Lo-res_IS09AV42T-S.JPGWith its product lines of athletic and outdoor gear, Outdoor Voices seemingly competes with companies like Nike and Lululemon. But the company would reject that assessment, pointing primarily to its mission statement and overall goal. Rather than selling clothing and apparel, it asserts that its purpose is to “get the world moving” and “doing things,” as foundational goals for a happy, healthy life. It simply sells some gear for people to wear while they do those things.
In accordance with this view of itself as the meeting place for a lifestyle community of recreationalists, Outdoor Voices also emphasizes enjoyment rather than achievement when it comes to exercising. Nike might promote its performance gear for example, detailing how a particular running tight can help people go faster and farther. Outdoor Voices instead is going to market the ways that its comfortable attire enable people to do fun things outside with their friends, protected from such irritations as chafing or ill-fitting garments.
Matching this view of its offering, Outdoor Voices has started publishing a lifestyle magazine, called The Recreationalist, that is available both online and in print. Although there are plenty of pictures of attractive people wearing Outdoor Voices gear while engaging in exercise-related activities, it also hosts playlists, profiles of interesting people, yoga videos, and articles about community movement events. A printed copy will accompany each order, to encourage buyers to recognize the community that they become a part of once they start wearing Outdoor Voices gear.
If they also visit the publication online, they can of course contribute further to the community, by posting their own pictures, inspirations, or thoughts. Moving on from there, they might link back to the retailer’s main site, to leave a product review or perhaps pick up another pair of leggings with the latest pattern.

Discussion Questions:
1. Is a promise of “doing things” more appealing than a promise of improved performance when it comes to athletic gear?
2. Your answer to the previous question might depend on the target market. How would you define the target market for Outdoor Voices, based on its positioning, as described in this abstract?


Source: Barry Levine, “Outdoor Voices Issues Magazine as Part of New Storytelling Platform,” Retail Dive, July 25, 2019; see also https://www.therecreationalist.com