Puma seeks out after-hours athletes

The sneaker company targets the less athletic among us with an OOH and event-focused campaign.

Puma Canada is going social with its new campaign that includes streetcar wraps, outdoor moose jumping and a Life Scoreboard smartphone app.

The shoe company, instead of going after actual athletes, like most sneaker companies do, is going for after-hours athletes, described in press materials as people who are more likely to take 5 a.m. cab rides than they are to take 5 a.m. runs.

The ‘Puma Social’ campaign includes a microsite and Facebook site, plus streetcar wraps in Toronto and future guerrilla OOH. It is the global campaign for the brand, localized for a Canadian audience and spread across the rest of the year, says Sheila Roberts, director of marketing, Puma Canada.

‘In regards to Puma and us being a sports lifestyle brand, this is probably the best global campaign we’ve done,’ she says. ‘It’s so us, it’s so our DNA that we decided that for the strategy this year, there’s nothing better than the Puma Social campaign. It’s pretty clever, it’s pretty cheeky to sponsor an after-hours athlete, so it’s definitely a Puma spin.’

The global creative comes from Droga 5 in New York and was repurposed for Canada by Socimedia and 1188 Films, both in Toronto. ZenithOptimedia handled the Canadian media plan.

There will be print in everything from regional weeklies to national high fashion mags, including a cover wrap of an upcoming issue of DesignLines.

Puma Canada has also signed on to run a 1:30 video on a loop in Foot Locker stores across the country, glorifying inebriated foosball and darts players, as well as karaoke stars.

The centrepiece is the promotional ‘Puma Social Club’ events, large parties that will feature sports preferred by after-hours athletes. The first will be in Toronto in March, with parties to follow this summer in Montreal and Vancouver.

On Friday, the company held a ‘Recruit the After-Hours Athlete’ stunt on Toronto’s Queen Street West, giving away poutine and offering the chance to win tickets to the Social Club by hurdling life-size inflatable moose.

The final piece of the puzzle is a web and smartphone app called the Life Scoreboard that lets users keep a running tally of anything they want to turn into a competition.