June 22, 2024


Feel everything

A Q&A with Timberland CMO Drieke Leenknegt on the brand’s metaverse strategy

Timberland has entered the metaverse. The brand kicked off a multi-faceted activation final 7 days that integrated an interactive Fortnite Artistic encounter, the Timberland Parkour Trails, in addition to other assignments checking out the uses of virtual and augmented actuality engineering in the footwear house.

The activation is the outcome of a partnership involving Timberland, Fortnite developer Epic Video games and CONCEPTKICKS, a footwear web site founded by designer and influencer Daniel Bailey. Particulars of the economic arrangement have been not offered. It isn’t Timberland’s 1st foray into a virtual area for marketing and advertising functions — that honor goes to TimbsTrails, an interactive knowledge that the enterprise released in January — but it represents the brand’s determination to plunge further into the metaverse, validating the video game-run eyesight for the notion championed by Epic in the method. To additional underline the connection involving the gaming local community and Timberland’s metaverse strategy, the manufacturer brought on well-known Twitch streamer Ali “SypherPK” Hassan to boost the experience to his enthusiasts.


ACTIVATIONS: Fortnite Innovative encounter, Timberland Parkour Trails, TimbsTrails Tactic: hook up gaming community and brand’s metaverse approach, use electronic items to thrust footwear innovation and drive sustainability, integrate manufacturer into lives and mindsets of customers.

Digiday contacted Timberland CMO Drieke Leenknegt to master a lot more about why Timberland picked Fortnite as its metaverse system of alternative — and whether or not the brand name options to get into the NFT activity in the foreseeable upcoming.

This interview has been frivolously edited and condensed for clarity.

Why did Timberland lover with Epic Game titles for this activation, instead than other metaverse platforms such as Roblox or Decentraland?

In particular accelerated by COVID, and particularly within Timberland, we have seen this acceleration of digital solution development. That is quintessential right now to what we do, not only mainly because it has enabled us to thrust product or service and footwear innovation forward, but it also has been driving our sustainability agenda when we glance at the positive aspects of electronic product generation.

The way we look at partnerships at Timberland is, if you companion, you collaborate mainly because jointly, you can do one thing that you can not do on your have. Searching all around us, Epic was the best husband or wife, because Epic is far more than what you see from a buyer standpoint — Epic is a company company with Unreal Engine. They are the company supplier that allows brand names to use digitalization from concept to buyer. You want to convey persons together to cross-pollinate, to thrust on your own ahead and to innovate.

So Timberland believes that Unreal Engine could come to be the creating blocks of the metaverse?

Yes. My counterparts are not here, but I imagine I can communicate in the title of all of us, specifically the heads of style and design. The choices that Unreal Engine presents to further more support evolve and digitize the go-to-market process from commence to finish is astounding, and this is also a purpose why we enjoy to companion with them.

The way we seem at it is: be where your shopper is, provide your customer where by they are, answer their demands and lover with them exactly where they are.

Drieke Leenknegt, CMO, Timberland

Epic’s vision for the metaverse differs from some others due to the fact there’s no Web3 aspect to its platform — its vision for the metaverse does not have to have blockchain infrastructure. Why did you pursue a gaming-impressed metaverse activation alternatively of just one involving NFTs?

We are a customer-led brand that suggests that we need to be in the way of thinking and in the lives of the client. And gaming has genuinely come to be part of their life, correct? The way we look at it is: be the place your consumer is, provide your buyer where they are, respond to their needs and spouse with them the place they are. At this moment in time, NFTs have not occur to the agenda, due to the fact we have not appeared at the chances or requirements for that. But that does not signify that it are unable to materialize. What will come to a decision that is our partnership with the customer and what they want and what they are searching for — but also as a model, what do we want? Where by can we find out?

Why did Timberland pick SypherPK, a gaming influencer, to promote this brand activation?

Across the platforms wherever our shoppers are, we want to companion with the right persons, regardless of whether it’s in the gaming subject, or music, or leisure or art. The way we look at our partnerships with folks like SypherPK is generating sure that there is a synergy. And the partnership has been fantastic it was an honor for us to get the job done with him.

Which is why this undertaking is so exclusive as a collaboration. You carry jointly these game-shifting folks, from the industrial designers, Daniel Bailey, Metavision, the people of Unreal Engine. You bring them all with each other to genuinely take a look at and carve out new area and press ourselves. The “one furthermore a single equals three” is some thing that we at Timberland choose really severely when we look at not only style and design innovation but also at storytelling.