fashion product lines like the Haute Couture Line, Ready to Wear Line, Resort Line, and even a collection for children and men. The brand has makeup, accessories, fragrances, footwear, and jewelry available. Through segmentation, Chanel gains information to help the brand match the Chanel target market’s desires.
Chanel Demographic Segmentation
The Chanel target market includes both genders between the age of 20-80 years. The brand’s targets are usually wealthy and able to afford their luxury products. However, many would argue that the primary Chanel target market is women. This notion is true in many ways, as many of Chanel’s customers include women aged 15-40 years old. These women possess an inclination towards fashionable accessories. Additionally, Chanel customers are usually from the upper-middle-income or upper-income classes.
You can identify the Chanel target market by their lifestyle and motives. Most of the brand’s customers purchase their products mainly because they symbolize class, luxury, and elegance. The women who make up the Chanel target market want to appear youthful and fresh. Therefore, the Chanel no 5 fragrance possesses a unique smell that stirs confidence in women. These women are playful and spark; they want to appear youthful while remaining classic. To appeal to the Chanel target audience, the brand utilizes many famous models with images relative to its customers’ wand. In many countries, wearing Chanel is a way to portray your social status.
How Chanel Became the Master of Exclusivity
While it is easy to differentiate your brand with an innovative idea, becoming an exclusive and luxury brand is harder. Below are some of the strategies the brand used to become the master of exclusivity.
Release of Fewer Products
Quality is far more important to the brand. Chanel releases a new fragrance every decade rather than every year like most competitors. Instead, the brand focuses on high-quality products created by professionals. Making a single Chanel Haute Couture Jacket takes 130 hours of craftsmanship and 30 client measurements. Therefore, the Chanel target audience always knows what to expect with the brand, giving way to brand loyalty.
Chanel Premium Pricing Strategy
Chanel takes advantage of the psychology behind premium pricing; when your product costs more, you create more value. The brand’s ready-to-wear products collection usually costs thousands of dollars to purchase. The brand also tends to increase its prices each year. However, premium pricing only works when your product delivers on value, and Chanel’s commitment to craftsmanship ensures this.
Chanel Plays Hard to Get
When Chanel returned in 1964, the house fell out of favor with the Chanel target market. Therefore, the brand embarked on a mission to revive sales with scarcity marketing and aspirational advertising. The brand’s CEO Alain Wertheimer ensured he removed the iconic perfume from all outlets when the Marilynn Monroe ad was released. This move created scarcity, causing an increase in product demand. It was a bold move that drove significant sales for the brand. The brand continues to play hard to get by refusing to implement online ordering on its website.
Whether you know Coco as a fashion icon or a Nazi collaborator, Coco Chanel is one who left her mark in the fashion space. She rejected convention and freed women from uncomfortable outfits through her designs. Although the House of Chanel began as a small hat shop, it is one of the leading luxury fashion brands today. Most affluent neighborhoods in the world today feature a Chanel boutique selling some of its elegant products. This article provides insight into the Chanel target market to explain how the brand achieves a vast reach in the global fashion market. Luxury brands are exclusive, top-quality, and possess high standards; Chanel successfully embodies these qualities.