The North Face launches jacket line with mobile musical tie-in
- The North Face, the outdoor clothing and camping equipment brand, introduced its new Ventrix jacket with an immersive, mobile-first digital experience that urges users to get and stay moving, according to a press release made available to Mobile Marketer. As users continue to move, their smartphone tracks their activity to gradually unlock a new single from the musician Maggie Rogers, titled "Split Stones." The full-length track played 24 hours before its official release today, Sept. 20.
- Rogers also appears in the Ventrix campaign spot, directed by Grant Singer, along with athletes Jimmy Chin, Alex Honnold and Emily Harrington. The effort also includes ads in print and on social media.
- The Ventrix jacket is designed for outdoor activities and uses insulating material that releases body heat to prevent the wearer from overheating or sweating too much. The jacket retails for $199, while the hooded version runs at $220 in stores and on Northface.com.
The North Face's launch stunt for Ventrix, in encouraging users to get and stay moving, supports the idea that its brand is made for active people who like to hike, rock-climb and camp out. The mobile site only needs a web browser to open, which eliminates the friction of forcing a user to download a standalone app or register online. However, the experience still behaves like an app with its ability to detect phone movements and offer access to exclusive content.
Several brands have begun to dip their toes into the world of wearable tech, leveraging tactics like near-field communications and augmented reality. Nike recently debuted a line of web-connected NBA jerseys with special chips that interact with a smartphone app to unlock mobile content and promotional materials. Apparel brands that aim to accommodate younger consumers are increasingly allocating ad dollars for these types of mobile campaigns.
Adidas CEO Kasper Rorsted in March said the brand is pulling back from TV advertising and shifting toward digital channels to engage that target audience. This comes as many consumers are ditching cable for online streaming services and mobile devices, forcing marketers to get creative with how they reach tech-savvy audiences via smartphones and wearable tech.