A World Wide Voice

USA Track and Field: USATF connects the track and field community across the world.

USA Track and Field

USATF is the nonprofit governing body of American Track and Field. The Organization is the focal point around which the track and field community continues to grow.

The Warm-up

USATF is great at what it does but relies on a strong partner to create more opportunities for engagement and awareness for the sport and the brand. Prior to our partnership, the USATF brand lacked a consistent identity and failed to address its multiple audience segments through looks or messaging.

We began working with USATF for specific design pieces and projects to support their existing brand. These initial design pieces laid the groundwork for the long-term partnership we have today. When the time came to fine-tune USATF’s branding in order to reach its goals of awareness, engagement, and opportunity, Matchbook was the partner of choice.

Practiced Partners

USATF worked with Matchbook to manage the project, conduct research, develop a new, overarching identity, and create all supporting pieces for the new cohesive brand. Through a year-long branding effort, Matchbook was able to understand each audience and, through an internal audit, addressed the growing needs of each department and then identified the proper tools and messaging for each department’s unique constituents.

An in-depth brand guidelines document accessible to all USATF staff was developed, and a secure online portal was created to house these guidelines and the needed brand elements. Brand tools, such as fonts and swatches, downloadable logos, templates for e-blasts, email signatures, business cards, and additional resources, all live on the new portal to ensure the proper implementation of the brand. Because the portal can be accessed by all USATF staff, its regional associations, and designated brand managers, maintaining a cohesive brand across departments, states, and events is achievable.

Going the Distance

With more regional involvement, USATF is able to lead a nationwide, grassroots effort from a centralized source. Our partnership with USATF has extended past this branding effort, working with them on needed collateral and special projects, from graphic design to interior design of their national office space. This partnership has remained successful for over a decade.

One notable project we've worked on was the launch of its exclusive Nike shoe, the Pegasus 35. The goal was to create a strategically designed product launch to increase sales of the Pegasus 35 line.

On the Right Track

Matchbook began this project by outlining the overall strategy for the campaign, making sure to tailor the content and messaging to capture USATF’s target audiences. The Pegasus 35 custom shoe features one blue and one red shoe, highlighting a delicate balance of and need for coordination between two sides. The duality of the shoe’s design inspired the campaign’s overall left-brain versus right-brain (analytical versus creative) approach. Matchbook’s launch strategy focused on social media to hit the highest reach and potential for conversion.

Hitting Our Stride

In preparing the creative for this campaign, we enhanced USATF’s merchandise marketing practices moving from still graphics and single images to animated videos and multi-image shares. Strategizing a ‘render to reality’ component, Matchbook’s first video for the launch took the shoe from blueprint to final form. A 360-degree video was also created to highlight the shoe's attributes and emphasize the unique, two-toned design.

To generate buzz for his campaign, we engaged USATF’s audiences and related influencers to share their own stories about the shoes to further the conversation. Past Olympians, such as Bernard Lagat, posted their shoe’s arrival on social media, furthering the reach and perception of the product. A strategic and precise launch schedule allowed for more controlled messaging across multiple platforms and the ability to create interest and demand before igniting sales.

Crossing the Finish Line

In the first two months, USATF saw a 132% increase in revenue from that year’s launch compared to the previous year’s shoe and sold out of the majority of its limited-edition product. The launch video post alone garnered nearly 15,000 views, with engagement in social media promotions consistently in the thousands. In the first month of launch, visitation to the online merchandise store was up 83% from the previous month, with sessions nearly doubling one month into launch.

Setting the right intentions through this campaign, USATF saw immediate success in hitting their sales goals and velocity for the Pegasus 35 Nike custom shoe release.

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