After receiving our brief, our creative collective has been considering which markets we would like to explore. With 3 product designers and 1 graphics designer, we have decided against an artistic approach to the brief and so we have decided to focus upon products and brand marketing. As a product designer, I like to solve problems, which specifically originate from my target market and so the first port of call was to identify our target market for our sales area.
Whilst I only have a brief understanding of our target market at the moment, I feel I can use general ideas to get a starting point for research.
Our target market is the the large student group who attend the Howard Gardens and Llandaff campuses. As students ourselves we feel we have a decent understanding of the needs and wants of the most students and so we started some ethnographic research in some stores located in Cardiff city centre. With the already highly commercialised holiday of valentines day coming up near to our final sales days, we also decided to focus on gifts and other products related to valentines.
Seeing these gifts gave me a surprise due to the complete lack of humour present as soon as gifts became associated with valentines. This is an interesting point as to the nature of the day. It seems that valentines day is almost a day where nothing can be shown in a sensible way and that all things must pass to be a certain level of lovingness which wouldn’t normally be shown. It seems weird that couples would happily bend to the will of valentines day and buy what is deemed correct, especially in our modern society where everything seems to have an almost satirical nature to it.
Our research clearly showed a gap the market for comical valentines gifts, whilst also showing us the popularity of such gifts for normal sales. Shops such as ‘The Scribbler’ and ‘Urban Outfitters’ identified a niche market of people who like their gifts satirical and in some cases particularly crass. Fortunately their target market is the 18-25 year old’s, which includes our market – students.
Our research has shown us that we should focus on Satirical Gifts and also that we should push our niche market come valentines day to hopefully make a decent profit off of our seed investment and fulfil our entrepreneurial brief.