Working class heroes star in Mark’s mini documentaries

Who: Mark’s and Taxi.

What: A new campaign for casual clothing—as opposed to the workwear the Mark’s brand has traditionally been known for—built around three cinematic mini-docs about “The Well Worn Collective.”

When & Where: The campaign launched last month with three different films running exclusively on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.

What’s The Well Worn Collective?: It’s a human manifestation of Mark’s “Well Worn” platform. According to Mark’s, being a part of the Collective means, “You’re driven by a sense of purpose. By values, not material greed or the pursuit of fame. You lead by example. You put the needs of others, before your own.”

The Well Worn platform is a couple of years old, but Taxi wanted to do more with it, said the agency’s executive creative director, Alexis Bronstorph. “We were always craving the really authentic stories,” she said. So they went looking for them, scouring the internet for working-class heroes. “We searched through hundreds of candidates to find people who exemplified the core values of Mark’s—determination, hard work [and] bravery.”

Why: Mark’s is leaning into the hard-work ethos at its core by presenting ordinary people doing extraordinary things. “We took inspiration from athletic brands like Nike and Adidas, known for having endorsement teams of pro athletes, and asked ourselves what that would look like for a brand like Mark’s,” said Bortnstoph. “Effectively re-imagining what an endorsement team looks like, and highlighting ordinary Canadians with extraordinary stories.”

Who is in the Collective? The campaign focuses on a man who gave up his high rolling life as a fashion photographer to live off the grid in B.C., where he turns felled trees into art; a women who overcame sexism to become a lobster fisher; and a chef who feeds Toronto’s hungry with discarded, but still good, food. The point is that anyone can be in the Collective. These campaign stars are doing amazing things (in Mark’s clothes) not because they are genetically blessed like the athletes in Nike campaigns, but because of their vision, will and determination to do amazing things.

Is it just the films? Aside from the films there are product specific shorts ideal for social, while a Well Worn Collection section of the Mark’s site features more information about the stars of the campaign and a showcase of their favourite casual wear items.

David Brown