All our activations enable creativity- Mathew Morgan, Marketing Director, Vans

American manufacturer of surf and skateboarding gear, Vans, has been active in the action sports industry by sponsoring skateboard, surf, snow, BMX, and motocross teams. Its twenty-year old music property The Warped Tour is among the the largest and longest running travelling rock festivals in the world. In India the brand competes with several global sports apparel and footwear giants but is carving a niche for itself as a youth culture brand with its Off The Wall campaign. Mathew Morgan, Marketing Director, Vans Apac gives us the lowdown.


Tell us about Vans Off The Wall campaign, and its long term goals?
Following up on Vans’ 50th anniversary Story of Vans series, which welcomed newcomers to the brand’s rich heritage and thanked decades of loyalists, the 2017 campaign focuses on what makes Vans “Off The Wall” – creative expression. At Vans, we pride ourselves in that we have a deep connection with out consumers. The goals of this campaign is to tell that story of the connection and how it plays out through the creative pursuits that are truly “Off The Wall”.

What is the experiential quotient of the Off The Wall campaign?
To demonstrate the breadth of activities and pursuits that define “Off The Wall,” Vans has developed a digital-based campaign utilizing a range of film techniques, from slow motion to time-lapse, focusing on the creative endeavors that Vans champions. To bring the campaign to life we will connect with our fans one-on-one through the global House of Vans platform. Within the house of Vans, we activate our pillars of action sports, music, art and street culture with workshop, concerts, skate nights and more.

In the past Vans had curated a global property called House Of Vans, tell us about that?
House of Vans is where “Off The Wall” comes to life. As the cultural hub for Vans, House of Vans seeks to inspire and connect with everyone who enters the space. With three permanents locations worldwide and more to come, this platform is a way for us to engage with newcomers who may not have been part of Vans in the past, as well as reward our loyalists with interactive experiences. We are looking to bringing this experience to India soon so we can introduce the “Off The Wall” spirit to the local communities.

Are you curating any experiential activities in 2017, which Vans has not undertaken in the past?
We are planning to bring more global properties to India and we will be announcing them soon. These would be centered around the Vans brand pillars of action sports, music, art and street culture.

What are your strategies to compete with other brands in the same domain?
For over 50 years, Vans has been connected with youth culture by enabling creative expression. As the brand has continued to grow worldwide, we maintain our authenticity and heritage while expanding through progressive products and platforms. As we make inroads in India, we will stay true to our heritage as the original action sports brand with deep roots in skateboarding, as that is, and will remain, a point of differentiation that is unique to Vans. That said, our product offerings will straddle across our heritage and iconic styles while being progressive in terms of fits and materials. From a marketing stand point, all our activations actively enable creativity, which is core to what Vans is all about.

Any specific agency partners you have in mind for your experiential initiatives?
We already work with multiple agencies in India and APAC. We will continue to drive the brand through them as they can educate us on what is best in the marketing without compromising our brand identity.

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