Sports Direct x Puma
Driving sales for the UK’s largest sports retailer by promoting the latest drop of Puma football products.
Branded Effect, Branded Hashtag Challenge PLUS
Sports Direct is the UK’s largest sporting goods retailer and the self-proclaimed ‘Home of Sport’. To celebrate the latest iteration of Puma’s hugely popular ‘Future’ series football boot, nicknamed the ‘Flash Pack’, Sports Direct wanted to increase awareness of the new line in the UK and drive sales of the boot on Sportsdirect.com.
The aim was to fuel the hype around PUMA’s new boot, inspire purchase intent on Sportsdirect.com and increase brand engagement with a new audience of TikTok users. The idea? A Hashtag Challenge PLUS campaign called #FlashofFuture, incentivised by the chance to meet a PUMA footballer. Users were invited to film a skill move of their choice, followed by a unique football celebration, and post it using the hashtag.
With support from their agency DINK and the TikTok team, Sports Direct launched its Challenge with three official videos, one by Sports Direct itself and two by popular UK Creators. The two Creator videos doubled the UK engagement rate benchmark and inspired other popular Creators to add their entries. To accompany this, Sports Direct ran a TopView Lite, showcasing a clip from its innovative launch video, and a set of In-Feed Ads featuring the same creative, reaching over 3.1M users. Combined with a Brand Banner on the Discover page and a featured hashtag, these all drove users to the challenge page.
Hashtag Challenge PLUS adds five customisable sections to the challenge page in the ‘Explore’ tab. A discover banner, interactive survey, store finder, related hashtag and, crucially, a product carousel, turn campaigns into shoppable brand experiences. There were multiple touchpoints for PUMA fans to explore the product with Sports Direct, in-app or through links to its external website. Sports Direct also used a bespoke sound track and Branded Effect with their Hashtag Challenge PLUS, to enable users to get creative in their entries, further boosting exposure and engagement.
Resulting in 1.46M challenge page views from all activations (four times higher than benchmarks), the campaign exceeded expectations on all counts. The Hashtag Challenge inspired 49K TikTok users to show their creative flair, leading to 113K UGC submissions and 154M video views, massively outperforming the UK platform benchmark. The UGC entries also made great use of Sports Direct’s unique ‘Flash of Future’ Branded Effect, making them stand out in the feed for greater exposure.
The TopView Lite achieved an impressive CTR of nearly 20%, piquing the curiosity of football-loving users. Together with the native video In-Feed Ads, these two formats over-delivered on impressions by 115%, creating massive brand awareness for Sports Direct and PUMA.
The Hashtag Challenge also drove positive brand sentiment, its launch video gathering quality engagement in the comments and reactions, even a few physical ‘flinches’, as any great creative will. The campaign resulted in a follower increase of 280% for Sports Direct, from c.10K brand profile followers to over 30K.