The amount and diversity of outdoor goods on the worldwide market has grown tremendously in recent years; buyers can choose from a large number of brands. Supply exceeds demand.
To be successful as a brand, a company has to either invest heavily in advertising to draw attention to itself, or have a unique position that is especially relevant to particular consumer groups.
We opted for the latter route and have made sustainability a compelling differentiator from the competition. This strengthens our customers’ trust in the VAUDE brand.
VAUDE wants to make a positive contribution to a better world - that is our vision and our incentive. We publicize both internally and externally how we do this in concrete terms in our company communications. This allows us to position ourselves clearly as a strong and credible brand. In addition, we are pleased when we can be a role model and have a multiplier effect on others. This relates to our suppliers and competitors, to companies in other branches, to our customers and more generally, to the entire target group of outdoor enthusiasts. We are glad that we can contribute to raising awareness in society about sustainability issues.
We at VAUDE see it as our responsibility to provide information for customers in sports retail and in this way, to create a strong awareness of the social and environmental challenges in the production of outdoor gear. We see ourselves in the role of imparting knowledge to our customers and, in addition, of offering solutions to existing problems.
Based on our sustainability activities, we provide sound facts and in-depth background information that is relevant to our customers and may have a positive impact on their purchasing decisions.
In order to measure the effectiveness and efficiency of VAUDE marketing, we are working with key figures. These are used to determine realistic objectives and to measure the increase in efficiency compared with previous years.
On Facebook, we reach our consumers with spectacular nature photography, quotes and messages that demonstrate our appreciation for the outdoors. In 2015, we had 449,670 page interactions (comments, shares, likes and posts likes).
Active on Facebook
With images such as these, we achieve a broad reach and develop a powerful force for our message on Facebook.
In our activities on YouTube, we are interested in changes in the number of subscribers who watch our movies on a regular basis, and the average viewing time per viewer. These figures tell us about the quality of our movies and indicate if action might be needed.
Based on the analysis of hits on our website, we found that the pages on “responsibility” were rarely visited in 2013. Therefore, we revised our online content in 2014 to integrate sustainability issues into our well-visited product pages. In 2015, product pages continued to be the busiest section of our website. This confirms that it is useful to supplement product presentation with environmental and social information. This allows us to reach the consumer directly, to raise awareness and also provide added value.
Product and ecological information at a glance
We have created a stronger link between products and sustainability aspects with central placement and the description of relevant ecological information.
We surveyed retailers and consumers to find out how VAUDE’s activities affect our brand impression. In the past three years, we have participated in or conducted several studies and surveys.
VAUDE initiated the first representative study of the German outdoor market in 2013, Benchmarking Excellence, which was continued in 2015. This was co-initiated by VAUDE. In the Benchex Study, dealers throughout Germany were questioned regarding their satisfaction with 13 manufacturer brands in the following seven categories.
VAUDE once again placed 1st in this study. The dealers rated VAUDE consistently in all categories with the highest score compared to the leading outdoor brands. We are delighted with this fantastic affirmation.
VAUDE was awarded first place in the ranking of overall satisfaction with a rate of 78 percent. In the second survey in 2015, VAUDE was able to defend its top position and even expand it - see also „Customer satisfaction as the highest goal“.
In 2012, we initiated a primary study on brand awareness and on the VAUDE image. This study formed the basis for further investigations, which provide us with information about how to develop our reputation and our image over time.
Due to numerous external brand studies in terms of sustainability - and in light of our recent award Germany's Most Sustainable Brand 2015 - we decided not to repeat this study in 2013, 2014, and 2015.