Forever21’s new maternity line has sparked major controversy, especially because several of the five states where they are selling the line happen to be states with a high rate of teen pregnancy. From a marketing standpoint, it’s a genius move. The companies that are the most successful know who their target audience is and where to find them. But something about this just seems wrong. Forever21 makes no secret of being a religious oriented company. They even print “John 3:16,” a well-known Bible verse, on the bottom of their shopping bags. Back in 2002, in an article from Shopping Center’s Today, the CFO of the company, Larry Meyer, confirmed the young target consumer of Forever21 by saying, “We keep our inventory extremely fresh, keep attuned to what’s in the market and see what the fashion people are wearing. And we make sure that it’s appropriately priced to meet the pocketbook of an average teen-ager or 21-year-old.”
So there it is – even more reason to believe the maternity line is aimed at a younger generation. I have a feeling Forever21 was saying “OK, so you got pregnant and that was a mistake, but at least you’re keeping the baby. We might as well dress you to look good and save some money so you can buy diapers and formula and other baby stuff.” And although we can berate them for their endorsement of this, it might prove to be a smart move. Here are a list of people who could’ve used this line.
1. Jamie Lynn Spears. Even though the line isn’t available in Louisiana, when she goes to visit big sis Britney in California she could’ve picked up a few cute items.
2. Bristol Palin. Luckily, the line is debuting in her home state of Alaska, she would’ve been a great celeb endorsement seeing as she was all over the news. And remember when her mom was under scrutiny for all those expensive clothes she bought from Neiman Marcus? Her daughter could’ve added some balance to that by sporting some looks by Forever21.
3. Big Love cast. This would be great because all those polygamist pregnant teens can get a much needed makeover. And I wonder if this is another coincidence that the maternity line is going to be sold in Utah.
4. Secret Life of the American Teenager. I doubt you need me to explain this one. But I see a new season filled with some awesome new looks. Also, it should be noted that this show was created by the same person who created 7th Heaven, which is filmed in California and defintely had some pregnant girls.
5. Quinn from Glee. Maybe it would’ve been easier to partake in those performances with pregnant-friendly leggings or maternity underwear. And isn’t Quinn always talking about how she’s broke because her family abandoned her after they found out about her teen pregnancy? Forever21 dropped the ball on that one, seeing as Glee is set in Ohio.
And last but not least, the girls of 16 and Pregnant on MTV are probably going to get lucky with some free goodies from the mega store to give their line some more exposure.
Take a look at new ads promoting the maternity line. Please, share with us your thoughts… we’re dying to hear.[ITPGallery]