Skechers has a long history of signing up famous sports stars to become its brand ambassadors — retired 49ers and Chiefs star Joe Montana, NBA’s Dallas Cowboys owner Mark Cuban and former New York Jets quarterback Joe Namath to name a few recent examples. But the shoe brand has gone slightly left-field for the choice of its latest spokesman: Former Beatles drummer Ringo Starr.
Ringo, 74, is set to feature in a huge global marketing campaign for Skechers’ “Relaxed Fit” footwear range. Ads will appear across TV, print, outdoor, online and point of sale from Spring 2015 through June 2016.
In a press release, Skechers explains why is the perfect brand ambassador: His half century in the music industry; the release of a children’s book (Octopus’s Garden) earlier this year; and his philanthropy and involvement with the #peacerocks campaign through the David Lynch Foundation.
“Renowned for wearing comfy sneakers” is not listed, but Skechers president Michael Greenberg says Ringo is a perfect fit as the brand looks to move from just associating itself with the sports world to tying in with the music world in its upcoming campaign.
He adds: “Ringo possesses the charm, cool, charisma and instant global recognition that will elevate awareness for our popular Relaxed Fit footwear collection.”
What the release doesn’t explain, however, is why Skechers should have an association with music. It’s been more than a decade since its famous campaigns with Britney Spears — a tie-up the company said lost it tens of millions of dollars because the pop star allegedly violated her contract. Both sides filed lawsuits against each other over the deal, which were eventually both settled (terms of which were not disclosed) in 2003.
Whatever the reason, the company will be hoping the change of marketing direction from sports to music will continue the its recent upward momentum financially. In the most recent quarter to June 30, Skechers USA Inc. reported a record 37% increase year on year in net sales to $US587.1 million and a slight lift in gross profit to 45.9% of net sales, up from 45.5% in the second quarter of last year.
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