OK is you read Scalzi you'd have seen this already but for the 1 person who reads this blog that doesn't go to this link.
Basic premise - get a bunch of guys to go shirtless in an Abercrombie and Finch store (a store famous for it's depiction of shirtless men) and basically see what happens... a fabulous look at how a large store reacts to such behaviour...
Now as a Marketer that is someone with a degree in marketing and an interest in marketing the store manager (or duty manager) at this store HAD a great opportunity to use resource to increase it's marketing potential. Take this as a win for the store - hey they have a large statue of a semi naked man, posters everywhere and now shirtless men in the store.
Get on the PA and say for the next 30 mins any man in the store without a shirt can have a 10% discount on all shirts. Or something similar. Come on lets face it these stores have one reason for being and one reason only - to sell stuff. So as a manager your role is to sell stuff from your store. I can see that the upper management may have a problem with this - but show them your bottom line, your sales for the day and frankly anyone who would be upset by an increase in sales should probably not be in the retail game.
Corporate image blah blah, the marketing for A&F is buff semi-naked men, a model at the front door, a statue posters etc. If upper management didn't want this image then they should not have these images as there selling point.
Take Aussie Bum for instance - hey they go out making viral adverts for YouTube and similar sites but getting guys off the street to stripe and get on there undies. This is what Aussie Bum is, basics that are both sexy, fashionable and make you (the wearer) look good. If they had store fronts I am sure they would love to have guys walking around showing off there products - even just showing the waist band.
I feel sorry for the store manager of A&F he is only doing what his limited knowledge of marketing and sales tell him. He is probably worried he will get the sack for allowing something like this to happen - but did you hear the people outside, see the reactions the crowds... that is what sales is all about.
Anyhoo enough of a rant - good going to the team behind this stunt and I will have to check out more of their work!
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