The Road to Brandweek: Vans’ Nick Street on Fostering Creativity in Customers

What the sneaker brand's 'Off the Wall' slogan means in real life

Nick Street vans
"We want our consumers to rally around the idea that creativity is an essential part of being human," says Nick Street of Vans. Courtesy of Vans

Describing a marketing vice president as “off the wall” would, in most cases, be something of an insult—but not when it comes to Nick Street. For the past three years, Street has led global integrated marketing efforts for Vans, the athletic shoe that somehow manages the competing tasks of being a legacy brand and the coolest thing on the sidewalk. “Off the Wall” began as a descriptor for SoCal boys doing aerials off the sides of empty swimming pools but has become a mantra for the company.

@UpperEastRob Robert Klara is a senior editor, brands at Adweek, where he specializes in covering the evolution and impact of brands.