The Digital Collide: A Conversation on Social Authenticity and E-Commerce with Canada Goose Chief Marketing Officer, Kevin Spreekmeester

Posted on November 21, 2014 | Karen Moores | 0 Comments

Recently, Canada Goose has ventured into e-commerce. Tell us about your e-commerce experience and why you are opting to venture into this option for consumer distribution now? 
We’ve been growing rapidly for many years now and as part of that, the demand from consumers to buy directly from us has increased. It’s always been in our sights, but we launched this year because it was the right timing for the brand. We started in Canada because it’s our home, and we will be rolling out e-commerce globally in the years to come.

Since we launched on September 1st, our e-commerce experience has been extremely positive, not just from a sales perspective but also in regards to our relationship with consumers. Having a direct relationship with our consumers ensures a premium brand experience.

 I love your brand. Many Canadians love your brand. What has helped your team tell your story and grow so quickly in this market?
For one, we have an amazing story to tell. We’ve been in this business a long time, outfitting everyone from film crews to Arctic bush pilots to industrial workers in some of the coldest places on Earth. People rely on our jackets to keep them warm because they know they work – they’re the best possible quality, highly technical and all made in Canada, where we know cold better than anyone! We’ve got a deep and strong heritage in making products that work – and because of that, people know us to be the real deal. Surprisingly now, it wasn’t easy breaking into the Canadian market. We actually became popular in Scandinavia first, because the Nordic countries loved the Canadian ideology of the Great White North, and trusted that a Canadian brand could keep them protected from the cold unlike no other. It wasn’t until then that Canadians and the rest of the world started to follow suit.

What is next for Canada Goose and your marketing team in our market? 
We’ll continue to tell our authentic story in creative ways, using different communications channels. We’ll increase focus on videos to bring our stories to life in a more emotional way, and continue to expand and evolve our social media presence as it’s a big part of building relationships – it’s amazing how much we learn from our fans every day.

Your digital storytelling is compelling: incredible visuals and strong content. What best describes your brand in the digital and social space?
For anything we do or create, whether it’s in a store, in print or online, the filter we use is authenticity. We are a brand that tells honest, real stories no matter what the channels and that’s what has helped us create such compelling content. For example, our recent Nordic-focused advertising campaign featured three inspiring explorers with amazing stories to share about how they embrace the outdoors. And then there are our Goose People, like tennis star Milos Raonic, ultra-marathoner Ray Zahab and champion dogsledder Lance Mackey, who provide us with captivating content and visuals to inspire others to pursue their own adventures and accomplishments.

Congratulations on your new facility. How will this facility impact your operations and brand?
Made in Canada is a foundational part of who we are. The new facility has allowed us to double production capacity and immediately create more than 70 new manufacturing jobs in Toronto. We’re committed to rebuilding the apparel manufacturing industry in Canada and creating new jobs on Canadian soil. We’re extremely proud to be the leader in doing that and helping to drive the movement of making things where they should be made. That’s what consumers want — authentic, quality products that are made at home.

Your role at Canada Goose is Chief Marketing Officer – tell us about your role, your team and what your biggest accomplishment was in 2014 in terms of digital, social or e-commerce?
My job is to direct the focus of the department and the vision of the brand strategy. Our team is growing rapidly and our department evolves every day. We have an amazing team with very diverse expertise, but what is common is a group of people with a tremendous passion for the brand and dedication to telling our amazing stories around the world.

How does Canada Goose stay true to its brand roots through digital branding and advertising? Your images all have an organic, natural feel. 
It’s really about having the discipline to say ‘no’ to something that will take us away from our roots, no matter how tempting. We’re an authentic brand and we always have been, and so if it doesn’t feel natural, organic or true to who we are, we’re not going to pursue it. It’s important to have a clear understanding of who you are and what your fans want you to be…and then it’s about staying disciplined.

Photos by JJ Thompson
Photos by JJ Thompson

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