Highsnobiety

Salomon is about to have a huge year. I know this because Salomon said so itself.

On February 11, Super Bowl LVIII dominated American culture for one bright, brief moment. The big game between two football teams I personally know nothing about was presumably the main event but, really, it was all about the ads.

Super Bowl ads, reported to cost as much as $7 million for a 30-second spot, are a national pastime, or at least they were in the days when everyone had cable. But they’re clearly still sought-after as one of the few remaining eyeball-providers in an ever-marginalized attention economy.

You can’t guarantee attention but a Super Bowl ad is probably as close as you can get.

They aren’t always bids at virality, though. Some Super Bowl ads are purpose-driven, like Beyoncé’s Verizon ad-turned-album-announcement.

This is why Salomon, the humble French sportswear brand owned by Finnish conglomerate Amer Spots (itself owned by Anta Sports), paid up for its own Super Bowl spot.

Shot by Danish filmmaker Martin de Thurah, likely best known for directing James Blake and Kanye West music videos, Salomon’s "Welcome Back to Earth" spot is a fitting proposition worthy of Salomon’s ethos. Ditch the city’s hustle and, instead, bustle back to the outdoors (preferably while wearing Salomon’s running gear).

But the point wasn’t just to highlight Salomon’s latest campaign: it was to also draw a line in the sand. Salomon is here and it is not playing around.

Despite Amer Sports’ recent underwhelming IPO, Salomon is bringing in the bucks. It reported nearly $1 billion in revenue in its latest round of financial disclosures with especially huge growth in China, where Anta is based.

The fact that it makes money is one thing; the fact that Salomon is wildly cool is a whole ‘nother ball of wax.

You can’t buy cred like the kind that Salomon’s got. It’s in-house silhouettes remain some of the most in-demand in the industry — so much so that Salomon is de-emphasizing the marketing of its red-hot XT-6 sneaker line to instead focus on the Speedcross 3 in the 2024. The time is right to shine a light on another deserving candidate, Salomon presumably figures.

Speaking of shining a light, remember that at the last Super Bowl, Rihanna wore a pair of Maison Margiela’s Salomon sneakers. Now that’s clout you can’t buy.

In the interim, Salomon has only strengthened its organic appeal by issuing collaborations with tastemaking designers and IYKYK industry figures alike.

These are the twin strengths of Salomon: it’s got the monetary strength that comes with being a reliable name in adventure gear but also the coolness that comes with being genuinely desirable.

This is why Salomon’s Super Bowl ad highlighted both its trek-friendly brand ethos and the XT-6 sneaker. It really can do it all.

Salomon’s Super Bowl ad was a line in the sand. By stepping into a space typically only occupied by sportswear’s biggest names — your Nikes and adidas — Salomon reaffirmed its presence. 2024 is about to be Salomon’s year. It said so.

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