The paper “ Fashion Marketing in Australia - Market Size and Characteristics, Industry Structure, Competitors, and Macro-Economic Environment" is a fascinating example of a case study on marketing. The Australia fashion makes can be described as relatively small, highly competitive and well serviced by local industries. Nevertheless, this market presents numerous opportunities for both domestic and foreign companies. Most of the people in Australia share similar culture and lifestyles, for instance outdoors and sports and this translate into similar fashion trends and tastes. Faced with the ever-increasing pressure from cheap imports, particularly from New Zealand, Canada and the United States of America, Australian fashion retailers are looking for new ways to compete and remain relevant in the dynamic world of business.
Some fashion retailers have differentiated their businesses by specializing and offering only one particular type of product such as ladies' clothing. Yet, others have specialized in selling exclusive products that cannot be found in any other real stores (Caron, 2003). The majority of Australian fashion retailers have moved to the mid to high-end of the market. The boutique culture, which is characteristic of Western countries, has taken deep roots in the Australian fashion market.
Australian consumers have a strong reputation for innovative design and quality. Retailers have accordingly taken advantage of this consideration to offer highly innovative and quality products. This has ensured increased competition and enhanced access to new products and brands (ABS, 2012). The favorable market characterized by high urbanization and deeply-entrenched Western culture presents opportunities where companies can fill gaps in the retail portfolio. Moreover, custom duties for fashion products imported into Australia have been reduced significantly since the year 2000 hence the market is competitive for foreign players. Market Size and CharacteristicsDespite its big size, Australia has a population of only 22 million people.
In 2011, Australia recorded an annual GDP of A$1.4. Unlike several countries, Australia weathered the global financial crisis of 2007-2010 in a much better position because of its solid banking and financial systems. The increasing purchasing power of the Australian dollar, strong employment growth and strong consumer confidence in the country’ s economy have all helped fuel retail sales for fashion products in the past few years.
In 2010 for instance, Australia imported more than US$5 billion worth of apparel products. Australia’ s big size and the vast distance between major cities have created multiple, small but highly competitive markets for fashion products. However, the best selection of fashion products can be found in major urban centers where consumers are very much likely to buy better and competitively-priced fashion brands. As a result, the majority of international fashion brands are found in large cities and tourist centers like the Gold Coast. The level of domestic demand for fashion products in Australia is valued in the excess of A$15 billion per year, with more than 40% of this demand serviced by direct imports.
Since 1990, the Austrian government has increased its support for the textile and clothing industries to boost international awareness and to increase the industry’ s international competitiveness. Investments in innovative technologies have been initiated by the government to reduce production costs. This has ensured that locally produced fashion product retail at cheap prices compared to imports (Caron, 2003).