Inter-Covid Roadmap : Luxury & Fashion

category - covid-19
type - trends
sector - fashion
sector - luxury
With the sector in recovery, brands are taking the time to refocus on sustainability, intangible goods and next- level customer service. Our free Inter-Covid Roadmap report explores in detail the opportunities that now lie ahead for luxury and fashion

Read an excerpt from the report below or click here to download the full report featuring all six sectors.

In last year’s Covid-19 Contingency Planning report we predicted a difficult year for luxury. Subsequently, the global personal luxury goods market imploded, losing £56bn ($78bn, €64bn) in sales, resulting in a 23% decline – the biggest year-on- year drop recorded over 25 years of tracking, according to Bain & Co.

The market is not expected to recover until the end of 2022 or early 2023, when it will finally return to 2019 levels of £245bn ($342bn, €281bn).

But after a year of existential crisis, 2021 will allow high-end brands to regain their footing in the industry and roll out products, campaigns and services built for a more mindful, conspicuous, and omnipresent future of luxury.

After all, a great reset and revaluing of the meaning of wealth has already been underway. For brands, priorities have shifted from ostentatious goods such as watches, jewellery, and handbags to customer service, digital experience, and even Luxtainment.

‘Luxury brands will get even more adventurous,’ says Kathryn Bishop, foresight editor at The Future Laboratory. ‘Fuelled by digital transformation, we can expect luxury to transcend all parts of consumers’ lives, from our wellbeing routines to our choice of evening entertainment. This will also be the year of the avatar, as luxury embraces lucrative retail and marketing opportunities, dressing other-worldly audiences in the virtual realm.’

The full report is now available to download for free below. Members of our trends intelligence platform, LS:N Global, get full access to all of our trend reports 3 months before anyone else. Click here to find out more.


Published by:

23 August 2021

Author: Holly Friend, Rachel Wilson and Gursharan Panesar

Image: Adidas’ ZX sneakers by Builders Club


Left: The Dematerialised. Right: MetaFactory, Canada.

Luxury & Fashion Opportunities

Sustainability: Finding themselves with a surplus of inventory, luxury brands are reconsidering production in a world where consumers are demanding higher accountability on sustainability. New York’s 260 Sample Sale gives brands the means to launch online sample sales in a matter of days.Offline, Scarce offers so-called luxury mystery boxes made up from the excess stock of boutiques and factories.

Marketing: With fewer physical customer touchpoints at their disposal, luxury brands are turning to live-streaming as a way to engage directly with consumers. Gucci recently made a move into the film industry, launching cinematic festival GucciFest featuring films by famed and emerging talents.

Customer service: The inter-Covid period will require a new generation of customer service, especially as the pandemic has shown that luxury can exist in other realms entirely. As such, virtual influencers such as Chinese beauty brand Perfect Diary’s very own Xiao Wanzi will become personalised consultants to affluent shoppers.

Digital luxuryWith fewer tangible opportunities to experience luxury in person in 2020, luxurians are now comfortable interacting with the immaterial. Companies such as The Dematerialised, a blockchain-powered digital marketplace for virtual fashion assets, and MetaFactory, a marketplace for digi-physical apparel that is inspired by cryptoculture, are embracing the opportunities this new market represents.

‘Fuelled by digital transformation, we can expect luxury to transcend all parts of consumers’ lives, from wellbeing to entertainment’
Kathryn Bishop, foresight editor, The Future Laboratory

Lab Notes

: As concerns about sustainability grow at a similar rate to deadstockoff-price goods are now highly desirable. Think about how your brand can enter this market and emerge with cleaner, leaner and smarter inventories

: Retailtainment has boomed as a way to keep shoppers engaged online when they haven’t been able to visit the store. Consider how new innovations such as live-streaming and virtual events can continue to live on beyond the pandemic and complement physical footfall

: Luxury is increasingly adapting to luxurians’ day-to-day routines. These new modes of access and data points will allow your brand to get closer than ever into consumers’ homes, needs and preferences

: Wealthy consumers may be more open than ever to immaterial luxury, but they are still seeking personal recommendations and services from brands to establish tangibility and quality. Implement a Feedback Frontiers approach and begin circular conversations with customers

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Inter-Covid Roadmap report now


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