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Size inclusivity is one of the hottest topics in today’s fashion industry. From creator trends on TikTok to full-blown brand transformations — like Old Navy’s Bodequality campaign — this idea is popping up all over the fashion world. While there is a clear connection between fashion and size inclusivity, this is a conversation that brands in all industries can and should be engaging in.

Read on to learn how and why size inclusivity has become important to many fashion brands, as well as how non-fashion brands and their customers can benefit from incorporating size-inclusive strategies, tactics and creative.

 

A revolution in the fashion industry

There’s been a revolution in the fashion industry over the last 15-20 years. In the early 2000s, many retailers offered clothing sizes only up to L or occasionally XL, and the plus-size stores that existed (e.g. Lane Bryant and Torrid) were few and far between. This was back before “body positivity” and “real beauty” became buzz words, back when it was rare to see models over a size 0.

Fast forward to today and size inclusivity is woven into the fabric of many fashion brands. Budget-friendly brands like Target and high-end fashion brands like Christian Siriano have evolved their clothing lines to include more sizing options for consumers. The global plus-size clothing market is worth $178 billion, while the US market is worth $24 billion, according to Vogue Business

When it comes to size representation in advertising and marketing, fashion brands are embracing diversity more than ever. Two brands we admire in this space are Thinx (check out their Instagram channel for inspiration) and Aerie (shoutout to the #AerieREAL campaign).

It’s important to note that size inclusion in the fashion industry has traditionally focused primarily on cisgender women, although some brands like Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty — which spotlights plus-size male models — have started to change that. We’re excited to see how brands will evolve to better represent people of all sizes and genders.

 

What happened in the past few decades to bring size inclusivity to the forefront of fashion? 

Much of the work being done today to promote size inclusivity has its roots in the Fat Acceptance Movement, which began in the late 1960s. Since then, an increasing number of people have been advocating for size inclusion. Size inclusivity is also part of a larger movement for more diverse representation of bodies that intersects with race, sex, disability, gender, and more.

Social media has rapidly propelled the movement for inclusivity. A 2016 article from Adweek sheds light on this point:

“On platforms like Instagram and Twitter, women who have for so long felt ignored by mainstream fashion are finally able to have a voice. They're sharing body-positive selfies and hashtags, following plus-size bloggers like GabiFresh and Nicolette Mason (whose massive audiences have led to magazine columns and designer partnerships) and letting brands know exactly what they think.”

Social media has helped publicize the desire for representation and has given consumers an interactive platform they can use to ask brands for it directly.

In addition to advocacy and social pressure from consumers, many fashion brands have begun to engage with size inclusivity because of the financial benefits. In a 2018 interview with Elle, famed fashion designer Christian Siriano said that adding plus sizes to his line tripled his business. And as previously mentioned, the US market for plus-size clothing is worth $24 billion

But the rising popularity of size inclusivity in fashion goes deeper than advocacy, social media or even finance. Size inclusivity is powerful because it resonates with a universal human truth: People want to feel like they belong. As co-founder of Body Confidence Canada said in a BBC interview, “Being able to walk into a store and find your size makes customers feel they are seen.” Feeling seen is a powerful emotional response. It’s the kind of thing that can positively impact someone’s personal life and their purchasing decisions. From this perspective, size inclusivity is a win-win.

 

All brands should care about size inclusivity 

If you don’t work with or own a fashion brand, you may at this point be wondering how size inclusivity applies to your brand. Clearly, there’s a connection between fashion and size. Clothing items are almost always differentiated by this characteristic. But what if you sell a product or service that’s less clearly related, or appears to be completely unrelated? Should size inclusivity still factor into your marketing strategy?

Yes. The reality is that people of all sizes drive cars, wear perfume and buy houses. People of all sizes travel the world and go to concerts. Someone who wears a size 0 is no more or less likely to need glasses than someone who wears a size 24. Muscle mass doesn’t determine your taste in toothbrushes. So, why is there such a small range in the bodies we see in advertisements for these products?

