Patagonia Action Works


To understand Patagonia's Action Works program and how it plays into their overall brand in order to inform a business pitch.

Early Findings


  • Patagonia is an outdoor clothing and accessory company that focuses on making tools, clothing, and accessories for minimalist outdoors sports and activities such as skiing, climbing, hiking, flyfishing, snowboarding, surfing, trail running, and mountain biking.
  • The overarching mission of Patagonia is to protect the environment through sustainable business practices, sustainable products, and activisim. The company's tagline is "We're in business to save our home planet."
  • Patagonia knows that some of its business practices, such as lighting stores and clothing dye, contribute to the environmental crisis. The company consistently seeks new ways to change these practices in order to become more sustainable and cause less environmental harm. In addition, they closely monitor companies they do business with.
  • The company's goal is to build products that are functional and durable in order to reduce waste in the environment. Products are made with as much recyclable material as possible.
  • Patagonia donates 1% of all sales to grassroots environmental related organizations.

Action Works

  • Action Works is a platform created by Patagonia to connect individuals with grassroots organizations that are working to save the planet.
  • It grew out of Yvon Chouinard's (the founder of Patagonia) passion for the environment and the depression he felt in seeing the planet being destroyed. He believes that the "cure for depression is action."
  • Chouinard states that "the reason for Patagonia's existence is to force governments and corporations to take action and solve our environmental problems."
  • Over the last 35 years, Patagonia has donated almost $90 million to grassroots environmental organizations.
  • As environmental issues have increased, Chouinard realized that more had to be done. The result was Action Works.
  • In addition to connecting individuals with organizations, Action Works provides the organizations a platform to work together, advertise events, and promote petitions.

Patagonia Branding

  • Patagonia's brand revolves firmly around environmental activisim. The core purpose of Patagonia's marketing strategy is "to build a movement."
  • As such, the company is not afraid to take a stand. For instance, during Black Friday 2016, instead of advertising mass discounts like other retailers, Patagonia chose to donate 100% of all sales that day to grassroots environmental organizations.
  • Founder Yvon Chouinard believes that regardless of the items you sell, it is your business - it's culture and values - that are the true product. The actions the company takes to reflect the brand is what really sells.

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