Vera Bradley has been rebranding, and some of the results of their experiments are mixed.
BuzzFeed did a write up of Vera Bradley’s new target in March, a demographic they labeled as the “daymaker,” otherwise known as women from 25-40. CEO Rob Wallstrom spewed all sorts of enthusiastic buzz words purporting the singular magic of the wholesome, down-to-earth daymaker:
Daymakers are idealists, go-getters, and “choreographers” who are able to “balance 1,000 things” well for family, friends and themselves, he said. They also love to host others and are “joiners,” not loners, he said.
“She appreciates femininity and beauty in color and prints and thoughtful details and in her relationships,” he said. “And that’s what’s important. It’s not just beauty as something you acquire, it’s also beauty as in something you are and something that you do.”
She’s like Zooey Deschanel in the first episode of New Girl on steroids. On girly, girly ‘roids. Along with this change in focus they’ve rolled out a hashtag campaign called #ItsGoodToBeAGirl, which seems to be missing an apostrophe and any coherent meaning. A tipster sent this photo of one of the apparently many ads plastering subway cars in New York, a particularly egregious example, as everyone knows nobody offers their seats on the MTA:
The blurbs are supposedly coming in via submissions from Vera Bradley lovers, and they range from the hopelessly inane:
To the somewhat more upsetting:
To the borderline satirical:
According to The Washington Post, the company saw huge losses last year in a 10.6 percent decrease in comparable sales. This year, they’re down by 6.1 percent so far. They’re not hitting with the precious millennial demo, who are not interested in wearing huge cotton quilted tote bags into meetings. This hashtag may be the result of confused ideas about what women between the ages of 25 and 40 are looking for, and that’s almost certainly not to be treated like girls.
Vera Bradley isn’t the only company trying to connect with younger buyers by reminding them that they are girls. Last year, Kate Spade released commercials with Anna Kendrick fawning over Gloria Steinem and her contributions to feminism and purses—a better direction than a passive-aggressive demand that gentlemen give up their seats on the train.