 

Addressing popular arguments against size inclusivity

Argument 1: Showing bigger people in the media promotes poor health and glorifies obesity.

In an article about a Sports Illustrated fashion show that included plus-size models, BBC News quoted Dr. Brad Frankum, president of the Australian Medical Association in New South Wales, saying:

“If we send very overweight or obese people down the catwalk modelling clothes, what it is saying, in a way, is that we are celebrating obesity. I think that is dangerous because we know it is a dangerous health condition.”

This argument is erroneous for several reasons. First, it’s impossible to determine someone’s physical health by looking at their size alone. Size does not tell us how often a person works out or what their diet, blood pressure, etc. is. Second, this argument fails to take into account healthy reasons for weight gain. Someone might gain weight as the result of switching between antidepressants or trying to work on an eating disorder. Some disabilities are also associated with weight gain, and that’s certainly not a good reason to exclude someone from representation. Third, while there is no strong evidence to support the idea that representing larger bodies is “dangerous,” there is ample evidence to show that size stigma has harmful effects. Examples can be found here:

 

Argument 2: It’s not fine to be fat.

This language is taken word for word from the headline of a 2018 opinion piece from The Guardian. Journalist Lizzie Cernik writes:

“…as we move away from the skinny goals of the mid-2000s and embrace different shapes and sizes, one group of campaigners has taken things a step too far. Fronted by plus-sized models and social media influencers, the fat acceptance movement aims to normalise obesity, letting everyone know that it’s fine to be fat.”

Who gets to decide which bodies are “fine” and “not fine”?

Cernik presents being fat as a moral failing. This ignores the reality that size varies for so many different reasons. It’s also body shaming, which never feels good to the person being shamed, and has proven negative health side effects, like increased rates of depression and anxiety.

As advertisers and marketers, is this the attitude we want to show towards our current and potential customers? We think not.

But let’s remove emotion from the equation for a moment. Consider the average American consumer. What do they look like? The CDC states that 73.6% of adults ages 20 and up are “overweight, including obesity.” If we do not include overweight and/or obese individuals in our marketing and advertising, we are excluding almost three-quarters of American adults from representation. This does not seem like good business sense.

Argument 3: Beauty matters and straying from beauty norms in a brand’s marketing will negatively impact the perceived attractiveness of its products.

We agree that beauty is often important in advertising and marketing, and we also believe that beauty takes countless shapes, forms and sizes. Only viewing beauty through societal norms is limiting.

Additionally, beauty trends and perceptions are changing all the time. Renaissance paintings portray very different body ideals from magazine covers. These days, “thick” figures are popularly seen as attractive. Dad bods are celebrated. Un-Photoshopped belly rolls are lauded. Size inclusivity is in.

 

Argument 4: My customers don’t care about size inclusivity.

Tennis legend Billie Jean King said, “You have to see it to be it.” If people can’t see themselves in our campaigns, if they can’t relate to the people we show using our products and services, how are they supposed to connect with our brand? And if they don’t connect with our brand, why would they want to buy what we’re selling? More and more consumers are looking for authenticity and connection, and diverse representation is one way to achieve this.

Here are some things your brand can do to get involved with size inclusivity, no matter which industry it is in:

  • Use size inclusive stock imagery and footage. Intentionally search for images that include people of varying sizes. Check out AllGo for free plus-size stock photos. AllGo also offers inclusive design consulting services.
  • Work with models of all different sizes. Unsure where to look? L'Officiel has a great list of inclusive modelling agencies. IMG models recently created a division called Brawn that represents plus-size male models. You might also consider scouting models on social media by searching popular hashtags like #SizeInclusive and #InclusiveFashion.
  • Partner with influencers who reflect a range of sizes. Again, using relevant social media hashtags can help with your search.
  • Consider talking about size inclusivity on social media (if it feels on brand and authentic). If your brand has a good track record of being size inclusive with its products, services or representation, consider sharing why it matters to your brand on social media. Another way to join the conversation is to kindly but firmly shut down body shaming when you see it in the comments on your social posts.
  • Stay on top of size-inclusive trends across industries. Don’t be afraid to look to other brands for inspiration! While the fashion industry is a great place to start, there are also brands in other industries putting out great size-inclusive work (shout out to Sephora).
  • Avoid body shaming and weight-related jokes in your campaigns. No matter what your intentions are, body shaming and jokes about size are almost guaranteed to offend someone. And since the majority of Americans are now considered overweight, as previously mentioned, you could end up offending a lot of someones.
  • Think about how you can make your workplace more size inclusive. This might look like offering more sizes for company clothing or choosing office furniture that accommodates higher weight limits. 

