As fall quickly approaches, new advertising campaigns are popping up everywhere–the Gap is no exception. In the past, Gap has been known for short, precise tag lines such as “Black is a Color” and “Born to Fit.” But this time has customers a little confused. The news line the company came out with is “Dress Normal.” Gap hired director David Fincher, most known for directing House of Cards, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and Fight Club. In doing this they tried to add “anxiety” to commercials. The company did not want a typical Gap advertisement, but “we [Gap] wanted to tell part of the story and leave a sense of wonder,” said Gap’s Global Chief Marketing Officer, Seth Farbman, who also told Buzzfeed–
“There’s certainly a long tradition at Gap that people come first and that the clothes are there to make you feel like your best self, and we’ve been unapologetic about that for years. ‘Dress Normal’ is a reinforcement of that idea.”
The print ads for the fall include celebrities Anjelica Huston, Elisabeth Moss, Michael K. Williams, Jena Malone and Zosia Mamet. These stars are pictured in everyday scenes. One (below) is resting on a chair. One is a woman walking on a beach, another sitting at a coffee shop. Unlike past Gap ads where models are posing against a simple, colored background, these new ads try to depict people wearing Gap clothes in a normal setting.
The commercials are all in black and white, with the Gap logo at the end in white, aqua, yellow, or pink. This could be a nod to the different colors incorporated in the new fall line. The company, whose average buyer is age 39, wanted to appeal to the Millennials (age 16 to 34) yet still be classic and stay in touch with the older generation of Gap buyers.
Unfortunately, the view of the marketing director is not what is coming across to many customers. According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, normal means “usual or ordinary : not strange.” In a society where everyone strives to be extraordinary and original, it seems like Gap is telling them to be average. While this is not what Gap was trying to go for, it is how a great deal of consumers are interpreting the new campaign.
In my opinion, I can see where Gap is trying to go with this, but it just does not come across as well as I am sure they hoped. The commercials and print ads are very well designed and planned out, but the tag line needs some work.