- Banana Republic partnered with mobile dating app Bumble to host a week-long pop-up during New York Fashion Week, the Gap-owned clothing chain announced in a press release. The Bumble Hive NYC event at Banana Republic's flagship store in the Flatiron district will feature a "No Boundaries" panel hosted by Bumble's co-heads of creative.
- Media company PopSugar is presenting the event as part of its partnership with Banana Republic, which includes an installment of PopSugar's "It Takes Two" video series. The videos feature Bumble's co-heads of creative discussing living a life with no boundaries, a theme consistent with Banana Republic's brand image of exploration, per the release.
- The videos will debut on PopSugar and BananaRepublic.com this month, while the Bumble Hive NYC pop-up will run Sept. 6 to 12.
Banana Republic's partnership with Bumble and PopSugar demonstrates how a popular retailer can blend the elements of social media and experiential marketing to reach a key audience group — in this case, professional women. Bumble is distinct from other dating apps like Tinder in that women initiate the first contact with a prospective date.
Bumble is looking to expand beyond dating by pushing into business networking with a service called Bumble Bizz that lets users create separate profiles from their dating accounts, per the Financial Times. A partnership with Banana Republic, which offers higher-end clothing and businesswear, appears to be a solid choice to connect with similar target audiences around style, mobile apps and pop-up events.
Banana Republic's fall 2018 ad campaign is rolling out on digital platforms to coincide with the launch of its latest collection, which celebrates the brand's history and explorer spirit with reimagined versions of trench coats, utility jackets, a flight suit, cargo pants, suits, cable sweaters and graphic tees, the company said.
Banana Republic has been a comparable bright spot for parent company Gap, whose Q2 2018 sales rose 8% from a year earlier to $4.41 billion, per a company statement last month. Banana Republic's same-store sales rose 2% for the third straight gain since a 5% drop a year earlier, signaling a potential upswing for the chain in the months to come.