17th June 2020

Put your money where your mouth is

 Grace Marsh, client manager, talks about brand values and shopping with a conscience.

I had been umming and ahing about pressing the buy button in my Gymshark shopping basket for a while. The big question – do I splash my cash on fancy gym gear just to work out at home?

But on Thursday last week, I finally did it. The trigger point was a LinkedIn post from Gymshark’s Chief Brand Officer Noel Mack – it was enough to convince me Gymshark was the brand for me – great design and great values.

Noel reported that a member of the Gymshark team had seen a news report of a young man in the Bronx, New York cleaning up the streets with his friends following a protest the night before. He was wearing a Gymshark branded hoodie. Gymshark did some digging and found the man’s purchase history which dated back to 2018 – then refunded the lot.

At lunchtime, I placed my order.

It’s easy for brands to overthink how best to connect with customers, especially in challenging times like those we currently face. However, a simple act of kindness like this goes a long way — actions show commitment and are often more meaningful than words.

Gymshark is not pitching itself as a purpose-led brand per se (yet) but this act of decency really is a case of actions speaking louder than words and proves their commitment to a better future – which their core values wink towards.

It’s also a great example of values going to the core of the brand too – where employees are connected, compassionate and living the brand from the inside out.

I already knew Gymshark sold good quality clothing, that they cared about sustainability and looking after their employees, but so do many other gym apparel brands. What made this different was that their commitment to giving back to their customers and carrying out such a positive action resonated with me. And at a time when competition is high and consumers are looking for authenticity, forging an emotional connection with prospective and current customers is more valuable than ever.

It was a great social share and I hope Gymshark will inspire other brands to evaluate how they think and act and, importantly, whether they could do better.