The final stretch of the Triple Crown is just around the bend. The Belmont Stakes takes place on June 11th, following some thrilling performances at the Preakness and Kentucky Derby. And one of those performances wasn’t even turned in by a horse; it was Vineyard Vines, which showed its championship marketing and advertising form during the Derby.
For many, the Kentucky Derby is THE event to see and even more so, to be seen at. What better opportunity could there be for a clothing brand like Vineyard Vines, with its bright and colorful line of apparel that’s perfect for a day at Churchill Downs? Let’s take a closer look at the opportunity.
The chart below shows traffic to Vineyard Vines’ homepage, broken down by age, and it reveals that 18-34 year olds comprised nearly half of its total audience in April.
This year, Vineyard Vines embraced a younger Derby-going class by creatively integrating them into the event and its brand. Capitalizing on what some call the “narcissism of social media,” most prevalent among Gen Y, Vineyard Vines let attendees tag themselves in a high-quality panoramic photo of the Churchill Downs grandstands, right on the Kentucky Derby homepage.
Was it successful? A look at VineyardVines.com shows that it recorded a major increase in UVs during April, leading up to the event, and its daily reach numbers spiked considerably on Derby day. This success was no accident. Clearly, Vineyard Vines had done its homework, seeing that impressive increases in visits to KentuckyDerby.com are the norm.
Vineyard Vines tapped into its audience’s desire to actively engage with content online instead of just watching an event. The integrated campaign, which included Facebook and Twitter, likely gave the campaign a powerful viral lift. We’ll be able to confirm this by looking at referral traffic numbers for VineyardVines.com in May, once our data is available. For now, however, we can look at the graph below, which shows UVs leading through April, for a sneak peak at the success of the Vineyard Vines campaign.
Be sure to visit Compete.com soon to see how big a victory Vineyard Vines actually had at this year’s Derby. Meanwhile, we’ll be watching the Belmont Stakes on June 11th and the data that follows to see if any other sponsors made notable Triple Crown showings this year.
Aaron Smolick is the Senior Director of Marketing at Compete. Aaron spends his time at Compete building brand awareness and lead generations while managing the PR, the Kantar relationship and the day-to-day marketing efforts--he greases the wheels and connects the dots. Before Aaron joined the Compete team he ran the US division of the Samsung gaming division. He hopes to eventually climb the corporate ladder where the dots become larger.