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J. Crew Thinks Outside the Box... Kisses and Hugs From Jane Pratt...

J. Crew's new online advertising campaign to celebrate its ballet flats takes an interactive approach.

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DANCING FEET: J. Crew doesn’t like to be boxed in. While most online advertising is designed for a specific location on a Web site — a box or banner is typical — the retailer didn’t allow the medium to dictate the message. When J. Crew developed an online advertising campaign to celebrate its ballet flats, it used the box but created movement within it. The campaign, which launched today, begins with a hand reaching over an old-fashioned turntable and placing the arm on a vinyl album. A bright indie pop song by Jenny O., “Well OK Honey,” begins, as a white box with the J. Crew logo opens to reveal a cutie inside wearing jeans, a striped sweater and big glasses, tapping to the beat in her poppy ballet shoe-clad feet. “We felt the advertising should be interactive,” said Margot Fooshee, senior vice president of marketing at J. Crew. “[The campaign] would never translate to print. It was strictly developed and conceptualized with the intent of being an online campaign only. We wanted to show up in a way that’s fun and new and different. While we still believe in print advertising as a vehicle, we also think online is a vehicle that can be dynamic in a different way. We’re covering more sites and getting more exposure than in the past.”

The campaign will be seen on nytimes.com, nymag.com, elle.com, Style.com and glamour.com. J. Crew collaborated with Partners & Spade, Andy Spade and Anthony Sperduti’s studio that works on advertising, design and branding projects. Randall Poster of Search Party (“Boys Don’t Cry,” “The Royal Tenenbaums”) supervised the music for the three-part campaign, which runs consecutively though May 26. A different artist will be featured each week: Sallie Ford and the Sound Outside for week two, and Au Revoir Simone for week three. Songs were commissioned from both for the campaign.

— SHARON EDELSON

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