How Are Youths’ Perceptions Contributing to Its Popularity?

Published: 2021-07-17 17:05:05
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Exploring the CEO-fashion trend: How are youths' perceptions contributing to its popularity? Introduction Ensuring garments are produced in an environmentally friendly manner in regards to its materials, consumer benefits and the condition in which employees are working is the essence of what CEO-fashion is all about (Hudson, 2012). According to Hudson (2012), 2011 was the leading year fashion industries realized a prosperous opportunity and need for venturing into the businesses of CEO-friendly clothing.
CEO- fashion has increased in popularity as a global trend and Anne Salvatore Epstein was he one that discovered this concept in 2009, when she was pregnant. The reason for Epstein to embrace this concept was because of her desire to enhance the organic value in life for her new born. In order to create an organic fashion trend, Epstein first collaboration partnership was with Marc Jacobs (Smith, 2006). Generation Y, the main target market for sustainable fashion, enjoys the quick trends presented by fast fashion retailers (Martin ; Bush, 2000, as cited in Hill, 2011).
However, the value of being socially responsible and taking into consideration sustainability issues is mongo their concerns as well (Yang, 2003). According to a study by a market research company, Marital, 47% of the participants from generation Y found that they are attracted to environmentally friendly services, products or brands and are often more agreeable to pay extra when purchasing. The explanations behind the enthusiasm of the vast majority were due to reasons such as "care about the environment", "it's the right thing to do" or "so that people know I'm environmentally aware" (Barcelona, 2007). A significant figure of 47% of Generation Y is willing to shop at a retailer more often if they were environmentally friendly', was the outcome of the study, hence describing their attitudes towards retailers that positioned themselves as environmentally aware (Barcelona, 2007). A result from another study also showed that a company's social and environmental commitments are factors to be considered by of Generation Y interviewed and 83% find a company more treatable if it practices the societal marketing concept (Kim, Change, Lee ; Huh, 2011).



The improved public education that generation Y received in their early childhood consequently resulted in their heightened awareness and concern of becoming more environmentally conscious than previous generations (Meddlesome ; Polygons, 1995, as cited in Kim, Change, Lee ; Huh, 2011). Throughout their lives, Gene Y has faced detrimental issues regarding global climate change and ozone depletion. As a result, increased awareness through sound environmental education is an important element when teaching hence emphasizing the importance of protecting the environment.
Additionally, younger consumers are more likely to be fashion leaders (Goldsmith ; Clark, 2009, as cited in Hill, 2011), therefore understanding generation Yes perception towards CEO-fashion may lead to a better understanding of owe they are contributing to its growing popularity (Morgan ; Bristle, 2009). Research Justification Despite the prominently growing trend of CEO-fashion and its popularity in the fashion industry, identification of factors influencing consumers' evaluations and perceptions of sustainable product requires further research.
Lack of available options is one of the major barriers to CEO-fashion (Hillier Connell, 2010). Moreover, there is limited research directed towards consumers' views of fashion sustainability (Morgan ; Bristle, 2009). Thus highlighting the need to acquire further insight into generation Yes perceptions of fashion and sustainability. Fashion retailers are seen to have a unique position of being closer to consumers, as their business model and supply chain is driven by consumer demand (Bristle, Squid ; Frito, 2003).
Therefore consumer's opinions concerning sustainability are essential to how retailers conduct business in addition to the fact that they are able to respond quicker to the demand for sustainable products more appropriately. Owner and founder of Coming NYC and a fashion retailer that excelled in CEO-fashion, Anne Bernstein, has proudly dedicated to educating the public about the advantages of CEO-friendly fashion (Pietistic, 2009). According to Bernstein, there are three key factors that CEO-fashion designers take into consideration when creating pieces of fashion that is considered "sustainable".
They are the health of the planet, health of garments makers, and the quality of products in terms of sustainability essentially serving the purpose of long-term usage (Pietistic, 2009). Bridges & Wilhelm (2008) found a low level of knowledge of sustainability matched with a high level of interest in the concept among Generation Y. Hence, this research seeks to consider Generation Yes perceptions towards the sustainable line of fashion garments and how these perceptions will contribute to the expanding popularity of CEO-fashion.
Taking the above mentioned into consideration, this study will aim at providing fashion designers and retailers the insight needed into factors Generation Y consumers consider in relation to the concept of CEO-fashion. Understanding this could better equip retailers when creating marketing campaigns when targeting consumers as it is based on their level of knowledge and understanding. Objective of Research This research paper intends to determine the factors that affect the Generation Y consumer's perceptions towards the concept of CEO-fashion, and how these factors result in the mounting popularity of CEO-fashion.
