retail news in context, analysis with attitude

Advertising Age has a story about how Levi Strauss has “moved beyond its single-product roots into a more diversified mix of apparel offerings, including a robust global T-shirt business nearing $1 billion in sales. At 165 years old, Levi's is a lifestyle brand for the masses,” Extraordinarily relevant for a brand of its age.

An excerpt:

“Few brands - and logos - have had such enduring appeal, especially at a time when the apparel and retail landscape is littered with the bones of denim rivals. Levi's was near the graveyard itself nearly two decades ago. A merchandising overhaul that moved away from trendy but forgettable offerings into a collection with a more long-lasting, classic appeal, combined with an invigorating marketing platform and focus on digital innovation, have helped the brand avoid such a fate.”

The story makes the point that Levi Strauss has managed to retain and improve its position in consumers’ minds and hearts through persistent innovation and aggressive marketing, even as competitors have ramped up their efforts and crowded the field with new brands and styles. in fact, the company even has chosen this moment in its history to be more upfront with political stands, taking a position on gun control that annoyed some of its longtime customers.

Fascinating brand lesson, and you can read all about it here.
KC's View:
I’m utterly devoted to 541’s … wear them almost every day, and it feels good to be patronizing a company that is an American icon.