LOS ANGELES: Fila opened a pop-up store last week in the city to promote its new line of casual sports clothing, Filativa, becoming the latest to follow a growing trend toward experiential marketing.
The store, located on a trendy stretch of Melrose Avenue, will not sell anything. Instead, consumers will be able to design and keep a free T-shirt, while lounging in a space created to reflect an Italian aesthetic.
The concept, designed by New York-based Location NYC, which also helped the company with a pop-up last month in New York, will help the retailer appeal to the "22-to-30 trendsetter who is tired of advertising, traditional PR tactics, and traditional media," explained Mark Westerman, Fila VP of global marketing.
Westerman added that the concept is a good fit for Filativa because its targeted demographic is increasingly difficult to reach. Teenagers, he noted, can be reached through "icons and idols," but "as you get older, you become a little more cynical, a little less spontaneous. [Pop-ups] are a way to get [20-somethings] to interact with the brand and the product."
While pop-ups have been around for about four years, stores like Filativa's are becoming an increasingly appealing tactic for companies, from Meow Mix to Chivas Regal, as they seek fresh ways to capture consumer and media interest.
"We pitch it as a business story, a concept branding story. It's a story for the dailies, and a great fashion story," explained Rebecca Herman of Think PR, which is helping with Filativa.
Ira Cohen, director of media and brand equity for Meow Mix, has a similar take on their PR effectiveness. His company created the "Meow Mix Caf?" on New York's 5th Avenue last year with the help of Grand Central Marketing. "Not that it did a lot for sales," he said, "but it did a lot to imbed the brand. The feedback and press we got, everybody just loved it."
Cohen said the project gained "millions" of impressions, and was picked up by major wires, dailies, and broadcast stations.