A tiny victory in the shark-eat-shark globe of advertising

Patrick Clarke understands Cape Clasp, the tiny jewelry organization he launched in 2013, doesn’t individual the form of a shark.

But one particular of the Falmouth company’s prime-marketing bracelets is fashioned from marine quality cord and held jointly by the jaw and tail of a 1-inch-prolonged sterling silver terrific white shark. It’s a quirky structure that’s trapped due to the fact the corporation launched it a few yrs ago. Clarke reported he’s observed a lot of knock-offs considering the fact that, but till a handful of weeks back the imitations did not bother him.

At the starting of Shark 7 days in July ― an annual celebration concocted by the Discovery cable Tv community ― he discovered out that Pura Vida, a a lot bigger jewelry firm, had manufactured what he referred to as a “blatant, lazy rip-off” of his signature bracelet. Pura Vida, largely owned by Vera Bradley, has additional than 2 million followers on Instagram, whilst Cape Clasp has about 168,000. Even worse, Pura Vida inked a specific deal with Discovery to promote it through a Shark Week-themed on the net shop. The week of films and specials, he stated, is like Black Friday for Cape Clasp, so a good deal was at stake.

“It was a gut punch,” Clarke explained. “I saw that at the beginning of the 7 days and thought, ‘This is likely not great for us’… Pura Vida has a substantial audience.”

Clarke reported he experimented with to ignore the situation and concentration on the marketing options he and five-particular person group crafted for the busy week ahead. But as the times went on, and as far more men and women introduced the circumstance to his focus by way of social media, he resolved he had to do a little something. So on Thursday he posted a quick video clip of himself to Cape Clasp’s Instagram account to address the “shark in the room.”

“It’s pretty much the specific exact allure style,” he mentioned in the online video when comparing the items side-by-aspect. “This is a major risk to our enterprise.”

The video clip swiftly attracted practically 25,000 views and far more than 300 feedback, including some that tagged Pura Vida’s Instagram account directly.

“Within hrs, the Pura Vida item site was down,” Clarke explained. But considering that Pura Vida teamed up with Discovery Store to provide the bracelet by means of its Shark 7 days shop, that merchandise webpage remained on the web. Previous 7 days, the web page indicated that the bracelets had offered out.

A photo of the Pura Vida shark bracelet on Discovery’s on line shop.Screenshot of Discovery site

Pura Vida did not reply to various requests for comment. Just after Discovery was contacted by a Globe reporter, a spokesperson claimed the company was looking into the predicament with Pura Vida, and then reported the “bracelet in issue has also been taken off from our web-site.”

Pura Vida reported “we absolutely price intellectual assets and would hardly ever deliberately duplicate structure,” incorporating it was “in the method of investigating” what occurred, in accordance to an e-mail to Cape Clasp that Clarke study.

Clarke reported he is even now determining irrespective of whether to choose further more motion since it would be difficult to quantify regardless of whether the Pura Vida appear-a-like bracelet diverted revenue from his business enterprise. In hindsight, he said, he needs Pura Vida or Discovery would have attained out to him about collaborating on a Shark 7 days bracelet.

But obtaining Pura Vida to consider down the products webpage was a smaller victory in by itself, and Clarke believes his organization has received at minimum 5,000 followers because he posted the movie.

“It felt like a earn for our neighborhood and our enterprise,” he reported. “Maybe [Pura Vida] will be cautious about having inspiration from other creators in the long run.”


Anissa Gardizy can be attained at [email protected] Observe her on Twitter @anissagardizy8.