H&M Marketing Strategy | How H&M Became the Second-Largest Clothing Retailer

Abinaya Arangarajan Abinaya Arangarajan
Sep 21, 2021 7 min read
H&M Marketing Strategy | How H&M Became the Second-Largest Clothing Retailer

When we talk about top-branded fashion stores, the very first thing that strikes our mind is either H&M or Zara. Being the fast-fashion clothing & accessories for men, children, women and teenagers, H&M became the second-largest global clothing retailer after Zara. The company manages its operation both offline owing more than 5000 stores in 74 countries and online shopping in 33 countries.

Erling Persson established H&M exclusively for women's clothing in 1947 in Vasteras, Sweden. Later, the company built subsidiary brands such as Monki, Weekday, Cheap Monday, ARKET, FaBric Scandinavian AB and COS & Other Stories under the main branch H&M set out worldwide.

Besides, the brand also actuated other tyros to start up their careers as designers and did various philanthropic works. You may be wondering how a small clothing store located in Sweden became the second largest clothing retailer brand in the world. Hereby, H&M followed many marketing strategies that aided the brand to reach heights in the clothing retailer business.

H&M Key Marketing Strategies
The Unique Marketing Strategy of H&M
STP (Segmentation, Targeting and Positioning) Strategy of H&M
H&M Marketing Campaigns
H&M Covid-19 Marketing Strategy
FAQ

H&M key Marketing Strategies

Product Strategy:

The company is known for β€œFast-fashion clothing stores” which means they never fail us in presenting high-quality clothes & winning accessories that are admired according to the fashion trends.

Besides, they are always prepared to release new product lines on time and sell European influenced fashion in the American market as it brings inter-cultural fashions in such demographical.

H&M product strategy is about providing high-quality clothing according to the latest fashion at the best price possible. The company maintains four product stages- Introduction, Growth, Maturity and Decline stage, whereby the product manager analyzes the demand & supply of H&M products and works on these 4 stages of product life to bring effective marketing strategy on the new product to compete in the market.

Price Strategy:

According to the buyers, Some clothes by H&M cost an arm and a leg to acquire as they provide high quality fashion. While H&M focuses to satisfy customer’s needs with high quality fashion at a low price by controlling transport and labor cost to their possible. H&M clothes are priced as low as Rs 399 to as high as Rs 7999.

Promotion Strategy:

H&M developed a multi-channel promotion strategy that subsumes- advertising, sales promotion and internet promotion that helped the brand to be exposed worldwide. Moreover, the company entices customers by building brand awareness by showing low prices on the products while marketing them.

Place Strategy:

H&M established a reliable bond between customers and the company, by owning outlets in different geographical places all over the world. H&M make their basic goods in Asia, whereas high branded goods in Turkey and sell them in their owned 5000 plus stores in 73 countries.

Cost leadership Strategy:

H&M sells their fashionable clothes at a low price to broad markets, where the price is determined according to the market price of a certain niche. Cost leadership strategy focuses on working efficiency in expanding their market share rather than setting a high price to earning a huge profit margin.

People Strategy:

H&M always emphasizes the customer’s needs and provides them with fashionable items that are trending at that period of time.


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The Unique Marketing Strategy of H&M

H&M always comes up with new products that increase the customer's desire for clothing, that too at an affordable cost. Their only notion is fashion and quality at the best price.

They have everything that a person may look for, from normal wear to business suits, sports wear to lingerie sets all at a reasonable price. They collaborate with other top brands to establish a fresh style.

H&M collaborated with Karl Lagerfeld in 2004, Versace in 2011, Alexander Wang in 2014 and the collaboration with Balmain is the most triumphant to date.

H&M x Balmain
H&M x Balmain

They also collaborated with the celebrated Indian designer Sabyasachi in 2021. The collection was named Sabyasachi x H&M.

Sabyasachi x H&M
Sabyasachi x H&M

Before releasing the season's collection, they fuel the people's curiosity by promoting it on social media platforms. The brands mostly target the teens, to get their attention, they make sure their brand pops up in every online platform and publicize it by the influencers with a large following.

They feature models in different skin colour and sizes, giving the notion that fashion pertains to everyone irrespective of their skin colour or size.


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STP (Segmentation, Targeting and Positioning) Strategy of H&M

Segmentation Strategy

H&M almost already reached various cultural, religious and lifestyle all over the world.

  • Segmented into class- from middle class to high society by rendering low-cost price products to extravagant products.
  • Segment by age- H&M literally covers all genders from the age group of 15 to 30 years old in presenting them fashionable products and accessories.

Targeting Strategy

H&M basically targets fashionable and trending consumers who are very much interested to spend their money on purchasing high-quality clothes. Notably, H&M highly aims to target women, as they usually invest a lot of money in purchasing fashionable items- clothes, accessories, shoes, Garment care etc. at an affordable price.

Positioning Strategy

H&M is a fast-fashion clothing retailer which manufactures products in their rented or owned outlets and sells them worldwide. For instance, those fashionable European clothes are brought into the American market to create demands. Besides, the company functions online as well as offline by understanding socially, economical and environmental sustainability.

H&M Marketing Campaigns

H&M’s campaigns always make people go awed with their inklings, ideas and modern clothes at an affordable rate. Considering the risk factor in having a campaign outdoors, H&M took a distinct step and are conducting campaigns on digital platforms.

In 2015 they launched a campaign 'H&M Conscious' to promote sustainability initiatives.


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H&M Covid-19 Marketing Strategy

COVID-19 pandemic made a huge impact on people's lives. Due to unavoidable circumstances, the markets were shut down, creating a great difference in the revenue of the companies and leading to unemployment, a deficit in GDP and low economic growth.

As per the reports, 65% of brands have undergone a decline in earnings. The brands that managed to maintain their sales or had an increase in sales were the companies that retail basic products such as household necessities, hand sanitizers and facemasks. The disposable gloves, cough and cold medicine, packaged foods, and training materials were the products that were on request in E-commerce during 2020. As per a study, many companies and restaurants endured a fallback.

To unravel the issue, the companies created modern techniques for marketing their products, obeying the COVID-19 rules. Helena Helmersson, H&M’s CEO decided to shift the shops online to keep them floating and to advertise for promoting the digital stores.

Applied to the year before, in March H&M had a 17% rise in online sales. To increase the income, the company has decided to enlarge their digital service into European countries and also step into the Austrian and German markets.

H&M groups have boosted their sales by adding warehouse items into their list and it turned out profitable in Sweden. The brand has over 5,000 stores worldwide in 74 countries, the counting will strengthen as the days pass with more visionary ideas.

FAQ

Who is the founder of H&M?

Erling Persson founded H&M in 1947.

Who is the CEO of H&M?

Helena Helmersson is the current CEO of H&M.

Which company owns H&M?

Hennes & Mauritz AB is the parent company of H&M.

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