A Chief Marketing Officer who works with 12,000 luxury brands says consumers are caught up in 'logo-mania,' and it's helped a famously flashy brand make a huge comeback

Gucci optical.JPGCourtesy of ModeSens

  • Italian luxury fashion brand Gucci has made a comeback in recent years.
  • That's according to ModeSens CMO Krystle Craycraft, who works with 12,000 luxury brands, ranging from Hermès to Louis Vuitton.
  • According to Craycraft, key factors to the brand's success include the revival of "logo-mania" and an interest in historic brands as both long-time and first-time luxury consumers want to invest in quality craftsmanship.

It's no secret Gucci has made a comeback.

As Krystle Craycraft, Chief Marketing Officer of online fashion assistant ModeSens put it, "Gucci has made a fabulous comeback, and they are maintaining it, which is kind of amazing."

The resurgence for the 98-year-old company arguably began in 2015, when newly named Gucci CEO Marco Bizzarri hired Creative Director Alessandro Michele. The rise in popularity continued through 2018, when the company saw huge growth in online sales and Google's Year in Search report listed Gucci as number five on a list of most searched-for fashion brands. In addition, previous Business Insider reporting showcased Gucci as one of 20 major companies leading the global fashion industry, according to the McKinsey Global Fashion Index.

Read more: Teens are obsessed with Gucci - and it's giving the brand a big boost

Today, Gucci remains one of the hottest fashion brands in the world. Alongside the creative genius of Michele, credit for its popularity goes to millennials and celebrity promotion, along with the revival of 90s logo trends. Ruth La Ferla described logo-mania in her November 2018 New York Times piece "What Gives the Logo Its Legs" and acknowledges Gucci as one of many brands contributing to the ongoing trend.

Gucci beltCourtesy of ModeSens

Craycraft said Gucci remains one of her company's most in-demand brands.

When asked about today's status symbol, she confidently answered with one of the brand's leading accessories: "We have been selling a lot of Gucci belts. It's always changing, but a lot of Gucci belts. People really love them, it's Gucci-mania still ... because it's an affordable piece, and logo-mania has been a trend over the past couple of years."

Gucci belts retail on their site beginning at $350 but can sell for upwards of $1,000. Customers can also turn to sites such as Craycraft's ModeSens, along with competitors Lyst and ShopStyle, all of which catalog locations in which belts may be available for lower prices.

Gucci belt bagCourtesy of ModeSens

"In terms of our consumer base, the majority of our consumers are high-end shoppers," said Craycraft, "But we do still have a contingent that are just buying that one piece or a couple pieces that they really just have to have, and Gucci belts seem to be the ticket for everyone, across all segments."

Alongside belts, the Gucci designs include logo t-shirts, sweatshirts, and bags. Bags range from classic purses with the brand's traditional dark green and red stripe to more trendy, boundary-pushing styles that use bright colors and velvet, something Business Insider's Jessica Tyler observed after visiting a New York store.

Gucci belt & ChokerCourtesy of ModeSens

"I think that while Gucci has some pieces that are out there," said Craycraft, "they also have their timeless, classic bags - and even new styles that still feel timeless. Customers are gravitating towards those styles since they know if they invest in them, they will have those pieces for many years to come."

Despite its comeback, the brand has recently made headlines for one of the latest scandals in the fashion world. On February 6, Gucci issued an apology statement following the release of a $900 wool balaclava sweater that people said resembled blackface. The company removed the sweater from both in-store and online sales. Prada faced similar controversy in December for a charm that people said resembled blackface imagery.

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