In 1936, Wisconsin bootmaker Charles Danner packed up his awls and headed to Oregon, lured by reports of the expanding timber industry in the Pacific Northwest. Danner craftsmanship and durability won over the loggers there, and by the ’70s the line had expanded to include hiking boots. The first pair weighed in at just under four pounds, at a time when most hiking boots weighed around five. In Portland, the Pacific Northwest and points beyond, your Mazamas hike leader, your neighborhood police officer and the woman who sold you a Christmas tree are all equally likely to be wearing Danner boots. In 1994, veteran rubber bootmaker LaCrosse Footwear acquired the Danner brand.
Like many retail brands, Danner had been relying on a mix of product managers and freelance copywriters to create its ecommerce and catalog copy. But as online revenue goals climbed, the brand recognized that they were outgrowing their current system. If they wanted to produce a robust and meaningful direct-to-consumer ecommerce experience, they needed help. They reached out to Thread to manage, create and deliver escalating copy requests while maintaining the straight-shooting brand voice that’s resonated with Danner loyalists for decades.
“We wanted to find a person or agency that would be available for each seasonal project and was willing to dive into the intricacies of each brand. The idea of having a dedicated team and copywriter working with us was very enticing.”
Thread started out by establishing ecommerce voice guidelines that translated Danner’s brand story into a road map for writing compelling, persuasive product descriptions. We then created an eCommerce content creation process that included briefing meetings, information sharing through the content management software Talkoot, and a clear review process. The goal was to create copy that felt like an extension of the brand story while doing the heavy lifting on the management side of things to make life easier for the Danner team.
“Working with Thread has been excellent. The project management is stellar, the Thread team members are interested and a joy to work with. Beyond the copywriting, the project management has been a huge help in keeping us organized and on track while preparing for each new season.”
For nearly a century, Danner’s story has been one of adventure, inspiring consumers to explore wild places both far away and close to home. Pride in the Pacific Northwest and in the history of the company sets Danner apart from other outdoor footwear brands. Thread made sure that each product description felt like a new chapter of their story, told in a voice that spoke to the electricians, wildland firefighters and weekend hikers who have made the Danner brand so admired.
Danner’s product managers and product marketing team gave us clear, accurate explanations of technical features like Danner’s legendary stitchdown construction and the Vibram Arctic Grip outsole. We combined those performance features with stories that sound like the through-hikers and machine shop workers who wear Danner boots, ultimately building trust between Danner and its consumers.
With the outdoor footwear market projected to see huge growth by 2025, Danner’s cohesive storytelling and product story infrastructure position the company to take advantage of the opportunity.
“ The efficiencies we have gained in working with Thread have helped us catch up on copy development to be nearly 1 year ahead of product release dates!”