3 Big Brands Bringing Customization To Classic Products

We know that Gen Z and Millennials are interested in personalization, and now big brands are taking cues from startups, and letting customers customize some classic items…

The days of one-size-fits-all are numbered. Customization is being taken to the next level to appeal to young consumers, for whom personalization has become an expectation. From the “Chipotle-fication” of the food industry to the “Netflix-ication” of entertainment, products and services that can be molded to their preferences are now the norm. We delved into this topic in our recent Customization Nation trend, exploring a slew of examples of customized products and experiences—and how young consumers feel about them. Ypulse’s data shows three quarters of 13-34-year-olds are interested in buying products that are personalized to their taste, and 91% find brands somewhat to extremely innovative if they offer personalized products.

Now, Millennials and Gen Z’s taste in products and services that feel like they’re made just for them is spurring more innovation in the space. While at one point the idea of personalized products was a novelty, technology has allowed hyper-personalization to spread across industries and to be achieved on a mass scale. We’re seeing new methods of customization and personalization emerging in retail, beauty, food, health, entertainment, and more, making tailored products and services more accessible than ever before. While much of this customization activity is being undertaken by startups like Lost My Name, Function of Beauty, Mon Purse, and more, we’re starting to see more big brands get in on the action. Here are three bringing personalized, build-your-own tech to some classic products:

Xbox Design Lab

You might not see the Xbox controller as a classic product, but we can guarantee that…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“I honestly wouldn't like to communicate with brands, unless it is to solve problems their brand is causing.”—Female, 27, MI

Why don’t people seem to care as much about fake followers on Instagram as on other platforms? Because while Facebook and Twitter are bashed for feeds full of fake news, no one holds Instagram to the same standard. The image-centric platform is inherently “a hyperreality,” where no one’s candid shot is truly spontaneous, and photo-shop freely fills feeds. Where does it get tricky? With Influencers, who are expected to garner true engagements for brands. (Real Life)

Influencer marketing faced another tricky situation this week when PopSugar replaced influencers’ affiliate links with their own. RewardStyle and its Instagram product LikeToKnow.it’s network of content creators’ photos and sometimes entire feeds “were copied to the site via “thousands of ‘falsified vanity pages’ containing millions of images belonging to the network’s content creators.” The group is planning on seeking a class-action lawsuit on their intellectual property and for the lost revenue that PopSugar made each time a customer clicked to purchase. (Racked)

Colleges are giving out more merit-based aid to win over top students. Tuition discount rates have risen to a record 49.1% for first-time, full-time freshman attending private universities, up over 10% from ten years prior—according to the National Association of College and University Business Officers. By using data-driven analysis to calculate just how much aid is likely to lure a top student in, colleges are seeing success upping their prestige. However, the practice has also “created a closing of the doors for low-income students,” according to one policy analyst. (WSJ)

Apple is betting that young consumers could bring back magazines via a magazine subscription service. The tech company took a gamble by buying Texture, a subscription service for over 200 titles that’s been dubbed the “Netflix of Magazine Publishing.” The app aggregates articles into a single browsing experience, rather than being separated by title, and pays the included publications. Apple has announced plans to integrate the service into their Apple News app, the latest incarnation of their less-than-successful Newsstand app. (Bloomberg)

Function of Beauty is customizing hair care, blending up shampoo and conditioner for each customer based off a five-question quiz. Beauty companies big and small have hopped on the Customization Nation trend, and Function of Beauty takes that to the next level with their hyper-personalized hair care set. They're customizing everything from the fragrance to the chemical components, and even going so far as to print the purchaser’s name on each product. The founder explains, "Every single person is unique and different...why negate that instead of catering to it?" (Paper)

“[Allison Raskin] is open about her struggles with mental health, and she is also funny.”—Female, 19, CA

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