Opinion

Brand New Old Brand

Do you like my new shoes? I love my new shoes. Mrs P was initially dubious about my new shoes. Aren’t they awfully orange? I pointed to the pair I was wearing at the time, the ones that were to be replaced. They were bright pink. A bit of orange wasn’t going to deter me. My new shoes are a pair of Clarks, an old and well respected English firm that is headquarted in Somerset, one county along from me. It’ll not be long till their 200th birthday celebrations.

I now have five pairs of Clarks shoes. They have turned me into a bit of woman now, when it comes to shoe shopping. I have something for every occasion. And I don’t just love my new shoes. I love Clarks shoes, full stop. It’s not just me. Gangsters, rappers, mods, celebrities and army types around the world have sworn by Clarks for decades. Walter White wore nothing else in Breaking Bad. With my latest acquisition, the only time I will not wear a pair of Clarks is when I’m out for a run. I would hate to get them muddy.

There are a few other companies that have won me over. Where my purchases are affected by Brand Loyalty. Waitrose, the grocers. Mazda, the car maker. Flickr, the photo host. First Direct, the bank. John Lewis, Auntie Beeb, Prezzo and The Guardian newspaper. I trust them, I feel valued by them, I take pride in being their customer, I love the products. I have an image in my own mind of workers lovingly crafting my new stuff, taking care to package them just right, having pride in what they do, the things they make and the heritage of the company.

And isn’t that just the magic of Brand Loyalty? Did I create that image in my mind, or did they? Regardless, they have managed to forment a bond, a relationship between us. A personal and emotional relationship. Like I would have with another human. But with a faceless logo and fancy typeset instead. It’s truly magical stuff that no amount of sleazy marketing money, flashing neon signs and fancy television adverts can ever buy. Bravo Clarks et al, bravo. Just don’t ever cheat on me. Now that you’ve turned me into woman shoe shopper, you do not want to see the consequences of my being scorned.

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9 thoughts on “Brand New Old Brand

  1. Very funny last line there!

    I’m a big Clarks fan too. The shoes are comfortable right out of the box, and durable to boot. (Pun intended)

    Saludos,

    Kim G
    Redding, CA
    Where I ought to put on a pair and get out of the house.

    Like

    • Until a year or two ago, I had no idea that Clarks were such a global hit. I always assumed that they were just an old English company for the older English market. And until I returned from Mexico and was dragged into a Clarks shop by Mrs P (who has her own extensive collection of Clarks shoes, boots and bags), I had always assumed that they really just catered for school children and pensioners. My mum always took us to Clarks to have our feet measured and new school shoes and sandals fitted. At that time of life, everyone seems to be very old. It left an impression.

      There’s something else I like about Clarks, something I only learned when reading up on them for this post. They are still owned by the Clarks family. Except for a 16% share, which is owned by the employees. That, in my humble and slightly left-of-centre-mixed-economy opinion, is a wonderful business model.

      I may very well pop in and see their museum in the next few weeks. It’s close to Glastonbury and Wells Cathedral. The three of them could be done in a day trip.

      Liked by 1 person

        • Hopefully I will get there. Cheddar Gorge is also in the vicinity and we’ve been meaning to go there for ages. Wells, Cathedral, Glastobury, Clarks museum and Cheddar Gorge, with 3 hours of driving there and back. That’s quite a packed day. Something will have to give.

          I’d not heard of Church’s shoes. A quick visit to Wiki was in order. They seem to appeal to a very particular type of person. Tony Blair, James Bond and Mr Bean were big fans, all of whom left a trail of chaos in their wake. With differing degrees of hilarity…

          Liked by 1 person

    • Where I ought to put on a pair and get out of the house.

      Indeed you should. And as you mentioned in another comment on another post, your own blogger contributions have been few and far between, se~nor. Brand ‘Gringo Suelto’ has a noticeable productivity problem which, if not addressed by management, will almost certainly see increased consumer dissatisfaction!

      🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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