Therefore, the objectives of this study are to: 1 . Identify the stimulus affecting perceptions towards CEO-fashion among Generation Y. 2. Examine the relationship between Generation Y consumers' perceptions on CEO-fashion concept and the popularity of the concept in regards to the five variables that will be analyzed. Literature Review Price and the purchase intention of CEO-apparel Consumer's price sensitivity has attracted the attention of various researchers throughout the 21st century.
The reason being is studies have shown that price is the cost that shoppers are able to best determine thus making it among the most important criteria when deciding to purchase (Dickson ; Hustled, 2009). To further elaborate, in a recent study of shopper's selection, price was consistently indicated as a major influencing factor (Sensei & Todd, 2003). This coincides with the findings of how retailers too, find price to be an important factor for shoppers thus emphasizing its relevance (Sensei & Todd, 2003).
Studies have shown that the perception of higher prices may prove to be a barrier to purchasing environmentally friendly apparel and they may be unwilling to pay increased prices for sustainable apparel (Connell, 2010). However the way in which retailers are able to overcome this issue is by producing apparel on a global scale thus increasing sourcing options that allows manufacturers to compete on lower prices (Gamma, 2011). Another solution is sustainable fashion is encouraged to develop current styles and provide increased information to customers through labeling to inform them (Height, 2009).
Levis have incorporated this concept into their trendy clothing proving how it can gain customers through style and ethics (Mesa , 22)). The concept is still emerging into the retail business hence showing its potential to grow. Furthermore, it was stated in green marketing literature that consumers that are environmentally conscious are willing to purchase green products that may cost more than the average (Halyard, Ogle & Dunbar, 2006). HI : Price positively affects the purchase intention of CEO-apparel. Perceived quality and the purchase intention of CEO-apparel
When considering a product, consumers take into account their perceived quality of the products characteristics meaning its overall components that are physical and non-physical (Hill & Lee, 2012). Elements such as reliability, durability and performance are factors that lead to consumer satisfaction or dissatisfaction in accordance with their expectation (Sheen, Wang, Lo & Chum, 2012). As CEO- apparel is still a young concept in the business, consumers may be reluctant in purchasing such goods although they are environmentally conscious.
Another barrier that may be faced is the belief among consumers that apparel made of recycled eternal is of reduced quality. The large apparel industry leaves a large carbon footprint in the environment as it is ever changing and growing resulting in increased wastage (Chain & Wong, Wong). Through all stages of its product life cycle: from fiber growth, manufacturing, dyeing, transportation to end users each step leaves a harmful impact (Hill & Lee, 2012). Consequently, designers are taking initiative by engaging in CEO fashion by producing their clothes in a way that best suits the environment (Hill, 2012).
Utilizing 100% organic fibers, bamboo and hemp are among the biodegradable materials used in the production process. The sturdy fibers of the plants increase the durability of the products promising that the garments made are of strong quality. In addition, for those that are hesitant as it is a new concept, reputable designers such as Guess Scares have altered methods of production to create more CEO-friendly garments (Volitional, 2009). Customers need not make trade-offs in terms of attributes that create quality when selecting CEO- apparel products to purchase due to qualities like 100% organic cotton (Sheen, Wang, Lo & Chum, 2012).
By remaining stylish, entities have been able to promote Rene fashion without compromising their cool factor, thus enhancing their brand image to a larger pool of customers besides guaranteeing quality. H2O: Perceived quality positively affects the purchase intention of CEO-apparel. Openness to innovation and the purchase intention of CEO-apparel One of the main influences in determining the purchase of CEO-garments depends on an individual's personality and their openness to experience.
Each person has a unique self-image they try to portray and remain consistent with in accordance to the type of good or service consumed (Sibilate ; Undervaluation, 2012). A significant indicator of the type of consumers that may be attracted towards this concept are those that indulge in innovative ideas (Cornell ; Heartfelt, 2012). As stated by Coworker , 2011, the CEO-apparel concept is fairly new and is gradually gaining awareness among consumers and businesses thus the need for consumers to be open to new ideas is vital in order for them to accept this idea (Coworker, 2011).
