ABOUT THIS ENTRY
The Warriors x TikTok x Rakuten was an ambitious project using the power of influencers to unlock three distinct goals for each property involved. The Warriors aimed to promote their 75th-anniversary jersey, TikTok wanted to alert fans of their new shopping function, and Rakuten was looking for exposure of their 10% cash back feature.
How does this represent “Excellence in Engagement”?
Looking past the success of the reach, sales and creator satisfaction at the event, there are key components of this initiative that allow it to be a standout initiative within our industry — the Warriors’ ability to craft something that no one else had done before.
Upon the launch of this in March of 2022, the Warriors became the:
- First North American sports team to launch a TikTok storefront (only other sports partners that have done so are WWE and Barstool)
- First North American sports team to work directly with TikTok to develop a creator program
- First North American sports team to drive revenue through TikTok creators by selling to Rakuten
The main objective of the Warriors Origins TikTok collaboration was to increase awareness of the Warriors Origins jersey line, which paid homage to the 75th anniversary of the franchise. Alongside the jersey launch, the team released an entire merchandise line, all of which was presented by Rakuten.
As the organization educated fans on what the jersey and the merchandise line meant, the Warriors wanted to reach fans far across the Bay Area. The team worked with TikTok to source five creators to help carry this messaging using their channels and unique audiences to expand reach beyond Warriors channels.
Since the Warriors went with a TikTok-focused approach, the team also wanted to lean into the TikTok shopping feature. So as the creators pushed out content around Warriors Origins, they pointed to the Warriors’ TikTok page where a storefront with all the items was launched.
Finally, as this collaboration was in partnership with Rakuten, the Warriors wanted to ensure fans knew that they could get cash back if they shopped using Rakuten. So, within the creators' content they messaged that you get 10% cash back by using Rakuten.
Strategy & Execution
This initiative was centered around the modern sports fan. As the Warriors looked at their fan base, the team knew that those who engage with owned touch points (brand social accounts, ticket buyers, at-home viewers) would consume the Warriors Origins campaign. As the team aimed to expand that reach, they looked to not only capitalize on the rise of TikTok usage but also tap into the devoted follower bases of top creators within the app.
By sourcing creators across various specialities—lifestyle, sports, entertainment, and finance—the Warriors were able to reach new audiences. Within the TikTok creator community, follower bases view creators at a celebrity status, so the Warriors wanted to lean into this, with the franchise's brand truths on the frontlines.
With a two-step approach to the content with creators, the Warriors had multiple touchpoints with these earned audiences. The first was through a TikTok where they were showing off the merchandise and speaking to how history runs through the threads of them. The second was through hosting all of them in our “Warriors Origins” suite at Chase Center. They posted their game day experience, bringing a focal point of the Warriors brand to their feeds too.