Creating Animal Crossing Custom Outfits to Drive Brand Awareness

Even if you haven’t played the game, you’ve probably heard someone talking about how they owe Tom Nook money, who is the newest villager that has moved to their island, or what DIY recipe they are still on the hunt for. With unintentionally impeccable timing, Nintendo’s latest addition to the Animal Crossing games, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, is the perfect distraction. The response to the game has been overwhelmingly positive, and the conversation around it has yet to die down, especially as some brands started using this as a new way to market and connect with fans. 

Animal Crossing  pro designer app
Animal Crossing pro designer app

Animal Crossing: New Horizons includes multiple ways to interact with other players through Nintendo Switch Online, such as visiting other islands or sharing custom outfit codes. These custom outfits have become the talk of the island, and made popular amongst gamers on Reddit. Players will find a pro designer app on their character’s phone, in which they can create their own outfits pixel by pixel. These outfits can then be uploaded to a kiosk in the Able Sisters’ shop on your island. The kiosk will generate a creator code and outfit codes that can be shared with others to download.

This feature has proven useful for companies wanting to market themselves through the game. As you’ve likely seen, Wendy’s was one of the first companies to dip their toes in the world of advertising through the game. They started to share their island over twitch stream, and they even created a custom outfit for their iconic Wendy.

Fashion brands have also taken interest in the game, specifically the creation of custom outfit codes. They are recreating entire collections to share with their fans within the Animal Crossing community. 100 Thieves, the popular lifestyle and gaming brand,  shared custom codes for the lines they’ve released within the past three years.

Sandy Liang, a New York based fashion designer, held a pop up shop on her island to share pieces from current and past collections.

Our creative agency, verylike, has been working hard to find the newest forms of media for today’s current climate, where some traditional forms, like OOH advertising, are no longer ideal. While creating zoom backgrounds for clients was a bit more expected, our team never could have guessed we would be playing Animal Crossing for them.

The verylike team was recently tasked with creating three Animal Crossing custom outfits inspired by Paloma Mami’s latest music video, Goteo.

Three designers took their time carefully recreating the three outfits worn by Paloma throughout the video. Once the outfits were complete and custom codes were generated, we created social images that could be shared with her fans.

Diving straight into this new form of creative was fun and exciting, but we soon discovered a hurdle that is important to keep in mind. Animal Crossing was not designed for advertising, it’s a children’s game. There are currently no forms of tracking analytics around assets like custom outfit codes. This means if you want to share the custom codes, while also tracking the number of downloads, you’ll need to think outside the box. How about a trackable link or QR code to lead fans in the direction of the custom outfit codes? What if we include a hashtag and encourage fans to share photos of their Animal Crossing characters wearing the outfits? As with any new form of media, there are going to be problems to solve, but that doesn’t mean we can’t get creative to figure them out.

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