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SEARCH FOR AUSTRALIA'S WELL WORN VOLLEYS

basics
Industry: Apparel, Clothing & Footwear
Media:Promotion & Event
Market:Australia
Style: Minimalism
descriptioncnen
Describe the campaign/entry
For over 7 decades, the Volley has been the symbol of Australian youth. In recent years, the brand has been in decline due to lack of awareness of Volley’s ‘credentials’ amongst style commentators and influencers. Volley wished to leverage their retro appeal and relaunch 3 classic styles. We were tasked with retelling the original Volley story in a way that would firmly reconnect the brand with a youth audience. Following our discovery that many Volley designs were missing from the product archive, we launched a national search for ‘Australia’s Well Worn Volleys’ and asked Australians to search their homes for shoes that had been lost or forgotten. To ensure mass exposure, we enlisted a panel of experts to curate the search and select a ‘winning discovery’ that would be relaunched. The panel conducted a high profile press conference, where they appealed to Australians to upload photos of their Volley finds to Facebook. Our panel shortlisted 31 pairs which were exhibited in Melbourne’s Federation Square and then chose a pair of 1973 Volley High Leaps to be relaunched nationally in 2012. The reaction from the media and consumers was extraordinary, achieving mass media exposure across TV, radio and online. Highlights included 21 pieces of branded TV coverage and the campaign reached over 17m people. The search uncovered a pair of 1973 Volley High Leaps, which have since been relaunched and also unearthed 10 other Volley styles previously lost, these styles will now be re-released over the next 2 years.

Describe the brief from the client
To re-engage the youth audience, Volley decided to relaunch 3 classic styles from 1959, 1965 and 1975. To do so, we were tasked with re-telling the original Volley story in a way that would connect the brand with 24 year-old males (their bull's-eye consumer). Our analysis of qualitative consumer insights revealed youth audiences believe that brands only have ‘permission’ to tap into vintage trends if they have a legitimate heritage. We therefore knew it was going to be absolutely critical to educate the youth audience about Volley’s iconic credentials, to ensure the 3 reset styles would resonate.

Results
The response from the media was phenomenal, achieving mass media coverage across TV, radio and online. Highlights included 21 pieces of branded TV coverage, 15 of which ran on national news segments throughout the launch day. Over 23,000 fans were added to the Facebook page with no media spend. The campaign reached over 17m people and delivered over AUS$2 million in earned media. As a direct result of this campaign, Volley exceeded its sales forecast for the quarter, halting the decline, with sales up 14% in value. The search uncovered a rare pair of 1973 Volley Hi-Leaps, which have since been relaunched, achieving critical acclaim amongst fashion and lifestyle media. Perhaps even more importantly, the search also uncovered 10 Volley styles previously lost, these styles will now be re-released over the next 2 years, giving Volley a credible, long term vintage relaunch strategy.

Execution
To ensure the campaign would achieve mass exposure, we enlisted a panel of experts to curate the search and select the ‘winning find’. To appeal to our style conscious youth audience, we appointed Simon ‘Woody’ Wood, editor of international fanzine ‘Sneaker Freaker’. To draw the mainstream media, we also appointed former Australian tennis champion Evonne Goolagong AO MBE, who won the Wimbledon Championships in 1971 wearing Volley shoes. Our curators fronted a press conference to launch the search at Sydney’s White City tennis ground. They appealed to Australians to get searching and asked them to upload photos of their Volley finds to Facebook. The panel shortlisted 31 pairs which were exhibited in Melbourne’s Federation Square and then chose a pair of 1973 Volley Hi-Leaps to be relaunched in 2012. The campaign launch, the exhibition and the announcement of the winning pair were each supported with intensive media relations strategies.

The Situation
In 1939 Australian tennis legend Adrian Quist won the Davies Cup wearing a pair of borrowed boat shoes. He was so impressed with the grip of the herringbone sole, that he asked the Dunlop tyre factory to create a shoe with a revolutionary grip: The Volley was born. For every generation since, the Volley has served as the unofficial shoe of Australia and has been loved and worn by countless icons. But in recent years, Volley has got a little lost amongst the influential youth audience and a huge opportunity existed to reignite the nation’s latent love for this brand.

The Strategy
When we asked Volley for access to their archive, they revealed that many of their shoe designs had gone missing over the years. Given their heritage and the affection people have for the brand, we decided to launch a national search for ‘Australia’s Well Worn Volleys’ to ask the nation to search their attics and wardrobes for Volley shoes that had been lost or forgotten. Our motivation was not only to drive mass press awareness around the reset vintage range, but to potentially unearth new Volley styles that could also be relaunched in years to come.
credit
Brand:
Agency:
Account Supervisor:
Account Manager:
Other credit:Managing Director: Kat Thomas
Account Coordinator: Casey Bosward
Social Media Manager: Mathieu Abet
Online Community Manager: Nick Ross-Edwards
Senior Event Producer: Lloyd Major
awards
Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2012
Bronze PR
Best Launch or Re-launch
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