I asked Dylan Slater, Rip Curl's sports marketing director in Costa Mesa, if plans have changed now that Stephanie Gilmore and Mick Fanning took home the world titles.
Here's what he had to say:
Yes, it's extremely rare to have simultaneous men's and women's ASP World Champions. If you think about how much the top companies in the industry have invested in not only the quality of athletes but also the quantity of athletes, to have the champions from each gender is a very rare occasion.
We plan to promote the title as the pinnacle of all competitive achievements. For a competitive surfer, it doesn't get any better than winning the world title. The impact of Steph/product driven marketing will hopefully increase with her association as the World Champion.
Whether it's our latest girls' boardshort, watch, or apparel, her association with the title will hopefully impact the girls' product range across all categories. It's undetermined whether we will be producing Stephanie Gilmore-specific product.
Yes, we plan to definitely bump up the marketing more, as it has been 16 years since Rip Curl's last world champion. We realize this is a very special occasion, and we definitely plan on communicating that to our customer.
While the world title is fresh, we hope to push it through the Web via online banners, video clips, etc. In-store point of purchase will also be crucial because we are the only major brand that can push the message that we have the current world champs.