Welcome To The Dojo: Foot Locker, Asics Launch Collection With Anime Campaign
Wednesday, August 15, 2018 at 04:23PM
NYSportsJournalism.com in Ad Campaigns, Asics, Foot Locker, ad campaign, animation

By Barry Janoff

August 15, 2018: How do you get your new products to cut through the retail clutter and come to life in a marketing campaign as unique as the items themselves?

Be inspired by your heritage and let creativity take over.

Foot Locker in partnership with Asics America are launching "Welcome to the Dojo,” an exclusive apparel and footwear collection inspired by Asics’ Japanese heritage.

The collection — which includes workout and casual wear plus various kicks — drops Aug. 24 and is supported by multi-platform marketing anchored by an original series, "The Sun and The Snake," featuring five short anime-inspired episodes.

According to Foot Locker and Asics — with global headquarters in Kobe and founded in Japan by Kihachiro Onitsuka in 1949 — the collection “celebrates the story of two Dojos — Rising Sun Dojo, which inspires fear in the hearts of all who hear its name; and Snake Dojo, revered as a respected institution where many have started the arduous trial to become a Samurai.”

The first episode debuts Aug. 21.

Marketing also include Internet, social media (#TheSunAndTheSnake) and in-store consumer touch points.

The episodes will also be “shoppable,” allowing viewers to purchase the featured "Welcome to the Dojo" footwear and apparel directly within the platforms.

The campaign is from BBDO and illustration/animation studio Shotopop.

"At Foot Locker, Inc., we're dedicated to driving culture, individuality and sport style," Andrew Gray, GM and chief merchandising officer for Foot Locker North America, said in a statement.

"By launching this exclusive collection and original series with Asics, we're offering an immersive experience for customers across our family of brands, who can experience 'Welcome to the Dojo' through creative, engaging content and unique shopping touch points," said Gray.

The animated project features the voices of Luka Sabbat as Sneaker Samurai, Princess Nokia as Kiku and YFN Lucci as the Ghost Samurai.

The plot line: “When the Sneaker Samurai has his coveted Asics GEL-LYTE sneakers stolen by the Rising Sun Clan, he goes on a quest to seek revenge and his sneakers. Guided by a street-smart girl named Kiku, he battles his way through the city and into the Forest of Lost Souls on his way to the mysterious Rising Sun Dojo.”

"The 'Welcome to the Dojo' Pack taps in to Asics’ Japanese heritage, which inspired the series and curated assortment of this collection," Sarah Bishop, vp-marketing for Asics America Corp., said in a statement.

"We're proud to partner with Foot Locker, Inc. to exclusively launch this collection that touts bold colorways, comfort and style."

Although founded and based in Japan, the company draws its name from another culture.

According to Asics, “Anima Sana In Corpore Sano, meaning ‘A Sound Mind in a Sound Body,’ is a Latin phrase from which Asics is derived and the fundamental platform on which the brand still stands.’

According to Sabbat, who also served as a creative collaborator on the series. "I've always had an affinity for fashion and personal expression, and I think it's dope that Foot Locker and Asica were able to bring those together in such a lit way for the launch of the 'Welcome to the Dojo' Pack."

Earlier this year, Asics was part of multi-media marketing to support the release of the Disney-Pixar movie, The Incredibles 2.

The Dojo collection will be available exclusively at Foot Locker, Inc. stores including Foot Locker, Footaction and Champs Sports as well as online.

Incredibles 2 Draws On Asics To Help People Feel Super

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