LOS ANGELES: Adidas, the German sportswear giant, has used a Snapchat e-commerce activation feature previously used by Nike, as the platform demonstrates a new way to drive value for brands.

In partnership with on-demand fulfilment service Darkstore, Adidas used the platform to pre-release a new style of sneaker – the Falcon W shoe – earlier this month, Adweek reported. The shoe appeared on a Snapchat show called Fashion 5 Ways, during which customers could swipe up to buy the shoe through a Shopify-powered experience.

According to the sportswear company, the pre-release sold out in just six hours.

“Going into this collaboration, we wanted to bridge the gap between content and commerce,” said Chris Murphy, Adidas’s senior director, digital activation, North America.

He added that the partnership with the image-sharing platform was “all about coming closer to our consumer and bringing a unique brand experience to one of the platforms that they value the most”.

Strategically, the move was calculate with a young female audience that the partnership believed would amplify the social buzz around the release. “We matched great content with exclusive product knowing it would connect with the right audience,” said Murphy.

Darkstore CEO, Lee Hnetinka praised the way in which Snapchat is providing a unique and unprecedented service, “connecting something digital with something physical in a way that’s really seamless”.

An earlier instance of Snapchat exercising its e-commerce capability, this time with Nike and again involving Darkstore and Shopify, also demonstrated the platform’s effectiveness in shifting footwear. The new shoes sold out in 23 minutes.

In June of this year, Digiday covered LAFC, the new Los Angeles soccer club, which began selling match tickets through Snap, as it expands its offering in the area.

However, experts believe that the potential of Snapchat as a sales channel will only be realised if the platform continues to tailor communications very specifically to the audience that the brand wants to reach.

Compared to Facebook, “for me, Snapchat is more innovative”, said Ben Williams, VP and executive creative director of products and services at R/GA, and who worked on the Nike campaign.

“They double down on the experience piece of it. Instagram has the install base. They’re winning by the power of numbers. When you’re at scale, you tread cautiously. When you’re the underdog, you’re willing to take risks,” he added.

Sourced from Adweek, TechCrunch, Digiday; additional content by WARC staff