Keds in March rolled out a nine-city “How Do You Do?” mobile tour to introduce its iconic footwear to the millennial generation. Besides touting its shoes, the tour connects with college students through creativity and art, showcasing the local arts scene at each stop. The tour launched March 18 at Style X at SXSW in Austin and concludes May 7 in Boston and will hit colleges and universities along the way. Online elements include a Keds website, twitter handle and Facebook page.
A 32-foot trailer designed as a shoe box, which opens up to become a Keds gallery at each stop, is the centerpiece of the tour. The brand’s history is depicted on a timeline on the floor and Keds’ classic white Champion shoes hang from the ceiling. Videos on interactive touch screen maps depict local artists and charity partners, who also are showcased on the back wall where their mission is displayed on blue Keds boxes filled with art supplies. Thirty limited-edition shoes, designed with Keds’ “How Do You Do?” tour stops’ styles, also on display, are available for sale online.
The “How Do You Do?” theme, which serves first as a salutation and an introduction to the brand, brings the tour to life as the springboard for five questions. The first, How Do You Do Keds? has attendees express what inspires them about their city on a pair of Keds using two freestanding touch screens. The kiosks also promote a nationwide Keds How Do You Do Your City? shoe design contest, running March 1 to 31, in which the winner receives $1,000 as well as a $5,000 donation to a local arts-based charity of their choice.
As part of the How Do You Do Charity? theme, for every tweet to #kedshdyd, Keds will make a $1 donation to arts charity partners. Handwritten tweets will be collected on-site as well. How Do You Do Art? has local students designing, painting and drawing on Keds white shoes. Charity partners also are creating eight-foot by eight-foot murals on-site inspired by their local cities. How Do You Do Music? showcases local musicians and djs that reflect the sounds of their city. At How Do You Do Style? events, 10 local students show off their personal styles and how they work with Keds shoes.
“The idea of create, collaborate and contribute, which is how we are engaging students on the tour, exemplifies our brand values and positioning and how we want to interact with our consumer,” Kristin Kohler Burrows, president at Keds, told Buzz. “We’re not only engaging, we’re shifting perception and reintroducing the brand.” Agencies: Mr Youth, Night (digital), both of New York City.