By Barry Janoff
June 6, 2012: Skechers USA, which recently agreed to pay $50 million in restitution to settle a complaint from the Federal Trade Commission, is shelling out another $3.5-$4 million, but for a better company cause — a 30-second spot in Super Bowl XLVII.
The performance shoe and sportswear company said creative was still in development but that it would star Mr. Quiggly, the French bulldog who appeared in the company's Super Bowl XLVI commercial.
Skechers said the spot would promote its performance footwear, including its GoRun shoes, which were unveiled with the help of Mr. Quiggly's commercial.
The Manhattan Beach, Calif.-based company said it plans to expand its Skechers Performance Division with launches this summer of Skechers GoRun Ride, a running line with enhanced cushioning; Skechers GoTrain, a workout shoe built for added stability and control; and Skechers GoBionic, a zero-drop ultra-minimal running shoe.
This will be Skecher's fourth successive Super Bowl appearance. A spot during Super Bowl XLIV featured Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Montana. During Super Bowl XLV, the company ran a commercial starring Kim Kardashian in which she got hot and sweaty with her personal trainer.
Much ado was made in the media about Kardashian being replaced by a dog, but company executives said that it was a basic business and marketing decision to help launch the GoRun line with a new creative concept.
Mr. Quiggly has his own Twitter account, albeit with barely 100 followers. Kim Kardashian has almost 15 million followers at her Twitter account.
The Super Bowl XLVI spot with Mr. Quiggly also had a cameo from Mark Cuban, but received notoriety due to its plot, which featured greyhound racing. Numerous groups that advocate the abolishing of the sport were vocal in their demand to have Skechers drop the commercial from Super Bowl airing.
The spot ran and was well-received by viewers, according to numerous post-game ad meters.
Super Bowl XLVII will be played in Feb. 3, 2013 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans and will air on CBS, which is charging upward of $4 million for a 30-second spot, according to industry analysts.
"The spot generated massive awareness for our Skechers GoRun product . . . We already have Mr. Quiggly booked and back in training for his triumphant return."
"[Super Bowl XLVI] was our third year at the Big Game and thanks to Mr. Quiggly, we ranked third in the viewer polls," Michael Greenberg, president for Skechers, said in a statement. "The spot generated massive awareness for our Skechers GoRun product. Next year we'll be celebrating our second anniversary as a performance brand and we already have Mr. Quiggly booked and back in training for his triumphant return."
Last month, Skechers USA agreed to pay $50 million to settle charges from the FTC that the company "deceived consumers by making unfounded claims that Shape-ups would help people lose weight, and strengthen and tone their buttocks, legs and abdominal muscles." The FTC also busted Skechers for "falsely representing that clinical studies backed up the claims."
Part of the marketing efforts cited by the FTC included the Super Bowl ads with Montana and Kardashian.
The complaint did not include Skecher's GoRun line. In addition to Mr. Quiggly, GoRun's are also worn by marathon runner Meb Keflezighi, who will represent the U.S. this summer at the Summer Olympics in London.
And then it's on to New Orleans, where, according to Greenberg, "We're aiming for the No. 1 Super Bowl commercial this time.