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Creative Campaign Goes to Work for Outdoor Retailer

Quick Take:

How do you disrupt workwear apparel conventions to stand out in an oversaturated market? By breaking those conventions of traditionally stern and stoic messaging with something crazy to establish a long-standing brand.


DRI DUCK is an outdoor apparel brand – providing high-quality, comfortable clothing that lasts – and for years, the retailer sold its workwear apparel line through an established network of wholesale distributors. After successfully expanding into a crowded B2C market, the brand wanted to continue the momentum in attracting customers from competitors Carhartt and Duluth Trading Co.

In construction, workers put their trust in uniforms that keep them safe from rough conditions, routinely relying on brands that hold up in the elements. To shift consumer behaviors, DRI DUCK had to disrupt their routine, show authenticity in action, and break category communication conventions to leave a memorable impression.

As a new B2C retailer, DRI DUCK was uniquely positioned to differentiate itself with a key consumer insight and grow an engaged social media following of brand advocates. That’s why DRI DUCK tasked Merkle with creating a long-term strategy for introducing the brand to new consumers and doubling the revenue from ecommerce sales during a busy holiday season.


In order to educate outdoor workers about the reliability of DRI DUCK’s workwear products, Merkle conducted agency research on the retailer’s customers to better understand with whom they relate. The research indicated that a majority of the target audience watches ESPN weekly, listening to sportscasters who often use humor when sharing their opinions.

Merkle’s strategy was to create a campaign that used relatable voices in a familiar setting that would resonate with the outdoor workers DRI DUCK was trying to attract and position the brand as reliable and trustworthy. Enter Work TV.

Merkle spent one day filming at a Kansas City rock quarry, using real workers as extras and building a storyline of a SportsCenter-style show for worksites, complete with announcers using sports-inspired lingo, and giving tongue-in-cheek play-by-play analysis of job performances. The campaign celebrated the new DRI DUCK tagline “Real Work. Made Better,” using video and motion graphics to show its workwear products in action with lively commentary.

Along with developing multiple videos, ranging from 30 to 90 seconds, Merkle also created a content library that included videos, GIFs, and images. The campaign was launched on the brand’s digital channels, including YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram, and targeted people within relevant work categories.

In addition, the agency retargeted middle-of-the-funnel customers by re-engaging individuals who had viewed or interacted with the video with a more direct call-to-action in search, social, and display ads. Finally, Merkle ensured there was a solid campaign base of media at the bottom of the funnel – including search, product remarketing, and promotional display – to drive purchase.



over revenue goal in the first three months


increase in website-generated sessions YoY


increase in product transactions YoY


YoY increase in email subscribers and 30% increase in social media followers

Keys to success

  • Conducted agency research to find that majority of target audience watches ESPN weekly.
  • Combined strategy and creative efforts to build the storyline of Work TV and new tagline “Real Work. Made Better.”
  • Built a content library of videos, GIFs, and images for use across digital channels.
  • Retargeted middle-of-the-funnel customers and supported the entire program with a base of media at the bottom of the funnel, to drive purchase.

Discover how we did it. Contact us today.

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