Sinead O’Rafferty

Sinead O’Rafferty

COURSE: Fashion Business & Promotion 2018

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Revolution - Activism Marketing

'57% of consumers are buying or boycotting based on a brand's position on a social or political issue' - Edelman Earned Brand

2020 Marks a new decade, a time for reflection, what is wrong with our past? and how can we improve our future? The Revolution website offers brands and industry professional's a toolkit specially designed to help create a better future for their brands containing market research and information surrounding activism marketing. Revolution is updated daily by a group of researches, analysts and creative thinkers in order to provide the best market analysis for each brands individual needs, from inspiration and innovation to advice and activation, Revolution offers a range of services designed to prepare businesses for what is next.

This course focuses on the business and marketing side of the fashion industry, providing me with skills in marketing, buying and merchandising, events planning and trend forecasting. I believe all industrys succeed by being customer centric, predicting, adapting and influencing trends - this course has provided me with the skills to do all of the above.
As well as enabling students to be creative with their outcomes, my course has offered group projects which have given me the skills to lead a team as well as work positively within one. The course has enabled me to grow professionally and contributed to my desire to work in Buying.

Dissertation
My dissertation consisted of in depth research and analysis of the marketing sector.
This research was predominantly focusing on the younger generations (Gen X and the Millennial) as they increase their buying power and begin to demand that brands have an ethos, social responsibility and purpose as well as good product selection.
Research suggested that the current climate consists of disconnectivity and a feeling of fear amongst society as terrorism rises as well as consumer sense of lack of leadership, in turn this means less and less consumers are leaving their homes - and are instead using online shopping at their convenience.
During analysis I had learnt that in order to meet consumer needs brands would have to act more like leaders for their customers by commenting, reacting and acting upon social and economic changes happening nationally and internationally - this had already began to be done by brands such as Topman, Airbnb and Starbucks.
It was learnt that in order to generate sales, higher profits and successful marketing campaigns brands would need to create experiences surrounding activism as well as acting upon Government legislation, charities and other social changes happening - this could include movements such as the MeToo hashtag.
In conclusion brands that failed to do this would face a mass loss of customers, perhaps even liquidation.
As consumers want to become closer to their brands and connect on more intimate levels it is the brands job to remain open and honest on their opinions surrounding politics, economics ect. even though this would be a great risk for many brands the reward would be greater with a $263 billion in unlocked market potential.

Final Major Project
In link with my Dissertation my Final Major Project was a forecasting database called Revolution - due to the start date of 2020 and the link with the new decade, the database was set up to inform brands surrounding the subject of activism marketing.
The website which could also be used in app, was set to contain daily updates by researchers, analysts and creative directors in order to inform brands and future proof their business'.
These updates contained business professional's opinions on certain subject matters, statistics and polls taken in certain areas of the country to give brands a deeper level of knowledge surrounding their consumers political, economical and social thoughts and opinions.
Revolution supplied the tool kits which contained market trends and suggestions for brands instore and online activism.
Brands could also contact the database to arrange one on one meetings whereby the researchers, analysts and creative directors were able to work on marketing campaigns with themes of activism - by doing this brands would be ensured a level of succession with their out reach to consumers.
Revolution also supplied brands with seminars and workshops in order to continue the guidance of brands, keeping their information up to date and creating a closer relationship - therefor a more loyal one.

Event Management
The video to the left depicts an event created, marketed and held within Birmingham for St.Basils, a charity for homeless youths in Birmingham.
For this module we were placed within groups, within this group we each decided on a role we would take within the group.
My role was that of event liason - this job role involved liasoning with potential business proffessionals who our group could work with throughout our project.
This started with club owners to discuss rental for the night to DJ's and business' who could supply the night with prizes, games and other amenities we could use for a successful night.
The night was Las Vegas theme and was held in club Mechu - a popular, upper class club in Birmingham.
This was decorated with betting tables, a DJ, free champagne, booths for V.I.P's and prizes supplied by business' for attendees to win after purchasing raffle tickets on the night.
To raise the funds in order to supply these for the night the team marketed our event by making and selling cupcakes around the University on the lead up to Valentines day, the team also created and sold 'naughty' valentines day cards to match the cakes - by doing this we raised over £1000 and were also able to sell tickets for the night aswell as booths and market our event to expectant attendees.
On the actual night our team raised more than £1900 - all in all this totaled to almost £3,000 the most funds raised across our year group and an achievement the whole team is extremely proud of.

To conclude my 3 years at Birmingham City University Fashion Business and Promotion has improved my already high level of self motivation, my dynamic personality and given me the drive and courage to overcome obstacles. Along with these skills I have also acquired personal characteristics that enable me to develop, build and maintain professional relationships. My main strengths include organisational skills, creativity and a disciplined and hard working attitude. The knowledge and experiences I have gained throughout the course have led me to become excited and enthusiastic about commencing my career in the field of Buying.

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