- Teen retailer Hollister and video game giant Activision Blizzard on June 21 will host in-store events to celebrate the release of "Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled," a game featuring characters from the popular "Crash Bandicoot" series. The companies will set up special gaming lounges in Hollister stores, whose front video screens will be connected to Sony PS4 systems showing the game, according to Hollister announcement.
- Twitch streamer Fuslie and J.D. Witherspoon, the comedian who hosts the Facebook Watch show "Confetti," will livestream from Hollister's Los Cerritos, California, store on the game's launch day. Social media influencers from the Hollister Swim Collective, including Adelaine Morin, Haley Pham and Eris the Planet, also will be at the event to connect with gaming fans.
- Activision will give away limited-edition T-shirts and PS4 game downloads to customers who spend at least $100 at select Hollister stores in California, Illinois and New York.
Activision's promotion for the latest "Crash Bandicoot" game takes a multiplatform approach to reach teen and pre-teen fans where they shop, socialize and watch online videos. By collaborating with Hollister on in-store events, the video game publisher can give customers a chance to test the new game and potentially receive a free copy. Gaming fans who don't live near the live events can participate by watching the livestream on Twitch, Amazon's video streaming platform for gamers.
For Activision, the Hollister promotion is a chance to introduce "Crash Bandicoot" to a new generation of fans looking to engage with gaming content. The franchise remains a reliable money-maker more than 20 years after Sony Computer Entertainment debuted "Crash Bandicoot" for its first PlayStation. Activision has sold more than 10 million units of its "Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy," a bundled version of the game released in 2017, COO Coddy Johnson said during a quarterly earnings call in February. The franchise's success signals why the gaming brand is extending its reach to a new generation of consumers who typically prefer interacting with brands through in-person experiential events.
Meanwhile, surf-themed Hollister had been a bright spot for parent company Abercrombie & Fitch Co. for the past few years among its core Gen Z customer base. The brand saw softer demand in Q1 as same-store sales growth slowed to 2%, missing estimates for a 3.3% gain from the prior year. Last year, Hollister reported same-store sales growth of 6%. The company blamed slowing U.S. mall traffic and greater competition for the lower growth rate. It also announced the closure of three flagship stores, including a Hollister store in the SoHo district of New York, Reuters reported.