How Patagonia Advertises their Products with Politics

“We want customers who need our clothing, not just desire it.”
– Yvon Chouinard, Co-Founder of Patagonia

Patagonia’s brand voice is bold, adventurous, and customer-centered. As a brand Patagonia focuses on the sustainability of their products and charitable efforts. Patagonia’s online community voices their opinions socially, politically, and environmentally.

Where can you find Patagonia’s online community?

Patagonia has a large social media presence. Patagonia is active on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.  


Patagonia’s Facebook community isn’t small. Their Facebook community is made up of 974,981 likes and 960,191 follows. Patagonia’s Facebook feed is filled with scenic, outdoorsy photos that are from Patagonia’s loyal consumers. These photos are from loyalists who are doing outdoor activities and wearing Patagonia gear. Mixed in to these photos Patagonia has links to their blog where they showcase people who are adventurers, outdoorsman, and environmentalists. They also share articles related to environmental clean-ups and social justice groups. Patagonia posts about one to two times per day usually in the late afternoon and early evening. Their posts are usually short and to the point. All of their posts contain photos or links.

Patagonia Facebook


Patagonia’s Twitter is the social platform that voices most directly their social, political and environmental views. They have 353k followers. A large portion of their Twitter content are retweets from accounts like the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Environmental Defense Fund, and Ceres News. They voice their political opinion frequently. For example, when Trump withdrew the US’s participation in the Paris Climate Accord Patagonia retweeted and tweeted many times regarding that issue. However, they also post photos from loyalists like they do on Facebook showcasing their customers outdoors doing really cool things like surfing, rock climbing, and hiking. On average they tweet two to five times per day. Which is the highest frequency of all Patagonia’s social platforms. Their tweets are direct and powerful.

Patagonia Twitter


Patagonia’s Instagram feed is similar to their Facebook feed. They have 2.7 million followers. Their Instagram feed is filled with beautiful, outdoor photos. Almost every day a new photo is posted from somewhere around the world of people doing crazy things. However, Patagonia takes almost none of these photos. Customers post photos on their own accounts of them doing really cool things and wearing Patagonia clothing. Then, they tag Patagonia. Patagonia goes through their tagged photos and reposts about 4 per week. This is a great way of connecting with Patagonia loyalists online as well as showcasing their clothing and gear in beautiful locations around the world. On average, they post one to two times per day. Their posts are short and direct.

Instagram Feed


Patagonia has over 86k subscribers and close to 32 million views on their YouTube channel. Patagonia posts videos that relate to skiing, snowboarding, surfing, and climbing. They also post videos that are a part of a bigger campagin like "worn wear" and "#Find_Away". Customers are featured in these videos central to outdoor sports and in their campagin videos. Patagonia also advertises more traditionally on YouTube explaining the technicical specifications behind their gear. For example this video on the Men's El Ray Shirt. However, their videos on their gear recieve significantly less views than other videos like this video on this men who ran 170 miles through the Owyhee Canyonlands. The video on the Men's El Ray Shirt has 547 views and the video on the runners has over 25k views. Their videos vary from 50 seconds to 10 minutes. 

What is the most interesting?

It is most interesting to me how Patagonia uses social media to advertise their products without directly advertising their products at all. Rarely do they showcase a specific product and give the specs on it. Almost all of their posts revolve around real consumers wearing their gear in real outdoor environments. Patagonia voices their opinions on social, political, and environmental issues more frequently and direct than most brands. 

Who is Patagonia's audience?

Patagonia's target audience is the outdoorsy folk who are enviornmentally and socially responsbile. These people participate in activities like hiking, fly fishing, surfing, biking, and backpacking. They are part of generation X and millenials who have disposable income and live in costal cities like Seattle and Portland. Their target audience cares more about quality than quanitity and see the value in spending a lot more in order to have sustainable gear that will last them longer.

Man hiking

What kinds of conversations happen?

Patagonia voices their opinion. This encourages comments from Patagonia’s online community regarding social, political and environmental issues. From my research most of these comments are positive and praise towards Patagonia. However, every once in a while there will be a rouge comment from someone who’s beliefs are vastly different that Patagonia and Patagonia’s community will respond to it starting “Twitter Beef”. In conclusion, the conversations that are happening within Patagonia’s online community are positive.

Facebook Post

What content is most effective?

The two types of content that I believe perform the best are why-posts and videos.Why-posts are posts that are show readers a reason or purpose. For example, Patagonia repeatedly talks about their mission statement to help the environment and build sustainable products out of as many recycled materials as possible. Therefore, they voice their opinion on enviornmental issues. Videos perform well for Patagonia because they get a lot of attention on YouTube. Their videos that are about real people doing active, outdoorsy sports recieve lots of shares and retweets on social media. 


Source: Hubspot, New Data: What Types of Content Perform Best on Social Media,