Last Sunday, Stephanie Gilmore was featured on the cover of Sunday Style, an Australian magazine dedicated to the style and the fashion. Besides being a 5-time World champion, Mrs. Gilmore is a fashion lover who admits “being sexy, and not a slut”. Therefore, since the World Tour has not started yet -the Roxy Pro Gold Coast, which is the first contest, will take place in March-, she poses for some fashion magazines: Elle Australia, Vogue Australia, etc.
And she is the perfect ambassador for Pop Surf, the Roxy’s collection which is an “iconic swim collection, marrying fashion-forward design with technology that easily transition from water to sand.”
We are at a crossroads where surfbrands have the choice between positioning themselves as real surf brands -as Rip Curl did by repositioning themselves as a technical brand- and positioning as fashion brands. For several years, Roxy was positioned as a girl brand whose target was mostly 12-25 years old. In 2012, Quiksilver launched Quiksilver Women in order to target a more mature consumer -Stephanie Gilmore was their ambassador. But as Andy Mooney, the CEO of Quiksilver, decided to cut costs, Quiksilver Women was shut down in 2013, and Steph signs with Roxy. Since then, the brand has been changing by offering a wide range of products that targets all kind of consumers. It’s not too late: the managers at Roxy, and the ones of some other brands, have understood that they need to position their brands as “prêt-à-porter”, not only as surf brands. In the consumers’ minds, surf brands are made to be worn in summer, not everyday of the year. Hence the necessity to be positioned as a lifestyle brand, with a legacy in surfing. It is a long hard work, but it has be done.
Do you agree or not? Let me know!
Photo credits: Roxy, Sunday Style