STIMULUS – OPENING SESSION – DAY 2 (THE AWAKENING OF THE SOCIETY) – Pria Kataaria Puri, Neha Lulla and Sahil Malik

The awakening of the society”  in Stimulus 2020, a one a kind webinar encompassing 70 speakers across 14 panel discussions.

Speaker: –

  • Pria Kataaria Puri, International Celebrity Fashion Designer
  • Abhay Gupta, Founder & CEO Luxury Connect
  • Neha Lulla, Celebrity Jewellery Designer
  • Sahil Malik, MD, Da Milano

The opening session of Day 2 focused on revenge/pent up shopping by consumers, sustainability, retail & tech, monopoly of virtual store over retail store and life during COVID19:

Pria Kataria Puri, International Celebrity Fashion Designer: Speaking on a revenge/pent up shopping, I feel that India will witness an upsurge in shopping however, consumers will be prone to opt for mindful shopping. This move-in itself will set a trend in motion wherein consumers will gradually be seen going for affordable sustainable products as quality will rule over quantity in the times to come. Also, the digital landscape will be the medium to go to even for apparel brands/ fashion shows in the years to come. Time is something that people are always running short on. In this situation, e-fashion shows, conferences and other digital businesses with a personalized delivery system in place will pick up the pace. However, it is true that established brand which thrives on experiential marketing will have an upper hand (if gone the digital way at the right time) with tapping and converting consumers. However, newbie’s, who have just entered the industry and whose business also does depend  a lot on experiential marketing will have to face the glitch as one can never do away with physical store completely.  Having said that, I would also say that retail tech will have a huge role to play for fashion luxury brands as 80% of my consumers purchase my apparel line online. Sustainability will have a larger role to play in the long run. With consumers becoming aware (consumers especially based out of the cosmopolitan cities in India) has led to a rise in conscious buying, which is why organic and sustainable products are gradually becoming the highlight of the day. Also re-used, pre-owned and rented luxury items will also find a new segment of consumers and avenues being opened up.

Abhay Gupta, Founder & CEO Luxury Connect: While speaking about the purchasing pattern of the consumers post-COVID 19, we will see two segments of consumers emerging strongly in the forefront. The conscious and the Aspirational buyer, who will be mindful of their spending and shall only purchase if it is a necessity, on the other hand, we will find the premium buyers, who would want to go all out and might want to go on a shopping spree to kind of deal with the happiness of being free and this, in turn, will bring back the much-needed optimism in the economy. Having said that, I would like to highlight that the principles of business will also change a lot due to the concept of social distancing, hygiene and safety of consumers will become the top priority of luxury brands that are into experiential marketing and sales. Further, even though the digital landscape will emerge as a major player in the business, virtual stores will not replace physical stores that soon when it comes to luxury purchasing.

Neha Lulla, Celebrity Jewellery Designer: The Indian consumer will spend, but will spend in a very conscious way. Even though consumers like to have the touch and feel factor come into play while purchasing jewelry, in the current lockdown situation, jeweler apps that allow you to shop jewelry online will see a hike in sales. However, only virtual stores will not work for jewelry over all because with the purchase of jewelry the look and feel good factor is associated very strongly and consumers still prefer walking into the physical store and then make a purchase that might possibly turn into a family heirloom. In short a lot of emotions attached to the entire concept; on the same lines, it would be right to say that consumers might want to purchase vintage luxury but overall usually they are not too keen on pre-owned, re-used or rented jewelry.

Sahil Malik, MD, Da Milano: Consumers will be keen on opting for affordable luxury post-COVID 19. As for the digital landscape and social media handles acting as a platform of sales, well for us at Da Milano it acts more like a distribution channel for having far and wide reach for our product and our content. However, brands in the leather industry survive mainly on experiential marketing in physical outlets/ brand stores which in turn generate higher consumer engagement where the consumer has the feeling that they are the top priority for the brands. As for sustainability, well I fell that even though it is here to stay in the long run, the concept itself is at a very nascent stage and consumers need to be more educated about this concept.

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