WHERE ARE YOUR ATHLETES LULULEMON?
That, is exactly what came to my mind not only yesterday as I stepped into the retail store but every time I make my way past it. I am the first to tell you that I am a fan of their products, yes! I enjoy wearing their $120 “Fast & Free ” pants. In fact, I have them in 4 colorways, and even a few pairs in the same color. There is no doubt that the quality of their apparel is subpar when it comes to working out. Heck, I even wear them on a daily basis when I want to run errands or simply be comfortable.
But I have noticed, its not their product that is lacking diversity and quality but their branding and advertising. Now, I am no genius, surely their ‘unique’ marketing strategy is and was well thought out but maybe just maybe they should take a step in the Nike direction.
Going back to my in store experience, (and need I remind you, this is simply consumer insight from a marketing major) I decided to snapchat my thoughts to a few friends. I noticed the store had about 3, maybe 4, photos hanging up on the wall. One of which was what looked to me as a crossfit trainer, the other was a photo of two buildings (aerial view). As I viewed snapped these photos, my friends got back to me (A few of which were guys who are huge Nike fans). Their responses to me consisted of:
“I’ve never been to Lululemon.”
“Don’t they just sell yoga stuff pretty much?”
“Yah, not many of my friends shop at Lululemon.”
I realized herein lies the problem. Lululemon had branded themselves as simply “Yoga” wear for women. Though, that is precisely what they sell, they have SO much more. My friends and I don’t do yoga, but we sure love to wear Lululemon when we run or train.
Now, this all brings me to my original thought….WHERE ARE YOUR ATHLETES LULULEMON? As a huge Nike fan, I realize how important athletes endorsing active wear is. I realize that when I purchase a new pair of Nike shoes, I feel like I myself, am an athlete. I feel like I myself can run the distance, shoot the ball, win the tennis match (Even if I can’t).
Athletes endorsing Active wear brands is extremely important. Yes Lululemon wants to target the Yogis but why not also attract the men and women who are sports fans, who are athletes themselves? I am a firm believer that with the right branding, comes the mass consumers. I think it is time for Lululemon to get on board with what has been working best in the industry. The misconception that Lululemon only has products for “women who do yoga” needs to be broken if they want to increase their sales. They are competing with the biggest retail brands in the world (Nike, Adidas, Under Armour) yet they are staying stagnant in their marketing strategies. I have yet to see a Lulu advertisement that drives me, that makes me want to get up, put my running pants on and go for a jog. This is the type of movement they are missing.
With all that being said, I personally believe that Lululemon needs to take athletes under their wing and really step up their game. Simply having Quality “workout” clothes isn’t going to cut it, they need to bring people in, make it an experience!