If you've been reading us for some time, you could easily deduce that we're sports fans. There is no better market to test consumer loyalty than sports fans.
The word "fan" is short for "fanatic," after all; a word that Merriam-Webster defines as "marked by excessive enthusiasm and often intense uncritical devotion."
Meaning that in the world of the sports fan, the typical boundaries of reason, logic, and sense do not apply. That's why people watch their team's game every week in the same place, wearing the same jersey. That's why people scream at the TV as if the coach or player can hear them, and that's why during mid-season you hear fans talk as if they themselves were once general managers, and know exactly what trades the team needs to make to finish the season strong.
It doesn't make sense. But it's not supposed to.
Puma, a brand heavily involved in the sports world, understands this. Puma, along with the agency Mix Brand Experience, created a campaign that not only harnessed the passion of the sports fan, but helped foster buy-in for a new uniform for the team these fans support.
The team is a Brazilian soccer club called Botafogo, and Puma changed its nearly 100-year-old jersey from black and white to gold.
To measure the passion of the Botafogo fan, and get them to test the jersey, the team created the FogoMeter. The fan's heart rate, while wearing the jersey, had to reach a certain point (170 bpm). Once they hit that threshold, the fan was awarded the jersey, proving that they were "fan enough" to deserve it.
The campaign is absolutely delicious to sports fans. The video of it is below.
There are more than several reasons why this campaign is a brilliant one. First, they let fans wear the jersey. That's personal selling 101: getting the customer to touch (or wear) the product makes the product more salient. Second, they had video and audio of fans screaming at games, and made the fan ramp up their heart rate while wearing the new jersey. They associated the new jersey with the fans' old feelings of excitement, loyalty, and winning tradition. Third, they made the consumer work for the jersey; they created a barrier. Because the consumer had to work for it, they are going to place more value on that jersey than one they didn't have to work for.
Great strategy, great execution. No brand, no sports fan, wants anything more than that.