UNIQLO – Made For All – The Japanese Clothing Chain That’s Taking Over The World

Uniqlo (Unique Clothing Warehouse) has only approximately 100 stores and all are in Japan in more than 10 years ago. Now, Japanese fashion chain stores is expected to have 840 stores in Japan and 1170 outlets in other countries. They now become one of S.P.A (Specialty retailer of Private Label Apparel) in the world such as Zara, H&M.

Slogan – Made for all

According to Iacobucci (2014), ‘branding may begin with simple physical qualities (a name, logo, color, packaging…). But the far more interesting and flexible aspects of a brand are the intangible cognitive and emotion associations that the company helps the customer connect to its brand’. UNIQLO, the Japanese clothing chain have selecting the brand ambassador downright unique and special one.

They choose Maru – a Japanese cat on the Internet as a brand ambassador for a marketing campaign. Maru is one of the most famous cat on the Internet today. Known for jumping and sliding into boxes, UNIQLO created four special boxes for Maru to jump into, fetching fun prizes – from UNIQLO clothing to blimp rides – for everyone in the Bay Area to claim at the new flagship store. In the video, they mention about “happy” and it also describes the emotion so it’s good to say emotion is one of the important key factor that connect between brand and customer.

Uniqlo – Lucky Cube Starring Maru. Source: Vimeo

Focusing on technology and investment to bring long-term vision because they believe that targeting customers who are interested in quality and value rather than trendy designs. To exploit this strategic market, UNIQLO spend effort, time to check out materials from the long-term supplier and design.

Uniqlo ceo

Tadashi Yanai – CEO of UNIQLO stated this strategy “In general, the apparel industry is not about continual improvement process or making the perfect piece of denim, it’s about chasing trends.” He is always looking for style that not quickly lost, classify them and establish supply chains to bring all to customers. So, it brings the slogan – UNIQLO – MADE FOR ALL. Overall, he directs customers to update their wardrobe by the same style that Uniqlo brings more than wardrobe with series of trends cannot under any style. Finally, UNIQLO was successful passing both the GAP and H & M (also the S.P.A brand) in US.

New product – New design

Iacobucci (2014) stated that companies, like people, are ever evolving. The primary way that companies make changes is by offering so-called new and improved good and services to customers. HeatTech product line is a good example that showing the improvements behind everything that UNIQLO do. It is described on UNIQLO website which is a fabric with a competitive advantage due to its ability to absorb heat emitted from the body and heat storage in the air pocket deep in the fabric to help keep wearer warm.

heattech

HeatTech products. Source: UNIQLO

This fabric is made by UNIQLO collaboration with a company in materials science research and development. The fabric of HeatTech thin and create a sense of comfort for the wearer. This special fabric material helps the designers can create more elegant clothing designs, different from the usual standards of clothes to wear and keep warm.

uniqlo-heattech-1

HeatTech technology continues to improve over time with new fiber technology. In 2003, 1.5 million HeatTech products had been sold worldwide and this number had increased to over 130 million in 2012. HeatTech is just one of the innovative products from UNIQLO and they also have other products such as AIRism (an elastic fabrics) and Lifewear (combination of sportswear and casual style).

Cheap price – Best quality – Best service

UNIQLO products have cheaper price when comparing with other companies such as Just Jean, Gap… This strategy brings the advantages in cost and agility for them. In particular, instead of outsourcing in some stages, UNIQLO has the group in charge of all processes from product planning, design and manufacturing and distribution.

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UNIQLO staffs. Source: Business Insider

UNIQLO ensures that not only the Uniqlo clothing must be high quality but customer service must be also the best. Therefore, the stages of recruitment and training to every little detail in the services are implemented meticulously. All employees of UNIQLO clothing stores are trained from folding clothes, communication skills to give clothes to customers to how to return the credit card to customers (Japanese style, should return with 2 hands and full eye contact). Every moves, gestures of staff are recorded and brought to the analysis system.

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UNIQLO employees learn how to fold clothes. Sources: The Japan Times

Moreover, UNIQLO staffs need to know English and they provide free alteration service for all customer. This is a different one when comparing with another store which they do not have alteration service or may be charge with expensive price.

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UNIQLO offer alteration service. Source: UNIQLO

Customer may be short or tall, young or old, men or woman, Asian or Western countries… when buying Jean so alteration service and friendly staff bring the customer satisfaction. One again, UNIQLO follows slogan “Made for all”.

Thank you for reading my blog! Do you like Uniqlo product? Please tell me your opinion.

References

Durisin, M 2013, ‘The Story of Uniqlo — The Japanese Clothing Chain That’s Taking Over The World’, Business Insider, 27 April, pp.1-24, retrieved 23 April 2016, <http://www.businessinsider.com.au/the-story-of-uniqlo-2013-4?r=US&IR=T#the-first-uniqlo-opened-its-doors-in-hiroshima-japan-in-1984-1&gt;.

Iacobucci, D 2014, Marketing Management (MM), 4th edn, South-Western, Cenage Learning, Mason.

Kyodo, 2015, ‘Fast Retailing to debut four-day workweeks for Uniqlo staff’, The Japan Times, 20 August, retrieved 23 April 2016, <http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2015/08/20/business/corporate-business/fast-retailing-to-debut-four-day-workweeks-at-uniqlo-outlets/#.Vx2pgDB96Uk&gt;.

‘Maru (cat)’ 2016, Maru (cat), 11 April, retrieved 23 April 2016, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maru_%28cat%29&gt;.

Petro, G 2012, ‘The Future Of Fashion Retailing: Part 1 – Uniqlo’, Forbes, 23 October, retrieved 23 April 2016, <http://www.forbes.com/sites/gregpetro/2012/10/23/the-future-of-fashion-retailing-part-1-uniqlo/#7aa388bb10ad&gt;.

Safe, G 2015, ‘Why Japanese fashion label Uniqlo is such a success’, Daily Life, 2 February, retrieved 23 April 2016, <http://www.dailylife.com.au/dl-fashion/fashion-coverage/why-japanese-fashion-label-uniqlo-is-such-a-success-20150124-12xn7w.html&gt;.

Uniqlo – Lucky Cube Starring Maru – Case Study 2013, Vimeo, John Antoniello, retrieved 23 April 2016, <https://vimeo.com/59312592&gt;.

Uniqlo 2016, HeatTech – Uniqlo product, Uniqlo, retrieved 23 April 2016, <http://www.uniqlo.com/au/&gt;.

White, C 2013, ‘Stay cool this summer in UNIQLO Airism’, The Fashion Foot, 8 July, retrieved 23 April 2016, <https://thefashionfoot.com/2013/07/08/stay-cool-this-summer-in-uniqlos-airism/&gt;.

Student name: Ba Trung Nguyen – 211638346

Email: btnguyen@deakin.edu.au

Username: batrung187

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