In an age where one well-placed tweet or a vine secretly filmed by an unengaged employee or unsatisfied customer can cost a company millions of dollars, business leaders will have to adapt or die. The inner workings of a company are no longer strictly "inner." And within this reality, transparency is the secret weapon for leaders in the new economy.
Abercrombie & Fitch has been peddling billboards of apparently-naked men for decades and it seemed to work okay. American Apparel shocked and titillated with its early campaigns: using sex appeal to sell such sundry basics as t-shirts and socks. My theory? BAD sex doesn't sell. And this is one similarity between the porn and fashion industries.
American Apparel founder and CEO Dov Charney, was ousted from his very own company spread like wildfire this morning. And it was predictably greeted with major glee among most of my feminist friends, who've had enough with this guy's gag-inducing sexist marketing campaigns, as well as his own personal conduct with employees. I still have no intention of ever purchasing anything from them in the future. Ousting Dov Charney may have been the right decision to make, American Apparel executive board members, but that's not why you finally got rid of him.
The new ad campaign for Aerie, a lounge wear and lingerie brand owned by American Eagle Outfitters and targeted to young women, has pledged not to use retouching tools such as Photoshop in the company's advertising. Its ads show beautiful women with a few extra pounds and rounder stomachs, smaller or bigger breasts, laugh lines and visible tattoos.
I hope I can ride this one out. I like my plain t-shirts, and I'm getting to old to try to find a new thing. I guess I will be "normcore". A fashion rebel. An iconoclast, thumbing my nose at those consumerist sheep. I will wear my khaki pants as a badge of honour, my t-shirts as a flag of allegiance to the state of bland.