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Uniqlo aims to increase app downloads via print campaign

The Uniqlo ads are running in New York’s amNewYork newspaper and promote the retailer’s recently launched UT Camera app, which lets consumers loop together videos to create a short, animated film.

“UT Camera is part of our larger UT Campaign, which celebrates our printed T-shirts and the spirit of self-expression behind them,” said Jean Shein, marketing director at Uniqlo USA, New York.

“Hence, UT Camera – which is all about expressing yourself in a fun way through GIFs – is a perfect complement to the campaign and something new that we want people to experience,” she said.

Promote on mobile
The full-page ads promote Uniqlo’s UT 2013 campaign that includes pictures of consumers wearing the retailer’s T-shirts.

In the bottom right-hand corner of the ad, a box promotes Uniqlo’s UT Camera app for Android and iPhone devices.

Via the app, consumers can shoot a two-second video clip of themselves in Uniqlo gear, and can then share through social media sites.

With the recent popularity of social video apps such as Vine, Uniqlo’s new app points to the need for brands to equip apps with interactive elements to keep consumers coming back regularly.

A URL is promoted to drive consumers to a mobile microsite where they can learn more about UT Camera and download the app.

The landing page that consumers are directed to includes more information about the campaign, which also included pop-up stores across the world earlier this month.

The Uniqlo UT app builds on a series of apps that the company has rolled out.

“Uniqlo already has a series of fun and useful apps that have been downloaded millions of times such as Uniqlock, Uniqlo Wakeup and Uniqlo Calendar, so we already have a solid relationship with consumers via mobile that UT Camera is going to augment,” Ms. Shein said.

“Going forward we will continue to work in the mobile area as we know that is the future,” she said.

Mobile opportunity
Uniqlo does not have a mobile commerce site or app – therefore the brand relies on using mobile to spur engagement and ultimately in-store sales.

For example, Uniqlo ran a mobile advertising campaign last year to promote a giveaway and sweepstakes (see story).

Since the goal of the print ad is to drive downloads, the call-to-action in this case could have been improved, according to some experts.

“If you are promoting a URL, your mobile campaign should be browser-based – otherwise you are making people open their browser, type in a URL, tap a link to download the app, then input their information to download versus simply promoting the app itself, which only requires people open their app store and type the name of the product,” said Mike DiMarco, director of media at FiddleFly, Columbia, MD.

Mr. DiMarco is not affiliated with Uniqlo. He commented based on his expertise on the subject.

“If the ad had a scannable QR code it may make the process simpler,” he said. “Adding more steps will result in customer losing interest.”

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York