REI has been ranked on the most respected private company brand in Washington for a long time. They provide service/maintenance and sell all kinds of outdoor gears. The company has 117 stores in 28 states and posted revenues of $1.66 billion in 2010.
REI started with distributing main stream outdoor clothing and gears, then also produce theirs own products in many outdoor categories. The most two distinguished features of REI compare to many of other competitors are their not just happy but also knowledgeable staffs and the lifetime 100 percent satisfaction warranty. Most of people who work for REI are real outdoor enthusiast, so they can provide suggestions for gear picking and they also know place to go ,tips and tricks. The lifetime satisfaction warranty is definitely the strongest advertisement for the customers, since you can always return the items you purchased at REI, no matter after how long and no question would be asked.
REI has very limit commercials on main streams channels. But since the lifetime membership is only $20, most customers would choose to become their member to enjoy the service and 10% annual cash back on what they spent at REI. REI distributes the words about promotions and events mainly through this membership channel. The marketing position and branding of REI really resonate with lifestyle of Northwest. Because of this, the words of mouth strategy plays an important role for bringing REI new customers.