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“Unless you're Kanye West, no one believes that your plain white T-shirt is fundamentally different from any other.”

Part Two: Chapter 8Differentiate Products

By Craig Kielburger

Add two scoops of purpose, stir, and stand out

PacSun is an uber-cool retail clothing brand marketed to teens, with headquarters in Anaheim, California. It's a destination for style that is effortlessly L.A., offering maxi skirts, floppy hats, and billowy dresses, as if the only occasions worth dressing for are beach parties and music festivals. It also carries a number of licensed product lines, including ME to WE Artisans, as well as designs by Kendall and Kylie Jenner. This is the most Marc and I will ever have in common with the Kardashian clan.

A few years back, Marc spoke at a Santa Monica conference for PacSun's general managers. It was like a fashion trend convention, with everyone clad in skinny jeans, Hawaiian shirts, and Buddy Holly glasses. They eyed Marc with detached looks. He walked in wearing his cross-country flight uniform of ergonomic sneakers, Dad jeans, and sport-coat-over-tee. Marc was there to help these fashion industry insiders solve a clothing problem: How to elevate the plain white T-shirt?

Marc and the PacSun team discussed a co-branded fashion line called The ME to WE Essentials that would consist of women's basics like white tees, tank tops, and other staples. This ...

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