Fisher & Paykel attempt to redress national sock imbalance

Much has been much written about the scourge of modern day washing that is the missing sock. It’s the bane of many a life, it is the subject of much conjecture and speculation and it is a mystery that, if Fisher & Paykel’s new Lost Sock campaign is anything to go by, seems likely to remain forever unsolved, because, despite the best efforts of its talented team of designers, engineers and scienticians, the appliance maker has admitted that it is the one thing it hasn’t quite managed to figure out.

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So, to help redress this horrible sock imbalance, Fisher & Paykel (with the help of Colenso) is offering victims a fresh pair. The new TVC, which was released on Sunday and points out the many technological advances the company can lay claim to, aims to draw punters to the lost sock website, where they are asked to upload photos of their orphaned socks. The uploaders then get a sock voucher they can redeem in-store. And who knows, they might even be captivated by F&P’s shiny wares and splash out on an expensive appliance or two while they’re in there.

The campaign is the “swan song” of Josh Lancaster and Jamie Hitchcock, the creative team who were previously with Colenso and recently opened up their own eponymous agency Josh & Jamie. And Lancaster says its intention was “to tell the innovation story of F&P while at the same time reinvigorating a latent love for a great Kiwi brand”.

Scott Coldham, senior account director at Colenso, says the campaign is going very well so far, with visitors spending over four minutes on the site since it launched and 5-10,000 people visiting per day. Added to that, over 3000 sock photos have already been uploaded. And there are already a few fans sharing their sock-related musings on the Facebook page.

For a traditionally conservative brand, this tongue and cheekery, which has apparently been quite a long time in the releasing, marks a bit of a shift.

“Tonally, I think it’s taken people by surprise,” Coldham says.

Mike Oldershaw from Automatic was the director, Nick Worthington was the executive creative director and Aaron Turk was the digital guru responsible for the site (if you hang around for long enough filling in your lost sock details, you might just get to see the intelligent-looking man in the white coat get stuck in Gentle Annie. That sounds rude, but it’s not).

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