When season two of “Orange is the New Black” premiered in June, Gilt partnered with the show and Dress for Success on a sale designed to correlate to an episode where the inmates attend a mock job fair.
In the episode, the inmates receive career advice and professional clothing from Dress for Success, a company designed to promote the economic independence of disadvantaged women by providing professional attire, a network of support, and career development tools to help women thrive in work and life.
Netflix approached Gilt about highlighting the episode and the Dress for Success angle and they agreed, offering to donate an item for every item purchased from the sale.
From a marketing point of view, we love this for a few reasons:
1. It creates buzz around “Orange is the New Black” (not that they really needed it).
2. The partnership is good PR for Gilt and drives sales.
3. Best of all, it’s all about giving back and doing something good for other people.
The last point is why this is our favorite TV show/movie shopping collaboration, but we took a look at a few others to see why they worked (or, in a few cases: didn’t).
“Mad Men” and Banana Republic
Probably the most famous of the collaborations, Banana Republic partnered with the iconic show in the fall of 2011 to create a capsule collection inspired by the outfits seen on the show. “Mad Men” Emmy-award winning costume designer Janie Bryant worked with Banana Republic creative director Simon Kneen on the collection and the collection helped Banana Republic post its best first-quarter sales ever.
“American Idol” and Kohl’s
In 2012, “American Idol” whose name can be found on everything from Barbie dolls to McDonald’s Happy Meal toys decided to launch a junior’s clothing line at Kohl’s. The interesting thing? They decided to call it the “Authentic Icon” line and leave out “American Idol” all together. The contestants, however, did wear the clothing and Kohl’s ads promoting the line ran during the show, ultimately driving the youth market into stores.
“Pretty Little Liars” and Aéropostale
When teenagers abandoned the uniform look of clothing with logos, Aéropostale started struggling pretty badly. The “Pretty Little Liars” collection, which debuted in January (two days before the season premiere) was their attempt to lure teenage shoppers back. Each of the pieces was based on one of the four main characters, so teens (or, um, adults) could shop based on whose style they related to best. And shoppers loved that the characters actually wore the pieces on the show. Unfortunately, though the line was a big hit, Aéropostale is still struggling.
“The Fosters,” “Switched at Birth,” “Twisted” and Wet Seal
Last fall, ABC Family teamed up with Wet Seal to create a line of apparel and accessories inspired by characters from three of the network’s popular shows. The “Crush by ABC Family” line was heavily geared towards tweens and juniors and again, characters wore the clothing in the shows for extra promotion.
“The Great Gatsby” and Brooks Brothers
There was a lot of hype building up to Baz Luhrmann’s “The Great Gatsby” starring Leonardo DiCaprio. It was basically impossible to go to a party in the spring/summer of 2013 that didn’t have a 1920s theme. Brooks Brothers capitalized on what they knew would be a huge trend by releasing a line “inspired by the costumes designed by Catherine Martin” for the film. This is a collaboration that made perfect sense; Brooks Brothers was around during the time “The Great Gatsby” takes place and was mentioned in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s writings.
“The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” and CoverGirl
This collaboration is a little weird since one of the themes “The Hunger Games” is warning of the dangers of being shallow, wasteful, and vain, but it also makes perfect sense because despite all of that, women love makeup. And they love spending money on makeup. The “Capitol Collection” includes product lines that were used on the stars in the actual films and the campaign offered tips for how to get each district’s look.
“Spring Breakers” and Opening Ceremony
“Spring Breakers” had a racy plotline and even racier costumes so it made perfect sense for Opening Ceremony to collaborate with the film to launch an exclusive collection inspired by the film. The line was available the same day the movie came out and was a hit with fashion bloggers who said the pieces were worth the investment.
“The Fast & the Furious” and Guess
Guess partnered with Universal pictures in 2013 to create a “G by Guess” capsule collection inspired by “Fast & Furious 6.” The limited-edition line had graphic tees for the boys and a studded motorcycle jacket for the ladies. And, of course, it launched right before the movie came into theaters.
“The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” and H&M
Who better to do a collection inspired by “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo’s” anti-heroine than a Swedish retailer? The pieces were all designed in collaboration with the film's costume designer, Trish Summerville, and were meant to emulate Lisbeth Salander's outfits, but tweaked for the mainstream consumer in order to ensure they’d fly off of shelves.