- The North Face on Oct. 12 launched its fall brand campaign to honor the adventure-related memories made over the brand's 55-year history, according to a press release. "It's More Than A Jacket" calls on everyday explorers — in addition to musicians RZA and Haim and athletes Conrad Anker and Ingrid Backstrom — to submit stories and photos to be included in the brand's first crowdsourced digital archive.
- The outdoor apparel brand is teaming with the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) to bring the digital archive to life in 2022 through several participatory programs. These programs will feature some of the most significant designs throughout the history of exploration and the stories behind them alongside everyday consumers' submissions.
- Rounding out the campaign is a 60-second hero film that is built around the idea that stories from the past are woven into the brand's jackets. Additionally, six new product collections will be released through early December that nod to The North Face's legacy of adventure. "It's More Than A Jacket" serves as an on-ramp for the brand's holiday marketing efforts and will extend to social media through the hashtag #MoreThanAJacket.
The North Face's latest marketing push celebrates the brand's legacy that spans six decades while inspiring new adventurers, both at home through social and digital content and in person at the SFMOMA. Teaming with a hometown museum allows the outdoor apparel brand, which was founded in the Bay Area in the 1960s, to connect with its roots more deeply before showcasing fan submissions of adventures powered by The North Face products.
On top of the hero spot released this week, the brand will roll out three extended films under the "It's More Than A Jacket" banner. The videos will debut throughout fall and will feature adaptive athlete Vasu Sojitra, freestyle skier Jossi Wells and Will Stegar, leader of the 1990 International Trans-Antarctica Expedition.
The digital archive and future museum programs speak to the brand's mission of inspiring exploration and show how adventures big and small can live on through quality gear. The brand plans to leverage the archive for future marketing efforts.
"Our customers, the feats they have achieved, and the memories they have created are such a big part of our brand's rich DNA," said Mike Ferris, vice president of global brand management. "With this archive, alongside SFMOMA, we are memorializing the people, products and stories that continue to inspire our community and move the world forward."
For years, the brand has worked to preserve the outdoors and encourage people to discover nature. More recently, it has looked to make adventure accessible to more consumers by widening the definition of exploration.
"With this campaign we are amplifying the idea that exploration is a mindset," Ferris told Marketing Dive. "It doesn't just necessarily mean I'm out there exploring the mountains. Exploration for some people is creative expression, for some people it's emotional [and] for other people it could be cultural, through travel, for example."
This fall's campaign builds on one from 2020, in which a video illustrated how exploration could help people adjust to lockdowns, quarantines and a "new normal" during the pandemic. The North Face went beyond advertising with last year's "Rest Normal" effort by pledging $7 million toward diversifying the outdoors through a global fellowship program with Emmy Award-winner Lena Waithe and climber Jimmy Chin.