Trone’s Kids Are Dirty

“Kid logic” is the theme of Trone Advertising’s kick-off campaign for Healthtex’s Kidproof apparel.

Steve Dunkley, executive creative director at the Greensboro, N.C., shop, said his upcoming work for the shrink- and stain-resistant clothing centers around a simple truth: “Kids are not as concerned about clothes as their parents.”

That insight is built into print and television ads depicting kindergarten-aged children doing what they do best: slathering themselves with mud, chocolate syrup and jelly.

Each print execution tacks a different punch line onto the “Kid logic” theme, including “I’ll tuck the dirty part in,” “I don’t need a napkin, I have sleeves” and “Why go around it when you can go through it?”

The TV spot shows a group of well-scrubbed children drawn together by the hypnotic power of a leaking garden hose. In minutes, they are transformed into giggling, mud-splattered urchins. “Where there’s a mess, kids will find it” is the tag. “Don’t change the kids, change the clothes” is the kicker.

“Trone’s approach to the Kidproof launch shows us they have a good handle on what reaches kids and moms,” said John Martin, vice president of marketing for VF Playwear, the Greensboro-based manufacturer of the Healthtex line.

The initial TV commercial begins airing in February on ABC, HGTV and Nickelodeon. Print advertising is scheduled to appear in Child, Family Fun and Parents magazines.

Dunkley and his staff chose to avoid the typical product demo approach in marketing the line.

“We pushed past that to a simple insight—kids think differently. That resonated with parents,” he said. “So with Healthtex, kids can be kids.”

Dunkley served as copywriter on the campaign; Scott Scaggs was art director. Hal Goodtree produced. The spot was shot by director Chace Strickland of Backyard Productions in Venice, Calif.