- Foot Locker, Nike and Jordan Brand are celebrating the 10th anniversary of House of Hoops, their basketball-focused retail concept, with limited-edition products, an out-of-home (OOH) activation and a new Instagram account, a press release announced.
- To launch the @HouseOfHoops channel, the trio unveiled a video combining basketball and dance culture and featuring several NBA players and social influencers. The spot will air on TNT on Feb. 17 during the TV network's broadcast of the NBA All-Star Weekend. House of Hoops is also debuting two digital content series surrounding basketball sneakers and culture, as well as live game-show styled content featuring NBA stars and early product release information for its Instagram followers.
- During the All-Star Weekend from Feb. 16-18, House of Hoops will host an event at Foot Locker's new West Coast flagship store for NBA player appearances and an "elevated brand space," which includes a full-sized basketball court for a skills clinic, dunk contest and ball-shooting competition.
For the House of Hoops anniversary, the brands involved in the retail concept are tapping into a number of big marketing trends, including experiential OOH, influencer marketing and social video content. Working with social influencers and NBA stars on Instagram and for the content series will likely court millennials, Gen Zers and loyal basketball fans that still follow the sport closely but might be watching games less frequently on TV, a channel that's been battered by a trend toward cord-cutting.
The retail industry has grown especially fond of influencers, with 70% of brands in the category partnering with influencers on Instagram campaigns. Research by eMarketer also found that 78% of millennials either specifically don't like celebrity endorsements or felt indifferent toward them, with just 7.5% reporting they would be more likely to make a purchase based on a celebrity endorsement. Activewear brands like Nike, which owns Jordan Brand, are leading the retail sector with their influencer efforts. Video influencer content, such as House of Hoops' two new series, tend to generate more views and engagement than traditional digital video ads, as they can provide entertainment in information without feeling as overtly promotional.
OOH activations are also growing in popularity as these same young consumer segments are viewed to demand "experiences" over products. These events aim to create memorable moments that excite consumers and drive user-generated content on social media. More than 75% of millennials say they prefer to spend money on experiences rather than material objects, according to a Harris Group study. Nearly 70% said they feel "FOMO" — fear of missing out — and so they look to events where they can engage and share their participation online.