In episode 386 of Total Retail Talks, Editor-in-Chief Joe Keenan interviews Monica Rigali, vice president of global brand management at JanSport, a VF Company. Listen in as Rigali provides an overview of the heritage backpack brand (1:01), her current role and professional background (2:25), and how JanSport engages Gen Z consumers (3:51). She shares how the brand stays relevant to both junior high, high school and college students (6:30), what consumer behaviors JanSport is tracking from its teenage shoppers, and how it's connecting through authenticity (8:25).
Rigali details how product factors into Gen Z customer acquisition and retention (11:04), how JanSport collects customer feedback (13:33), and how that data informs innovation such as the brand's new adaptive backpack line (16:38). Lastly, she shares the growth areas she's targeting for JanSport this year (18:41), and offers her thoughts on what retailers and brands need to focus on to win in 2023 (20:45).
Monica Rigali leads global brand management for JanSport, a brand in the VF Corp portfolio. She joined VF Corp in 2017 as director of marketing and e-commerce for adventure travel icon Eagle Creek after 12 years at Nike. A purpose-driven leader, Rigali launched Eagle Creek’s first millennial-focused travel campaign, “Quit Your Job,” tapping into the wanderlust of a travel-inspired generation and growing the adventure travel brand into a premier resource for serious globetrotters.
In 2018, Rigali moved to senior director at iconic teen backpack brand JanSport. In 2021, she became the vice president of global brand management, where she led teams to add cultural conversation of post-COVID back-to-school with “Disorientation,” a sketch comedy TikTok and YouTube series hosted by drag artist, Jan Sport (JanJan). In recent years, Rigali has led the JanSport brand in helping celebrate a generation of those who are the protagonists of their own lives. “JanSport Always with You” celebrates the journey to self and promises that JanSport is here for all of it.