Stride Rite is reinventing itself.
The nearly 100-year-old children’s shoe company has launched a new brand platform, Built for Childhood, that will encompass everything from its product and marketing to its e-commerce site and in-store environment. The new branding reflects Stride Rite’s efforts to better relate to and connect with today’s busy millennial parents, with an integrated brand experience that is more convenient, immersive and social.
“Whether a mom finds us in a Stride Rite store or at Striderite.com, engages with us on one of our social media channels, or shops for our brand at one of our great retail partners, she will immediately see and feel the energy and relevance of Built for Childhood to her life,” said Ira Hernowitz, president of Stride Rite, a division of Wolverine World Wide Inc. “It reflects our commitment to delivering everyday solutions for parents in children’s footwear.”
On the product front, Built for Childhood will see the brand stepping up design innovation under its Made2Play collection, which offers comfort-driven, machine-washable styles for school and playtime. New product offerings will emphasize durability features and easy-care solutions for the demands of real life. To garner attention for the collection, Stride Rite is investing in a major consumer advertising campaign for back-to-school that will target parents nationwide via TV, online video, video on demand, print, social and digital channels.
In addition, Stride Rite is expanding its retail distribution with an exclusive new partnership with Target. The Surprize by Stride Rite collection is rolling out this week to Target stores nationwide, as well as Target.com. Priced from $20 to $30, the 23-style collection features a mix of athletic and fashion-casual styles for toddlers and preschoolers. “In speaking with our customer base, we know that Target is absolutely their go-to store — it’s where they shop everyday,” Hernowitz explained. “Target offers a great combination of style and affordability that moms love, so we’re really excited about this partnership.”
In its own network of retail shops, Stride Rite is introducing new services and technologies, including in-store ordering, real-time digital signage and an enhanced customer-loyalty program. The brand also is experimenting with self-serve concepts in select locations. “In line with our new branding, we’re looking at new ways to make our stores fresher and more exciting for shoppers,” noted Hernowitz.
To elevate its social media profile, Stride Rite has tapped designer and parenting guru Rosie Pope as brand ambassador. Pope, a mother of four who starred in the Bravo reality series “Pregnant in Heels,” will provide original content across multiple digital platforms, including videos on various parenting topics and columns such as “Rosie’s Picks,” “Mommy IQ” and “The Rosie Report.”
“Rosie is relatable and influential because just like every mom, she has ‘been there and done that. So far, we’re delighted with the results we’ve seen on social media from her content,” Hernowitz said.