Creative director keen to grab market share with autumn collection ads in September’s fashion bibles

River Island is to launch its first print advertising campaign for five years as it seeks to be more open and aggressive in the difficult trading conditions.

The fashion retailer’s campaign will hit the September editions of glossy magazines such as Elle and Glamour promoting its autumn 2011 collection.

River Island creative director Farida Kaikobad said the retailer wants to “grow and grab market share”. She said: “We’ve always been a quiet company, but we need to start talking. We’re proud of our product and what we’re doing. We’re going to be a little more aggressive.”

Kaikobad said the move was partly down to the tough trading conditions.

The retailer has also refreshed its logo to coincide with the campaign, which will be rolled out across all its stores nationwide. Kaikobad said the logo was more modern and in line with River Island’s brand.

She said: “River Island is responding to the difficult trading conditions by becoming fresher. You can see that in our autumn collection, so we’re shouting about that in our advertising and in our new logo.”

Kaikobad said it was a good time to kick start advertising again to communicate developments such as the relaunch of iconic 1960s brand Chelsea Girl and the kidswear range which debuted last year.

The ads will feature in both monthly and weekly fashion and lifestyle magazines, as well as online, on the retailer’s website and in store.

Kaikobad said the campaign, shot by renowned fashion photographer Ellen Von Unwerth, captured the “spirit” of River Island and was sassy, fun and had a touch of glamour.

Retail Week Knowledge Bank director Robert Clark said the retailer’s decision to advertise was a sign of how competitive the high street fashion market is.

He said: “Retailers have to use every means possible to push and promote themselves. That fact that they’ve got away without doing it for so long is a sign of its relative strength.”