JUNE 09, 2014

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Mintel Forecasts Healthy Growth in Men's Clothing Industry

Due to improved consumer confidence, growing Hispanic and 25-44 male segments, and continued growth in online shopping, Mintel forecasts men’s clothing sales will grow 4% to reach $64.7 billion in 2014. The insights firm further projects that sales will increase a total of 20% over the next five years, reaching $74.8 billion in 2018. Because Hispanics and younger men place higher value on appearance, they are expected to help drive category growth. The Hispanic male segment is expected to grow 12% in the next five years, while the segment comprised of men 25-44 is projected to grow 5%. Maintaining and updating their appearance are the top reasons men shop -- 57% buy new clothing to replace something old or worn out, while 42% of men purchase new clothes to update their wardrobes. Sales also drive men to purchases -- 38% of men buy new clothes because they are on sale. Encouraging for retailers, 28% have seen new clothing items they liked and purchased on impulse. While most men buy clothing for themselves, quite a few men benefit from their female partner also buying clothing for them: almost two in three women report purchasing clothing for their man in the past year.

So what?

While clothes shopping is still more of a necessity than passion for many men, we are seeing more reports about young adult males growing more image-conscious and fashion-forward. All signs point to continued growth for apparel brands with men's lines. While brands should continue to focus on advertising men’s clothing to younger and multicultural men, there is also an opportunity to drive sales of men’s clothing by marketing to their doting women.

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Journalists Experience A Tough Decade, but Willing to Respond to Changing News Dynamics

The University of Indiana School of Journalism conducts a survey of U.S. journalists once every decade. Last year's survey (prior surveys conducted in 1982, 1992 and 2002) found that the past decade has been an especially difficult one for American journalists as they try to maintain satisfaction in their roles while responding to a changing news landscape. Journalists surveyed (employed across a variety of daily and weekly newspapers, radio and television stations, news services and news magazines, and online news media) currently have a gloomy outlook on the direction of journalism in this country as 60% feel it's headed in the wrong direction; 23% feel it's headed in the right direction. Less than one in four journalists report being very satisfied with their job (fewer than the 33% that felt very satisfied in 2002). While downsized newsrooms can be partially to blame, a perceived lack of authority might also be the cause of lower satisfaction. In the past three decades, the percentage of journalists who feel almost complete freedom in selecting their stories has steadily declined from 60% in 1982 down to 34% in 2013. Journalists are also getting older -- the median age in 2013 was 47 (compared to 41 in 2002, 36 in 1992 and 32 in 1982), so perhaps they have a greater weariness than those surveyed in the past.

But alongside these negative trends, journalists are also doing their part to reimagine how to do their jobs well. More journalists than ever (69%) feel analyzing complex problems is important (the previous high was 42 years ago -- 61%). They are also more ethical than their counterparts of the past -- fewer feel using hidden microphones or cameras, gaining employment to gain inside information and paying for confidential information might be justified to chase a story. Finally, two out of three would also like more training to respond better to the new expectations placed on them. The areas they would most like to further develop include: video shooting & editing, social media engagement and data journalism.

So what?

The results of this study illustrate how the news industry's seismic shifts of the past decade have had a fairly profound effect on journalists' outlook. For many in the field, confidence in their profession has been shaken. However, the next decade might bring about a reverse in trend if journalists' calls for additional training in 'new' media formats and increased autonomy are answered. 

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Social Media
The Four Types of Facebook Fans, and Why They Like Your Brand

Brands that are active on Facebook make an effort to grow their fan base continually, but as an article in the Journal of Advertising Research points out, not all Facebook fans are created equal. Many fans choose to “like” a brand but – contrary to what one might expect – do not consume the brands’ products. Researchers from Ireland, Spain and the UK partnered to explore why likes are not always correlated with actual brand consumption by identifying four different types of fans:

1) Fan-atics – Fans who are highly engaged with brands, both on Facebook and online. They have high brand loyalty and love for the brands that they “like” and they generate more word-of-mouth about them. They also tend to view themselves as opinion leaders and seekers.

2) Utilitarians – Fans who do not have a real connection and “like” brands to gain incentives.

3) Self-expressives – Fans who “like” a brand to make an impression on others. Those fans are concerned about the opinion of others, and liking a brand helps them create an ideal self on Facebook.

4) Authentics – Fans whose likes reflect their offline brand preferences. They are unconcerned with image, and Facebook serves as an online extension of their offline social group. In other words, these Facebook fans are loyal fans, but not as engaged as the Fan-atics of the first group.

So what?

The four types described in the report ring true for Condé Nast brands, which see their fair share of each group among their Facebook fans. Segmenting our own fan bases can help us understand what motivates our social followers and craft our messaging accordingly. Additionally, the study's findings highlight the need to think of social media metrics through the lens of the organization's larger goals and optimize for the KPIs that matter most (such as high-value visitation to our sites).

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Consumers Want a Personalized Experience, As Long As They Maintain a Level of Control

“Personalization” is one of the most prevalent buzzwords in digital these days and is considered to be the future of the internet, but do customers even want it? Yahoo partnered with Ipsos to gain insights into user perceptions of personalization of both online content and ads. They found that acceptance of personalization is reliant on users’ ability to exercise control over it, with 65% of consumers demanding privacy controls and 58% wanting personalization based only on information they proactively provide. Despite some privacy concerns, 78% of consumers expressed a desire for some kind of content personalization. They felt that technology would especially improve content in categories like entertainment, lifestyle, sports and news. On the advertising side, two thirds of consumers did not oppose marketers using online behavior and information to craft personalized ads, and said they would interact with them if they are relevant to them. Yahoo concludes that personalization is a balancing act between content curation (“what I need to know”) and consumer control (“what I want to know”).

So what?

Online consumers today are bombarded with information, and finding the right things at the right time can be challenging. As Condé Nast readers visit our digital properties, we learn about their interests and affinities, and through personalization we have the opportunity to leverage this understanding to surface content, enhance discoverability, and target ads to those who may be interested in them.

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Quick Takes
Ultra-Affluent Americans (HHI: $250K+) More Often Using the Word 'Unique' to Describe Luxury and Less Often Using 'Exclusive'

Source: Ipsos Affluent Barometer
Spending is Up In the App Store, But Down on iTunes

Source: Statista, Morgan Stanley Research
Consumers Say They Are More Likely to Buy an Item In-Store After Looking at it Online Rather Than Vice Versa

Source: Nielsen
Teen Birth Rate Continues to Decline

Source: National Center for Health Statistics, USA TODAY
Condé Nast
Feedback, questions, ideas for future issues? Please contact:

Phil Paparella
Condé Nast Research & Insights | Associate Director
1166 6th Avenue, 14th fl. | NY, NY 10036 | office 212.790.6044 | philip_paparella@condenast.com

Tamar Rimmon | Senior Manager, Digital Analytics
Robyn Hightower | Manager, Research & Insights