How to brand CSR certified fashion

Line Højsgaard & Tina Valter Olsen

Student thesis: Master thesis


Our thesis focuses on the behavior of the Danish consumers when faced with CSR certified fashion. The aim is to investigate and understand the consumers in depth, creating a base for business recommendations to fashion companies who wish to utilize the concept of CSR in their marketing communication program. Through the investigation of Postmodernism and Hypermodernism it becomes clear that with the emerging Hypermodernism a change in purchase motivations has occurred; consumption becomes about consuming for the sake of emotions and self-gratification. In contemporary society, both -isms exist and consumers can possess characteristics from both, resulting in a Hybridmodern consumer, however, within the fashion industry Postmodernism seem to be the major influencer, creating a challenge for CSR certified fashion. The empirical findings indicate that the degree of influence from Postmodernism and Hypermodernism depends on especially three factors: social setting, consumption situation and product category, meaning that consumers may draw from one or both -isms depending on the purchase situation. In addition, our findings also indicate a relation between Hypermodernism and female consumers, a relation which increases in a social setting. Furthermore, our investigation reveals that CSR may not have the ability to act as a product attribute in relation to branding, as it is not a motivation factor for paying extra for a fashion product. However, the willingness to purchase CSR certified fashion seems to increase along with social consensus, meaning that consumers’ social setting becomes important for the success of CSR certified fashion. The prospects for potential business implications are found complex due to the Hybridmodern consumers and certain areas require further investigation, however our recommendation based on this project is to target females with the most hypermodern traits. Even though this segment may be limited within the fashion industry it is viewed as having the most long-term potential. In addition, CSR has to become a part of the whole company identity to facilitate authenticity, which is the key to legitimacy. The thesis also recognizes that the empirical findings have limits in relation to generalization. As the focus has been on understanding the importance of the social setting in depth, only qualitative research has been employed.

EducationsMSc in Brand and Communications Management, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2011
Number of pages243