Ralph Lauren unveils "Polo" app and collaborative Yankees capsule
As part of the iconic American brand’s extended celebrations of its 50th anniversary, Ralph Lauren has announced the launch of an app aiming to build a community for the label’s fans, as well as an upcoming collaboration with the New York Yankees.
Dubbed “Polo”, the free app allows users to shop featured and limited-edition merchandise, while also giving them access to other exclusive content. The platform will host editorial features, as well as an “Ask Ralph” section that gives the brand’s fans the chance to post questions for its eponymous designer, a selection of which will be answered by the man himself every week.
“It’s an opportunity for people who love Ralph Lauren to see products early and get the first peek at them, but it’s also a site by, for, and about our fans,” said Ralph Lauren chief innovation officer David Lauren in an interview with Forbes Magazine. “Very curated, limited-edition stuff that you can’t find online will be here.”
Users can also vote on product designs, with a poll to decide which Polo bear will be featured next on one of the brand’s sweaters already up and running until September 30.
Moving forward, the plan is to make the app increasingly community-focused with the addition of more interactive features, including a forum through which Ralph Lauren fans and collectors can meet and trade merchandise.
The hope is that by offering a new way of interacting with the brand, the platform will not only appeal to existing fans but also attract new customers, particularly among younger consumers.
"We have learned that we are over indexing with millennials and the Polo app pushes us further into the digital space, enabling us to attract a younger digital-savvy audience, while offering the best of Polo with unique content that will appeal to all brand enthusiasts," explained David Lauren in a press release.
The first app-exclusive Ralph Lauren collection – a collaborative capsule with the New York Yankees – already launched on Thursday, just moments after the designer, a long-time fan of the baseball team, threw the ceremonial first pitch at the Yankees v. Red Sox game at Yankee Stadium.
The limited-edition capsule features a satin baseball jacket, a New Era baseball cap, a Wilson baseball glove and a Rawlings commemorative baseball.
The launches of the app and the collaborative collection follow on from the brand’s commemorations of its half centenary which climaxed with a grand 50th-anniversary celebration held in Central Park’s Bethesda Terrace during this month’s New York Fashion Week.
The event, which featured a runway show, a lavish dinner and a digital retrospective exhibition, was attended by a flock of A-listers, from fellow designers such as Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger and Diane Von Furstenberg, to celebrities including Oprah Winfrey, Bruce Springsteen and Jessica Chastain. Exclusive backstage photos from the event are available to view on the new app.
The Ralph Lauren “Polo” app is available to download now in North America via Apple iTunes and is slated to be rolled out globally in 2019.
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