Seemingly out of nowhere, the above patch–and the winter parka it’s attached to–is everywhere in NYC.

I feel like it was just a year or two ago when everyone was walking around with the North Face logo on the right rear shoulder blade of their coats.  Now this.

What explains the popularity of this nearly 60-year-old brand?  And why now?  Could it be

  • The brand’s long-standing relationship with Hollywood, which , as I was told by Alex Thomson, the brand’s senior marketing communications manager, has made it the “unofficial jacket of film and TV sets everywhere it’s cold.”  In numbers, that’s over 200 productions including Game of Thrones, World War Z, Fargo, Captain America, Man of Steel, and the list really does go on.
  • Celebrities such as Daniel Craig have taken to wearing the jacket
  • It made the cover of Sports Illustrated‘s 2013 Swimsuit issue as pretty much the only thing covering Kate Upton.

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  • People have just come to the conclusion that Canadians might know a thing or two about staying warm.

What makes it even more curious is brand’s price point.  At prices ranging from roughly $600-$1,200, these aren’t cheap jackets.  Compare that to $200-$300 for their competitors from North Face, Patagonia and the like.  People are willing to pay a premium.

I’m trying to figure out why this brand is popping now.  And I’m not the only one who’s noticed.  Places like The Daily Beast, and more recently The Globe & Mail and Crain’s New York.

Still, there are so many questions:

  • Was it the cumulative effect of all of those product placements in big budget films?
  • Is Canada Goose somehow incentivizing sales associates at its retail partners to push its product?
  • Was it Kate Upton on the Sports Illustrated cover?
  • Did brands like North Face, Patagonia and Columbia all drop the marketing ball in some critical way?
  • Can we just chalk this success up to brilliant marketing?
  • Is it simply price and positioning in the luxury space?

Any ideas?  How do you make sense of the brand’s seeming ubiquity?  Some strange alchemy of meteorology, marketing, and an improving economy? Share your thoughts below and I’ll choose the best to include in the post that makes it to Forbes.

 

Posted by Rob Fields

Observer. Curator. Marketer. Dot connector.