Is Zoom video a competitor to Hugo Boss?
Last weekend, I went into a clothing store for the first time in months.
And I noticed that the cost of suit jackets, even for luxury brands like Hugo Boss, was significantly lower than I remember.
Yes, there are sales on everywhere to try and get people to spend money at retail again, but this was different.
Perhaps the increase in remote working is bringing a different change to the fashion market.
Everyone has made jokes about how they are on Zoom video calls wearing sweatpants or pyjamas under the table.
But perhaps there is a wider trend here, which brings to light how the men’s fashion market has a new competitor: Zoom.
Or to be more specific, the new ways of working which video-collaboration software like Zoom, Slack, Microsoft Teams and Google enable.
If large companies do indeed see that their staff can be productive while working from home, there will likely be more flexibility in how often professionals are expected to go to the office.
And just as importantly, the question of how often business travel is actually required, when you can now meet clients virtually and still conduct business effectively.
One result of this is that people (especially men) are likely to require fewer clothes specifically for the office, like business suits, ties and leather shoes.
And therefore, the remote working industry could disrupt the fashion industry.
It is just another example of companies not necessarily realising who their real competition is. It is not just other companies who produce what you do. It is consumers thinking they don’t need your products at all.