SmartWool Cracks Top 50 Brand List in Sporting Goods Brand Strength Study

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SmartWool ranks 8th overall in Product Quality

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo. (June 17, 2014) – A recent “Brand Strength Report for 2014” study by the SportsOneSource Consumer Research Group shows that SmartWool now ranks as one of the top 50 sportswear and apparel brands in the U.S. This marks the first time that SmartWool has made the list, according to a proprietary Brand Strength Index (BSI) rating system developed by SportsOneSource over seven years ago. SmartWool is the only Merino-based performance brand to join the ranks of Nike, Adidas, The North Face, and Vans on the top 50 list.

“SmartWool enjoys immense brand loyalty within core snow, outdoor and run channels,” says Mark Satkiewicz, SmartWool’s president. “But what this study confirms is that we are successfully scaling SmartWool’s brand promise of uncompromising innovation and quality while resonating with a wider spectrum of consumers.”

The 2014 report ranks SmartWool 47th on the overall list, just behind PowerBar and ahead of Toms, Keen and Garmin. However, consumers rated SmartWool eighth overall for “Product Quality” among apparel makers, placing the Colorado-based brand behind Oakley and ahead of Patagonia and Under Armour in the top 10. The North Face, Carhartt and Columbia were the top three brands, respectively, in the “Product Quality” category.

“A top-10 result in ‘Product Quality’ just means that we are doing our job,” adds Satkiewicz. “We work every day to earn the trust and loyalty of consumers who prioritize quality apparel. Our 100% Satisfaction Guarantee delivers on this commitment.”

The SportsOneSource Consumer Research Group developed its Brand Strength Index around four key criteria: consumers’ uncompromising commitment to the brand and respondents’ likelihood to purchase, as well as aided and unaided brand awareness. The 2014 report includes results derived from an April 2014 online survey polling 4,201 respondents on the brand strength of more than 300 athletic, outdoor and sportsman’s brands. SmartWool’s inclusion among the top 50 brands on the index, and its scoring in the top 10 for “Product Quality,” are testaments to the company’s 20-year heritage as a leader in premium Merino socks, apparel and accessories.

For more information on the “Brand Strength Report for 2014,” including methodologies, visit SBG Weekly’s page on issuu.com

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About SmartWool:Based in Steamboat Springs, Colo., SmartWool is a 20-year-old apparel brand whose products are inspired by living and playing in the mountains. All SmartWool® products come with a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee and are created to get the most out of the inherent benefits of Merino wool. For information on the full range of SmartWool products or to find a dealer near you, please log onto www.SmartWool.com. SmartWool is a wholly owned subsidiary of VF Corporation. For event and company updates visit us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/smartwool or Twitter: http://twitter.com/smartwooligans.

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