KIDBOX has delivered a more personal touch to its shopping experience with the launch of three private label brands. The new lines are designed to be curated based on the personalities of children wearing the company’s apparel. The brand lines — Miki B., Kid’s Club and Baby Basics — complement the more than 130 premier brand partners in the KIDBOX portfolio and speak to the four style personality types that KIDBOX has found children identify with most — City Cool, Sporty Athletic, Modern Casual, and Classic Preppy (Kid’s Club).
The new brands launched in August 2018, just six months after initial product design was completed. The three new brand lines represent between 15% and 20% of the retailer’s total assortment, according to Miki Berardelli, CEO.
“The development of our exclusive brands was really a result of just listening closely to our customer and what they were looking for more of,” said Berardelli in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. “Instead of looking at what’s walking the runway or what’s being developed or designed for men and women in the marketplace, and then adjusting that into a child’s mind, we’re actually listening to our customers and developing a line based on their input and feedback. It’s turning the whole product development and seasonal collection development upside down.”
To discover which of the four personality types the child fits into, shoppers can fill out a quiz answering questions on the child’s age, name, sizes, specific look, styles and colors to avoid, favorite retailers to shop at and attributes that make the child special such as “artistic” and “bookworm.” The company surveys its customers online regarding products and experiences, and regularly creates word clouds based on responses to better determine assortment and experience.
“We get a sense of how they define themselves and the type of looks and items they gravitate to,” Berardelli said. “That data is all fed into a proprietary algorithm that hits against our product catalog and serves up the perfect box for a size-7 sporty boy, for example, to our styling team.”
Members of the KIDBOX product design team previously worked with other brands including Tory Burch, Burberry, Bonobos, and J.Crew. They use the style personalities to guide them through every step of the creation process, from fabric and color to pattern and cut.
Kids Have A Say In Product, Social Good
KIDBOX highly values insights from its target audience. Its Kids Board of Directors helps advise the company on children’s style and current apparel trends, as well as identify new ways to give back to their local communities. In its second year, the Board of Directors includes 12 children between the ages of 8 and 14. One of the projects the group has been working on, with guidance from KIDBOX, is conceptualizing and executing a creative community service initiative in their hometowns.
“Children have a voice,” Berardelli said. “They have unlimited ideas and they certainly have a point-of-view. They love to get dressed and express their individuality and personal sense of style, and it’s really important to us that their voices are heard and that their fingerprints are all over everything we do.”
The KIDBOX team started the Kids Board of Directors before establishing an adult Board of Directors for the company, Berardelli said during a keynote at Shop.org 2018 in Las Vegas.
KIDBOX Kicks Off The Holiday Season Early With Back-To-School, Uniform Boxes
For the back-to-school season, KIDBOX released its own Back-to-School Box, and even partnered with French Toast, a seller of uniforms and schoolwear, to create a limited edition Uniform Box. The decision was designed to make it easier for parents to save money while choosing kid-friendly outfits every morning.
“Back-to-school is sort of our holiday,” Berardelli said. “It’s a major shopping event for parents in getting their children outfitted for the season. We were able to launch this back-to-school season with the largest collection of brands we’ve had to date.”
For every Uniform Box ordered (and for all boxes in general), KIDBOX donated a new uniform to a child in need through its partnership with Delivering Good. The partnership had a goal of helping provide children with the confidence they need as they start the new school year, and was the latest example of the retailer’s continued social good efforts. In two years, KIDBOX has donated $8.5 million in the form of clothing to children in need. The company partners with four different charities every season.
“When we launched the company, we had a social mission at our core, and it’s always been our intention to pass off our efforts to help children in need,” Berardelli said. “It’s paramount to us to raise awareness among children about the importance of giving back. We prompt them to tell us where to allocate the goods — it could be a charity that supports children living in foster care, a charity that supports a child who has one or both parents incarcerated, or a charity for children who have lost their home in a hurricane, flood or fire. We’re hearing back from our parent customers that they’re starting conversations with their children about the importance of giving back earlier in the child’s life than they would have otherwise because of the KIDBOX shopping experience.”