The perfect in-store promotion is one that draws customers to the store and makes them feel good about shopping. That’s why we’re excited about participating in Socktober this year. We know that our customers love a charity tie-in that helps our community at the same time that it helps a locally owned business.

Socktober is a clever event started in 2011 by Brad Montague, the originator of the web show Kid President (which features his young brother-in-law). The month-long campaign is designed to show people that ordinary acts of love can make a big difference.  Socktober partners with shelters and individuals across the U.S. to help ensure the men and women who are living on the street have access to such basic needs as socks, hygiene products and more.

This drive to collect new pairs of socks (and other supplies) to give to the homeless has been hugely successful, but of course the need continues to grow.  Socktober’s goal is to have 2 million people participate by donating to their local shelter or other homeless program.

We are going to team up with the Friends of the State Street Family, because we know that socks are one of the ongoing needs for the population they serve. We’ll ask our customers to bring in new pairs of socks, and in exchange we’ll give them 20% off our wide selection of fun socks.  October is a great time to promote socks as a gift for the holidays, so we welcome the opportunity to encourage customers to see what we offer.

There are lots of great ideas for promotion on the Socktober website, including flyers you can customize.  And because this event has been done by many different communities around the country, if you Google Socktober images (or check out the hashtag #socktober) you can see what others have done.

If you don’t want to do your own drive, consider reaching out to a service group in your community to be the drop-off point for their donations. And if socks aren’t really your thing, maybe you can think of a clever way to participate in the second effort by the Socktober folks: Undies for Everyone.

Happy Retailing,

Carol “Orange” Schroeder