Cotton or Nothing: How consumer research created an experiential campaign for a natural fabric

Geoffrey Precourt

In September 2013, in the middle of New York City – at the peak time of that city's Fashion Week – a parade of mannequins interrupted the carefully scripted annual fashionista celebration. "Wear Cotton. Or Wear Nothing At All," the march of naked plastic bodies announced.

Cotton or Nothing

It was a bold, aggressive assault on an industry that had stepped away from quality materials even as it marched to a series of stylistic trends. And, according to Cotton Incorporated, the not-for-profit trade organization, the assembly wasn't just for the trade: "We were speaking directly to consumers," Kimberly Kitchings, vice president corporate strategic planning and program metrics at Cotton Incorporated told a "Consumers Speak: Are You Listening? Linking Satisfaction to Brand Perception & Loyalty" break-out session at The Market Research Event – a conference run by the Institute for International Research and held in Nashville in October 2013. In doing so, she added, "We believe we're going to improve overall customer satisfaction" with the entire apparel industry."