Lead Forensics
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American Apparel

Brand re-launch.

Challenge

Cult fashion retailer American Apparel had been absent from UK high streets for several years following negative press around their ex-CEO and provocative advertising, which eventual led to the closure of the business. In 2017, they successfully re-launched in the U.S.

As well as being their ‘brand guardians in the UK’, we were tasked with re-launching this iconic fashion brand in the UK by creating a huge buzz and sense of excitement to drive people to the online store.

Idea

Despite the recent history, there was still a lot of affection for the brand. By heroing their ‘Iconic Basics’, we reminded customers of their love for American Apparel.

Strong, empowering photography, simple, bold type, and a hardworking line created a high-impact and emotive campaign that was certain to get noticed. Its effectiveness was then maximised across three key media channels: outdoor, social media and PR. To increase potential reach to our core target audience, the outdoor advertising was launched in London and Manchester. The locations of these sites, 753 in total, were key to its success and included a heavyweight presence around key competitor stores and main arterial routes.

On social we created and managed the UK Instagram channel to act as key communication point with customers and AA fans to spread the word about the re-launch. We also produced content calendars for each launch phase, ensuring gradual build-up of anticipation, and the design and activation of paid adverts across Facebook and Instagram to promote the online shop. Part of this involved creating multiple mini clothing range campaigns and ideas that would directly appeal to the UK target audience.

Working together with Fabric PR, we further spread the word of American Apparel’s return to initiate engagement and buzz online, in press and across social media. Connections were also established and relationships built with on-brand influencers to further extend reach on social.

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Impact

Understandably, the client was extremely happy with the results:

  • 548% sales increase WoW with the UK contributing to 34% of all international orders (the target was 30%).
  • £900k worth of PR coverage across online and print publications and social media, including coverage in Vogue, The Guardian, Cosmopolitan and Harpers Bazar.
  • Extended influencer opportunities included vlogger Joe Sugg (5.3m followers) and singer Dua Lipa (9.9m followers).
  • 68% of site traffic driven by organic, direct and social marketing.
  • 92,161 impressions in launch week, reflecting a 367% increase in people seeing the brand on Instagram
  • 190% increase in Instagram followers with a 408% increase in engagement.

We’re continuing to create and manage the brand’s content across their UK social channels and have also been briefed to work on a global brand campaign for them.

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