Case Studies

How This Retailer Became a Gen-Z Darling on TikTok

The Desiree Team
December 6, 2023
In recent years, Aritzia has enjoyed an unprecedented rise in annual sales, capturing the attention and wallets of Gen Z on TikTok.However, it wasn't always like this. What is the secret behind Aritzia's successful infiltration into this hard-to-impress demographic?

Just a few years ago, Aritzia was primarily known for its in-store experience, quality products, and reasonable pricing. Fast forward to today, and it has become a social media sensation. The company’s evolution offers a blueprint for mastering the art of online engagement without alienating the in-store customer base.

Aritzia’s digital strategy did not rely on just any platform; it zoned in on TikTok, the social media playground of Gen Z. According to Elizabeth Tan, a digital anthropologist, Gen Z turns to TikTok to make sense of the world. For Aritzia, this platform became a fertile ground for organic and user-generated content. By embracing the quirks and trends of TikTok, Aritzia managed to resonate deeply with its Gen Z audience.

@aritzia If you saw us making this during our lunch break, no you didn’t. #aritzia #aritziastyle #thesuperpuff #icespice ♬ Benjamins Deli - JRitt

In an era where social proof weighs as heavily as product quality, Aritzia's reliance on user-generated content presents a masterstroke. By letting real people, not paid influencers, showcase their products, they managed to instill a sense of authenticity that is particularly appealing to Gen Z. This generation seeks brands that don't just market to them but understand them. Aritzia seems to have found that elusive sweet spot.

Another aspect that sets Aritzia apart is its commitment to inclusivity. By featuring a diverse range of body types, ethnicities, and genders, the brand sends a strong message: Aritzia is for everyone. This has not just been a mere marketing strategy but a genuine reflection of the brand's ethos.

While Aritzia has successfully courted Gen Z, retaining their loyalty will require constant evolution. As TikTok's algorithm changes or as sustainability norms shift, the brand will need to adapt accordingly. The real test will be maintaining its newfound popularity without losing sight of the core values that brought it success in the first place.

Takeaways for Businesses

  1. Pinpoint the Right Platform. Recognise where your target audience spends most of their time and strategize accordingly.
  2. Leverage User-Generated Content. Build authenticity by allowing your customers to be your brand ambassadors.
  3. Commit to Inclusivity and Sustainability. These are not mere trends, but expectations from a new generation of consumers.


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