I’m saluting Debenhams for their win last week at the Body Confidence Awards at Parliament and sponsored by Bare Minerals and presented by Jo Swinson MP.
Mark Fast may have taken up a large amount of column inches when he won the All Walks Beyond the Catwalk visionary fashion award for his use of curvy models on the catwalk, but he wasn’t the only fashion forward thinker!
Debenhams has also been working hard to listen to consumers in recent seasons… and then DELIVER.
I know this because Jane and I work with this store from time to time and their marketing team take a more considered and strategic approach approach to body image than most.
Why else then would the Ben de Lisi collection for Principles launch feature Shannon Murray (with her wheels) surrounded by a diverse range of individuals… petite, curvy and dark – a rare site in one fashion photograph.
That’s a whole load of inclusivity in one photo doncha think?…But there’s more… Debenhams positioned mannequins in a range of sizes to invite customer feedback about whether a range of sizes could be the way forward.
And the Style LIST created by Jane and I and shot by Karena Perronet Miller, features Caroline, Valerie and Maxine who are not only our favourite women… but they are all over 40 – just like many of the Debenhams customers. This initiative received a deluge of encouraging comments on line, proving what we all know…
It is already researched fact reported by the Centre for Appearance Research, that women will respond with clear intentions to purchase when they see marketing imagery that looks more realistic… and frankly more…well loving. Debenhams get it already…New research from Phd graduate Ben Barry at the Judge Business School Cambridge in May, will drive the nail home to other stores too.
Don’t these following pictures just warm the cockles of your handbag…even your purse. Where will you chose to spend your money in future? A retailer who invites you in to the store with fashion imagery that speaks especially to you and represents you, could be the only place to go.
Read more on why the Body Confidence Awards are such an important idea.