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Summersalt, the direct-to-consumer women’s swimsuit company, is expanding its business—not with a new product line, but with content.
Today, the company is launching The Forecast, a travel-focused content platform. Operating as a vertical on Summersalt’s website, The Forecast will publish organic, travel content, the bulk of which won’t be about Summersalt’s products but will directly reflect the brand’s product lineup. In addition to swimwear (an obvious staple for any beach vacation), Summersalt recently rolled out comfortable yet chic travel wear, too.
The debut of the new vertical comes just 19 months after the brand itself launched. In that time, Summersalt’s co-founders, Lori Coulter and Reshma Chamberlin, have seen countless customers tag the brand in Instagram photos of themselves wearing Summersalt’s suits in places all over the world. In thinking about creating a content arm, the product lent itself seamlessly to the theme of travel.
“We always say Summersalt is for women who are not afraid of adventures both big and small,” Chamberlin said. “How could we create a platform that inspired her to take more adventures, inspired her to be more adventurous and provided her with content that really addressed her needs?”
The Forecast is the answer to that conundrum. It’ll feature travel guides, travel tips and advice, and interviews with influential women like Heidi Zak, the founder of lingerie brand ThirdLove. The latter series, while not directly about travel, is fittingly called “Women Who Are Going Places,” tying it to the idea of being on the move.
Being avid travelers themselves—Chamberlin says she’s been on about 80 flights this year—Summersalt’s co-founders are a good representation of the target demographic for The Forecast. That made designing it that much easier. They also brought on a content director, a former editor at Condé Nast, to handle the day-to-day. The hope is that The Forecast’s content fills a void. Coulter pointed out that much of what’s out there was designed for “our father’s generation of traveler.”
A selection of articles available on The Forecast
Their own experiences also informed the site’s name, which is derived from the universal tendency to check the weather at a destination before a trip. It also speaks to Chamberlin and Coulter’s desire for the site to be an authority on forecasting travel and fashion trends.
“We want to be that one-stop shop that you check like you check the weather when you’re going to a particular location,” Chamberlin said.
Chamberlin insists The Forecast won’t be filled with product reviews and other product-centric posts. Instead, it’s primarily a way for the brand to tap into the travel-heavy mindset of the modern young consumer who prioritizes buying a round-trip ticket to Iceland or Peru over a designer handbag.
“The new status symbol really is your destination,” Coulter said. “We saw a major gap in the market with regard to brands that are utilizing content, particularly travel content, in a meaningful way. We see it as an opportunity to connect with our consumer one more time and really home in on those values that are important to her.”
This has become an increasingly common move for brands, and Chamberlin and Coulter said it feels especially natural for a direct-to-consumer, digital-first company like theirs. For Summersalt, content is set to be just as big a part of its business as its signature swimsuits.
This has become an increasingly common move for brands, and Chamberlin and Coulter said it feels especially natural for a direct-to-consumer, digital-first company like theirs. And they’re not alone: DTC suitcase company Away launched a quarterly travel magazine, Here, in the summer of 2017, and beauty industry darling Glossier was famously born from online publication Into the Gloss. For Summersalt, content is set to be just as big a part of its business as its signature swimsuits.
“Content is one of our products,” Chamberlin said. “We don’t see it as a separation from the brand, but a truly foundational element. “