In the past few years, many brands have made efforts to increase representation in their marketing and advertising campaigns, but few outside of the fashion industry have made size inclusivity a priority in these efforts. Can your brand help lead the way?

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In our continuing series of examining Google Search Trends to gain insights into the top keywords queried in the USA, we present our findings for October 2022. Every day, we capture the top three keyword phrases in terms of search volume as reported by Google Trends (US Only). Each term has an estimated query volume attached to it, which we also record. The number scale tops out at 10,000,000+ with a lower limit of 200,000+ (sometimes 100,000+). After the conclusion of the month, we look at the phrases we collected along with their volumes to get an understanding of what drove queries for the month. Harvesting Search Queries in October 2022 Autumn 2022 is in full effect across the USA last month and we followed along, recording the top queried keyword phrases each day. Looking at our collection, we see interest in Halloween entertainment options, dreams of big lottery wins, and concerns about tech companies.  With the MLB playoffs, College and Pro Football games, and the NBA season starting up again, we collected a large number of keyword phrases related to sports. Lastly, the two events that best captured the moment in time that was October 2022: McDonalds introduced Happy Meals for adults and a gamer revealed his face. People showed their quest for knowledge of both these things via Google search and the AMP Agency team was there to witness it. The Day of The Dead Doodle We almost got through the whole month without seeing a keyword phrase queried more than 10 million times within a day.  On the last day of October, Google changed its logo and we got our top phrase of the month by query volume: Day of the Dead - 10/31/2022 - 10,000,000+ queries Clicks on the logo sent people to the results page for “Day of the Dead” as a celebration of a holiday  widely observed in Mexico. October 2022 Entertainment Options Thursday the 13th was the day to learn more about the films and TV shows that were made for frights. Halloween Ends - 10/13/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries The Watcher - 10/13/2022 - 500,000+ queries Michael Myers is back for another installment of the Halloween movie series and home ownership is made scarier when letters arrive in the mail in the Netflix show, The Watcher. Yes, even scarier than the utility bills. Swifties were excited about a new album and Heidi Klum dressed as a worm. Taylor Swift - 10/20/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Heidi Klum - 10/31/2022 - 500,000+ queries Taylor Swift’s Midnights album was released on the 21st and Heidi Klum hosted her first Halloween party since 2019 and was dressed extremely realistically as a human-sized worm. It’s another great sign that things are getting back to a post-pandemic reality.  Powerball Fever In October, they kept drawing numbers and they kept finding no winners. With no winners, the jackpot kept getting larger and so did the search interest. Powerball - 10/25/2022 - 500,000+ queries Powerball - 10/27/2022 - 500,000+ queries Powerball - 10/29/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries There’s definitely a correlation to the size of the jackpot and the number of queries.  When there is a chance to win a billion dollars (or close to it, after taxes), “Powerball” makes the daily top 3 in Google Trends. Two Big Reveals The gaming YouTuber Dream decided to reveal his face after years of concealing it and McDonalds released a Happy Meal made for adults that feature collectables from the streetwear brand, Cactus Plant Flea Market: Dream face - 10/1/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Cactus Plant Flea Market - 10/3/2022 - 1,000,00+ queries Dream’s face reveal was a big deal.  According to People.com, the video where he showed his face for the first time on YouTube generated over 21.9 million views and 2.5 million likes in less than a day.  Happy Meals for Adults launched with figurines designed in collaboration with CPFM and clearly people were excited to learn more about them. Politics Here and Across The Pond In the US, debates between candidates running for Senate seats drove people to search. Warnock, Walker debate - 10/14/2022 - 200,000+ queries Fetterman - 10/25/2022 - 500,000+ queries We safely predict we’ll see more query volume for keyword phrases related to the midterm elections next month. Stay tuned. Search interest in UK politics continued in October with the appointment of a new Prime Minister. U.K. Prime Minister - 10/19/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Rishi Sunak - 10/23/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries After Liz Truss stepped down from the post, Rishi Sunak officially became the incumbent Prime Minister on October 25th, 2022. October 2022 Tech News There were three notable queries related to tech companies from our collection last month: Amazon Prime Day - 10/10/2022 - 200,000+ queries Meta stock - 10/26/2022 - 500,000+ queries Elon Musk - 10/26/2022 - 500,000+ queries There was another Amazon Prime Day in October 2022 although the search interest related to this one wasn’t as large as the one that occurred during the summer: Maybe one Prime Day per year is enough?   