Marks & Spencer simplifies sub-brand strategy, relaunches Per Una
Marks & Spencer is set to drop its ‘Classics’ sub-brand from Autumn/Winter 2019 and is relaunching the Per Una sub-brand with a redefined aesthetic.
The department store’s announcement that it’s simplifying its sub-brand strategy follows CEO Steve Rowe’s admission that the predicted turnaround of the Clothing business is running behind schedule.
At an investor day in London last week, the chief executive said the company has been struggling with stock issues, with buyers over-ordering collections that are not doing well while underestimating demand for popular items.
This Monday, Marks & Spencer further acknowledged that its most recognised sub-brand, Per Una, had also become “too frilly”.
So Per Una has been given a significant refresh, using lots of prints and soft tailoring, as well as quality fabric such as British wool, to shift customer perceptions from “too frilly” to “stylishly feminine”.
“Per Una is our biggest and best-known sub-brand – but in recent years it’s lost some of its identity,” said Nathan Ansell, director of Clothing & Home Marketing at Marks & Spencer.
“So, we’ve been talking to thousands of our customers about what they have loved about Per Una in the past and tried to recapture that in the contemporary brand relaunch.
“The design teams have done a great job bringing that soft, feminine, floral feel to the product and we wanted the campaign to match that – so went to stunning British countryside - natural and effortlessly beautiful, we think it perfectly complements the new product.”
A new logo and new labels on all the products introduce the brand’s redesigned identity, which will be the focus of a major marketing campaign launching this week across all major customer channels - including billboards, print ads, influencer marketing, email and social media.
Per Una and Autograph will be Marks & Spencer’s only sub-brands alongside the wardrobe essentials of M&S Collection.
Jill Stanton, director of womenswear & kidswear at Marks & Spencer said, “M&S is changing and we’re focussed on delivering what matters to our customers; great value contemporary, easy to wear style and quality wardrobe essentials backed up by an easy shopping experience.
“Responding to this we’ve redesigned our womenswear ranges and simplified our sub-brands – focusing on where we can offer a point of difference for our customers. Alongside our M&S Collection wardrobe essentials we’re proud of our two clear sub-brands – Autograph and Per Una. With Per Una we’ve refreshed a much-loved brand to give it a more contemporary feel with lots of soft tailoring and beautiful prints.”
Marks & Spencer also announced on Monday a collaboration with Disney to launch a line of Frozen 2 merchandise for children.
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