Shelf Life: NicHarry.com socks it to Valentine’s Day
Cheryl Hunter (shelflife at marklives.com)’s weekly pick of all things new — product, packaging, design, insight, food, décor and more!
- Nic Harry Socks propose choice
- Sasko and Liquorice create love letters from moms
- More smiles from Ivohealth and Sunstar GUM
Sexy socks for your Valentine
The message this Valentine’s Day from South African entrepreneur, Nic Haralambous, is to celebrate love every day in every way. This is demonstrated by his cheeky ad campaign for Nic Harry Socks which showcases men and women of all sexual orientations and racial backgrounds sharing a bed.
Owner of premium men’s socks and accessories company NicHarry.com, Haralambous has built his business on the philosophy that men have the right to choose. It’s this viewpoint that has given birth to his “Month of Love” campaign, which sees men sporting a variety of brightly-coloured and patterned socks in celebration of individuality and choice. The in-store campaign, which was shot by Haralambous himself, challenges the status quo and encourages people to think about Valentine’s Day in a new light.
Haralambous founded NicHarry.com in 2012 because he was tired, as a male, of not having enough choices when it came to shopping and of being judged for the less conventional or different clothes he chose to wear. He asks: Why can’t men dress differently? Why are most men forced to wear the same thing as their work colleague’s day in and day out? Because it’s what’s deemed by society as ‘appropriate’ attire for a man? Doesn’t society realise that men are the new shoppers?
It’s because of these unanswered questions that ‘the right to choose’ is the central business theme of NicHarry.com.
Haralambous believes that ecommerce in South Africa is a tough place to build and scale a business, and advises that the key to success is to have both an online and offline presence: “The future of retail is not pure-play anything. You can’t exclusively be online and you can’t exclusively be offline in bricks and mortar. The best retail businesses are going to figure out how to mould the two experiences together.”
The first physical Nic Harry store opened in August 2015, followed by store openings in Cape Town and Pretoria, with a new store opening tomorrow, Wednesday 15 February 2017, at The Zone @ Rosebank, Johannesburg, and another one in March 2017.
“We’ve started in South Africa and produce our core products locally. When we move and scale abroad, the goal will be to do the same when we’re able to. Produce local, sell local, act global.”
The luxury brand also offers men’s accessories, including funky-looking pocket squares, scarves, cufflinks, shoelaces, ties and umbrellas.
Smart lunchboxes full of love
Bread and flour producer, SASKO, and digital agency, Liquorice, recently launched a Lunchtime Love Letter campaign using RFID-enhanced lunchboxes to send video messages from mothers to their kids to make the first days of school a little easier.
According to SASKO, its bread is the most consumed in lunchboxes. Add to that the brand understanding that every meal prepared by moms is made with love and care, and you have a challenge to Liquorice: Make the first day of school more special.
The story begins on the first day of school, with moms getting ready to send their children to Grade 1 at Westcott Primary School. “We knew that a lunchbox packed by mom with their favourite sandwich makes the first day easier, but we wanted to add something extra to the lunchbox; an experience that would bring a smile to the children’s faces,” says founder and CEO of Liquorice, Miles Murphy.
Each mom was given a special lunchbox with a unique RFID microchip and asked to record a message to her child — a few words of encouragement to get their little ones through that first day, tears-free. At lunchtime, the kids took their lunchboxes to the SASKO Care Station to reveal the special video message from mom, which they watched while eating their sandwiches.
The quest for fresh breath
February sees National Fresh Breath Week and love in the air, at least for fans of Valentine’s Day, sparking a new campaign from dental hygiene product, Sunstar GUM, and distributor, Ivohealth, in support of Operation Smile South Africa.
Take the Sunstar GUM #FreshBreathQuest this month to find out how fresh your oral-care knowledge is and win prizes worth R15 000. Each time someone completes the simple online quiz, Sunstar GUM donates a toothbrush to Operation Smile South Africa.
Cheryl Hunter (@cherylhunter) has written for the South African media, marketing and advertising industries for more than 15 years. A former editor of M&M in Independent Newspapers and contributor to Bizcommunity, AdFocus, AdReview and the Ad Annual, she has also produced for various television networks and currently consults on communication strategy and media liaison.