- French fashion company Lacoste will give viewers of the French Open a chance to buy clothing through "on-air shoppable moments." The broadcast will be the first time that NBCUniversal directly sells products through its new ShoppableTV experience, according to an announcement shared with sister publication Mobile Marketer.
- Lacoste will offer items from its Lacoste X Novak Djokovic Collection during matches featuring the Serbian tennis star. During the broadcast, viewers will see an alert that indicates when they can hold up their smartphone cameras to the TV to begin browsing.
- A QR code will direct viewers to Lacoste's website to complete the purchase. The brand is offering two of Djokovic's "statement outfits," one in bright orange and one in black and white, alongside other pieces in the collection.
Lacoste's collaboration with NBCUniversal on televised shoppable moments will provide some early insight into how the broadcaster's ShoppableTV works in real time. The media company this month announced the rollout of the direct-response marketing program, which it touts as the first time that QR code technology is being used on national TV for shopping. Scannable QR codes aim to make the shopping process more seamless for viewers, who are taken directly to an e-commerce site to place an order instead of typing in a web address or opening a mobile app.
A tennis tournament like the French Open at Roland-Garros provides plenty of sponsorship opportunities, especially for sports gear and athletic apparel worn by star players. Lacoste has about 10% of men's tennis clothing sponsorships, compared with 23% for Nike, 17% for Adidas, 10% for Fila and 10% for Lotto, per data compiled by Score and Change. By offering direct sales of clothing worn by the top-ranked Djokovic, Lacoste is likely to stand out at the French Open while generating a direct sales return on its sponsorship investment.
NBCUniversal isn't the only company that seeks to drive direct sales through TV. Walmart this month unveiled its Vudu Audience Extension network to expand its reach to half of U.S. households and provide marketers with "retail-connected" advertising, Ad Age reported. Walmart used its first official NewFronts appearance to show off its "shoppable ads" that let consumers add products to an online shopping cart.