The other two tech-related keyword phrases were a bit more gloomy as Meta released its third quarter earnings on the 26th, which caused the stock of Facebook’s parent company to fall sharply. On the same day, Elon Musk finalized his purchase of Twitter. What will the future hold for either of these properties?  Whatever happens, people will be searching for answers. The Collegiate Gridiron Roundup Sports-related queries took up the majority of our collection from October 2022.  Here are the top college football keyword phrases: Georgia football - 10/1/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Alabama football - 10/8/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Tennessee football - 10/8/2022 - 200,000+ queries Texas Longhorns football - 10/8/2022 - 200,000+ queries Alabama football - 10/15/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Clemson football - 10/22/2022 - 500,000+ queries Since these keyword phrases were all queried on Saturdays, the intent behind them is most definitely game related.  Just The Top NFL Queries If Saturdays are for college football, then Sundays are for the NFL.  And Mondays.  And Thursdays. Dallas Cowboys - 10/2/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Chiefs - 10/2/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Vikings - 10/2/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries 49ers - 10/3/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Tom Brady - 10/4/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Broncos - 10/6/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Packers - 10/9/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Bengals - 10/9/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Bears - 10/13/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Cowboys - 10/16/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Broncos - 10/17/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Christian McCaffrey - 10/20/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Saints - 10/20/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Dallas Cowboys - 10/23/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Steelers - 10/23/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Patriots - 10/24/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Tampa Bay Buccaneers - 10/27/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Tom Brady - 10/27/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Buffalo Bills - 10/30/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Eagles - 10/30/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Vikings - 10/30/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries There were more NFL related queries collected last month but we’re only publishing the phrases that were queried more than a million times during a 24 hour period.  This list is long enough! Major League Baseball Is Still Interesting The MLB playoff got a lot of attention from what was reported in Google Trends Aaron Judge - 10/4/2022 - 500,000+ queries Mets - 10/7/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Phillies - 10/7/2022 - 500,000+ queries Astros - 10/11/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Dodgers - 10/11/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Phillies - 10/14/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Yankees - 10/15/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Yankees - 10/16/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Phillies - 10/18/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Padres vs Phillies - 10/21/2022 - 500,000+ queries World Series - 10/28/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries Astros - 10/31/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries The eventual winner of the World Series will be revealed in our next report - no spoilers! A New NBA Season The 2022-23 season kicked off in October. Before the games started, Draymond Green made headlines for getting into a fight with one of his teammates: Draymond Green - 10/5/2022 - 500,000+ queries Draymond Green - 10/7/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries The rest of the NBA-related queries had more to do with games than individual players. NBA - 10/18/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Lakers - 10/18/2022 - 500,000+ queries Suns - 10/19/2022 - 200,000+ queries Lakers - 10/21/2022 - 500,000+ queries The volume of NBA queries will pick up in March 2023 and will continue increasing in interest until the Finals in June. Is European Soccer’s Popularity Apparent To You? Finally, Keywords related to European football matches continue to appear in the top 3 of Google’s daily trends.  Here’s the full list of phrases. Man City vs Man United - 10/1/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Man City vs Copenhagen - 10/5/2022 - 200,000+ queries Chelsea vs Milan - 10/5/2022 - 200,000+ queries Arsenal vs Liverpool - 10/9/2022 - 500,000+ queries Barcelona vs Inter - 10/12/2022 - 500,000+ queries Rangers vs Liverpool - 10/12/2022 - 200,000+ queries Real Madrid vs Barcelona - 10/15/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries Manchester United - 10/19/2022 - 200,000+ queries Chelsea vs Man United - 10/22/2022 - 500,000+ queries The popularity of this non-American sport is quite apparent in search trends. The team at AMP Agency wonders when there will be more domestic coverage of these games.  Perhaps soon is likely the answer. Thanks for reading. If you liked this article, we utilize search trends data for all of our clients and we invite you to learn more about our SEO services.

