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How Asics gets shoppers to vote with their feet

Data, the right technical staff training and “word of mouth” recommendations have been key aspects to Asics’ success, chief executive EMEA Alistair Cameron told the Drapers Fashion Forum on 12 October.

Asics regent st party 009

Asics regent st party 009

“People will ask: ‘why aren’t you wearing Asics?’” he said. ”There’s a word of mouth aspect with running, and our biggest endorsement is other people, as well as the top athletes we work with.

“A total of 40%-50% marathon runners wear Asics. We never even sponsored the London Marathon, and that was 40% of runners. People choose with their feet.”

There is also something else that “sneaker heads” love, Cameron explained: “Runners are obsessed with data.

“In store, customers spend a lot, and when they get the right technical staff training, they can sell the whole outfit.”

In its Regent Street store, Asics offers its visitors an analytic running tool, which Cameron said ends in 90% conversion.

As well as its in-store offerings, he says that digital engagement is key, which is why Asics bought running app Runkeeper, created social media focused running community Frontrunner, and works with Sound Mind, Sound Body (SMSB) communities to “help establish communities not just obsessed with running but that want to do active things together”.

“We know that getting fit is all about movement, which Asics is committed to,” said Cameron. “But it’s also about ensuring we’re on the move ourselves, changing as a company. Today, the phrase ’sound body, sound mind’ is more relevant than ever before.”

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