A Cross-Industry Mindset

By Alissa Guzman, Lauren Lyons, Marketing, The Doneger Group
April 20, 2016

Brands are increasingly embarking on lifestyle experiments, as creativity and novelty top the consumer must-have list. No longer rigidly defined, the retail landscape is gradually moving into new frontiers, answering the consumer call for spaces and brands that can offer it all. As convergence continues to be pervasive, from fashion and beauty to food and art, we take a look at some exciting cross-industry trends.

Fashionable Food

Scroll through Instagram and it's clear that food is top of mind with consumers, and smart retailers know it too. Uniqlo, partnering with Thomas McNaughton of Flour + Water and Central Kitchen, created recipes inspired by their Fall 2013 collection. With food acting as the fashion industry's latest obsession, this collaboration is clever in keeping with the consumer-driven need for novelty. From restaurants that double as retail spots, like D.C.'s Maketto, or Kate Spade's accessory line inspired by Magnolia bakery, foodies prevail.

Festival Beauty

Festivals, with their counterculture beginnings and pilgrimage-like vibe, are now a mainstream cultural constant, and Coachella alone has inspired an entire lifestyle movement. Coachella is a real-time reflection of pop culture that inspires far beyond fashion. Beauty and wellness brands are beginning to capitalize, and spray tan products and waxing/grooming services are the bestsellers of the festival season. On-site appearances from on-demand brands like Glamsquad underscore the look-your-best attitude of festivalgoers.

Accessible Art

With the rise of commercially successful art fairs, the art world has shifted its focus beyond galleries and museums to more collective events. Art Basel in Miami Beach has become a pilgrimage in its own right, offering a long weekend full of art, commerce, celebrity and see and be seen parties. With London's Frieze Art Fair setting up its tent on Randall's Island, the draw isn't just art and interactive exhibits but the beautiful outdoor setting and ever-popular foodie vendors like Roberta's Pizza or Blue Bottle Coffee. In the same vein, PS1 MoMA's "Warm Up" concert series combines modern art, music and a constantly changing menu, appealing to more than just art lovers.

Looking beyond retail, the takeaway is clear: dwell time and unique products lead to an overwhelmingly positive consumer experience. Every investment by the consumer must reflect his/her wider interests and lifestyle preference. Learning how to cater and entice via lifestyle is key for retailers and brands, and looking to other industries for ideas on how to better integrate a complete lifestyle offering can be the perfect inspiration.