When First County Bank called looking to do something “cool” for Small Business Week, we knew just what they needed to do. Hand out socks.
But we are getting ahead of ourselves.
With just over five weeks to take a campaign from idea to execution, we wanted to come up with something that would inspire the business team to “hit the street” with a fun and friendly giveaway that would let them “get a foot in the door” with busy clients and prospects.
Where once a fun tie may have been the way for a businessperson to show their personality, today socks are the “in thing” with many high profile people pairing their power suits with funky socks (don’t believe us, check out this article in the Economic Times about Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s “Sock Appeal“). And unlike ties, quality socks can be purchased at a reasonable cost, are gender-neutral and can be worn with a power suit or a pair of work jeans.
The first step was getting the socks designed, and delivered, on time. Working with Sock Club, a Texas-based company producing socks in, and using cotton sourced from, the United States, the final socks pair the Bank’s brand color, teal, with a bright punch of blue, and the Bank’s logo on the foot of the sock.
While the socks were being produced, we turned our attention to how the socks would be distributed, coming up with a postcard that could be used to leave a personal note or attach a business card. The card, and subsequent social media updates, also invited local businesses to contact the Bank to request a pair of socks.
Going into the campaign, we recognized that one week would not be enough time to allow this campaign mature. So, while it was launched during Small Business Week, the Bank committed to running the campaign, and handing out socks, for the entire month of May.
As the First County Bank team hit the streets – handing out socks, and taking pictures – we shared their activities along the way, first in a series of stories on Instagram (the first for the Bank):
Followed by regular recaps of sock-related activities on all of the Bank’s social networks including Facebook and LinkedIn:
The biggest surprise has not been the reaction of local businesses – because, who doesn’t like a free pair of socks? – but the enthusiasm, creativity, and consistency of the Bank’s business team. Through their efforts, the Bank has seen not just an increase in available content for use on the Bank’s social channels, but also an increase in followers, as well as in views, and engagement.
Not bad for a “cool pair of socks.”