American Eagle Outfitters is building its subbrand aerie, and will rely partly on nontraditional media to help do it.The company said Thursday that it will step up expansion by opening at least 15 freestanding aerie stores this year, and plans to generate excitement with inventive marketing at events such as the Sundance Film Festival."We're accelerating the expansion of the brand through our stand-alone locations," said Kathy Savitt, chief marketing officer for American Eagle. Aerie, launched in September, is a collection of intimates and dormwear for 15- to 25-year-old girls. The collection is offered in all American Eagle stores, including 18 side-by-side stores and on ae.com. The company also tested three aerie stand-alone locations."We are thrilled by the strong customer reaction to aerie," said Susan McGalla, president and chief merchandising officer. "We see opportunities to build the brand further by expanding and evolving the collection, including complementary businesses such as accessories and personal care."American Eagle believes aerie's success is due partly to its ability to forge deep connections with its customers. The company has tried to find marketing vehicles that can be more meaningful than 30-second TV commercials or print ads sandwiched between hundreds of pages of advertising and editorial content. However, Savitt pointed out that AE hasn't turned its back on traditional forms of advertising.Next week, the company will head to Park City, Utah, for the Sundance festival, where it will host the aerie spa at the Village at the Lift. "Sundance is an exciting, young, creative event that has become more than just an independent film festival, but a place for writers, filmmakers and content producers to go and discuss new media," Savitt said. "Movies and content are very important to AE customers and Sundance, with its role as a trendsetting event, is important, too."The company is counting on press coverage of the spa with celebrities sporting aerie camis and leggings, as well as word of mouth from the stylists and tastemakers who attend the film festival.Aerie.com will provide a window onto the rarefied world of Sundance, the pampering of and pandering to stars, and, of course, the all-important swag. "We're doing a full multichannel expression of our Sundance participation," Savitt said. "While our guests enjoy aerie spa, we'll bring those experiences to life on ae.com and in our stores. We'll show scenes from the spa to our AE White Out party on Jan. 20, where we'll have performances by 30 Seconds to Mars and DJ Samantha Ronson. It's part of our 360-degree approach to marketing and a way for our customers to connect with a major cultural event."Aerie, which last fall experimented with a new advertising format during the WB's Tuesday prime time lineup, is working on another TV vehicle. "That was our first toe in the water," Savitt said. "You'll see us taking that further. We'll be more relevant, entertaining and disruptive. You will see AE on television in 2007."Asked whether the marketing programs are more economical than traditional advertising, Savitt said, "We're generating as good or better value at this time of year going with experiential marketing than doing a traditional TV spot."
To celebrate Pride 2018, @themarcjacobs released the #GratefulNotHateful campaign, a social media initiative aimed at extending Pride beyond the parade. Inspired by Jacobs’ everyday outlook, the campaign features Jacobs along with a group of models and social media stars who are members and supporters of the LGBT community, all seen wearing @marcbeauty’s Highliner Gel Eye Crayons in colors of the rainbow. Head to our Instagram stories to see close-ups of the liner. #wwdbeauty
Virgil Abloh’s dad Nee and Don Crawley, cofounder of RSVP Gallery, were some of the hometown crew at the Chicago-born designer’s debut show for Louis Vuitton. (📸: @jdiderich ) #wwdmens #louisvuitton #virgilabloh
About last night: @marycharteris and @adwoaaboah hit up Hyde Park for the Serpentine Galleries’ annual summer party held in partnership with @chanelofficial. Head to WWD.com to see more photos. #wwdfashion
“This is Paris, my first show. I’m all about democracy. If some kid shows up, flew from New Jersey to just be around, let’s get him a seat.” — @virgilabloh tells WWD’s @jdiderich ahead of his first show for @louisvuitton men’s. (📸: @alfredo_piola ) #wwdmens #virgilabloh #louisvuitton
“Kate Spade was a true fashion icon who brought joy to the lives of women around the world, and inspired women to live life to the fullest. We are dedicated to carrying on her legacy,” said Anna Bakst, brand president and chief executive officer of @katespadeny. The Kate Spade Foundation announced that it will be donating $1 million to suicide prevention and mental health awareness in tribute to the recent death of Kate Spade. Read more on WWD.com. #wwdnews (📷: @chinseephoto)
A first look at @virgilabloh’s sneakers for @louisvuitton. Abloh spoke to WWD about his debut collection for Louis Vuitton, creating @kendalljenner’s #metgala outfit and redefining the heritage brand. Read the full story on WWD.com. #wwdfashion 📷: @alfredo_piola)
The world’s largest producer of denim @iskodenim is sharing the strategy behind its product development process. Read our full interview with ISKO’s product development manager Baris Ozden on the company’s extensive research practices, upcoming denim trends and the latest material innovations on WWD.com. #iskodenim