Three “aha” moments emerged which guided strategy development
Growth without meaning is unsustainable
Vans was growing, and the company assumed the growth was driven by brand. But we determined that it was due to style trends and the shifting economy, Vans being cheaper than most high-end sneakers. People didn’t understand the brand, and styles shift, so this was a clear indication that Vans needed to focus on and tell the story of the brand
Vans was losing its anchor in performance
Nike’s SB skate line had changed the game and made performance a desirable attribute for skate shoes. They raised the bar for performance expectation, and Vans realized it needed to catch up.
In extreme sports, you can’t half-ass it
Vans was stretching beyond skate (e.g. snow, board, BMX), but there wasn’t enough focus, so the brand seemed to be just dabbling in these sports. In extreme sports, consumers don’t trust brands that dabble.