High-End Prices in a College Market

High-End Prices in a College Market

Growing up as a native of Athens, Heery’s Clothes Closet was always a favorite of mine when shopping downtown (especially during their half-price sale). Even if we couldn’t afford the merchandise, my friends and I loved to browse the new designer fashions. This held true throughout college, and I recently started working there as a part-time sales associate. Although I love the clothing they sell and follow all of Heery’s social media accounts, I discovered that not many of my peers in college did the same. In fact, one demographic I rarely see shopping in Heery’s is college students. This could be because of the high-end prices that many students don’t want to spend their hard-earned money on. However, Heery’s does have some moderately priced clothing that not many people know about, as it’s not usually broadcasted on any social media site. This got me thinking, could Heery’s improve its collegiate outreach by being more involved in social media?

Although I rarely shop in many retail stores downtown due to most of my paycheck paying off the clothes I get while working, I know that Heery’s isn’t the only store in Athens that carries high-end clothing. Stores like Indigo Child and American Threads offer some brands that are well above the average price for a typical blouse or dress, and they continuously draw in college crowds. What’s so different in their marketing that they can do this?

One difference I noticed between these three stores is that the staff of Indigo Child and American Threads primarily consists of college students, who regularly make appearances on their Instagram. American Threads also reaches out to students with a strong following on social media, and gets them to endorse their store using the hashtag “Threads Babe”. Don’t get me wrong- Heery’s definitely utilizes their social media accounts to promote new products and keep their followers updated on store hours and sales. They even post pictures of the college students who work in the store, but none of their employees have the following to be considered an influencer. If Heery’s allowed students with a large social media network to promote their popular brands that are more affordable like Dolce Vita or Bella Dahl, which is one of their highest selling clothing lines, it may increase their collegiate outreach.

No matter how well a store can advertise their clothes, some students understandably still won’t pay the high prices associated with designer clothing. Luckily for Heery’s, college students are not their key demographic. Although this could be a profitable market for them, Heery’s has generated a loyal customer base over the past 50 years they’ve been open, so they’re definitely doing something right.

 


Jessica Rather

Jessica Rather

January 18, 2018at 10:42 am

I remember when I first came to UGA I was so excited about the downtown shopping scene and would go and walk around the stores all the time. However, I never went into Heery’s because I was told by older girls that a top is $200 and so I steered clear. I think that Heery’s has such a reputation of being insanely expensive that college girls just avoid it. I had no idea that some of their prices were similar to Indigo Child and American Threads, which I have bought clothes from in the past. If they want to reach the college market they need to do a better job advertising that they are more affordable.

    Sydney Faulkner

    Sydney Faulkner

    January 18, 2018at 2:21 pm

    I would still say that Indigo Child and American Threads offer more affordable options, but they also carry brands like Show Me Your Mumu and For Love and Lemons that retail at a similar price point as some clothes in Heery’s. You definitely won’t go into Heery’s and find a blouse for $30 like you can in the other two stores, but there are some brands they carry that are more affordable than others (like the two I mentioned in my post). Thanks so much for your feedback!

Madeline Hewatt

Madeline Hewatt

January 18, 2018at 10:47 am

I love that you chose this topic, because when I first walked into Heery’s I was shocked a the prices. I honestly had no idea how they were open in a market where buyer’s prefer to buy two dollar meals from Cookout and wait for their parents to hopefully make them shopping one day so they don’t have to spend their own money. I agree there are other stores that have pricey items as well, but I think the points you made about how they specifically target college students whereas Heery’s doesn’t is very interesting.

Leighton Broome

Leighton Broome

January 18, 2018at 12:27 pm

I completely agree with everything you have said! I think Heery’s has become such an out of sight out of mind type of store for our demographic, but if they incorporated promoters like you suggested, I think that could definitely increase the interest of many college students. Even though the boutique carries some affordable pieces, much of the time that is overshadowed by the high-end items. While our age group is definitely not the store’s target market, they do differentiate themselves to us among other Athens stores by carrying many designer brands we wear that a shopper may be unable to find elsewhere in the area. They should also emphasize this trait through their social media to try to appeal to more customers!

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