Wolverine Worldwide

Spotlight Stories

Building a Culture of Consumer Obsession


Unveiling the Saucony Consumer through Holistic Insights

Through the WOLVERINE WAY FORWARD, and the focus on transforming into a consumer-obsessed company, Saucony launched a deep dive with their consumers.

“In order to truly be consumer-first, the brand needed to understand a new, multi-dimensional consumer,” Amanda Reiss, Saucony’s CMO explains. “With our new consumer target, the Hustle Heroes, we can focus on reaching a group defined by a shared mindset. In today’s world, the influences, motivations, and behaviors of consumers are what defines them, not simply their demographic attributes. Our research enabled us to have first-hand, intimate insights on who these people are and what matters to them.”


Becoming a Powerful Product, Innovation, & Design Engine


Brand Growth Model Comes to Life with Merrell Thermo Rogue

In 2017, Wolverine Worldwide implemented the Brand Growth Model, which is concentrated around the consumer with an emphasis on continuous flow of new and innovative product.

“We designed the Thermo Rogue to live in the space between an overbuilt traditional winter boot and a trail running shoe,” Merrell Design Director Bill Cass says. “The biggest design challenge was to strip out all the extra materials that weren’t essential to function.”

Through this model, Merrell can focus on clear product segmentation, extensions into new consumer territories, a faster cadence of new product introductions, and design influenced by consumer insights and market intelligence.


investing in new processes to drive growth


create to consumer: evaluating and valuating the details

Relentlessly focused on creating powerful product through the development of new processes, Create to Consumer was initiated to ensure our products are designed to meet consumer desires and maximize their value.

The initiative was rolled out across our entire portfolio of brands and leveraged a cross-functional team to deconstruct and evaluate one-third of the products in our portfolio. As they looked to optimize each of these products, the team analyzed over 15,000 consumer reviews to understand what consumers find most important in their footwear and how our shoes are performing. This allowed the team to pinpoint and prioritize areas of immediate action.

“The value of Create to Consumer is to understand what is truly important to our consumers and what drives their purchase decisions,” Kate Pinkham, Vice President of Consumer Insights/Market Intelligence explains. “The result is producing craveable product designed to our consumers’ needs.”


driving operational excellence


speed to market product wolverine overpass breaks top ten

In 2017, we welcomed and integrated talent, tools, and capabilities into the organization that changed the way we do business. These tools will be a catalyst for us to act with speed and urgency - including the Speed to Market initiative. Through this approach, the Wolverine Overpass LX was created.

“Not only did the product go to market in about 75% less time, but we were able to use consumer research to design a better performing product with less weight,” Yahn Lebo, Product Line Director for Wolverine says. “To have a work boot go to our top 10 in three weeks is unbelievable. Speed to market works, and we need to keep testing the waters.”