A recent piece in the Wall Street Journal looked at 15 years of consumer surveys by the research firm MRI Simmons and found what many farm and ranch hands already knew: Levi’s are preferred by liberal-skewing urbanites, and Wranglers are the jeans of choice for rural conservatives.
The Journal article detailed how Levi’s and other brands like Gillette and Nike’s backing of progressive causes has both energized their customer base while turning off some buyers, and companies like Chick-Fil-A (or locally in California, In-N-Out) have done the same with their support for conservative values. Wrangler, the piece notes, avoids overt political messages, opting instead to align itself with rodeo and ranch lifestyle. Which companies do you choose to shop with based on their apparent political, ethical, or social values? Which ones do you avoid?
Americus Reed II, professor of marketing at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business; his research focuses on the role of identity in consumer decision making