Icebreaker: From lust to love

It’s not very often that I fall in love with a company based solely on their advertising campaign; in fact, it’s only happened twice. Icebreaker is one of these companies – a relative “dark horse” in the sense that they aren’t a company that would have likely ever been on my radar. (Read as an admission that I’m not the most outdoorsy person). I first learned about Icebreaker in a sustainability marketing class from group members. A quick Google search of the company and I was in love.

Their ads are racy. Their ads are provocative. Their ads are unique. Their ads toe the line of offensive. Their ads are unbelievable. Their ads are polarizing.

First, let me give you a bit of a background on Icebreaker, because once I show you images of their ads, I guarantee my words will no longer register. Icebreaker is a sustainable New Zealand-based merino wool outdoor garment manufacturer. Leveraging the renewable resource of wool, Icebreaker internalizes a sustainability-orientation in all aspects of their business. Emphasizing transparency throughout their process, Icebreaker’s products are all traceable using a BAACODE. This enables consumers to go online and trace the location of the herd from which the wool in their product came, as well as where it was processed and manufactured.

The business model is amazing, with sustainability at it’s core. Icebreaker states that “It’s about our relationship with nature, and to each other.” Admirable. Understanding their business model simply reiterated my shallow love for the brand. I don’t actually believe in love at first sight; you can’t love somebody based upon appearance – that’s called lust, folks. So, I guess my feelings for Icebreaker were really “lust at first sight” rather than “love at first sight.” Now you’re about to see why.

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Had enough??? Well, lucky for you I’ll give you the option of whether or not you can handle a little more. If you think you’re up to it, watch this video!

Polling the Readers: Are Icebreakers ads inappropriate and offensive, or simply good marketing?

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One thought on “Icebreaker: From lust to love

  1. I think theres a fine line with their advertisements, and while some are simply good marketing, I think some may simply be misinterpreted. They’re definitely eye catching, but theres a 50/50 chance that someones either going to look more into the company or turn their heads in confusion. If I was Icebreaker, I think it would have been more beneficial to run a brand awareness campaign based on information so more people understood the company, and what it’s products stood for and then follow up with these ads. From someone who believes in Icebreakers brand and products, some of the ads may portray the wrong image, i.e. the one where the lady(?) is aggressively cutting the wool off the man/ram – which if i hadn’t known about Icebreaker would lead me to question how they treat the sheep and use the wool to make their clothing. However, with a limited marketing budget of a smaller company, the best approach may very well be a shock and awe factor! Great post Bri 🙂

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