- Hoka One One, the maker of athletic apparel owned by Deckers Brands, is offering a mobile shopping experience on photo-messaging app Snapchat. The experience includes an augmented reality (AR) pop-up store and virtual try-on of running shoes, according to an announcement parent company Snap shared with sister publication Mobile Marketer.
- The shopping experience is available to select Snapchat users in a World Lens, a feature that shows AR imagery while using a smartphone's outward facing camera. The lens can be accessed in the Snapchat carousel of lenses or by scanning a Snapcode with the app's camera.
- By tapping on a "shop now" button that appears below products featured in the AR pop-up, users can buy the products directly from Hoka One One. Product pages for shoes have a "try on" button that overlays a digital image of sneakers on a shopper's feet.
Hoka One One aims to engage Snapchat users in a virtual shopping experience as many consumers avoid shopping malls and stores during the coronavirus pandemic. More than half (52%) of Snapchat users said feeling or seeing a product helps them to make a purchase decision, per survey data cited by Tom Bates, creative strategy manager at Snap. These AR lenses can help to give shoppers a better idea of how Hoka One One's products will appear in real life, while removing friction to guide them into making a direct purchase from their phone.
With the back-to-school shopping season disrupted by the pandemic, Hoka One One's AR experience on Snapchat may help the brand to connect with younger consumers. Generation Z and millennials are more likely than older cohorts to have shifted their spending to e-commerce sites during the health crisis. Thirty-three percent of young consumers increased their online spending, compared with 23% of older groups, a Boston Consulting Group study commissioned by Snap found in June. Snapchat reaches more than 100 million people in the U.S., including more than 90% of people ages 13 to 24, and more than 75% of people ages 13 to 34, per metrics provided by the company.
Hoka One One has been a bright spot for parent company Deckers Brands, which is mostly know for its Ugg boots and Tevas. Sales of Hoka One One products rose 37% to $109 million during the most recently completed quarter, contrasting with the declines in Deckers' other brands including Sanuk (down 29%), Ugg (down 10%) and Teva (down 7.9%), per a quarterly earnings announcement. The company's net sales rose 2.3% to $283.2 million during the quarter ended June 30 from the prior year.
Hoka One One is just the latest brand to develop an AR-based campaign on Snapchat. More than 180 million of the app's users engaged with AR content every day in Q2, a period when its global user base grew 17% to 238 million from a year earlier. PetSmart last month featured an AR lens to promote reptile sales amid a 50% jump in purchases of snakes, lizards and turtles. The immersive lens included a quiz that gradually transformed a Snapchat user's face into a reptile based on their answers. Microsoft's Xbox similarly unveiled a dozen AR lenses to promote the release of its next-generation video game console.