Levi's is going all in to get voters out -- casting their ballots on Election Day. Ahead of National Voter Registration Day on Sept. 25, the 165-year-old denim brand is debuting a new TV spot encouraging voting. It will also host voter registration booths in select stores and sell a limited edition "Vote" T-shirt.
The Levi's push is a concerted effort from a brand that hasn't shied away from controversial issues. Earlier this month, Chief Executive Chip Bergh penned a letter in Fortune magazine pledging the brand's support in ending gun violence. "As a company, we have never been afraid to take an unpopular stand to support a greater good," Bergh wrote.
Taking a stance on voting could help the San Francisco-based apparel brand connect with younger consumers, experts say. Larry Chiagouris, professor of marketing at Pace University's Lubin School of Business, notes that voting registration campaigns can help a brand appeal to a certain group of consumers without "antagonizing other segments." He notes that it's an issue that appeals to all.
Younger consumers "have a high lifetime value and that is why all [these companies] are targeting them," Chiagouris says. He notes that the challenge will be how Levi's will differentiate itself from others who are also trying to "rock the vote" with millennials.
Levi's new messaging is one of inclusivity and comes while the country is divided by politics, most recently at odds over the Brett Kavanaugh Supreme Court nomination. The 30-second spot showcases a diverse group of Levi's-clad individuals taking to the polls. Set to the song "Think," by Aretha Franklin, who died last month, the commercial ends with text that reads, "It's your voice. It's your vote."
"Levi's is all about authentic self-expression," said Jen Sey, senior VP and chief marketing officer of Levi Strauss & Co. in a statement. "And there is no purer form of self-expression than voting."
The brand worked with FCB West on the new push. FCB has been Levi's agency of record since 2014. According to an FCB spokeswoman, the agency has never worked with Levi's on a voting campaign prior to this year.