Connecting with younger consumers is a priority for many brands right now, with studies showing Gen Z’s spending power amounts to roughly $143 billion. One popular way to get close to this digitally-native cohort is by partnering with their already-beloved brands — especially on mobile channels.
Air Jordan is doing both with its new Bitmoji launch with Snap Inc.
With Gen Z and millennials leading the charge, mobile commerce is growing across all demographics. According to the Pew Research Center, 55% of Gen Z use their smartphone for five or more hours a day, making mobile a desirable place to grow a brand’s reach. Of these five hours, a considerable proportion is spent on social media, with Snapchat (a product of Snap Inc.) ranking the second most popular among Gen Z shoppers, according to data by Adobe.
This creates a compelling marketing opportunity for brands looking to reach their younger consumers, or attract new ones in a fun setting.
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It makes sense then that Jordan is partnering with Snap on an activation that uses the social platform’s Bitmoji technology to showcase new Air Jordan product in a digital environment. Users can dress their virtual avatars, called Bitmojis, in digital apparel and sneakers that include the new Air Jordan XXXV in multiple colorways.
“At Jordan Brand, we want to continue to grow basketball culture and with Bitmoj, we can offer young people a new way of creatively expressing their love for the game,” said Sean Tresvant, CMO of Jordan Brand. “At a time when our digital lives are helping to bridge physical distancing, we saw this as a great opportunity that allows people to share their love for Jordan Brand.”
Since Jordan is launching the virtual product before the drop of the physical collection, it allows fans of the brand to engage with the items and become familiar well ahead of them landing on store (or digital) shelves. In addition to the new Air Jordan XXXV, users can access new lifestyle looks like the Jordan 23 Engineered apparel and women’s Flight Suit as well as classics such as the AJI and AJIII.
“This partnership takes Jordan’s physical apparel and sneakers into the digital world in a deeply personalized way,” said John Imah, head of games and entertainment partnerships at Snap. “We’re excited to tap into Jordan’s legacy of innovation and enable Snapchatters and Bitmoji users to authentically express themselves and their love for the Jordan Brand through our collection.”
The collaboration also taps into the popularity of personalization among younger consumers. Surveys show that these shoppers in particular expect a more individualized experience when engaging a brand. McKinsey recently found that 58% of Gen-Z consumers would be willing to pay more for products that are targeted to their individual personalities.
With the Bitmoji collaboration, Jordan Brand fans can enhance their experience of the Snap platform by aligning their virtual avatar more closely with their personal style. Additionally, the collection will be available to buy on Nike.com and in select retail stores in mid-October, allowing for consumers to match their physical apparel to that of their Bitmoji.