Finding HENRYs for fashion brands today

September 17, 2019 Max Levchin

Line of young professional men and women with shopping bags on Black Friday.A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of co-hosting a breakfast event with The Business of Fashion. Our guests included high-level executives and decision-makers from a variety of well-respected brands like Intermix, Hudson’s Bay, and Ralph Lauren.

The discussion, led by The Business of Fashion’s Director of Content Strategy, Robin Mellery-Pratt, was an opportunity to listen to retailers speak about their challenges, and brainstorm ways they can tackle them. 

Some of the challenges we heard loud and clear:

  • The HENRY (High Earner, Not Rich Yet): The challenge for brands is identifying this consumer, and building their brand with them, signaling accessibility earlier in this customer’s lifetime. 

  • Increased transparency: Consumers are demanding an increase in transparency from the brands they shop: from ensuring products are sourced and made in ethical ways to understanding retail markups. As one guest commented, fashion and finance are removing the “smoke and mirrors” both industries have traditionally been known for. 

  • Omnichannel: Shopping journeys now feature more touchpoints than ever. Shoppers may see an item they like on Instagram, try it on in-store, and purchase it online. Retailers need the tools to ensure that once an interested prospective customer presents themselves they’re able to capture their intent, and turn it into a purchase. 

Affirm has built the tooling to bring high LTV customers to brands, sooner. Our platform enables consumers to take control of their purchasing power whether they’re considering a new mattress or a new watch. 

Take for example the 25-year-old professional, a few years into her career, excited about a designer blazer that she’s been eyeing for months. The “usual” way is to watch her come and go, and then remarket to her ad nauseum, until she, hopefully, saves up to afford it. Alternatively, with Affirm offered on the designer’s site, the blazer our young professional has been eyeing is no longer out of reach, it is now a monthly payment, on her terms. She’s able to harness this new purchasing power and invest in a quality piece she’ll not only keep but come back to time and time again—without going into credit card debt. Affirm enables our young professional to have the peace of mind, knowing that her purchase falls well within her budget and lifestyle. 

Looking at this customer journey it becomes clearer how Affirm can provide a great answer to some of the challenges that were shared that morning: 

  • HENRYs: Offering Affirm allows brands to capture younger consumers, by letting them pay over time in a simple, transparent way, for the things they love—instead of forcing them to wait.

  • Transparency: Affirm was created with honesty and transparency in mind—never charging hidden fees or hiding terms within fine print, something our users love us for. 

  • Omnichannel: Affirm’s offering is available both in-store and online. Offering a variety of payment options allows customers flexibility while merchants convert more visitors. 

I’ve always believed it’s on us to ensure consumers are empowered and know exactly how much they can afford. I’m personally excited about how our work can provide a better purchasing experience for consumers and empower fashion brands to expand their customer base. 

Are you interested in partnering with Affirm to expand the customer base for your business? Learn more here

This post was republished from Max’s LinkedIn page. Parts of this conversation were shared earlier as an article on The Business of Fashion.

 

About the Author

Max Levchin

Max Levchin is the founder and CEO of Affirm. He was one of the original co-founders of PayPal, where he served as the CTO until its acquisition by eBay in 2002. He's a serial entrepreneur, computer scientist, philanthropist, and active investor in more than 100 startups.

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