Abercrombie & Fitch Pairs Shopping, City Exploration in New Campaign
Abercrombie & Fitch is helping consumers unlock the wondrous possibilities of a long weekend getaway through a curated and immersive holiday shopping experience inspired by the brand’s ongoing campaign and digital content series, Do 96 Hours In. The “Do 96 Hours In” retail pop-up events spotlight packing essentials hand-selected for two markets, Los Angeles and New York City, as well as four days of local programming and destination-inspired shopping events that will allow participants to confidently and comfortably discover the city on their own terms. The pop-up shops were located at The Hoxton, Downtown LA (Nov. 7-10) and The Hoxton, Williamsburg (Dec. 12-15).
In this exclusive interview with Total Retail, Carey Krug, Senior Vice President of Marketing at Abercrombie & Fitch, offers details into the Do 96 Hours In campaign, including how content is supporting the effort as well as how the local merchandise was chosen.
Total Retail: Can you tell us about Abercrombie & Fitch's "Do 96 Hours In" campaign, and what the motivation was for doing it?
Carey Krug: 96 Hours was inspired by our brand positioning, which is that every day should feel as exceptional as a long weekend. “Do 96 Hours In” originally started as a digital content series earlier this summer, and we’re now bringing it to life through an immersive shopping experience at The Hoxton in Los Angeles and Brooklyn, featuring a curated retail shop with A&F essentials; four days of exciting, hyperlocal shopping events customized to each city; influencer fashion chats; a wellness-inspired staycation package; and more.
Throughout A&F’s 125-year history, we've always celebrated and outfitted the modern escape. It's very much in our DNA. When you put that through the lens of today’s consumer, it manifests into a long weekend, as the days of long, leisurely vacations have been largely replaced by micro-cations averaging four days or less. This concept is a way to bring the feeling of a long weekend to life for our customers.
TR: Why were New York and Los Angeles chosen as the two markets for this activation?
CK: We’re focused on ensuring we're meeting our customers where they are. Los Angeles and Brooklyn are two markets not only where a lot of our customers are located, but also where our customers choose to travel to during their long weekends. Additionally, both cities are energetic and diverse, reflecting our brand as a whole and our customers’ demographic and lifestyle.
TR: In addition to the experiential pop-up shops, there's content supporting this campaign. Can you tell us about that content, and overall the role that content plays in supporting marketing initiatives?
CK: The 96 Hours content series spotlights various lifestyle, travel and fashion influencers and their long weekend adventures. It features travel tips as well as where to eat, stay, and what to wear and do to make the most out of 96 hours. The series has included destinations like Montauk, Hong Kong, Tulum, Lisbon, San Francisco, and more.
This engaging content supports our overall brand purpose of making every day feel as exceptional as a long weekend. The original content series was so well received — we saw increased engagement on our social and site content — that we wanted to bring the narrative to life and evolve it into a physical space.
TR: How is the merchandising team involved in this campaign, as it looks to select the perfect products for two different markets?
CK: Fortunately, our design and merchant partners are all located at our global home office outside of Columbus, Ohio, which allows us to easily work together as an integrated team. We’ve collaborated closely with these partners to hand-select products that resonate with customers in each market — always with the goal of providing confidence and comfort. For Los Angeles, we’ve selected a mix of denim and on-trend outerwear pieces ideal for layering as temperatures start to cool at night. For Brooklyn, in addition to trending cold-weather items and denim, we're incorporating some of our top items from our gift shop, since this event falls closer to the holiday season.
TR: What are the company's goals for its "Do 96 Hours In" campaign?
CK: As a lifestyle brand, we want to be more than a place that provides clothes. Our goal is to create deeper connections with our customers through immersive and engaging experiences, and to make every day feel as exceptional as a long weekend. Through this campaign, we’d also like our target audience to take another look at our brand and experience how it has evolved.
TR: Will Abercrombie & Fitch consider expanding this campaign to other markets in 2020?
CK: This campaign is a great example of our test-and-learn approach, and we've already seen success with the L.A. events. All staycation packages sold out, we saw high attendance at the events, had great engagement on social, and built brand awareness, getting our target audience to take another look at A&F and how it has evolved.
We’re looking forward to seeing how these pop-ups resonate with consumers in Brooklyn, and based off their feedback, we will determine how we can continue to evolve the 96 Hours experience next year, as we continue to meet our customers wherever, whenever and however they choose to engage with us.