PINK MAKES WOMEN FEEL BEAUTIFIED
BY BRENDA REASBY
When a girl walks past the enormous, hot pink plush dog in front of Victoria Secret’s PINK store, she isn’t just going for comfy leggings, highlighter tees or the five for $25 panty deal. Maybe that too, but also for an amazing experience that is recreated when wearing PINK’s products.
Pink is one of the top ten most popular brands among millennials. PINK shoppers, like other consumers, latch onto this brand and create an emotional attachment, also called brand loyalty.
Dr. Marlene Larson, marketing and business professor at Mount Mary University, explained that brand loyalty is staying with a particular product or company because of its products and services.
“I drink Coke over all other sodas.” said Larson. “If they don’t have Coke, I don’t drink soda; I’ll drink water.” In other words, customers who stick with a brand often know what to expect when buying their products. The brand makes them feel secure.
PINK started off in a small section in Victoria’s Secret lingerie store owned by L’Brands. L’Brands also owns sister companies Bath and Body Works, La Senza, and Henri Bendel. As the popular demand grew for more casual wear, the PINK store took off in 2008.
“What they actually did was create a Victoria Secret Brand and from that, decided to base or concentrate because so many of their current customers were saying ‘We come here for your lingerie and your pjs. Don’t you have anything we can wear to go to class or to go shopping?'” Larson said.
In wearing PINK, a girl may hold a certain perception to herself not only shaped internally but also by peers.
“Right away the person that you’re looking at you know that they pay attention, that they have a source of confidence in themselves, and they’re probably ready to have fun,” said Larson.
Mount Mary students said that not only does PINK make them feel sexy, but it gives them an inexplicable, psychological feel to wearing the clothing.
Jasmine Bray, senior education major, is a faithful shopper at PINK. When shopping, she tries not to spend more than $200 every visit.
“I buy their lotions, perfumes, their leggings and comfortable wear.” said Bray. “I feel cute in it. Maybe that’s why I shop there a lot!”
She explained that PINK has a fun variety of products and styles to choose from. Compared to competitors like an Aerie, Hollister, and Aeropostale, most women seem to think that PINK has more quality clothing.
Women are attached to this brand because it better suits them as individuals. “Live Comfy. Live Chic. Live PINK.” is their slogan posted on PINK’s website.
It’s evident that PINK targets not only college-aged women, but are they doing enough to better represent diversity and women of color? Even though PINK has made an effort to include more diverse models in their print ads and on the runways, students have claimed that PINK isn’t a good representation of them race and body wise.
Consider its popular collegiate line, for instance. In partnering with college athletic programs all over the country to bring out spirit wear, PINK still to this day, has no items for historically black colleges, private schools or even same-sexed schools. Ohio State, University of Florida, and University of Wisconsin, to name a few, have items in for the collegiate line.
Bray said that African-American women are one of PINK’s biggest consumers.
“Anything happening in outside environment can cause a brand to fail very quickly,” Larson said.
In efforts to reach out to PINK’s media relations and communications department regarding this matter, they responded via email:
“Thank you again for reaching out to us. We sincerely apologize but unfortunately many of these questions are about strategy and we do not provide that information publicly.”
Nataly Tolentino, health communications major thinks PINK is more for the high-class woman especially those women who can go and spend as much as they want.
“It makes me feel like I do have money, but then again I don’t!”, Tolentino said.
As one of the first generation students in her family to go off to college, Tolentino’s parents couldn’t always afford to buy her the popular high-priced brands everyone wore.
She explained how embracing it’d be to bring out a line embracing the Hispanic culture during the month of Cinco de Mayo.
BRANDING ENCOURAGES BUYING BEHAVIORS
Victoria’s Secret PINK shoppers are like kids in a candy store. It is always stocked with great deals and buyers incentives. Incentives include tote bags, water bottles and coupons.
PINK sales associates are continuously talking with shoppers to make sure they find everything they need.
“They listen to customers and are active in taking feedback.” Larson said.
Appearance for the store is important too. Maybe it’s the polka dots that do it.
Tolentino said it makes her feel like a girly-girl.
During PINK’s semi-annual sales, shoppers are on it when it comes to finding the best deals.
“Sometimes I do leave the store wanting to buy everything.” said Tolentino.
I spoke with Jasmine Bray and Nataly Tolentino and they discuss how brands overall influence people’s mind frame.
Comment Q: What popular brands or trends do you remember from high school or as a kid that have faded away?