“THROUGH OUR METHODOLOGY AND APPROACH, WE DEPLOY AN INTELLECTUAL SET OF TOOLS AND A PROCESS WHICH DELIVER MERCHANDISE COLLECTIONS THAT ARE SIMPLY FANATICAL — HERE’S HOW WE DO IT...”
1. DISCOVERING YOUR WHY
Why does your brand exist?... You would not believe what a show stopper, stumper question this is. Ask yourself the question right now! Like most, you may not be articulate; you may pause… a lot; worse off, you may not even be able to define it well at all. Don’t feel bad… that’s where most brands are.
We start here because it is the “filter” that everything passes through. It is the responsibility and duty of a brand builder, like Touchstone, to be able to tell the story of a brand through product execution and an aspirational merchandise collection.
Through our process of workshopping our clients through their brand’s “WHY,” we’re able to access some pretty vulnerable and uncomfortable spaces, and what comes out if it is redefining.
2. BRAND ARCHETYPES
One of the most profound tools that Touchstone uses is Brand Archetypes. Simply seeing a brand as a personality, allows us to liberate a brand in a whole new way. The measurement of what product execution is correct, is simply aligning (or not) with the personality of a brand.
Challenge yourself to think about where you’ve seen a “miss” that a brand has had or when you’ve been part of that “miss.” This lonely and vulnerable feeling simply does not happen with the deployment of Brand Archetypes.
“People have personalities. Brands have personalities. If you want to do good business by building a successful brand, you need to be skillful about matching your market with you brand.”
— JAY OGILVY, Cofounder, Global Business Network
3. STYLE PROFILES
Style Profiles are everything. Each of us, as individuals, usually have 2-3 “Style Profiles.” Go ahead… I know your mind is racing… what are yours? Street Chic, Swag Dad, Flagship American, World Wanderer, or maybe something else?
Annually, our design team leads collaboration and co-authorship from our colleagues, clients, merchandisers and influencers to define our forecasted Style Profiles. These profiles translate to product execution and collections (that we build), and provide a guide of aspiration. Gone are the days of “checking the box” and having a “portal of corporate swag.” Welcome to the days of merchandising aspirational product collections which continue to elevate the brand and live a continued story-telling.
Day in the life gives us the categorical use of how the product or collection will live within someone’s daily life. Winning collections provide users, fans, followers, and fanatics the ability to access and “live out” a brand, in every aspect of their life.
This is where we build “looks” for the multiple areas of a consumers full day — at work, on the weekend, night life, etc. Our methodology and approach focuses on work life, evening life, and weekend/family time. Our product execution and collections provide, not only access to the brand, but an ability to live an elevated style, through the inspired couture collection.
5. VISUAL LINE PLANNING
If you haven’t seen this before, you are in for an a-ha. The VLP (Visual Line Planning) process is the summation of all tools deployed; product merchandised; and planned for deployment. This process “brings to life” the product in a visual way, which allows for measurement through all Touchstone tools.
Further, the VLP process allows for the implementation, conversion and execution of each product, in a “planned” methodology. The VLP semi-annual process provides a roadmap of product strategy, which aligns with all aspects of the brand, as well as all culture and business calendars. Gone are the days of “jumping” to the next things…. Welcome are the days of sophisticated product planning and execution.