Lululemon: exercise in marketing

If you took this marketing segment:

affluent, fashion-following females who like to look good in work-out gear

and herded them into a focus group session,

you’d find that there are two clear camps:

1) those who have never heard of Lululemon

2) those who wear nothing else.

There is no middle ground.

open door but photo ban at Lululemon

open door but photo ban at Lululemon

No, I’m NOT going to write a post about why I love Lululemon work-out gear.  But, with my marketing consultant hat on, I am fascinated about the brand’s communication strategy and that’s exactly reason I headed down to their Chelsea showroom (not simply SHOP) to meet Aoife, Lulu’s London based Community Coordinator (you’ll notice, not PR girl).

Aoife had explained to me on the phone in advance.  There are no press releases, no company history, no catalogue nor… (and I wondered how hard I could push this)  was any photography allowed in the showroom or of the products.

fitness goals surround the brand

fitness goals surround the brand

I was feeling irritated.  How on earth has this company grown at such a rate without any traditional marketing?  Originating in Vancouver, here are now more than 200 of these yoga-inspired athletic apparel showrooms worldwide and yet the brand still feels a properly cult.

So ladies and gentlemen of the Lycra world, I bring you a whole new form of marketing a la Lulu:  it’s called “hyper-local” focus marketing and it is applied

ooops a product shot!  Naughty blogger spotted.

ooops a product shot! Naughty blogger spotted.

to every single part of the company from products to media relations.  Instead of a low down on the brand, I was asked if I wanted to join a local yoga session.  On arrival at the showroom, polite enquiries were made  as to HOW I exercise and WHAT were my goals?  You see, every customer is considered to be an expert in her community.  Hats off to the brains behind this approach, the founder and former CEO Dennis “Chip” Wilson.  This is grass-roots marketing yoga-style.  And, let me tell you, it works.

Lululemon 6 Burnsall Street? SW3  020 7352 7174

and another...

and another…



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