Best Global Green Brands 2014

retail watch

Gap Plans Tumblr Takeover as Part of Greater Omnichannel Retail Strategy

Posted by Barry Silverstein on August 14, 2013 02:22 PM

Gap is launching the biggest marketing campaign in its history—dubbed "Back to Blue"—this fall with a global media push that includes the brand's return to TV after a hiatus since 2009, as well as print and outdoor advertising, social media, in-store promotions and digital marketing. In fact, Gap will be the first brand to take over all mobile ads on Tumblr for one day, August 29.

"Pop culture doesn't really start on TV anymore," Rachel Tipograph, Gap's global director of digital and social media, told Mashable. "Pop culture starts on the Internet. When you think about what community is creating pop culture on the Internet, it's Tumblr."

The Tumblr campaign includes a content creation contest, where the winning work will earn a spot on Gap's Tumblr and be turned into Tumblr mobile ads. There are also nearly 10 "Back to Blue Moments" videos on its YouTube page. 

The impetus for "Back to Blue" is two-fold, according to Seth Farbman, Global Chief Marketing Officer for Gap.Continue reading...

brands under fire

Lululemon Has No Interest in Plus-Size Consumers, Insiders Say

Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 1, 2013 03:47 PM

Lululemon Athletica is becoming quite the newsmaker. Since the yoga apparel brand made headlines back in March after pulling its proprietary 'luon' yoga pants off shelves due to "sheerness," the company can't seem to stay out of the limelight.

After ousting its chief product officer, losing its CEO and being berated by disappointed customers, the brand is now under fire again for an offense that has become a common topic among today's clothing giants. In an article by The Huffington Post, former Lululemon employees accused the brand of purposely shunning plus-size customers, relegating larger-sized apparel to a "heap" in the backs of stores.

While most of the merchandise was displayed "out on the floor, hung on the walls, or folded neatly in cabinets," larger sizes, such as 10s and 12s, were not stocked on those same shelves, and were rarely offered in the latest styles and prints. "All the other merchandise in the store was kind of sacred, but these were thrown in a heap," former employee Elizabeth Licorish told HuffPost. "It was definitely discriminatory to those who wear larger sizes."Continue reading...

campaigns

Sneaker Envy: Female Fans Launch Campaign to Turn Nike on to Women's Trainers

Posted by Sheila Shayon on July 30, 2013 06:15 PM

Dear Nike: "Somewhere in Swoosh Central, there's been an oversight."

At least that's what sneaker enthusiasts Emily Hodgson and Emilie Riis, founders of Purple Unicorn Planet, think. The pair started the website to showcase all of the cool, "men's only" style sneakers on the market with the hope of influencing companies like Nike to make them in women's sizes. Many shoe companies neglect to create styles that use custom colors, materials or patterns in women's sizes, forcing some to wear sneakers designed for men and others to just lose out.Continue reading...

sustainability

Making Good: Nike Looks to Make a Better World with New Sustainability App

Posted by Mark J. Miller on July 9, 2013 11:39 AM

With a commitment to making a "Better World," Nike is determined to produce more environmentally conscious, and sustainably innovative, products. And it's not just looking at its own branded products, either. The sports apparel giant has released a new mobile app (now available for Apple's iOS devices) called Making with the lofty goal of helping designers and the fashion industry (as well as consumers) decide what source materials are the most environmentally responsible.

Using information from the students at London College of Fashion’s Centre for Sustainable Fashion as well as the Nike Materials Sustainability Index, the app “ranks materials used in apparel manufacturing in terms of the use of water, types of chemistry, amount of energy and the levels of waste required during production,” Sustainable Business Oregon reports.

"Innovation is in Nike's DNA, and sustainability is an integral part of Nike's design process," said Lee Holman, Nike apparel design VP, in a press release. "We've created the Making app to empower any designer around the world to make better materials choices in the initial stages of the innovation process to ultimately create products that are better for consumers and better for the planet."Continue reading...

e-commerce

Content Meets Commerce: How Thrillist and Refinery29 Turn Brand Loyalty into Sales

Posted by Kristen Van Nest on July 5, 2013 01:16 PM

Founded in 2004, Thrillist started as a guide to New York City for recent male graduates. Today, Thrillist Media Group generates over $40 million in revenue , 45 percent of which comes from its e-commerce site, JackThreads, which it acquired in 2010 to complement its content offeringson its Thrillist and Crosby Press sites.  

