Emily Viberg
Emily Viberg is a Retail Analyst at Mintel. She researches and writes reports on seasonal shopping.

Ted Baker has made its first foray into the gaming market with Nintendo’s Animal Crossing: New Horizons to reveal its Autumn/Winter 2021 collection. Players are able to dress avatars in digital versions of 20 items from the collection to explore Ted Baker Island. Players also have access to in-game photo opportunities and QR codes that enable a wider discovery of the campaign. We explore how this digital collaboration will benefit Ted Baker and why more and more fashion brands are joining the gamification trend.

Ted Baker allows users to preview its Autumn/Winter collection in Nintendo’s Animal Crossing game

Source: The Industry Fashion

This is a first for Ted Baker and an unexpected move from the retailer, but one that shows it is moving with the times by experimenting with new and innovative digital formats, and looking to boost the brand’s image after a difficult few years. It is also a playful expansion of its Street Party Sessions launched earlier in the year – a series of virtual concerts celebrating British musicians -which has helped the brand engage with younger audiences globally. 

Ted Baker is the latest, but not the only, brand to join the gaming sphere with similar moves made in the luxury fashion market. Burberry was an early adopter of clothing gaming avatars when it launched its first game ‘B Bounce’ in 2019. Since then it has continued to experiment with the format and launched its first dedicated game for the Chinese Lunar New Year in 2020.

Burberry’s game ‘B Bounce’ allows players to select their avatar’s outfit 

Source: Burberry

What we think

Gamification has been a popular way for brands to connect with consumers during the pandemic and offers a playful way for people to consume and discover fashion content. The interest is there, as Mintel’s upcoming UK Report on Designer Fashion reveals that 7% of shoppers would be interested in dressing an avatar in a video game/online game in designer fashion. While gamification in fashion is still in its infancy, and is mainly adopted by luxury brands for marketing purposes, it has been used during the pandemic as a creative way to engage and reach a younger demographic.