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Victoria’s Secret is known for its overtly sexual imagery and lacy lingerie. But it has a successful younger sister that’s much more casual: Pink
Victoria’s Secret’s parent company recently announced it would axe the swimwear category by the end of the year to zero in on three major categories – its core lingerie products, Pink, and beauty. Beauty is the weakest category, the company said on a recent earnings call. The strongest category, the company said, was Pink.
In the past, Pink has been seen as the stepping stone for young consumers to Victoria’s Secret – particularly as many of the models, such as Elsa Hosk, Taylor Hill, and Sara Sampaio, who walked the runway for PINK end up becoming bona fide Angels.
But Pink stands on its own as a viable business.
Pink targets college students with its Pink On Campus program, through which girls can apply to become representatives o the brand. They get to serve as brand ambassadors and post to Instagram. They throw events in stores, as well. The company touts it as a career-building opportunity for women interested in event planning, advertising, or marketing.
To fit with the emphasis on college students, Pink sells spring break theme apparel.
Year-round, the store sells seasonal apparel with quirky puns.
Many of the products even appear to defy the sexiness for which Victoria’s Secret is known: like sweatpants.
A lot of the apparel is cheeky and flirtatious, versus outright sexy.
Perhaps most appealing to young women is that the advertising, like much of the apparel, isn’t flat-out sexy – it’s flirtatious.
The company also rewards loyal members through its Pink nation program, through which members can get access to events and discounts.
Pink is still just a small component of Victoria’s Secret’s business; as of April 30, there were 129 company-owned standalone Pink stores in the United States, where eas there were 992 Victoria’s Secret stores at the end of April in the United States. But judging by the company’s comments, it’s fair to say that Pink is resonating with its target audience.
Arguably, Pink’s most direct competition comes in the form of Aerie, American Eagle’s teen lingerie company, which recently saw comparable sales for the first quarter of fiscal 2016 skyrocket 32%.