Hill City, Gap Inc.’s Newest Brand Launches Wear Tester Program

Gap Inc.

At our newest brand, Hill City, we want the customer’s voice to be woven into the fabric of the clothes. That’s why we’re forming a Wear Tester community, so the guys who wear our product can have a role in testing, suggesting, making the clothes better, and hopefully getting them a little dirty along the way. Wear Testers are a small group of selected men all across the country who will receive items early from the brand - for free - in exchange for valuable feedback and engagement. They’ll wear product across multiple activities and then share how it performs. Is it comfortable? Does it fit well? Is there anything they’d want improved in the item? Then the Hill City design team will review all of this feedback from the community to help inform product design and brand identity.

So how will they find the Wear Testers? When the brand launches in October, Hill City will be online-only, but the team still wants to be able to connect with customers on a personal level, so they sought the latest technology to create a community. Enter the Hill City chatbot. This chatbot is more than a conversation window. It’s the latest in artificial intelligence that engages with the customer to find out more about his life and what he wants to wear. The chatbot engages with each customer individually, including his preferences on size, activities and lifestyle as well as past purchases. In addition to general customer service, the chatbot will be used to evaluate applications for Hill City’s Wear Tester program. Once accepted into the program, the chatbot will be the interface that Wear Testers use to tell Hill City how they like the clothes, and how they feel.

Our pilot Wear Testers have already provided value to the first Hill City collection, offering key insights to improve the performance of products like the Everyday Pant. The prototype contained a waistband with a seam that, according to one participant, chafed during use. Their feedback led to the patented development of a single-piece waistband with added stretch, which is way more comfortable during all kinds of athletic movement, a long workday or just kicking back.

Now that we’ve pulled the curtain back on Hill City, we’re looking to expand the Wear Tester Program and start the community. Guys will get early access to product, take it out on the streets, trails, beaches, and tell us how it feels. Our Wear Testers have a chance to help define Hill City and help us become a more functional and fashionable brand. Plus there are invites to special events, promotions, and potential posts featuring your stories and photos on social media.

Want to apply to be a Wear Tester? Here’s how It Works:  

  • Find the Hill City chatbot on Facebook or Twitter.
  • Tell the chatbot you want to sign up for the Hill City Wear Tester Program.
  • Tell us what your life is like, and what you like to wear, and the activities in your daily life.
  • Hill City will respond to you in in about a week to say if you’re part of the program, or on a waitlist to join.
  • Even on the waitlist, you’ll get access to special promotions, product info, and invites to Hill City events. 

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