Mr. Wicksteed, is working to broaden the TV-centric retailer's
horizons, even as the medium still "commands the lion's share of
the budget," he said. Old Navy spent $176 million on measured media
last year, according to the Ad Age Datacenter.
Though Old Navy's ads typically focus on moms throughout the
year, the retailer turns its attention to kids during the
back-to-school season. Mr. Wicksteed says music can help bridge the
gap with younger generations. Though, it's worth noting that "Old
Navy Records," an earlier campaign from the brand with a heavy
music component was deemed
"ineffective" by Gap Inc. executives.
"If you want to talk to this audience, you have to engage them
using media that they interact with," said Mr. Wicksteed, who cited
Disney's 'Frozen' as an example of the impact
music can have. The movie's anthem, "Let It Go" won the Academy
Award for Best Original Song. "Music is something they're used to
interacting with in a major way. We're really just tapping into
that as a cultural phenomenon."
Mr. Wicksteed declined to comment on the budget for the
campaign, but said the online video is the "backbone" of Old Navy's
For the video, Old Navy tapped AwesomenessTV, an online
distribution platform with a strong reach among a younger
demographic. The artists on the platform who are featured in the
video are producing original content around it. CAA Marketing also worked on the anthem,
which is available on iTunes.
Old Navy's back-to-school campaign also include in-store,
digital and social. TV ads featuring Ms. Poehler were handled by
Camp Old Navy, the brand's partnership with the Boys and Girls
Club of America, which serves underprivileged youths, is also
incorporated in to the back-to-school campaign. The program, which
is mentioned in the music video, will receive proceeds from the
iTunes purchases of "Unlimited," as well as in-store donations.
Other retailers have taken cause-related marketing approaches
this back-to-school season to drum up support for students in need.
Target, for example, aims to
donate $25 million in school supplies -- one product for each
product purchased from Target's school-supply line Up and Up.