The Challenge

Backcountry.com is the second largest outdoor retailer in the world. Their online business distributes over 1,000 independently-owned brands to outdoor lovers and action sports enthusiasts alike. In 2014, Backcountry.com introduced their own lifestyle clothing brand, Basin and Range, to be sold exclusively on their site. Upon the release of the brand, customers struggled to identify with Basin and Range. Without a true brand story, consumers were confused as to where their products came from and who they were intended for. When Backcountry.com approached us, they asked our team to create a fully-integrated digital campaign to help build awareness around the brand and ultimately close the gap on its competitors.

The Objective

Mainstream advertising tells us to focus on the products. We took a different approach by diving head first into the stories of interesting people who are using Basin and Range products. Through a series of real-life stories, we aimed to create a unique lifestyle image that Basin and Range consumers could identify to help encourage sustained brand loyalty. By implementing a strategy focused around user engagement and relatable content, we aimed to foster organic promotion from within the outdoor community. Through a combination of film, photography, and design, we set our sights on creating a dynamic storytelling experience across web, social and email platforms. Our key objective: Give people a reason to pay attention to Basin and Range.

"Brands have lately woken up to the fact that their entertainment outputs can and should go beyond the paid, interruption-based model known as advertising."

Teress Iezzi, Communication Strategist at W+K

The Process

Our team managed everything from creative concepting, production, social media development, web design all the way to the launch and implementation of the final campaign. We worked closely alongside Backcountry.com to ensure that the experience was aligned with their intended audience and that the content was released during the proper intervals with the fall / winter clothing line. Our campaign featured a total of four distinct characters across a variety of locations around the United States. Each story tactfully introduced a new set of products while remaining true to The Locals Project commitment towards authenticity.

STEP ONE

Campaign Developmentand Character Selection

The campaign concept, “Basin and Range Unscripted”, was derived from the idea of telling authentic stories of non-fiction characters who have established themselves among the outdoor community. Our core audience was defined as the weekend warriors, super parents and urban adventurers ranging between the ages of 30-45 years old. During the initial phase of the project, we introduced a wide range of characters who we felt were a strong representation of the brand and its target audience. After presenting these characters to our client, we narrowed down the list to four uniquely interesting and inspiring characters. Each represented a slightly different audience and were thoughtfully chosen because of the diversity of their stories, backgrounds, livelihoods, genders, and locations.

STEP TWO

Content Production

Over a two month period, our team managed to produce four distinct short films and photo stories located in a variety of states ranging from Washington, Oregon, Colorado, and New York. We slept in the bed of trucks, on desert floors, and even in cattle feeds. We made a habit out of waking up at 4:00am to shoot at sunrise, filming everywhere from the middle of the desert to crowded and busy downtown Manhattan. In the weeks prior to each shoot, we spent time developing our relationships with each of the characters before setting out to capture their stories. These early interactions allowed us to develop a stronger storyline and character rapport to ultimately capture a more accurate and honest representation of our characters and their stories.

STEP THREE

Social Media Strategy and Implementation

Our team managed all of Basin and Range’s outward facing social channels including Instagram, Facebook and YouTube. When challenged with the task of building their audience from the ground up, we developed an in-depth social strategy which would allow our content on various platforms to compliment the larger stories, encouraging users to dive deeper into the campaign experience. Our strategy was largely based around four key pillars: the characters, the lifestyle, the products, and user generated images. Upon the release of our campaign, we coordinated with a handful of select influencers to post on our behalf and raise further awareness around the brand. By leveraging social analytics, we were able to make informed decisions to help tailor the content we released towards what was working.

STEP FOUR

Website Design andEmail Newsletter Campaign

As soon as the stories were underway, our design team crafted an online experience, combining videos, photos, and written content into a series of landing pages that would be displayed on Backcountry.com. On each respective page, users were given the opportunity to interact with the multi-media stories and were encouraged to purchase the products seen in the stories. Additionally, we created an entirely new Basin and Range brand page to serve as hub for the campaign, housing each of the stories while pushing newly-released products to build legitimacy around the brand. Alongside the web experience, we released a series of email newsletters that served as a teaser to the larger campaign all the while promoting products from the fall / winter line.

The Results

As a direct result of the Unscripted Campaign, we witnessed a sharp increase in user engagement across web, social and email channels. We saw a 594% increase in audience growth across Basin and Range’s Instagram, Youtube, and Facebook pages. During the campaign, we gained additional traction through a series of established media outlets who shared our stories and linked users directly to the Basin and Range brand page. Across social platforms, user engagement for the brand reached an all-time high as people shared, liked and commented over 70+ thousand times. Some users even took it upon themselves to post their own content on behalf of the brand. At the end of the day, we transformed a rather lifeless brand into one with a clear image and story–satisfying all of our clients needs in the process.

Full Length Films


594

% SOCIAL MEDIA GROWTH

63,750

TOTAL VIEWS

70,021

TOTAL REACTIONS

Backcountry.com

Backcountry.com is the second largest outdoor retailer in the world. Their online business distributes over 1,000 independently-owned brands to outdoor lovers and action sports enthusiasts alike. In 2014, Backcountry.com introduced their own lifestyle clothing brand, Basin and Range, to be sold exclusively on their site. Upon the release of the brand, customers struggled to identify with Basin and Range. Without a true brand story, consumers were confused as to where their products came from and who they were intended for. When Backcountry.com approached us, they asked our team to create a fully-integrated digital campaign to help build awareness around the brand and ultimately close the gap on its competitors.

ClientBackcountry.comServicesCampaign Development, Film, Photography, Web Design, UX, Social Media, Strategy, Copywriting, Pre-Production, Post-ProductionYear2016Linkwww.backcountry.com