Do you need a little encouragement to get you through a rough retail year? Many small business owners do. While retail stores are struggling all over the UK, one brand is going strong after over half of a decade: world renowned clothier Laura Ashley. A peek into the key parts of this well known brand gives insight into how other businesses can find similarly timeless success.
The business Laura Ashley began as a cottage industry run by a woman and entrepreneur of the same name. Laura Ashley screen printed linens for table use, which immediately gained local favour for their classic floral designs. Over time, the empire grew and opened locations all over the globe, adding a wide variety of products without compromising the brand.
There have been ups and downs in the path to success, but one asset that kept the company chugging was their unchanging brand. Although the brand was based on the simple tastes of its founder, its equity has only grown since her death. As Laura Ashley expanded their offerings to include a variety of home goods and furnishings as well as apparel, the emphasis on quality linens with classic designs was never lost. The public has always known exactly what to expect from both the brand and the stores.
Another key brand asset is the logo design. Although it has changed slightly over the years, the Laura Ashley clothing logo design has always been an instant classic. It has always relied upon merely the company name written in newsy, thin lettering that is classic and even a little plain. The light sea foam green colour that is now often seen in the fashion logo design is one often seen in the products as well. This logo design lets customers know key information about the company, which is a huge advantage in the competitive UK market.
An important part of the brand is its versatility. Because the brand is based more upon quality textiles and a certain style than on any particular product, the company is free to modify their range of offerings based on the ever changing current trends. It is notable that the business began making tea towels, segued to women’s fashion, added a children’s line, and now is focusing mainly on furnishings—all without compromising the essence of the brand. The flexibility of the Laura Ashley brand allows this company to maintain viability as the market for their products changes over time, while also introducing new lines at a relatively rapid rate.
The result? After fifty-six years of being a business, Laura Ashley is still seeing steady increases in sales while many competitors can barely keep their doors open. In fact, company sales rose 8.8 percent over the past nineteen weeks. While the company has had rough patches and management problems, the strength and versatility of the brand along with the professional logo design have virtually ensured success. This is a success story that every UK business can learn from.