Patagonia, the outdoor clothing retailer, was founded by climbing enthusiast Yvon Chouinard in 1973. It grew into one of the world’s most trusted high-performance retailers, thanks to a strikingly transparent and relentlessly authentic brand and business model. Over four decades, Patagonia has:
- Consistently and vocally supported environmental causes.
- Publicized its supply chain practices to conscious consumers.
- Launched a marketing campaign that celebrated “worn wear,” encouraging customers to reuse and repair Patagonia gear instead of buying replacements.
- Told customers not to buy its products in an effort to promote conscious consumerism.
The brand has earned the respect of consumers who like to see the firm do good. And it has also helped the company do well: since 2008, Patagonia doubled the size of operations and tripled its profits.
Who says you can’t have it all? If you’re a marketer who wants to tap into the heart and soul of your company—and pass that message onto consumers—Patagonia has some lessons for you.