Getting a further understanding of the degree to which consumers inhibit a desire to experience unique ideas allows marketers and CEO retailers the opportunity to take advantage increasing the amount of potential customers. However, research has shown that the level of generation Yes knowledge regarding this matter is low, yet it also indicates that they put great emphasize on their concern of this issue (Sensei ; Todd, 2003). Their willingness to educate themselves will essentially result in an increased desire to indulge in CEO-friendly goods (Ma, Littered ; NIMH, 2012).
Targeting generation Y in an effort to gain increased supporters of CEO-garments is key to its success (Connell, 2010). However, capturing those individuals that are more ailing to engage in such products enables this concept to gain popularity more rapidly. HE: Consumer innovativeness positively affects the purchase intention of CEO- apparel. The socio-cultural impact and the purchase intention of CEO-apparel When discussing the environment as a whole, several factors can be taken into consideration in accordance to an individual's life.
CEO-fashion is currently considered to be a niche market hence appropriately targeting those consumers that are environmentally concerned with products that are designed to fit their lifestyles (Bruno, Mindedness, Reid & Yanks, 2008). Moreover, generation Y consumers that enjoy shopping generally have specific lifestyles, motivations and opinions in relation to shopping (Serbia-Sanchez, Vagary & Hot, 2011). Their motivations to purchase certain goods tend to reflect their social and recreational identities (Serbia-Sanchez, Vagary & Hot, 2011).
Hence by purchasing specific goods such as CEO-apparel allows them to communicate to their peers that they are able to incorporate their values and beliefs of being socially aware through the clothes they purchase. Moreover, segmenting research has shown that lifestyle profiles of customers are a more beneficial meaner to differentiate green consumers than demographics thus highlighting the importance of understanding their daily lives (Hill, 2012). In addition, as generation Y makes up a large segment of the retailer business, their interest in fashion and shopping is dominant.
They are more prone to seeking new knowledge regarding clothing products which can lead to greater curiosity concerning CEO-garments (Sheen, Wang, Lo & Chum, 2012). They find a sense of self-fulfillment when purchasing CEO-made goods as it promotes an CEO- lifestyle (Macaroon, 2009). Research has shown that by combining an CEO-friendly production process with fashion-orientated behaviors may identify the degree to which consumers are more willing to purchase CEO-apparel (Cornell, Hester & Richard, 2011).
For those that want to express their values in regards to being CEO- friendly but also want to be stylish, top designers such as Archie Rich, was able to feature a "stunning pink and yellow skirt" made entirely from corn fiber. This shows the potential of such raw materials hence allowing them to further advance consumers beliefs and perceptions regarding this industry (Larry, 2012). Moreover, designer he stated how people often perceive the fashion world as superficial. Therefore this could be a stepping stone that proves to the world that by utilizing such resources in their clothing shows their willingness to help (Larry, 2012).
Businesses are able to undergo certain actions in their business that allows consumers to form certain perceptions about this issue. This results in the target market discovering certain attitudes, beliefs and values they own that translates into their daily lives. HE: The socio-cultural positively affects the purchase intention of CEO-apparel. Corporate persona and initiatives and the purchase intention of CEO-apparel Throughout the last decade, corporate social responsibility (CARS) has gained incredible momentum across diverse businesses globally as it is being considered as a main objective for firms.
This is done in an attempt to emphasize their commitment to environmental, social and economic goals that go beyond their commercial activities Cones, Comfort & Hillier, 2006). Studies have shown that the generation Y consumer does appreciate activities retailers practice and prefer to purchase from companies that are making a difference in society (Hill & Lee, 2012). As the participation in CARS and sustainability initiatives gains popularity in the market, companies also gain a competitive advantage (Career & Valor, 2012).
Companies such as Wall-Mart are confident enough to report the environmental footprint on products it sells to prove to consumers that they are causing lesser damage annually (Hill, 2012). Furthermore, various designers such as Stella McCarty, Gap, Levis and Guess Scares have recently debuted sustainable clothing lines highlighting short-term sustainable acts (Hill, 2012). Barneys NY, a famous U. S. Retail outlet, invested in a green luxury' campaign whereby studies found that it was well received by consumers that expressed interest in the "green themed window displays" (Hill, 2012).
This shows various ways in which companies show their consumers how they are involved as well as how consumers are positively responding. It represents a relatively smaller portion of the marketplace however each step taken to help the sustainable fashion market place grow is effective (Chain ; Wong, Wong). Practicing CARS is an option and not an obligation for entities therefore it verifies that those that practice do care about their consumers and the environment therefore allowing them to improve their value to consumers, enhance their reputation and own a competitive advantage.
