Vans is one of the largest youth brands in the World and it is estimated to achieve 5 billion dollars in revenue by 2023.
Founded in 1966 by Paul Van Doren, Vans is a Northern Californian brand specialized in manufacturing skateboarding shoes and other related clothes and equipment, owned by Van Doren Rubber Company. Vans is well known for its checkerboard slip-ons and the slogan ‘Off the Wall,’ which represents more than just the brand identity and image. “Off the Wall is a rallying cry for self-expression. From art and music to skating and surfing (…) people who inspire us with their creativity, authenticity, and passion” (VANS, 2019). That is, the ideology that separates Vans from the other sneakers companies is the proposed lifestyle and the rich legacy of being part of the history of skateboard and supporter of great music, arts, and other events.
While the brand’s success can somewhat be associated to the skateboarding community, the marketing strategy and brand approach place an essential role in the maintaining success of the brand. Schambra Stevens, VP of marketing EMEA at Vans, explains that “Paul – Van Doren – wanted to make it a people company rather than a shoe company.” That is, based on brand strong credibility, the brand was able to expand its marketing and communication through creative communities and cultural events, partnerships and sponsorships. Moreover, the brand understands that it is of great importance to be present and relevant in the digital space.
Vans has a well-established brand name in the national and international sphere and maintaining its position, Vans transformed the perception of the conventional marketing strategy, yet sustaining their values and lifestyle, which Schambra Stevens understand as “certain elements to the brand in terms of creativity and creative expression that are timeless.”
It is estimated that Vans will be a 5-billion brand by 2023 and it will become the third-largest in the World, behind Nike and Adidas. These results prove to brands the importance of engaging in the process of understanding their consumers to grow and stay in their top of mind.