K-Swiss races in with sprintwear

Sports shoe brand K-Swiss is gearing up for a major brand-building push as it aims to increase awareness and boost its consumer base.

K-Swiss’ UK marketing chief Nick Crook says that the initiative seeks to build on the brand’s recent expansion into clothing and position K-Swiss as more than a sports-shoe brand.

The drive starts next month with the launch campaign for its new footwear brand, Ariake. These are running shoes – an area in which K-Swiss is determined to make a name for itself. A series of television ads is planned, based around the urban sport of “free-running”, also known as Parkour, which originated in France.

The TV campaign breaks early next month and will run for five weeks in the UK. It has been created inhouse, while Amsterdam-based agency WiseCrackers is handling planning and buying.

Says Crook: “K-Swiss is still a young brand in the UK. It is perceived as a white trainer brand and while its history does lie in performance tennis shoes, we want to build awareness and broaden perceptions of the brand beyond the specialist arena.

“The advertising strategy aims to push our performance credentials in other categories, initially in running in particular.

“The ad strategy also aims to offer more localised and relevant communications for the UK market.”

The specialist sports shoe brand recently expanded into clothing and this week unveils a raft of new products across both shoes and apparel in Italy, which is to be rolled out next year. Crook says that the firm is committed to new product development and expanding its portfolio.

He adds that the brand is looking to expand further into fashion boutiques and selected outlets in the UK.

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