Keds: taking creativity on tour

Keds, the iconic US footwear company first introduced in the US in 1916, is going on tour. The new ‘How Do You Do?’ promotional road trip is part of a wider awareness drive, which sees the brand attempting to forge creative ties with a new generation of sneaker consumers.

“Keds' "How Do You Do?" is a reflection of our brand and spirit. We are travelling across the country to discover how America's next generation of young people are inspired to do what they do,” states the companies website.

The tour itself will take the form of giant travelling white Keds shoe box (not dissimilar in concept to adidas’ giant shoebox at last year’s Lollapalooza festival), which will pitch up at a number of US cities and college campuses – especially selected for their arts or fashion-based programs - over the coming months.

During each tour stop Keds will team up with various local ambassadors, including artists who will use the shoe as their canvas for the creation of various artworks, local models who will wear Keds shoes at fashion showcases, and a number of music events featuring local acts are also in the pipeline.

The shoebox will feature touch screen kiosks where participants can customise and purchase Keds footwear, as well as take part in a design competition.  In addition, those who venture inside will be able to view video content related to the various artists and charities the brand is working alongside.

Kristin Kohler Burrows, president of Keds Group, which is part of Collective Brands, told the New York Times that the campaign is designed to “awaken people to the fact that it is an iconic brand.”

The tour promotion is the culmination of a long running collaborative music, art and fashion campaign from the brand (which spent some $1.68 million on advertising over a nine month period in 2010). A previous promotional effort turned Bloomingdale’s windows into temporary art studios and brought an art and music exhibition to the The Whitney Museum of Modern art.

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