MELANIE ALBERT director of advertising, Riders Apparel Co.
Client: Lee Apparel Co.
Agency: Fallon McElligott
'93 Estimated Billings: $10 million
Increase over '92: 100%
Client Since: July 1992
Major Achievements: split brand equity into two separate lines; launch of new 'Riders' brand exceeded sales expectations.
Lee jeans have always been a brand caught between two distinctly different distribution channels. So two-and-a-half years ago, Lee Apparel Co. hit its agency, Fallon McElligott/Minneapolis, with an unexpected challenge: discover a way for Lee to grow in both regional discounters and department stores without alienating either one. After painstaking research and strategy development, the agency suggested the company split Lee Rider, the product's name since the '30s, into two separate brands. This year, Lee established Riders Apparel Co. and unveiled 'Riders' through the regional discounters.
'We were confident with this idea when we launched it earlier this year, but now that we have actual sales experience, we are thrilled to say we're meeting and exceeding our sales plan,' says Melanie Albert, the new division's director of advertising. 'We are going to be expanding into new markets and expect to increase our advertising support next year.'
Fallon's role as strategic marketing partner didn't stop there. The agency developed the logo, packaging and labeling and worked on the design of the apparel. 'It was important that we define an advertising strategy that differed from the Lee campaign, which emphasizes fit,' says Peter Engel, Fallon's group director on Lee and Riders. So the agency developed a humorous before-and-after campaign, themed 'Be Yourself,' to spur on the new brand, which has won high praise from both client and customers alike. A holiday effort now in production is expected to break soon.
Copyright Adweek L.P. (1993)