The opening of Puma's immersive Manhattan flagship marks a confident "return" to the US market for the sports brand. The Fifth Avenue store, which opened on Wednesday (28 August), has been two years in development.
But while the outlet wants to be judged on its ability to shift stock, it also has been designed with brand immersion in mind.
Customers are invited to grab a drink at the barista station, try their hand at soccer drills in an immersive digital training experience and spend time with them Events and customization experiences in the space.
Marketing and product development teams are also eyeing the store's capability as a real-life research center ̵
"We've been focused on engaging consumers with our social platforms … in the past 10 years," said Adam Petrick, Puma's global director of brand and marketing. […]
Petrick, a Puma marketing loyalist, described the flagship as a symbol of Puma's focus on and – "return to" – the US market.
"Our presence with wholesalers is increasing and getting better, and this serves as a platform for getting product across." , but also as a visualization of our presence in this market, and New York in particular, "he said.
Full-year sales increased by 17.6% at year-end February EMEA, APAC and the Americas, 2019 – The Successful Revenge of the NBA.
Yet the fire is still dwarfed by the dominance of Nike , and ongoing competition for what is left o Adidas and Under Armor.
So now, after some years spent building its grassroots authenticity on the street scene with a number of shrewd celebrity partnerships, Petrick is preparing
"We've been good products and [inking] great partnerships with great ambassadors around the world," he said.
"Retail stores want to get a piece of that, and they're getting the word out on a city by city basis. But if I look at our overall mix, the place where we're probably going to grow the fastest is probably traditional media.
He added: "What I'm surprised at is that few people know what Puma's doing.
This is exactly why Puma handed over his $ 300m global media account to Havas at the end of 2018. The French holding company has been tasked with investing in the "infrastructure, procedures and policies" of the brand's paid media practice in order to increase awareness of the outside world.
The deal wants to see Puma tap into Havas' relationships with Vivendi-owned sister companies as it aims to tap into the "culture of sport". Access to talent through partners seeks as universal music
"If we were to say, 'OK, that phase [of connecting with culture] is done, now it's just going to commercialize 'it would be disaster, "Petrick said. "We would never do that."
"Instead, we'll be over the past 10 years and just getting that in front of more people."