The North Face is not the only brand whose recent quick turnaround in responding to a TikTok resulted in positive attention. In November, for instance, drinkware brand Stanley, responded to a viral video of one of its cups surviving a car fire by pledging to buy the owner of the vehicle a new car.
“Dannggg Stanley taking it home! Great marketing. Great response. Bravooooo,” wrote user @castillo507 in the comments of Stanley’s response video. The post generated more than a million likes on TikTok within 16 hours.
Stanley partially inspired The North Face’s response video, Hamilton said, although she added that The North Face had been perfecting its social listening skills to be ready for this type of reaction prior to Stanley’s move.
Read more about Stanley’s reaction here
Although these types of brand reactions might seem expensive (after all, renting a helicopter or buying a new car likely isn’t cheap), Hamilton said that creating this video was a financially savvy choice for The North Face.
“If we look at what we spent on this versus what it would cost to pay for those impressions, it is a very, very, very efficient way for us to get our product out there,” Hamilton said.
While The North Face offered to pay Jensen, she turned it down and did the work for free, according to Hamilton. The North Face flew Jensen up to the top of the mountain in a helicopter so she did not have to do the full hike again for the video, she added. Jensen did not immediately respond to Ad Age’s request for comment via TikTok.
The North Face also paid a New Zealand content creator Sophie Piearcey to film the video and tapped North Face athlete Jossi Wells to star in it alongside Jensen.
“It’s all about listening to our customers—that’s really the core of it,” Hamilton said. She added that these types of responses on TikTok remind her of the early days of social media. After all, brands have been responding to their customers on social for years now, such as when Kohl’s responded to “Chewbaca Mom” on Facebook back in 2016.
“It feels like the spirit of social media is coming back again,” Hamilton said.