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Cost Transparency & Storytelling

How fashion companies disclose cost transparency information and use it as a storytelling tool

Written by F. L. Nyman

Paper category

Master Thesis


Business Administration>Marketing & Sales




Thesis: Cost transparency Transparency has many meanings, and researchers have always defined it differently (Ball, 2009). However, one can see that transparency comes from the word transparency. According to a definition in the dictionary, it means: "visibility is a feature or accessibility of information, especially information about business practices" (Merriam-Webster, 2020) . Speaking further about transparency within a company, the AMA Business and Management Dictionary explains it as: "Be open to goals and methods, share the quality of positive and negative development, and comply with legal and ethical requirements (Kurian, 2013). According to In the research done by Ball (2009), transparency as a concept includes the concept of openness, and it appeared in enterprises in the early 1990s. This is the result of the creation of Transparency International (an organization that investigates and solves corruption within enterprises) Ball (2009) talked about transparency that can help companies become honest and open, which is a value that can be used to evaluate companies and is the opposite of confidentiality. As the market becomes more complex in terms of environmental issues (Bhaduri & Ha-Brookshire 2011 ), transparency has become the key for fashion industry companies to build trust among consumers. Due to the increase in consumer power and the availability of information on the Internet, it has become more difficult for companies to hide information. Especially young consumers and employees are more accustomed to Being able to access information at any time and talk to the people they want has forced companies to be more transparent and open in communication (Gebler, 2012). Since researchers study transparency related to prices and costs in different ways, the first distinction is cost transparency The concept of price transparency and price transparency is considered essential. Cost transparency is defined as “the sharing of cost information between customers and suppliers” (Lamming 1993 see Lamming et al. 2001 p.6). At the same time, price transparency can be defined as A comparison of the prices of products or services available in the market (Simintiras, Dwivedi, Kaushik, and Rana, 2015). In order to separate these concepts, this article will only focus on the type of transparency defined as cost transparency, and further mention “disclosure of production of goods or provision of The cost of services” (Mohan, Buell, John, 2015 p. 3). With this in mind, it can be said that companies that claim cost transparency may disclose the costs involved in the steps of the previous chapter on the cost structure of fashion. 3.3 Storytelling in marketing The research on storytelling in marketing has been completed. Now storytelling has become an important part of the marketing process in order to attract and attract consumers by establishing emotional relationships (Pulizzi, 2012). With the rise of the Internet, stories provide companies with more unique opportunities and help companies pursue consumers in the digital environment (Lazauskas & Snow, 2018). Science says that by listening to someone’s story, the human brain produces oxytocin, a chemical substance released by the brain that can increase people’s empathy and make people feel connected to the storyteller (Lazauskas & Snow, 2018). In any case, it not only requires someone to tell any story, because today's companies need to tell an honest and credible story to remain relevant. This means that even if the true story is stronger, the story may be fictitious, but in order to maintain consumer trust, it needs to be true and clearly stated as fiction rather than reality (Lundqvist, Liljander, Gummerus; Fog et al. 2010; Van Riel, 2013). Stories add value to products. Storytelling can gain the power to convey the essence of the brand and its value through emotions, which traditional marketing lacks (Lundqvist et al., 2013; Fog et al., 2010). The essence of storytelling relies on emotions and values, which means that brands can establish emotional bonds through storytelling to convey their values ​​(Fog et al., 2010). Products or services can be copied, but the story told by the brand is more difficult to copy because it is the reason for the emotional bond between the brand and the consumer. Consumers will participate in the story and retell the stories they heard, which will also help spread information about the brand in the community and increase brand awareness (Lundqvist et al., 2013). Several researchers believe that seemingly possible and credible storytelling will create a lasting emotional band based on trust, which will also help build strong brands (Fog et al., 2010; Lazauskas & Snow, 2018; Herskovitz & Crystal, 2010). Denning believes that no matter what the purpose of storytelling is, a well-made story is useful for organizations (2011, p. 7). Although stories can be different and told for different purposes, the author points out that a well-made and effective story traditionally includes plots, turns, solutions, and heroes or heroines (Danning, 2011, No. 7 Page). Fog et al. further agree with this point. (2010) Who explains the four elements of storytelling is important. To define the framework for storytelling, Fog et al. (2010) first pointed out that the story should have a clear message and stick to the message, which is the key to understandability. Read Less