The Victoria’s Secret brand influenced fashion and sex for decades, and continues to do so today. The company was responsible for introducing the world to sensual and modern womanhood, and boosted the career of actresses such as Heidi Klum and Tyra Banks. In 1982, Ron Raymond sold the company to The Limited, Inc.; the company expanded from a single store to over 600 locations, generating a huge mailing list and more than $2 billion in sales.
But with so much uncertainty surrounding the brand, the new Victoria’s Secret plans to split off from L Brands and become a publicly traded company. The company’s new leadership has been working hard to execute the turnaround plan, while also revamping the image of the brand. It recently swapped out the Angels for a new group of activist and entrepreneurial women. But the company must strike a balance between continuing to invest in its brand and retaining customers.
In order to remain relevant in the market, Victoria’s Secret has enlisted the support of the VS Collective, a group of seven women who will advise the company, appear in its ads, and promote the brand through social media. The new board of directors will also have seven women on it, and all but one seat will be held by a woman. The company is already facing intense scrutiny over the brand’s lack of diversity in its workforce.
A survey conducted by Bank of America in January revealed that female customers were less likely to complain about Victoria’s Secret following the pandemic. It also found that fewer women were upset than they were pre-pandemic, with 64% saying their opinion had not changed in the past 12 months. In addition, only 33% of respondents disliked the brand more than a year before. Many women blamed the brand’s image as one of the causes for the negative publicity.
In addition to its famous lingerie and fragrances, Victoria’s Secret also has a wide range of products geared towards the romantic lifestyle. For example, the company’s popular “Classics by Request” CDs and tapes were sold over a billion times in 1996. In addition, the company also has bath and body products available in a variety of scents. And because their products are marketed as a lifestyle brand, Victoria’s Secret continues to expand its marketing efforts.
The brand suffered a huge setback in the second half of the 20th century. After its over-sexualized ads, the company has begun to re-invent itself. A deal with Sycamore Fashion Group aimed to revamp the brand has been pulled. But that won’t happen quickly. The company is still trying to find a way to survive a changing world. Even after the fallout of the Sycamore deal, it still holds a strong brand image.
As sales decline, a new approach to marketing is needed. One possible strategy is to focus on more comfortable apparel for a more inclusive image. While this strategy isn’t guaranteed to make the brand more profitable, it could help it recover quickly. As such, investors are betting on this strategy to help Victoria’s Secret’s sales in the coming quarters. The company is down 4% year to date, and its market cap is down nearly 20% over the past six months.