Internet Sports Retailer's Silent Mascot Comes to the Rescue
SAN FRANCISCO - Odiorne Wilde Narraway & Partners offers up a new and rather bizarre twist on the stereotypical image of man's best friend in an $8 million national campaign for online retailer Fogdog Sports.
TV spots, which broke last week, feature "The Fogdog" - a man wearing a brown dog suit - whose job is to help athletes and other sports enthusiasts in need. He mysteriously appears when people are caught in sporting goods predicaments, and like a true best friend, provides them with a replacement for a failed or lost item.
"We always wanted to have a guy in a dog suit who seems very earnest," said Jeff Odiorne, partner and creative director at OWN&P, San Francisco. "The Fogdog [exists] so you don't have to worry about sporting goods. That's what he does."
One 30-second spot shows a lone baseball player taking extra batting practice late at night in an empty stadium. After cranking out a few home runs, his bat splinters in two.
Suddenly, The Fogdog appears at the plate, silently offering a new bat. Then, as quickly as he appeared, he leaves.
Another spot, in 30- and 60-second executions, features a woman climbing up the side of a cliff. When she loses her last "protective cam" - used to secure her rope during the climb - The Fogdog quickly rappels down beside her and hands over a new one without saying a word.
When the climber offers her thanks, Fogdog puts a finger to his lips as if to say "Shhhh," then continues down the cliff out of sight.
Fogdog Sports, which launched its e-commerce site last fall, recently secured venture capital funding from several investors, such as Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Intel Corp.
The company plans to conduct an initial public offering to raise more funds to improve and expand its Web site and pursue more marketing and advertising efforts, according to Tom Romary, vice president of marketing at the client.