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Jerome Griffith has been CEO at Lands’ End for nine months and has longed for the iconic retailer to return to its roots.
That rich brand heritage is a driving force behind customer loyalty.
“Since I joined the company nine months ago, we’ve made significant progress as an organization,” Griffith said during the third-quarter earnings call. “We stabilized the business after several years of contracting sales and laid the foundation for growth in years to come. Looking ahead, I believe that we are uniquely positioned as a highly recognized American Heritage Brand operating in the heartland of the country, representing strong family values and offering a great value proposition. I am more optimistic than ever about the opportunity ahead of us as we fully capitalize on our Lands’ End strong heritage and leverage the excellent team that we have in place.”
Griffith is committed to achieving consistent growth across the business by focusing on four main areas: Product, digital, distribution channels and business processes, and infrastructure.
“Emphasizing our customer-centric orientation, our activities within each area will be guided by our customers’ needs and preferences,” Griffith noted. “First and foremost is our product. Our priority is to make our customers everyday life better by offering products with purpose, consistently communicating that we understand their needs and providing exceptional customer service. These attributes have been the foundation of Lands’ End 50-plus years of success and have earned the brand its loyal customer following.”
To ensure Lands’ End continues to maintain its heritage, company officials plan to refine product assortment with relevant and compelling styles, as well as updating the quality and fit to make sure that products reflect their strong brand heritage.
“We are focusing on delivering key items that align with our customers preference for timeless pieces and classic stylings that are well made and offer great value,” Griffith said. “This will primarily center around our core products, including outerwear, knits, pants, and swimwear. Our merchandise and design teams are coordinating with our marketing group to ensure that we are building a strong story around these key items across all touch points of our businesses.”
As Lands’ End focuses on its core product offering, it also wants to expand brand awareness.
“A great example of this is our existing new partnership with the Weather Channel, which will feature Lands’ End as part of all live, out-of-studio reporting,” Griffith said. “As the Weather Channels official outfitter, this is also an incredible opportunity to showcase our apparel highlighting our iconic outerwear, a category in which we will continue to leverage our core competency. We also plan to selectively broaden our product offerings where it makes sense for the brand. We’ve increased our focus on the home cartogram where we see a meaningful opportunity to expand the business as we better align the product assortment with the needs of our customer guided by data analytics and purchasing preferences. We will also focus on growing our outfitters business going forward with our innovative products to meet the needs of our partners. This includes our anticipated launch of the new Delta Airlines program in the fourth quarter.”
Digital is another key focus area.
“We see great opportunities to leverage data analytics to better tailor and personalize the shopping experience for each customer,” Griffith noted. “We know that they want to accomplish four things when they shop at Lands' End: To find what they are looking for quickly and easily, to ensure that it will fit right, to discover new products, and to receive their order when they need it.”
Evan Magliocca, Brand Marketing Manager for Baesman Insights & Marketing, told Loyalty360 that Lands’ End has a strong heritage, but that heritage is based on strong product.
“They’re continuing that trend of product quality while also expanding into new product lines,” Magliocca said. “It’s encouraging to see their leadership considers product the top priority still. That often gets lost as brands focus on moving into digital, expanding channels, and working on distribution efficiency. In the end, product still wins and Lands’ End is well-positioned within their competitive set.”
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