What's in our bookmarks this weekend
What’s in a Creative Director?
English Premier League club Crystal Palace recently announced they hired Kenny Annan-Jonathan to be the club’s creative director, overseeing its larger partnerships, merch, and collaborative endeavors.
It’s a fascinating move, as we’ve yet to see football clubs really flex this muscle internally at their clubs, at least in a more commercial manner.
What we have seen, oppositely, are luxury, streetwear, and other independent brands tap into football as a connecting point for their consumers, and the merging of fashion and sport will be inevitable. It already is.
Just look at the NBA, and over the last few years, franchises everywhere are carving space for creative types to man the helm of their merch businesses, from KITH and Daniel Arsham to Don C and Big Sean.
KITH’s founder, Ronnie Fieg
This poses an interesting opportunity for brands and franchises…
In our next trend report, we’ll unpack how brands can connect with sports franchises (and vice versa) to activate products and experiences in unique ways.
So, stay tuned. And if you’re new here, check out our previous reports.
Don’t tell me how good it is; show me 👟
Not every brand can do this authentically.
But I absolutely love when brands find creative ways to show their product’s wear and tear in advertising. Norda did a fabulous job photographing this and even paired it with a customer story in the caption, which we posted here because it’s so good.
“These Norda shoes are a part of my journey. I wore this pair from start to finish of two big adventures this year: Ultra-Trail Snowdonia 100km (Wales, UK) and Québec Mega Trail 100miles (Québec, Canada), two challenging mountain ultras just seven weeks apart. A combined total of 12,900m of elevation gain and over 43 hours of running.
Two magical sunrises. So much mud. Flowy wilderness single track and endless rocky climbs. Waterfalls and stream crossings. Encounters with horses, sheep, birds, and cows. New friendships made along the trail. Energy and love felt from strangers and friends near and far. A rainbow of emotions. One pair of Norda 001s.”
I shared this on Twitter, and people started sending me other examples of how consumer brands do this with their products, and I thought it was fun, so I had to share a few.
If you wanna make money, sell pasta sauce 🍝🥫
That’s it. That’s the tweet. Or advice, or whatever.
Anyway, Campbell’s recently bought Rao’s—a beloved 127 year old sauce brand that we frequently use in our household—for a cool….
$2.5 B I L L I O N
It’s just sauce, they said.
Well, turns out that when you got the sauce, it sells.
One of the interesting consumer habits I think is still hard to shift is what people buy online vs. in-store.
For example, I’ve never bought Rao’s online. Ever. Only in-store. And I think that will always remain the case.
And that’s also the point.
When your brand, product quality, and distribution capabilities are well thought-out, you don’t need to rely on DTC as the sole acquisition channel.
That may seem cliche to say, but a lot of folks don’t register how powerful wholesale and grocery is as a sales channel.
Speaking of Cambells and quality brand merch, the brand was nothing if not a pioneer.
Brand spotlight: Ugmonk 👀
If you know anything about us, you know we love Ugmonk.
Jeff Sheldon is one of the very best examples of a founder who leverages his audience to fuel growth for his business. He’s a prime example of what it means to build in public.
Photo by Real Thread
Jeff is earnest in his approach, constantly sharing progress on designs, products, ideas he has, updates about the business, and new drops in the works.
As a self-funded owner, he’s run Kickstarter campaigns, had his community vote on changes, and even built a multi-use space in Pennsylvania where they ship products, use as an office, and customers can swing by and shop.
Integrating type + font in the wild 📦
Creative campaign inspiration 🎨
Blackstock & Weber for Palmes Tennis
Fursac Paris Father’s Day campaign
The Stüssy cigar ash tray
Outsiders Store promoting their sleeping bags
Weekend reading 🤓
Our curated reports on niches that excite us, complete with insights, tactics and factories to build with.
THE TREND REPORT ON RUNNING IS HERE
THE TREND REPORT ON TENNIS IS HERE