|Performance running socks are a competitive product category as athletes, runners and hikers look for improved comfort and performance gains. Our task was to secure coverage that built awareness of Balega’s special brand ethos and drive sales of its distinctive product range.|
Socks with real spirit
Balega launched in 2003 and set out to create the world’s best performance running sock.
Balega socks feature a fully seamless design and moisture management technology, Drynamix, to keep feet dry and cool.
The company strives to operate with integrity by living the true spirit of Ubuntu. This means they are dedicated to helping those less fortunate.
Every sale of a pair of Balega running socks includes a donation to good causes, especially to projects in South Africa where Balega socks are manufactured. Looking to build brand awareness in the UK, Balega asked Aspire to drive new and relevant traffic to the brand’s UK website, grow trust in the brand and communicate its values to running communities as well as more broadly in the active lifestyle space. The campaign period ran from April – December 2022.
“Crafted for a superior fit and unmatched comfort, Balega® is committed to technical excellence and performance.”
Crafting a targeted PR strategy
With a goal to earn primarily online exposure using media and influencer relations, we created a carefully curated PR calendar to provide a monthly focus for content and product launch activity.
To build connections with Balega’s target audiences we worked closely with content creators who were an authentic fit for the brand.
Seeding and product placements
The initial focus of our PR strategy was to secure earned media coverage and authentic and credible sock reviews with online media titles.
We worked strategically to secure coverage with key media, including health and fitness and lifestyle publications. The focus was to gain online media coverage to drive traffic and, ultimately, sales on the Balega website.
Activations and partnerships
A month into the PR seeding campaign, we saw an opportunity to widen reach beyond traditional media to social media. We made this happen through seeding and gifting with influencers and community relations projects.
For example, we gifted goody bags containing Balega products to triathlete ambassadors taking part in the Outlaw Triathlon to generate positive coverage on social media.
Successfully seeding sock reviews
impressions from product seeding campaigns
pieces of media coverage
product category award entry
Consistent, credible and authentic coverage
Our PR strategy paid off nicely for Balega. We achieved over 50 pieces of media coverage, including the RunPod by Jenni Falconer, Runner’s World Christmas Gift Guide and the best running socks in T3.
The coverage really supported Balega’s marketing, leading to a rise in open and click through rates in emails and an increase in sales.
Our influencer gifting campaigns successfully generated engagement across social media, raising awareness of the brand and products across core running communities.
The content creators who received products continued to use them throughout the year and tag Balega in posts. The positive reviews showed the strong performance credentials of the brand and Balega experienced an uplift in web traffic and sales each time content was posted.
We worked closely with Balega throughout the campaigns to monitor key metrics. This helped to focus our efforts on delivering ongoing brand awareness for each PR story and product launch.
Many of the media and creators now include Balega socks as part of their favourite kit rotation and wouldn’t wear anything else.
To conclude a successful campaign, it was only fitting that the brand was nominated for The Readers’ Award in the Women’s Running Product Awards 2022.