Abercrombie & Fail?

Abercrombie & Fail?

abercrombie-smallIf ever there were an epic social media fail, this is it.

First, Abercrombie & Fitch’s CEO states that they don’t make clothes in sizes larger than 10 (for women; apparently men go all the way up to XL) because, well, I’ll let you read it for yourself, if you haven’t already:

“In every school there are the cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids,” he told the site. “Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong [in our clothes], and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely.” From BusinessInsider.com

Nice, huh? And, I think, ill-advised. Congratulations, sir, for alienating any woman larger than a size 10 (most of the population, that is), who might ever have bought a gift there for anyone else. If I’m not welcome, neither is my money.

Out of curiosity, I checked out their Facebook page, which I won’t link to, so don’t bother clicking the screenshot. They appear to be blithely posting tiny shorts and tank tops for summer as if they are unaware of the controversy. See all those comments? I didn’t read them all, but at least half of the ones I did read were negative.

I suppose the case could be made that it’s OK for them to ignore the flames because they stand by their statements and aren’t sorry for offending those who wouldn’t be their customers anyway. Even so, the discussion between the commenters is hardly anything I’d want on my company page. You’ve got a few A & F supporters telling protesters that if they would eat right and exercise, they might be able to shop there, and things of that sort, which do not breed a positive feeling.


In the interest of full disclosure, I’ve never liked them because of what, in my opinion, are overly-sexualized ads featuring and targeted to kids too young for that sort of thing. And I’m not a prude. But I really, really, really don’t like them now. They have every right to market in any way they wish, and I have every right to ignore them.

I may not be a cool kid, and I may never be skinny enough to shop there, but my money is just as green as it would be if I were a size two.

And it’s going all kinds of elsewhere.

Your thoughts?

2016-06-27T18:32:56+00:00 May 10, 2013|Categories: Blog, Marketing|Tags: , |


  1. Cammy@TippyToeDiet May 10, 2013 at 5:33 pm - Reply

    Well said, Beth! I don’t think I’ve ever walked into one of their stores (wrong demographic on all levels), and it’s certainly not going to happen now.

  2. beth g sanders May 10, 2013 at 5:42 pm - Reply

    Exactly, Cammy. Stupid comments, stupid social media strategy (actually NO social media strategy apparently) and stupid marketing. Ugh.

  3. markolivito May 11, 2013 at 6:59 am - Reply

    Very well done Beth! Unbelievably poor judgement for a big company CEO

  4. beth g sanders May 11, 2013 at 9:17 am - Reply

    Thanks, Mark. I hate the arrogance and discriminatory attitude.

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