One of our mantras here at AMP is “Question Everything” - we’re practiced at examining our deeply held assumptions and asking - is there a better way? Still, in 2019, even with a relatively flexible work environment, we assumed that “work” meant the 9-5 in-office grind. We never stopped to ask ourselves… “why? And is this really the best model?” Then 2020 and the Covid-19 pandemic hit, and out of necessity we realized there could be a different way to work. Sometimes it takes this level of disruption to jolt us out of our most deeply held assumptions.  But the jolt was effective. As other companies assumed a “return to normal” and continuously planned and pushed back office re-opening dates, AMP exited our four national office location leases. Instead of rushing back to “normal” we wanted to ask ourselves: was the old normal actually working for us anyway? And - what could a better way look like?  For us it was a design question, and the brief was to redesign the way we work. Like any design question, there were a wealth of exciting possibilities and major challenges to overcome. And we needed to start with the humans at the center. What did our clients need from us, and what did our employees need to deliver their best work to them?  The answer was not the status quo. Our people told us loud and clear that they did not want to head back into the office full time. Our employees, our clients, and loads of new research were telling us the benefits of the flexibility of remote work (No commuting! Better work/life integration! Higher productivity!). And as our pandemic-induced remote state chugged along, we also discovered some more surprising insights:   Virtual environments can make collaboration better Before 2020, workers were wasting an average of  9 minutes per meeting just setting up tech - that’s 30% of a half hour meeting, wasted. 40% of workers were wasting up to 30 minutes just searching for an open conference room. Conference calls with a mix of remote and in-person attendees left the people dialing in outside of the office at a disadvantage. At AMP, we were facing these types of pain points all the time, collaborating across four offices with clients all over the country. In this model, the tools meant to help us communicate like we were in person were actually making us feel farther away.  But something interesting happened when suddenly everyone was remote. Conference calls died out in favor of video, and these remote meetings acted as a great equalizer. We could all clearly see each other’s faces, no matter where we were zooming in from. Disembodied voices we’d been working across offices with for years became - perhaps paradoxically - more tangible humans. We met their kids, their pets, their roommates. Clients who we previously talked to on the phone and saw in person every few months became regular face-to-face virtual collaborators.  This new type of collaboration unlocked huge benefits. Employees felt more connected to their coworkers in other locations, and the work was thriving. Our client satisfaction metrics went up year over year. We took on global clients and expanded our teams outside of the US. Our business saw growth amidst a period of economic uncertainty. We saw that elements of remote work would be good for our people, our clients, and our business.     Virtual environments have higher intensity Our creativity and collaboration had been unlocked, but we also found the zoom fatigue was real. In the pre-pandemic days, we assumed burnout was directly related to long hours. But a look at our employee’s time-tracking told us that may no longer be the case - even employees not working overtime were feeling the fatigue. It turns out that without those built-in breaks chatting while troubleshooting tech and making coffee in the office kitchen, people’s days working remotely aren’t just more productive, they’re more intensive. With all remote all the time, a 40 hour workweek can start to feel like 50.  If the future of work had remote elements, our new model would need mechanisms in place to prevent burnout.    Career and life phase inform employee needs When the pandemic abated and parents were better able to get reliable school and childcare, AMP parents often preferred remote work. They could have breakfast with their kids without fear of missing the commuter rail. They could pop out to pick up a sick kid without sacrificing hours of their work day. Many, in the middle of their careers, had already built the skills and confidence that could transfer to a new environment. They were thriving in the remote workplace.  But employees at the beginning of their careers were disoriented. They were missing out on the mentorship and guidance you get from observing and interacting with more seasoned co-workers day-to-day, not to mention the camaraderie that comes from early office friendships.  We discovered that people were living in a multitude of personal situations that demanded different work environments in order to thrive.  We needed a model that could provide options for multiple ways of working depending on what employees needed to grow and do their best work.   Our Innovative Approach to Work: AMP Anywhere With these insights, we set out to design a new model based on radical flexibility. We concepted and pressure tested multiple models. And here’s what we’ve launched: a working model we call AMP Anywhere with three core tenets: You can work from anywhere, including from home or in an office – whatever works best for you. Compensation does not depend on or change based on where you live. Even if you’re not near an office location, you’ll have opportunities to collaborate in person on an ongoing basis. Two years after we exited our office leases, our workforce spans across 30+ markets internationally, and we’re reopening smaller flexible spaces in places with high employee concentration -  Boston and New York. This month we rolled out extensive guidelines for communication norms, travel policies, and collaboration opportunities built for a positive, equitable employee experience no matter how you work best, including deep-work focused “Flex Fridays” and events for AMPers to connect in-person with their co-workers across the globe.  Up next: Prototype. Test. Iterate.  We’re not done. We believe this is what the future of work looks like. But we also know that there will be a whole new set of assumptions we develop that we’ll need to break down. Unlike our old working model, the future of work is not static. It’s pliable. It’s evolving. As AMPers, we have a commitment to Question Everything. That means a commitment to continually innovate and improve around the ways we work to make our lives and work truly sing.    Welcome to the future of work. This is our first prototype.  – Greer Pearce, SVP, Brand & Innovation

