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The Loop Vol. 3 No. 8
Featuring Sketchers, KFC and Saucony!

WINS

KFC CROWDFUNDS NEW IDEAS

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KFC is a regular feature here at The Loop – varying between wins and weirds in equal measure. This week the brand’s embracing their win AND weird with the launch of KFC Innovations Lab, via IndieGoGo – a crowdfunding platform that lets fans of fried chicken back the brand’s next crazy marketing stunts. The initial ideas celebrate KFC’s heritage and founder, including a hot tub that looks like a KFC bucket and a Colonel-on-Ice skating show – just what we always wanted. It works like any other crowdfunding platform; if any of the ideas are fully funded, KFC will begin production. The brand is also offering merch for contributors, depending on the amount, such as sweatpants, T-shirts and 3D stickers. It’s great to see a brand leaning into something they’ve become known for and engaging their ‘tribe’ to really turn it up full tilt. With the Innovations Lab, KFC fully embraces its weird and wonderful tactics and gives their fans a say in what they want from the brand - rather than just doing a few flash-in-the-pan stunts hoping they stick. READ MORE >

Instagram launches “branded content ads”, to help connect brands to more influencers
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Office Depot teams up with Alibaba, hoping to take small biz from Amazon
READ MORE >

T.J. Maxx gamifies pop-up experiences via Instagram contest
READ MORE >

 

FAILS

THE DARK SIDE OF THE (YOU)TUBE

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Skechers’ came out of nowhere this week throwing major shade at Nike - and the Internet was not having it. The company ran ads in The New York Times sports section and on Instagram calling Nike out for an incident that happened during an NCAA matchup late February. Quick recap: just 34 seconds into the first quarter, the left Nike sneaker of Duke’s top NBA draft prospect 18-year-old Zion Williamson suddenly fell apart at the seams, causing the 6-foot 7-inch, 285-pound forward to slip, fall, and injure himself. Perfect opportunity to step in and take the throne! Or so thought Skechers’... Many felt that the brand needed to stay in their lane coming at Nike like that, saying the two are just not on the same level. Some also pointed out that Skechers’ doesn’t actually make basketball shoes worn by any NCAA or NBA players. But there was some praise for the boldness of the act – so this might have worked better if not for the poor timing on Skechers’ part. Nike’s just off the heels of several high-profile campaigns that have made them even more beloved by many. And so far Nike’s gone high in response to Skechers’ going low, not even acknowledging the stunt. So, yes, this did get some people talking about the Skechers’ brand, but won’t likely net out as well for their overall image. READ MORE >

Barstool Sports apologizes for acting like “idiots” (their founders words, not ours)
READ MORE >

 

WEIRD

HOLY SAUCAMOLE!

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We love avocado on toast. You probably do too. But, do you love the beloved brunch dish so much that you want to wear sneakers inspired by it? We thought not. But the sneakerheads at Saucony thought this was exactly what millennials are craving. The ‘Saucony Shadow 6000 Avocado Toast’ features “smashed avocado textured suede and red-pepper flake speckle on the collar line” – sounds…. delicious? We must, however, give the brand props for going all-in on a culturally-relevant insight that resulted in a ton of buzz. In fact, as of 3:30 p.m. ET Wednesday, 11 of the 17 sizes were no longer available on the Saucony website. Now, if avocado toast can be blamed for millennials not being able to afford a home, what does dropping $130 on a pair of avocado toast trainers say? According to Saucony, “It’s everything you avo-wanted, even if the guac is extra”. #Eyeroll. READ MORE >

John Mayer: The new face of…Vanity Fair napkins? (well, kindof)
READ MORE >

Ikea showcases furniture in 'Kama Sutra' guide to 'bedroom satisfaction'
READ MORE >

Popeyes invented a chicken-holding beaded necklace for Mardi Gras and it’s…a look
READ MORE >

Emoji license plates will soon be available in Queensland, Australia
READ MORE >

This unborn baby has more social media followers than you
READ MORE >