Why Hoka is experimenting with connected TV in its first global campaign

The article was first reported on, and printed by Digiday sibling Modern Retail

Athletic footwear firm Hoka is taking to advertising platforms like linked TV in its first-ever international advert marketing campaign, marking a giant public leap for a model that’s been busy with behind-the-scenes retail development.

The “Fly Human Fly” marketing campaign is launching in 32 international locations. Components embrace a 60-second spot, out-of-home advert placements like digital billboards, social media and digital adverts. However a cornerstone of the North American marketing campaign is airing the brand new advert on linked TV platforms like Hulu, Roku and YouTube TV.

Hoka’s marketing campaign marks a catalytic development level for a model that, up till now, has largely wager on wholesale distribution and partnerships to interrupt into the extremely aggressive athletic footwear area. For different retailers, it’s a case examine of how an experimental marketing campaign can woo new audiences.

Norma Delaney, Hoka’s vp of worldwide model advertising, advised Trendy Retail that 30% of the model’s North American price range went to linked TV. She mentioned the platform permits for higher focusing on to “lively adults” than conventional TV adverts.

“We sometimes would converse to those who establish as health runners or hikers,” Delaney mentioned. “Related TV lets us broaden the aperture of that, whereas additionally being very focused.”

Per week into the marketing campaign, greater than 80% of the visitors pushed to Hoka’s web site from linked TV adverts is from new customers.

General, web site visits are up 68%. There’s additionally been a bump in 14,000 new followers throughout social platforms, Delaney mentioned, indicating that the marketing campaign is driving consciousness and attracting new clients.

Hoka, which was based in 2009 and absolutely acquired by multibillion-dollar Deckers Model in 2013, noticed its fiscal 2022 income develop by 56% year-over-year to nearly $900 million. It represents greater than 1 / 4 of Decker portfolio income, even with some stockout and delayed stock hitting during the third quarter.

Deckers president and CEO Dave Powers mentioned in a Could 2022 earnings name that the expansion was pushed by market share expansion with present specialty retailers and wholesale companions. Along with its web site offering direct-to-consumer gross sales, Hoka merchandise could be present in outdoor and athletic shops resembling Fleet Toes, REI and Dick’s Sporting Items.

This summer season, Hoka can be in choose Foot Locker areas, “with the intent to extend the model’s publicity with the younger shoppers in key markets the place HOKA is missing presence with present distribution,” Powers mentioned.

Whereas the wholesale market is a giant driver of gross sales, Hoka has additionally focused  18 to 34-year-old buyers by way of digital advertising efforts. Pop-up markets in huge metros like New York, Los Angeles and Chicago have additionally helped drive model consciousness, with the primary Hoka everlasting retailer deliberate to open in New York by the tip of fiscal 2023.

“The HOKA model’s new strategic wholesale distribution, focused digital advertising activations and pop-up retail shops in key markets are collectively designed to speed up client acquisition all over the world by way of elevated consciousness,” Powers mentioned.

In opposition to these behind-the-scenes development plans, Delaney advised Trendy Retail that Hoka select this second to launch its new international advert marketing campaign as a result of “we needed to lift the model as much as be as particular because the product,” she mentioned.

“We labored actually arduous on making an attempt to ship a model language and visible vocabulary that may join all of the work,” she mentioned.

The 60-second spot options runners navigating a rainbow-tinted cityscape to the soundtrack of an EDM-style cowl of Nina Simone’s “Feeling Good.” Daring and vivid colours and the brand new “Fly Human Fly” tagline are peppered all through the marketing campaign’s property.

A part of the thought behind the marketing campaign is to maneuver past excessive athletes and hikers however to broaden attain into demographics just like the “prep athlete,” or highschool and school athletes, older adults, and those that are on the lookout for on a regular basis put on.

“We’re a contemporary providing in a really aggressive class,” she mentioned.

Jen Jones, the chief advertising officer at digital commerce platform Commercetools mentioned it makes explicit sense for Hoka to check out the linked TV area provided that athletic footwear is an area with many massive established gamers, Jones mentioned.

“For a model like that, you need to stand out, and [the campaign] appears actually true to the model they’ve put out into the market,” she mentioned. “I feel it performs effectively to their model authenticity.”

Related TV can also be a brand new sufficient area that it may be a cheap approach to experiment, Jones mentioned. However the recognition of the format is on the rise: a May 2022 report from IAB NewFronts along side Commonplace Media Index and Advertiser Perceptions says linked TV advert spend totaled $15.2 billion in 2021. The sector is anticipated to develop by 39% to $21.2 billion this yr.

“We’re on the cusp of seeing issues change shortly,” Jones mentioned.

Jones mentioned that it’s incumbent upon manufacturers — particularly these in attire — to pay attention to linked TV with the intention to meet clients the place they’re. Youthful generations have rising spending energy and aren’t as prone to be wooed by conventional TV commercials, she mentioned.

“Attire and trend is actually the place you begin to see loads of that experimentation,” she mentioned. “They’re pondering thus far forward making an attempt to maintain tempo with their buyer.”

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