What is Google’s new update? Google has rolled a new change in the way they present their search results on mobile devices for brand keyword queries. The engine is now prioritizing the site name for brand name queries of a company instead of the contents of the home page’s title tag. For example, before this change, a query of the company name, “rover”, would show the contents of home page’s title tag in Google’s mobile search results: With this change, a query of “rover” on mobile now presents a result with the site name in search results along with the favicon and URL: Currently, site names are available for mobile Google Search results in English, French, Japanese, and German, with more languages to follow in the coming months.   Why is Google using only site names?  Google strives to make it easier for users to find the specific website that is associated with the brand name they are searching for. By using only site names in search results, Google believes it becomes a lot easier to find the specific brand being searched.  These types of keywords are seen as being navigational in nature; that is, a keyword that has the intent of getting a person to the brand’s home page.  This update does not affect results for non-branded or expanded branded keyword queries.  Keeping the company Rover as our example, If one were to search “dog walking” or “rover dog walking”, the title tag’s content will appear as the link text for the home page: How Can You Optimize Your Home Page? Because of this change, AMP Agency recommends brands to add their desired website name using structured data on their site’s home page so it appears properly in Google mobile search results. Specifically, we recommend the use of WebSite schema markup on the home page as depicted in the example below: This implementation allows Google to recognize the “name” property as the site name of the website and provide accurate results on result pages.    The use of structured data is also beneficial for websites with alternate names, like acronyms and shortened names. The Website schema markup allows for these variations to be added to the home page as well.   How can Google understand your site name? Beyond Website schema markup, Google Search does use a number of other sources to determine the site name for a search result including on-page, off-page, and meta data information.   With the addition of schema markup, brands should ensure the headings (H1, H2, etc.), Title Tag, and Open Graph Protocol meta data (og:site_name) are optimized for the same site name.  Keeping up with Google changes are just a part of our SEO Services. Contact us for more information about how we can best position your site for search.