Built for the Bold

Timberland

Built for the Bold

Approach

Timberland was built for work in the brutal winters of New England. Over time, it’s become known for its perch in culture—in particular across fashion and hip hop. Our plan was to cut to the core of what makes both a construction worker in subzero temperatures and an MC dropping bars in the studio both embrace Timberland. The unifying attribute: boldness in its invite forms—and indeed as we completely tore down and built back up the brand ahead of its 50th anniversary, Timberland became ‘Built for the Bold’.

Challenge

People know of Timberland, but they generally know it across a small slice. No one seemed to understand the brand’s rich heritage and why that well of work put in matters. Originally created by Nathan Strauss in 1973 for hard work and to get shit done, the iconic yellow work book has elevated above footwear, workwear and style to become something bigger. It became an icon. A movement. A bright shining beacon of hustle. This boot is a chameleon. It’s what you need it to be. It’s a tool to achieve what you want and to express yourself. Our challenge was to tell this story to all of our audiences. This is not just a boot. It’s built for the bold.

Solution

We created a holistic campaign around the unifying rally cry: Built for the Bold. And boldness is not just about fistfights and fast cars. It was important to open the aperture and let the word breathe. Because bold is truly more inclusive. Boldness is everyone who embraces failure as a stop on the way. It’s vivid vulnerability and all of you who know that the only, ‘What if?’ that matters is, ‘What if it all works out?’ Every touchpoint around the world had to reflect this and the modern reality of Timberland, from the 60 second Mary J. Blige-narrated spot to the localized out-of-home pieces featuring creators and workers of all kinds to the social media posts set to inspire the next bold generation of those who get shit done.

We aimed our flare gun at the sky, loaded with boldness and ready to grab attention. We rolled out a series of billboards with bold statements in high-impact areas across our key cities: Milan, New York and London with bold messages.

Billboard up on street corner. BOLD KNOWS NO BOUNDARIES.

To continue to stoke the stoke as the rollout continued, we fed the fire with high-impact moments of bold, including a series of social posts with inspiring bold statements.

Video Description: Multiple Built for the bold social media posts
Video Description: Multiple Social media videos for Built for the Bold campaign
Timberland Build a Bold New World Billboard on city subway bridge

We turned the dial all the way up for the launch with a show stopping TV spot narrated by the queen herself: Mary J. Blige. Our bold manifesto rang loud and rang true.

Built for the bold social media manifesto
large Buit for the Bold billboard on side of skyscraper

We brought our message down to a hyper local level with bold stories of bold people representing each region. In blazing their own fresh path, each person uniquely subverted the stereotype of what it means to be bold.

Rapper. Entrepreneur. Educator. Propelled to the top by music and passion. Simple courage can change your whole life. Take that chance when it shows up.

Bold is never simple. Or is it?

Always pushing things forward. Perfectly manicured and radiating confidence. New York through and through. Culture is made at the street level so keep your feet on the ground.

Auto body technician. Hair you can’t miss and won’t forget. Can take it apart and put it back together just as well as anyone else in the industry. Keep your hard work challenging and colorful.

Bold never wears pink. or does it?

Explorer of Earth. Climber of mountains. Maker of campsites. Creator of communities. Hiker of everywhere. Just start walking, see where you end up and who you’re there with.

Bold only cares about the destination. Or does it?

Ceramicist. Potter. Experimental creator of the delicate. Follow your heart and find the craft you love. There’s a lot of power in vulnerability and sometimes success comes from perfect mistakes.

Bold is never fragile. Or is it?

Singer. Songwriter. Poet. Nigerian. Chadian. French. Proponent of self-love with an otherworldly voice. Sometimes the loudest statements come from those who say it softly.

Bold is screaming at the top of your lungs. or is it?

Gardener. Teacher. Grower of endless plant content for the masses. In the sweet spot where horticulture meets entrepreneurship. Sometimes the best results take their time showing up.

Bold always gets instant results. Or does it?
Timberland NY storefront
grid of 28 media stills from Built for the Bold campaign

The Built for the Bold campaign hit its mark right in the bullseye. In the digital spaces we could measure, it reached tens of millions of sets of eyeballs, much of that organically. Product interest spiked. In the physical world, where we can’t measure metrics, the conversation was palpable. Timberland is back in a big way and for the first time in a long time, people know exactly what it stands for and what it means to lace up a pair of Timberland boots. With every stitch and every step, Timberland is built for the bold.

Built for the Bold