Patagonia’s Reverse-Psychology ‘Don’t Buy This Jacket’ Drives Sales
Patagonia sent a reverse-psychology ‘Don’t Buy This Jacket’ email to consumers, driving sales in the early holiday season.
Outdoor retailer Patagonia is a rather environmentally conscious company. After all, the company gives away one percent of its revenues to green non-profit organizations. With this perception in mind, Patagonia sent out a holiday email with the tagline ‘Don’t Buy This Jacket.’
The theme of the campaign is that Patagonia is not only environmentally responsible, they’re also consumer-driven. Part of the point of the campaign is that – because Patagonia offers free repairs on their jackets – it’s wasteful to buy new jackets year after year.
The free-repair deal on Patagonia’s jackets also helps the company, not just the consumer. Patagonia tracks repair data and purchase history to determine which activities a consumer is interested in. The company follows up with emails, targeted at each specific customer’s outdoor hobbies.
Of course, this is still a for-profit business we’re talking about here. It’s no surprise that the ‘Don’t Buy This Jacket’ campaign has had a positive reverse psychology effect, driving solid sales throughout the early holiday season.
Patagonia’s ‘create customers for life’ philosophy certainly leads to some interesting advertising decisions. It’s a bold move to straight-up tell your customers not to buy your products, but if it works, it works.
But seriously. Don’t buy that jacket. You don’t need a new jacket. Your old one is still perfectly good…isn’t it? I guess it does look a bit tattered around the collar. That color’s not really in anymore, either. Maybe we should go see what Patagonia has in stock for this season…
Howard Davidson Arlington MA