Levi Strauss is the largest brand-name apparel manufacturer in the world. Levi Strauss's core product lines for men, women, and youth are the LSJ brands of jeans and jean-related products. Facing up a period of economic crisis in the Japanese, Levi Strauss risks to lose market shares. How can LSJ manage to overcome this situation, especially in a tough competitive environment? In order to answer this question, one will need to analyze the current Japanese jeans market and how LSJ positions itself on the market regarding to the marketing mix. In order to make evidence of rates, tables and a map of Japan will be used. Moreover, a magazine advertisement has been drawn for the next promotion. Looking at the marketing strategy, 1993 can be seen as a turning point: leading firms raise the bar for excellence by trying to improve marketing efficiency and effectiveness. Levi Strauss Japan must understand the strategic value that marketing brings to the rest of the company, leverage technology as well as process automation in order to grow.
[...] The denim jeans market in Japan: Market size and growth rate The demographic factor has to be taken into consideration, as it forecasts a lower birth rate. Thus, the future size of the young men segment will be smaller, which means that long-run demand is not reliable for young consumer purchase and should diminish little by little. II Micro economic factors Competitor activity The jeans market in Japan (cf Appendice 1 “Sales for Jeans Manufacturer”) The market of the jeans industry has come into maturity, which means that sales, after remaining high for a long time (with growth between 1985 and 1990) are going to decrease progressively after1991. [...]
[...] Levi Strauss Japan has to do its best to add value to the chain of services it is providing for its customers. However, it has to make crucial strategic choices in the segmentation. LSJ should show up a bigger interest in magazines, as it has to promote its brand as much as it can to remain competitive. In a word, it has to reinforce it pull strategy. In its advertisement, LSJ has to show a different image from its rivals so that prospective customers remember it. [...]
[...] Indeed, there was a 109% growth for women's blue jeans sales between 1985 and 1989 (from 8.5 million to 17.5 million a year) and the market does not seem to be ready to stabilise so women are going to represent a greater proportion of the segment in the jeans' industry in Japan. On the other hand, the young men's market is less successful than before. Moreover, the average frequency of jeans purchased per person per year is only 0.5 in Japan that is three times less than in the American market. [...]
[...] The selection of shops (Appendice Most of the sales occur in jeans shops so LSJ should keep traditional jeans shops in its distribution channel; otherwise, it will lose huge market share (about 70%). Then, as they are developing and are successful (opening of 580 new shops in 1992 and 1993), LSJ should also be present in department stores. Indeed, for the moment, the percentage of sales is not really significant but in the short to medium term, these shops will gain importance. [...]
[...] That is how Vintage jeans; a fashionable product launched by Wrangler in 1990 has become a big success. LSJ tried to react as quickly as it could by introducing reproductions of the old models - 5033BSXX 701SXX that were popular in the 1950's and 1960's in order to meet the demand. The other competitors have been focusing on a target that was under-represented until recently - women. Until now, the main target was young men but now, fierce competition in the women's segment has begun. [...]
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