By Barry Janoff
November 22, 2013: In what the NHL is calling its "first foray into animation for a campaign." the league has unveiled a multi-platform push to generate sales for the upcoming holidays.
The effort is anchored by a TV spot, "NHL Workshop," in which animated 1960's retro-looking holiday helpers get NHL goodies such as pucks, jerseys, T-shirts and other items ready for shipping from Shop.NHL.com and NHL.com.
The 30-second spot breaks this weekend in the U.S. and Canada during NHL broadcasts and shoulder programming on NBC, NBCSN, CBC, TSN, TSN2; on NHL Network; and regional sports networks including MSG, Fox Sports and Sportsnet.
Support includes such digital and social media platforms as NHL.com, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter (@NHL with the official hash tag #HockeyHolidays). In addition, the spot will run in NHL arenas in the U.S. and Canada.
Creative was developed by the NHL, with "collaborative input and animation production" from My Active Driveway, NY.
“Like all retailers, the holidays are a critically important time for our e-commerce business,” Brian Jennings, CMO for the NHL, said in a statement. “We wanted a holiday message that captures the spirit and fun of gift giving, while making our products the heroes of the spot and reinforcing that Shop.NHL.com has the largest selection of products and teams."
The spot takes place in an animated North Pole version of Shop.NHL.com. As hockey gifts and goodies come to life and are packed for shipping, a voiceover offers, "Every NHL gift has a home. This holiday season choose from 1,000s of gifts from NHL Shop and NHL.com." (See the full commercial here.)
The NHL said Shop.NHL.com has more than 15,000 products, including 2014 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic and the 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series apparel. The array of official products ieatured in the TV spot includes merchandise from partners Reebok, Bleacher Creatures, Ty (Beanie Ballz), Plushland and Forever Collectibles (Sock Monkeys).
According to Andrea Scaglione, creative director for My Active Driveway, "This campaign pays homage to classic 1960's animated holiday films while leveraging the play-by-play excitement of an NHL game. Our team of designers, artists and animators did an outstanding job in creating a whimsical and memorable broadcast and digital campaign for the NHL.”
"Holiday animations are a universal language and tradition enjoyed by people of all ages, and a clever and creative way to communicate our message," said Jennings.
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