• Retail Dive

Walmart's ModCloth celebrates individuality with its largest digital campaign

Dive Brief:
  • Lifestyle and fashion brand ModCloth, which was acquired by Walmart last year, has launched "Say It Louder," a campaign spotlighting modern female icons who are making a statement, the company announced via a news release. The campaign will be delivered across all ModCloth channels and will include video, a "magalog" catalog-magazine combo, social storytelling, in-store activations and digital media.

  • The campaign features four "muses": rapper Lizzo, country star Cam and emerging artists singer/songwriter Victory Boyd and musician Kacy Hill. In the online videos and magalog, each musician shares her passion and tells her story. The #SayItLouder campaign strives to celebrate individuality and inspire fans.

  • #SayItLouder is part of ModCloth’s overall brand revamp, giving consumers a glimpse at a new logo and representing the marketer's largest digital advertising spend, according to the release.

Dive Insight:

ModCloth’s new brand revamp and robust campaign is the e-commerce site’s first big marketing push since it was acquired by Walmart-owned Jetlast year, a move that angered longtime fans, who thought ModCloth’s positioning as an independent, inclusive apparel line was at odds with Walmart’s values. While the Walmart backing appears to be giving ModCloth deeper pockets for its marketing spend, there is clearly an attempt in the new campaign to retain the diverse and inclusive persona the brand is known for and possibly bring it to a wider audience. Analysts believe ModCloth can help Walmart boost its own e-commerce business and appeal to younger, hipper consumers.

Known for its vintage-modern style, ModCloth offers clothing styles in a wide range of sizes, instead of separating out its plus-sized lines. The #SayItLouder campaign is in line with this brand identity. By featuring a diverse cast of female musicians, ModCloth is also embracing storytelling and incorporating a message of female empowerment. Successful campaigns, like Dove’s Real Beauty, have demonstrated how realistic portrayals and positive gender messaging can resonate with consumers, who are growing to expect brands to break down gender stereotypes and be more inclusive.

ModCloth sibling brand Bonobos, also owned by Walmart, has embraced inclusivity in its marketing, as well. In a recent campaign, the company’s costliest to date, the e-commerce site featured 172 men of different shapes, ages and ethnicities to showcase the full range of sizes that it offers.

Along with beefing up its marketing spend, ModCloth is expanding its "Fitshop" stores, where consumers can try on samples and get styling advice, and then order their favorite items online. The retailer has been experimenting with the model via pop-ups and runs Fitshops in Austin and San Francisco. ModCloth plans to expand the shops to five this year and eight by 2019.

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