4 Out of 5 Van Heusen Customers

Filed by: The Author of tIoGT

“Timeless Style For Timeless Occasions.” That of course is the tag line for Van Heusen, a great American fashion label operated by highly successful fashion conglomerate PVH.

Although I don’t have one of these shirts myself, they certainly are very fetching. Take this chap for instance, you would have to admit he looks timeless.

The shirts they make are popular too. I know, because the Van Heusen website says they are the most popular selling shirt in US department stores. I’ve heard a lot of good things about US department stores so perhaps they really are timeless!?

Well, I was still to be convinced about the whole timeless quality so I did a bit of digging through their old catalogues. Eventually I found this old gem. Good for a bit of giggle.

While its difficult to be absolutely certain I am guessing the chap second from bottom with the bone and large nose ring is the non-oxford shopper.

This would suggest that at least 20% of punters are uninterested in Van Heusen garments. But frankly, I’m not entirely convinced this is all bad news for VH stakeholders.

To be perfectly honest Consumer #4 doesn’t look like as though he would shop in a US department store to begin with anyway, so his consumer preference for another label’s garment probably isn’t going to have much of an adverse effect on company sales anyway. Who knows? Perhaps a larger survey sample would have yielded surprisingly different results to use in the ad campaign.

But assuming this survey is accurate, I think Consumer #4’s preference only serves to reinforce how fickle some consumer segments of society truly are. Even when presented with a superior product endorsed by a unanimous majority of his piers, this consumer has opted for a totally different product. It just goes to show that its impossible to please everybody no matter how timeless the product is.

And if this whole debacle isn’t already confusing enough, I also note the advertisement muddies the waters even further by saying, and I quote: “4 out of 5 men prefer Oxfords….. in these new Van Heusen styles.” This suggests that all 5 of the men aren’t genuine consumers, but models showcasing new Van Heusen styles?!

If Consumer #4’s outfit is therefore a genuine new Van Heusen style, I suspect this campaign would have had poor consumer penetration in markets where 4 or even 5 out of every 5 people wouldn’t prefer Oxfords, such as underdeveloped tribal regions of Africa and the Amazon rain forest.

I also can’t help but be skeptical as to whether this man is actually a credible authority on semi formal business attire? Can I suggest that Van Heusen rethink their selection criteria for these surveys before they do next years analysis? It sure would be great to take a gander at the survey data because I think there is a possibility that some kind of error may have occurred here.

Not that I need to see the data to know that one of these styles would have lagged considerably behind the other 4. I think its safe to say that only real hard-core fans of the Van Heusen label would have purchased all 5 styles.

An exception to this may possibly have occurred in former British colonies such as the Republic of South Africa, and Zimbabwe, where both styles would presumably be equally acceptable as standard office dress codes.