LEXINGTON, MA: Wolverine Worldwide's Keds shoe and apparel line has named ShopPR its global PR and social media AOR following an RFP.
The brand selected ShopPR, Lippe Taylor's integrated marketing communications agency, from six firms in the review because of its innovative and strategic nature, said Stephanie Brocoum, VP of marketing at Keds. She declined to name the other finalists.
LaForce + Stevens previously handled PR for the brand for more than a decade, she added. The agency still works with some of Keds' sister brands, such as Sperry Top-Sider. Representatives from LaForce + Stevens were not immediately available for comment.
ShopPR will manage all PR strategy and execution for Keds, including traditional media outreach, influencer programs, celebrity seating, event planning, and blogger outreach, said Brocoum. She added that the firm will also optimize exposure of the brand's partnership with Taylor Swift by leveraging the singer's appearance schedule.
With a team of eight staffers on the account, ShopPR will also manage day-to-day efforts, promotions, and strategy for the brand's Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instragram pages, said Vanessa Pesce, MD of the firm.
“Our focus is really going to be making Keds the obsession of girls everywhere and creating a ‘Brave Girls' community with Keds,” she explained.
Keds, which has a target demographic of 13- to 24-year-olds with a sweet spot of high school girls, will launch a “Brave Girl” community and microsite at the beginning of February with the goal of empowering its customers, said Brocoum. Integrated marketing agency Toth + Co. is creating the digital site, which will help girls connect, share stories, and help each other.
Brocoum added that ShopPR's expertise in cause marketing was another reason Keds selected the agency to handle the business.
“We're currently doing a final review in selecting a non-profit to partner with to help us support girls in a more meaningful way,” she said.
Next spring, Keds will launch apparel, such as dresses, skirts, pants, and jackets, at Macy's with a target audience of Millennials, and ShopPR will support and promote the clothing line.
Brocoum said ShopPR will also help Keds with global leadership, and the firm will provide guidance to local or regional agencies that work with the brand around the world.
Keds, formerly part of Collective Brands' Performance & Lifestyle Group, was acquired by Wolverine in October along with Sperry Top-Sider, Saucony, and Stride Rite for $1.24 billion.