Finally, another study showed that numerous participants mentioned the proactive measures taken by companies and how it makes a more positive impact thus practicing initiatives has a direct affect towards their purchase intentions of CEO-apparel goods (Regional, 2010), HE: Corporate persona and initiatives positively affects the purchase intention of CEO-apparel. Methodology Three hundred female university students are to participate in this research by completing a self-administered questionnaire.
University students are targeted for the sample because they share similar characteristics with fashion leaders and are exposed to a variety of fashion information (Workman ; Kid, 2000). The sample for this study contained only female consumers due to previous research noting that there is a high propensity of female consumers towards fashion (Morgan ; Bristle, 2009). Additionally, research on environmentally conscious consumers has found females being more apt in supporting environmental issues (Mariner, Barnett, Balder, Nubian ; Osama, 1997, as cited in Nodding, 2003).
Therefore, in order to eliminate potential sampling biases due to gender, this study utilized data only from female respondents. To guarantee reliability and validity, the large amount of samples used will better reflect reliable results. Data is collected in the Klan Valley area as this area consists of most universities as well as being convenient for the researchers, thus making it a strategic location to gather a large amount of data (Miller ; ROR, 2004). To achieve the objective of this research, non-probability sampling method was adopted, as the focus of the research is only on Generation Y assign consumers.
The questions used to measure the variables were adopted from a wide range of relevant past research with the following components: 1. Price (Darker ; Freedman, 1992, as cited in Madman ; Sure, 2001; Vaudevillian ; Gradual, 2008). 2. Perceived Quality (Estimate, 1988, as cited in Joy ; Cigarillos, 2007; Sarasota, 2012). 3. Openness to innovation (Hill, 2012) 4. Socio-cultural (Bruno, Mindedness, Reid ; Yanks, 2008). 5. Corporate person and initiatives (citation) Participants were asked to rate, on a seven point Liker scale.
In terms of rating scale, seven point Liker scale will be used to identify categories in the questionnaire where 1= strongly agree, 4= neither agree nor disagree, and 7= strongly disagree. According to Sigmund, Ward, Lowe, WinZip ; Bin (2007), the Liker scale is also known as a popular method to measure attitude because it is easy to administer. Data processing and analysis SPAS 18. 0 will be used for data analyses. Reliability will be estimated by using Cockroach's coefficient alpha for all multi-item scales.
Others statistical analyses are such as descriptive statistics, inferential statistics, factors statistics and associative analysis. Functions of these statistics are to reduce the sturdy sum of data matrix collected from the large array of respondents (Burns & Bush, 2006). Tasks such as describing measurable characteristics for entities such as median, range, standard deviation, etc could be performed using descriptive statistics (Wally's, 1978). According to Stephen ; Horny (1995), inferential statistic is using a one-sample test to obtain data for standard error analysis and hypothesis testing to determine population parameters.
While associative analysis will determine whether the proposed variable in the report are interrelated in a logical way (Pappy ; Sequester, 2006); factor analysis will be used to describe variability among observed, correlated variables in terms of a potentially lower number of unobserved variables (Rumen, 1970). Limitation of the research Few limitations in the research are barriers that might limit the findings of the research but overcoming these weaknesses of the study would be the direction of future research.
Firstly, the research only focuses on the perceptions of the Generation Y consumer, thus not being a proper representation of the entire population of CEO-fashion consumers although this target consists of consumers that could be most interested in CEO-apparel. Studying other generational groups of consumers would further build the knowledge of consumers' perceptions toward the CEO-fashion concept (Hill, 2011). Furthermore, the research only analyses university students within the Klan Valley area thus it may not be most applicable in terms of different cultural contexts.
To elaborate, consumers react differently to prices across countries 00 & Cigarillos, 2007). Compared to individualistic culture, any changes in price in a collectivist culture tend to have greater corresponding perceived laity differences. Hence, a larger sample covering other distinctive areas would be suggested to provide more accurate results (Cooper, 2005). Additionally, this study is limited in that it only covers variables such as price, perceived quality, openness to innovation, corporate person and initiatives and socio-cultural impact that influences consumers' perceptions toward the CEO-fashion concept.
The inclusion of other related features such as personality and family could also influence the consumers' perceptions toward CEO-fashion concept. According to Fernery, Park & Brandon 2005), these factors play a unique role in the perception towards fashion retailers and are especially salient in apparel purchases. Thus, further study into other influences on consumers' perception is needed. Lastly, this research is limited as it focuses only on female respondents. Therefore, this may lead to gender bias in the results.

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