The fashion industry, like any other, is competitive.

Even if a company has been around for a long time, new brands continually threaten their existence.

That was the case with Levi’s not so long ago. Despite founder Levi Strauss inventing what we now know as jeans, competitors soon appeared and sales dropped.

For over a decade, Levi’s saw a series of losses.

However, the past few years have seen a resurgence in growth for the company. The key to this success? Some much-needed innovative marketing.

Levi’s – Developing an Innovative Marketing Approach

It goes without saying that, to stay successful, marketing campaigns need to be relevant.

Keeping up-to-date with current trends and bringing an innovative approach to sales are required to draw in customers.

Otherwise, your brand will be lost in a sea of duplicates and fall-behind competitors. So, changing with the times is needed in every sense.

Whether it was the inability to change with time that caused Levi’s decline is hard to say, but when current CEO Chip Bergh joined the team in 2011, a transformation was soon underway. The business was restructured and work started to rejuvenate the company.

Collaborations with celebrities including Justin Timberlake and Karlie Kloss helped grow the brand’s relevance.

In addition, there was a digital makeover, with e-commerce improved and Levi’s Virtual Stylist launched; an online chatbot helping customers to find their perfect pair of jeans.

Whilst both these developments are of significance, they are not unusual among major companies.

Levi’s real strength lies with its changing attitude to the environment.

Levi’s – Recognising the Environmental Issues

The human impact on the environment is something that has been at the forefront of people’s minds in recent years.

The fashion industry is a major polluter and causes a number of environmental issues.

Levi’s is tackling one aspect that most of us would not think about on a day-to-day basis – water consumption.

In 2007, a study carried out by Levi’s revealed that shockingly over 3,000 litres of water was used in the life-cycle of a pair of jeans. This occurred throughout the production process and during washing by customers.

Levi’s Waterless Jeans – The Rise of Water<Less

As a result of the study, Levi’s created their now famous Water<Less jeans.

With an aim to reduce water consumption by up to 96%, the jeans are a hit, with 1 billion litres of water already saved.

The campaign stretches further than just saving water.

It’s about educating consumers and caring for those involved in manufacturing, especially with many manufacturing plants being established in poorer countries.

The Better Cotton Initiative, for which Levi’s is a pioneer member, seeks to reduce water and chemical usage, while also increasing income for workers.

As for customers, new labels encourage minimal washing of jeans, suggesting that you can wear them 10 times at least before washing. CEO Bergh admitted he hadn’t washed his jeans for a year!

The educational element expands to far more than just clothing tags.

Levi’s wants to do good in as many ways as possible.

2015 marked 15 years in partnership with Community Day, an event which sees employers organising volunteer activities over the world. Through this, Levi’s provided water conservation lessons to students in collaboration with Project WET foundation.

Levi’s Waterless – A Positive Impact

Levi’s has shown that it is possible to regain success in the fashion industry through the Levi’s waterless campaign and beyond.

All that is needed is innovative marketing and recognition of what is truly important to people.

Levi’s situation from a few years ago has been reversed and it’s their competitors who are now struggling to keep up.

The author of this article, Megan Harrison of Megan Elizabeth – A Lifestyle Blog, brings a human touch to marketing and business strategy. She is also a part of the Axies Digital team, working with businesses on their brand identity and business awareness.