WWD‘s David Lipke reports that starting from the Knicks’ home opener this Saturday, Hugo Boss will be seen almost everywhere you look in the garden. Courtside LED signs will display the brand’s name and messages, as will the ribbon of signs that run around the stadium’s second level. During Fashion week, Hugo Boss will have round-the-clock ownership of two large signs on the building’s exterior, which will be seen by about 1.6 million passersby every day.
But this isn’t any old branding campaign — Hugo Boss wants to engage with the people who come to watch the Knicks play, not just berate them with display advertising.
Additionally, the center-hung GardenVision screens will engage fans with three interactive features during games, all including Hugo Boss graphics and accompanied by public-address announcements: best-dressed player of the game (judged on players’ outfits worn while arriving to the game), sharp-dressed fan, and who’s the Boss of the paint? The latter accolade will go to the top point scorer and rebounder inside the shaded free-throw lane.
So is it a good strategy? While it might not be as comprehensive as, say, Dolce and Gabbana‘s many sports-focused clothing lines, it’s not the first time we’ve seen a marketing strategy like this one in New York City. In early April we reported that DKNY would be the first fashion sponsor to have a permanent presence in Yankee stadium, and with the many millions of people who attend these events each season, we’re surprised no one in the fashion industry thought of this sooner.
We won’t hold our breath for a partnership between Brooks Brothers and The New York Jets, (or between Tracy Reese and The New York Liberty, for that matter) but if Hugo Boss and DKNY start seeing big returns, it won’t be too long before every big brand is clamoring for a piece of the professional sports pie.