A failed attempt at publicity
‘Shore’ cast to stop wearing Abercrombie
Lately, it seems as though half-naked models are not generating enough publicity for popular clothing store Abercrombie & Fitch. Because of this, the advertising department at Abercrombie & Fitch decided to try a celebrity publicity stunt. Unfortunately for the company, the plan backfired.
On Aug. 16, Abercrombie & Fitch sent out a news release to the general public asking the cast of the MTV show “Jersey Shore,” mainly Michael “The Situation” Sorrentino, to stop wearing their clothing. The plea did not stop there.
“We understand that the show is for entertainment purposes, but believe this association is contrary to the aspirational nature of our brand, and may be distressing to many of our fans,” Abercrombie & Fitch’s Brand Senses Department said in the news release.
The company also, supposedly, agreed to pay the entire cast a substantial amount of money to stop wearing their clothing.
The public relations department of Abercrombie & Fitch must have developed this ridiculous plan in order to boost sales during the back-to-school season. By getting its target audience to watch the drama between the show and the clothing company, Abercrombie & Fitch hoped to brainwash kids to buy more clothing.
“With respect to ‘The Situation,’ Abercrombie & Fitch saw an opportunity to get some advantageous publicity during the all-important back-to-school season,” Senior Retail Analyst for Abercrombie & Fitch John Morris said in the CNNMoney article “Abercrombie drops Nine Percent after ‘Jersey Shore’ diss.” He also said that publicity would make for good water-cooler conversation.
Apparently, most students have water-coolers in their classrooms, or perhaps, Morris meant to say water fountains?
Whatever the case may be, once the public had an eye on “The Situation,” Abercrombie & Fitch probably hoped that people would begin to talk about how awesome the company’s clothing is.
If the plan worked as it should have, this would have caused a big increase in sales for the company.
Unfortunately for Abercrombie & Fitch, the ploy was not successful. Instead of making more money, sales dropped about nine percent in one day.
“The stock price for Abercrombie & Fitch fell nearly 10 percent at one point on Wednesday and finished nearly eight percent lower for the day,” reporter for CNNMoney, Aaron Smith, said in his article, “Abercrombie drops Nine Percent after ‘Jersey Shore’ diss.”
Maybe Abercrombie & Fitch should have thought about Jersey Shore’s audience demographic. It’s possible that when the show’s viewers heard that their beloved “Situation” was asked not to wear Abercrombie & Fitch’s clothes, they opted for a different brand to wear for “T-Shirt Time.”