On Monday, Lane Bryant launched its “I’m No Angel” advertising campaign. The ads promote the brand’s Cacique lingerie line. Lane Bryant is taking a stand against the false perception that most or all women have perfect bodies like the Victoria’s Secret’s Angels.
The brand’s website says, “The women who wear Cacique know that sexy comes in many shapes and sizes. They’re no angels—and they own it.” The print and video ads feature plus-sized models like Ashley Graham, who has modeled for the brand before, while the campaign invites other women to join in redefining what sexy is by posting and using the hashtag #ImNoAngel.
Lane Bryant is paralleling the VS Angels in another way by introducing each of the six plus-size models and telling their individual stories. Victoria’s Secret hasn’t had much of a response, except for continuing to post photos and videos of the VS Angels.
In terms of public relations, running off of what Victoria’s Secret is doing is brilliant. Considering VS is the most popular lingerie brand in the nation, Lane Bryant will get more impressions and media attention by creating its own “Angel” brand. And at the moment if you search “Victoria’s Secret Angels” in Google, some of the first news results are about Lane Bryant. And although the campaign is paid media, there will most likely be positive feedback and negative backlash for Lane Bryant. Therefore, public relations strategies and tactics must be applied to handle the interactions from its publics.
The company has already made one smart PR move: CEO Linda Heasley gave an interview explaining the campaign’s intentions.
Many women are proud of what Lane Bryant is doing and have joined in the campaign through Twitter and Instagram. The brand has also created a Tumblr page devoted to the #ImNoAngel campaign to feature all of the women joining in.
But there are also critics saying the Lane Bryant is trying to body shame others who don’t look like the plus-size models.
I don’t think that Lane Bryant is trying to body shame anyone. I think they’re trying to show that yes, there may be some women who look like Victoria’s Secret models, but that the majority of women do not have perfect bodies. On the other hand, Lane Bryant probably should have taken into consideration that VS sells lingerie and clothing that will fit women of many sizes. Either way, running off the popular Angel theme is earning Lane Bryant a lot of attention.