Stevio...LA LA Lovin' It?

I'm British-born Chinese from Bristol, UK. I’m LA-based. I’m a hip hop aficionado. After 15 years in London I moved to LA to pursue a new career and outlook on life.

Back in the 80s I was a DJ. In the 90s I contributed to the world's first street style exhibition at London's Victoria & Albert Museum. In 2011, I had my first interviews published. Today, I’m keeping busy with music, art, photos and writing.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Hip-hop: Consumers 0 vs. Marketers 1

As I was surfing around I spotted another collaboration from a couple of brands. One who has a firm grip on the street youth, Nike, and another who is reinventing itself to get respect from the trendsetters, Levi’s.

But the news that the Nike Jordan x Levi's special project to release a (sold out) pack consisting of AJ1s made of Levi denim (printed with the Jordan elephant design), a t-shirt, and a crisp pair of 501s wasn't interesting to me. What was interesting was the way the marketing teams 'conspired' to create the excitement and sales momentum for this initiative. The youth can't survive this barrage of marketing. May be I'm still sensitive from reading Jennifer Government that Britt lent me?

What the style watchers were saying:
"I am very curious to see how this turns out. It sounds great on paper, but if there is one criticism I have had for Jordan over the years it is their denim...The problem to me has never been material, it has been cut and logo placement. Hopefully they designed with the idea that less is more...My favorite pair of jeans to date are the Stussy/Levi’s anniversary joints with the metallic silver stitching on the back pockets."

What the marketers said:
To promote its limited edition 23/501 jeans and shoes online, Levi Strauss wanted to go beyond the usual, often boring advertising banners.

The Plan: launch a widget campaign that capitalized on the target consumers' penchant for social networking. Avenue A/Razorfish and Gigya created a widget chock full of unreleased hip hop tracks by popular artists. This new music made the widget more likely to be shared with friends.

A sense of urgency was added by including a two-week countdown ticker that tracked how much time remained before the clothes were available for sale on March 1, 2008. The widget also included the locations where the special collection would be sold, product shots, and a customizable space where widget users could leave personal messages. The widget was launched on Wildfire, Gigya's widget distribution network. Banner ads also drove traffic to a Web page featuring the widget.

The Results: the 23/501 Collection sold out in less than 50 seconds. The countdown ticker had consumers lining up moments before the products became available at Levi stores in Chicago, San Francisco, Santa Monica, Calif., and New York, plus NikeTown outlets in Beverly Hills, Calif., Chicago, San Francisco and New York. also sold a limited inventory.

The widget averaged 10 views of product shots per installed widget and was sent to more than 2,000 friends. Interactions per impression were 20.8%, much higher than the 3% average that rich media banner ads deliver.

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