Quiksilver: Repositioning the brand back to its rebellious roots

Following a turbulent decade, Quiksilver asked SHARE to help the brand regain its edge and concoct a social strategy that lives up to its historic motto: “IF YOU CAN’T ROCK ‘N’ ROLL DON’T F*CKIN COME”.

Resurrecting an icon

As a brand that peaked in popularity in the early 2000s, Quiksilver had lost much of its counter culture allure and core audience. Eager to return to their rebellious surfing roots, they came to us to dissect the brand, use social listening for steering insight, and set the brand on a path towards its goal. We started at a category level to understand how surfing and snowboarding were manifested on social media, and what role major competitors played within the culture at large.

Disrupting a sleepy category

We found the edges firmly filed off surfing conversation, with major historic brands having no authentic voice in their comms. This negative finding quickly turned into a huge category disruption opportunity, as there was tons of ground to be made for the first major to break the norm. The strategic challenge was to slowly grease the rebellious groove, as an ill-timed or rushed disruption would massively compromise the brand’s credibility and authenticity. From there we crafted a new, punchy tone of voice and aesthetic worthy of Quiksilver’s historic origins, injecting some much needed rock n’ roll back into the brand.

Staying hungry

This transition was ultimately a logical step for a brand like Quiksilver. If a brand was created in a ‘challenger’ spirit, it can always reclaim it as that disruption is still, if somewhat dormant, in its DNA. The challenge wasn’t so much to invent a new identity for Quiksilver as much as it was to simply go back far enough to imagine how the Quiksilver of 1969 would walk and talk today.

SHARE helped to provide perspective to the problem, showing the issue wasn’t just brand-wide, but category-wide; helping to draw up a roadmap for how an icon of yesterday could become an icon of tomorrow.

  • Creative Director: Alex Hill
  • Head of Creative: Robyn Saunders
  • Strategist: Max Grünefeld
  • Insight Analyst: Saffron VandenBurg
  • Copywriter: Jack Watkins
  • Senior Content Manager: Joe Moring
  • Designer: Tom Stephens
  • Designer: Joshua Smith