Salvation Army Seeks Discount Shopping Crowd

Brandon Removes ‘Second-Hand Stigma’ of ‘Stuff With a Past’
ATLANTA–It’s “stuff with a past” that’s still present.
Fresh off its best of show win in South Carolina’s Third District Addys for its 1999 Salvation Army of Horry County [S.C.] print work, Brandon Advertising has crafted a much broader campaign for its pro bono client.
A new advertising effort repositions the nonprofit Christian charity’s thrift stores as a folksy alternative to Kmart and Wal-Mart. Called “Stuff with a past,” the multimedia campaign centers around four television spots, which are drawn upon for print, newspaper and magazine ads, plus a series of posters.
The creative story line focuses on products available in the Salvation Army’s stores, giving each item a history and personality. Individual ads were created for a leather bomber jacket, a broken-in armchair, vintage dishes and lived-in trousers.
“It wasn’t ergonomic when they built it, but it is now,” reads the chair’s print ad copy.
“Not wrinkles, character lines,” says the spot for the bomber jacket.
All ads are tagged, “Stuff with a past as colorful as yours.”
“We sat down and looked at what [the client] had done in the past,” said Tom Collins, creative director at the Myrtle Beach, S.C., agency. “The thing with a thrift store is that you want people to know you want them to buy things, not donate clothes. And you don’t want to just appeal to the kids; they already know. You don’t want to just appeal to the needy; they know too. We want to get the people who shop at Kmart or Wal-Mart.”
Collins said the object was to remove “the second-hand stigma. So we created ads that gave these clothes personality.”
Last year’s Salvation Army effort focused on car and boat donations. The winning Addy piece showed a personalized license plate, “D DUCTION,” with a receipt from the charity attached.
Art director for “Stuff with a past” is Brett Jones. The copywriter is Travis Sharp, who has since left the agency to join iD8 here. K