Reebok partnered with Sports Direct for an in-store activation to promote the global athletic footwear and apparel company’s association with the Ultimate Fighting Championship and its UFC Fight Night Collection.
Ahead of the UFC Fight Night event which took place at London’s O2 on March 15th, Reebok invited aspirational mixed martial arts fighters and fans to test their punching prowess at the punch-bag at the flagship Oxford Street branch of Sports Direct.
As part of the one-off “Reebok Knockout” experience, customers had the chance to win one of five VIP packages to the UFC Fight Night London event. As participants attempted to emulate the skills of successful Reebok sponsored professional fighters such as the UK’s Michael Bisping, a 180° bullet camera rig filmed a GIF for them to share on social media.
In keeping with the high intensity atmosphere and entertainment of a major UFC event, a line-up of DJs created an in-store soundtrack, blending modern and old skool hip-hop, rock and grime classics, while an MC was on hand to commentate on the day’s events and encourage supporters and participants in the Reebok Knockout challenge. Customers also had the chance to win Reebok UFC Fight Night apparel and merchandise through on-the-spot giveaways.
The partnership activation was created for Reebok by brand experience, sponsorship and partnerships agency MKTG UK, which came up with the event concept, handled development and production, and managed influencer and gym partnerships and the competition element.
A pre-event awareness campaign ran during the week running up to the event, including a campaign featuring UK-based UFC influencers talking about the experience, while London-based MMA and boxing gyms were signed up to promote the activity to members through direct communications and an in-gym ad campaign.
Joanna Hodgetts, Brand Activation Manager at Reebok, said: “We are extremely proud of our Official Reebok UFC Collection and wanted to bring a little bit of the UFC action to the high street.”
Gary Whelan, Business Director at MKTG, added: “We are delighted to have been appointed by Reebok to work with Sports Direct to bring the brand’s association with UFC to life with this knockout retail experience. This activation is part of our continued strategy to bring our learnings from designing and activating big brand experiences to drive footfall into the retail environment, improve the in-store customer journey, and increase customer dwell time for retailers and brands.”