Hot Topic, a brand iconic for bringing counter-culture apparel and accessories to malls across the United States, is now bringing skins to the metaverse with its Roblox Hot Topic Halloween Forever Collection. The collaboration features exclusive avatar clothing and accessory options, as well as virtual extensions of clothing in the sandbox game which players can also opt to purchase in real life.
Ten Hot Topic items first appeared in the Roblox Avatar Shop with the soft launch of the campaign on October 3. The initiative also includes a Hot Topic Pop-up Shop, which appears in Roblox games The Floor is Lava!, Speed Run 4, and Catalog Outfit Creator!.
Since the October 3 launch, the pop-up shop has reached more than 900k players and amassed the equivalent of more than 1.2 years of playtime, according to a press release. Items in the pop-up include cosplay hats, die-cut sunglasses, figural mini-backpacks, and more. Hot Topic tapped leading Roblox content designers Junozy, StrapCode, MatthewDelRey, and 0929lego to develop the virtual products.
The campaign features Cobra Kai star Mary Mouser sporting an exclusive black and orange sweater available as part of the collection. Both this and a beanie with the 90s throwback Hot Topic logo will both also be available to purchase as physical products in-store and online.
Andrea Lewis, Vice President of Marketing for Hot Topic, says she sees Roblox as a strong fit for Hot Topic as an extension of the omnichannel brand, which already has a significant presence across social platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
“It gives us the opportunity to expand what omnichannel means for us,” she said in an interview with PCGamesN. “It gives us the opportunity to have a great entry point into the metaverse space in terms of what we bring to the Roblox user base from our demographic perspective, but also the worldwide reach that we have by activating in the Roblox space.”
Roblox continues to catch major brands’ attention not only because of its community but also the fact that Robloxians can interact with the products and provide real-time feedback. Ultimately, metaverse spaces can act as testing grounds that can play a role in helping brands like Hot Topic better understand customers while also appealing to new audiences.
Hot Topic’s foray into Roblox’s metaverse follows a slew of other companies in the fashion and apparel space, including Gucci, Vans, and Tommy Hilfiger.
“I think they’ve done an amazing job of really building a community-based gaming platform,” Ed LaBay, Hot Topic’s senior vice president of merchandise and marketing, told PCGamesN. “With Hot Topic and what we do as a brand, what we’ve done in stores and creating that customer journey with our store employees, we’re able to do that same kind of conversation within Roblox with groups and with the general chat conversation. It almost has this kind of digital discord-type concept within Roblox, which I think makes it a little bit different than some of the other gaming platforms out there right now.”
“Not every Metaverse experience allows you to have the same amount of conversation in terms of hearing what people are saying,” Lewis said. “Some Metaverse experiences are more about playing, and you’re not really having that global conversation. So, from a Roblox perspective, it just seemed like a really great fit for us.”
The campaign also leverages Roblox’s recently-introduced immersive advertising platform, which means players may see advertisements for the campaign as billboards in one of more than 150 games. The company worked with Super League Gaming, a leader in developing metaverse campaigns and environments, to develop the campaign.
The Roblox initiative isn’t the company’s first dip into the metaverse. Hot Topic officially entered the realm in July when it partnered with Toonstar Web3 animation studio to produce NFTs and other digital activations in conjunction with the Hot Topic brand.
“Every brand is trying to navigate where the new sources for authentic advertising are going to be. I definitely think this metaverse environment is one to watch for sure,” LaBay said. “We see [Roblox] as a huge opportunity.”
The Hot Topic pop-ups are live now on Roblox. Once you’ve acquired a few pieces of virtual mall goth gear, show it off in the best Roblox games in 2022. And, if that’s not enough for you to fully deck out your avatar, visit our Roblox promo codes list for October to access even more accessories. While you’re at it, you can also check out our Roblox music codes for October for songs to play in your favourite games.