Unlike most media companies, Thrillist has over half a million credit card numbers on hand. The seamless shopping experience, where men can discover and purchase product on the same site, means that the user is more engaged and more likely to have intent to buy. “They’ve got their wallet in hand. They’re looking for recommendations and what to do and what to buy,” Eric Ashman, Thrillist Media Group's strategic advisor told brandchannel. “Reading GQ, your feet are up on the coffee table, you’re leaning back. And when you’re [on Thrillist], you’re leaning forward and looking for ideas and looking for recommendations and things to share with your friends.” 

Refinery29, like Thrillist, is also at the forefront of seamlessly joining content and commerce. With 5 million visitors per month, Refinery29 focuses on building brand loyalty for the brands advertised on its site, but without a major complementary online store.

Whether it's driving sales or driving loyalty, both sites utilize and prioritize content over commerce.Continue reading...

brands under fire

Lululemon Faces Shareholder Lawsuit as it Continues on Road to Recovery

Posted by Sheila Shayon on July 3, 2013 04:13 PM

Lululemon has been hit with a lawsuit from a shareholder accusing the company, founder and Chairman Dennis "Chip" Wilson and departed CEO Christine Day of "defrauding shareholders by hiding defects in yoga pants whose sheerness led to a costly recall, and concealing talks that led to the sudden departure of its chief executive," Reuters reports.

Tuesday's lawsuit, which was filed by Houssam Alkhoury, who owns 7,500 shares, follows a previous lawsuit that was filed in May by the Hallandale Beach Police Officers and Firefighters' Personnel Retirement Fund, which claims Lululemon's compensation committee voted to "boost the maximum payout of the executive bonuses plan just before a $60 million recall of yoga pants," raising executive bonus plans as much as one-third when management knew of the imminent sheerness debacle.

The dust has yet to settle from the Canadian company's March recall, which pulled 17 percent of its black luon yoga pants from shelves after it was revealed that the garments were too sheer to wear. While shares have experienced double-digit drops since, the brand, at least on the stock market, has seemed to recover fairly well.Continue reading...

sporting brands

Adidas Hopes to Spring Ahead with Latest Shoe Innovation

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 27, 2013 06:09 PM

There are plenty of folks who don’t think you need anything special on your feet to be a good runner. There are some—like Ethiopian Abebe Bikila, who won the 1960 Rome Olympics marathon barefoot—who don’t think you need anything at all to be the best in the race.

Adidas (and Nike, for that matter) aren’t in that group, of course, and keep upping the design ante to show runners the world over how much better they can be wearing their innoative products.

Now adidas, fresh off the heels of launching the Boost running shoe earlier this year with the help of Britney Spears, is debuting another running shoe, the Springblade—a model billed as its priciest, and most advanced, to date.Continue reading...

executive decision

Men’s Wearhouse Drops Founder and Pitchman George Zimmer in Questionable Move

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 20, 2013 02:39 PM

Men's Wearhouse founder George Zimmer may have been able to guarantee the way you'd look in his suits, but that same comfort didn't extend to his own job. In fact, Men’s Wearhouse tossed the 64-year-old Zimmer out the door Wednesday after he spent 40 years building the brand, starting with the first location that he opened with his college roommates.

No reason was given for the ouster but analysts suggested to The New York Times “that the conflict might be over the company’s efforts to appeal to younger customers, who could have been hampered by Mr. Zimmer’s continued presence in ads.” A person familiar with the matter told Bloomberg that Zimmer, who still owns about 3.5 percent of the company’s shares, and his handpicked CEO, Doug Ewert, have had “repeated clashes” about buying back shares and selling off apparel chain K&G.Continue reading...

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