Fabletics: Fashion with a Following

More and more, consumers are making purchases based on product reviews and referrals from other users rather than traditional marketing and commercial advertising. The best marketing strategies are adapting to this growing trend by embracing customer feedback, and responding with empathy and innovation. A recent Huffington Post article by digital marketing expert Diana Wertz details how brands like Kate Hudson’s Fabletics line are conquering the retail and e-tail marketplace by harnessing the “power of the crowd” to drive search ratings, sales revenue, and fierce customer loyalty.

 

By “the crowd,” Wertz is referring to the crowd-sourced reviews found on services like Yelp and TrustPilot, one of the world’s largest review sites where Fabletics boasts 30,000 reviews and a Trust Score of 8.2. ”Fabletics is obsessed with its customers,” reports Wertz, actively collecting and responding to thousands of reviews from its members in order to refine its marketing and products. According to Shawn Gold, CMO of Fabletics’ parent company, learning to value consumer input helped Fabletics “overcome initial issues upon launch,” and ultimately deliver a better service, resulting in 200% growth in five years and a projected revenue of $250 million for 2017.

 

Much of that growth can be attributed to Kate Hudson herself. According to an article last June in Forbes, it was her hands-on approach and quick-fire problem solving that helped Fabletics overcome a 6-month production delay, inventory shortfalls, and concerns about its membership structure by spearheading a customer service and analytics upgrade. This data-driven business model, which monitors the brand’s social media presence as well as sales and customer reviews to predict trends and production quantities, spurred the company to “a retail growth of 644% last year” in an industry that has many retailers closing shop.

 

Hudson continues to be heavily involved and says in Forbes, “I’m really proud of the things that I’m doing in business, which we’ll continue and expand.” According to Fabletics president Gregg Throgmartin, the clothing line and its business model reflects Hudson’s approachability and authenticity, as well as her own active lifestyle. She maintains an eye on sales numbers and helps design fresh styles for the athleisure brand that collaborator Demi Lovato says is all about “inspiring women and empowering them…to be strong, and it doesn’t matter what shape, or size, or age.” To provide inclusivity and personalization, a quiz on the Fabletics website helps to match members with outfits that best suit their needs and lifestyle.

 

In the Post, Wertz reports that “a business’ reputation is one of the most impactful customer considerations,” valued even above price point and budget when deciding whether or not to make a purchase. A transparent and customer-focused marketing strategy pays off big by cultivating repeat customers and referral-driven sales. By listening – and responding – to its 1.2 million members, Fabletics shows it genuinely cares about the quality of its products and whether or not they improve customers’ lives, boosting the brand’s satisfaction and trust ratings, and ultimately its bottom line.

Fabletics: A great Shopping Experience

Fabletics is an online American retailer that sells accessories and women’s sportswear, which is commonly referred to as Athleisure. It has twenty-two brick-and-mortar stores although it is best known for its e-commerce. It was founded in 2013 by Don Ressler, Adam Goldenberg and Kate Hudson who spotted a niche in the active wear marketplace. Most of the sportswear in the market at the time according to them was not stylish and high-quality at an affordable price.

I think the brand has been set apart from competitors as top in its field by the following tips given by Kate Hudson herself. Firstly she identified marketing opportunities, which in this case were there were a lot of expensive activewear, and there were not any to cater for all shapes and sizes. Secondly, Kate Hudson says. She stays hands on her business by looking at numbers every week which a lot of people do not do. Thirdly she relies on big data to make better decisions. This she does by interviewing new members of her brand to determine things like the prices and getting models for her brand. Fourthly she says you need to stay inspired to be successful. She draws her inspiration from her kids. Lastly, she says you believe in yourself and take risks. These are what I think have made Fabletics stay on top of its field.

Fabletics is leveraging the power of the crowd by using reviews and getting a lot of positive reviews. Consumer reviews increase loyalty, customer retention for brands and increase sales. This is because consumers trust reviews a lot. If a product initially used by a lot of consumers gets a negative review, many of the consumers stop using the product. Fabletics has used this to its advantage because it gets a lot of positive reviews.

Kate’s take on the winning athleisure brand is that although she is proud of the things she is doing in business, her heart is still in being an artist. She said she is not about to quit her acting soon. When Kate was approached by the other two founders, she was heavily involved since day one.

Kate also faced negative press who called her business a scam among other complaints like their most popular items were sold out. She did not give up still, and later on, she got a positive review. Through her efforts, Fabletics upgraded their customer service.

Lastly, I would like to encourage readers to take the Lifestyle quiz to find out which Fabletics gear is most suitable for them.