Our global apparel client, with established leadership in the clothing category, was finding it challenging to keep the brand relevant among younger consumers, particularly women.
Despite having a competitive advantage on products that ‘fit well’ and a perception that they were the ‘leading authority’ on denim; they were less likely than other brands to be preferred or recommended. The competitive landscape was becoming increasingly fragmented, with new brand offerings covering ‘head to toe’ looks and delivering at lower price points.
What we did
We used advanced structural equation modelling to identify the key drivers of consideration for our Gen Z target. It pinpointed the importance of authenticity and personal relevance. We recommended that the brand reinforced its links to its heritage; however, it was important to do this with a new, modern, unexpected twist.
Essentially, continuing to capitalise on the authenticity that comes from its long heritage, but by also presenting a much more modern, exciting face of the brand, one that would feel more immediately fresh and relevant to younger consumers. The links to heritage would also help lay the foundations and links back to a newly evolving, purpose-driven strategy. We argued that the brand needed both to be truly distinctive. And that real style never goes out of fashion.
Brand metrics linked to +3% improved YOY sales
The new marketing efforts were specifically geared towards Gen Z. These included experiential marketing activities, such as pop-up stores in key markets, product collaborations with celebrities, and leaning into cause-related initiatives, such as sustainability. As well a new advertising campaign, specifically focusing on the surprising new looks and lifestyles, coming from this familiar heritage brand.
All this contributed to creating a strong sense of a new following and community for the brand. It also helped provide a platform for a deeper, ongoing dialogue with this audience. We looked at sales data following the new launch and campaign. We were able to identify that the significant gains on brand metrics could be linked to +3% improved YOY sales amongst Gen Z women. This sales uplift was sustained through to the following year.