Because it first made headlines by banning photoshop all the way in which again in 2014, Aerie’s #AerieReal marketing campaign has been a magnet for fashions and celebrities trying to lend their voices to a model that really stands for one thing, attracting names like Yara Shahidi, Jameela Jamil and Samira Wiley. By 2020, the roster was absolutely stacked, with Hari Nef, Beanie Feldstein, Lana Condor and Ali Stroker becoming a member of longtime Position Fashions Aly Raisman and Iskra Lawrence, alongside a gaggle of activists, in representing the model.
However, very similar to everybody else, the Covid-19 disaster prompted Aerie to rethink the whole lot. And whereas the workforce is just not fairly abandoning their successful formulation — Kelsea Ballerini and Antonia Gentry are getting into the Position Mannequin footwear for a bit — Aerie wished to embrace the individuals who have made the model so profitable: its group.
“The final 12 months, for us, what we have had an opportunity to do is actually take a step again and to take a look at what’s essential,” says Aerie SVP of Model Advertising and marketing Stacey McCormick. “We see a lot inspiration coming by way of our buyer lens.”
It began, McCormick says, with The Positivity Problem, a social media marketing campaign aimed toward encouraging Aerie’s followers to share constructive tales early on throughout the pandemic. What the model hadn’t counted on, nonetheless, was the natural engagement, itself the fruition of a number of years’ value of #AerieReal campaigns: actual prospects posting TikToks and Instagram Reels of their very own volition, speaking about how Aerie’s product made them really feel like their greatest selves. It is the form of factor most manufacturers can solely dream about.
“What we have seen in that group development over the previous six months blows our minds,” McCormick says, singling out TikToker Hannah Schlenker, whose put up about Aerie’s super-popular crossover leggings went viral. “For those who pull up #crossoverleggings [on TikTok], there’s 10 million views, which blows our thoughts as a result of that legging has been there for the entire 12 months. November is when it took off, and we thank Hannah for that, nevertheless it’s one other story of that natural love.”
Aerie now works with Schlenker in a extra official capability — she’s turn out to be a “crossover curator” — and he or she is not the one one. The model has a few completely different applications by way of which it really works with influencers, certainly one of which is an envoy program “constructed on a really numerous group of girls who’re leaders inside their group,” starting from faculty college students to mothers.
The opposite, which McCormick is worked up to roll out later this 12 months, is the Changemakers program: Members of the Aerie group can submit their private tales and causes for the possibility at a $20,000 grant from the model, earmarked for serving to them create change in their very own communities. Extra on that’s coming in October; in the interim, McCormick shares that there are 23 ladies who’ve been chosen by Aerie already, and that their tales can be adopted all through the subsequent 12 months.
“Once we checked out how we wish to evolve, what we do in Actual, we stated, ‘We now have to start out with group first. We actually should amplify the voices which might be inside our ambassador program, which might be inside our newly fashioned Changemaker program,'” McCormick says. “It is an evolution of what the marketing campaign has been doing. It is bringing extra of our inner heroes to the forefront and having their voices be heard.”
Celebrities stay a key a part of that evolution: “We actually embed them into the DNA,” in line with McCormick, noting that Aerie does not simply signal them on as well-known faces — they work with them on causes close to and pricey to their hearts.
Raisman has stayed on, persevering with her work with psychological well being advocacy. Ballerini and Gentry spherical out the high-profile facet, every vocalizing their commitments to authenticity and inclusivity, respectfully. Including to the influencer facet of the #AerieReal roster are TikTok phenoms the NaeNae Twins (Shayné and Zhané Stanley) and The Rollettes (Chelsie Hill, Samantha Lopez, Steph Aiello, Maria Rabaino, Conner Lundius and Natalie Fung), a wheelchair dance workforce.
Most advertising and marketing groups can be nervous to make adjustments to what has up to now proved to be fairly the successful formulation, however McCormick emphasizes that what’s most essential to Aerie is serving its prospects — each new and constant alike.
“With #AerieReal, it was rooted in group to start with, however now our base has grown a lot. These prospects have grown with us,” McCormick says. “They’ve developed. They’ve had children. They have been modified, and the impression that they’ve had because of the model being there to assist them, we really feel it is essential for them to talk up and to actually drive a variety of what’s taking place. We now have so many individuals coming into the model and truly coming into social media that wants Actual now greater than ever.”
https://fashionista.com/2021/08/aerie-real-role-models-2021-campaign | This 12 months, #AerieReal Is All Concerning the Group