BBH Imparts Gold Toe Wisdom

NEW YORK Gold Toe will launch an “inspirational” print campaign to help consumers feel an emotional connection with its socks.

The effort, via Bartle Bogle Hegarty, New York, plays off the theme, “Seven steps along the golden path.” The socks take center stage in ads designed like motivational posters with proverb-like copy guiding feet through life’s journey. An ad targeting women, for example, shows the sock against an outdoor landscape with rays of sunlight shining down on it. Copy reads, “Wisdom comes in many forms, notably argyle.” The men’s version shows a fashion dress sock and reads, “Sit at the feet of great men, you’ll see great socks.” Tagline: “Gold Toe. Enlighten your feet.”

Ads run in April issues of Oprah, Real Simple, Marie Claire, Self, Golf Digest and Popular Science magazines. Newspaper ads and in-mall kiosks will continue the proverb theme in 10 markets: New York, Boston, San Francisco, St. Louis, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Dallas, Chicago, Atlanta and Washington, D.C.

Point-of-purchase at department stores such as Dillard’s, Macy’s and Marshall Field’s will feature adages to guide consumers to Gold Toe’s styles. Signs for dress socks read, “Respect your feet”; casual socks, “Calm your feet”; All-Day Comfort, “Listen to your feet”; and athletic socks, “Utilize your feet.”

The budget for the integrated campaign is $6 million, per the company.

“We needed an emotional hook and a message that was intellectual yet witty, as well as navigational, to guide consumers at retail,” said Trish McHale, executive vice president of marketing. “We also had to engage women since we are perceived as a men’s dress sock.”