News & Views

Walking goes Hi-Tec

by Contagious I/O

This story originally appeared on Contagious I/O, our customisable research platform featuring the world’s most innovative, creative and effective ad campaigns and marketing ideas

Footwear brand creates short documentaries to make walking cooler

Outdoor brand Hi-Tec has launched an online documentary project called The Walkumentary Series, releasing a series of short documentaries about walking.

The first film in the series, Happy, follows Jon Beattie, the Steadicam operator behind Pharrell’s hit-music video 24 Hours of Happy. The catchy tune plays as he narrates his filming experience, which involved walking backwards seven miles a day for ten days, filming roughly 360 takes.

Produced by Amsterdam based agency, this that + the other, the second film in the series documents the world’s biggest marriage proposal by Tokyo GPS artist Yassan. The third will tell the story of Sonia and Alexandre Poussin, who embarked on a two-year Madagascan adventure with their children Ulysse and Philae in search of a mythical pirate burial plot.

The Walkumentary Series is promoted across the brand’s social channels, designed to act as a teaser for the launch of new Hi-Tec walking products in 2015.


Contagious Insight /

Walk that way / This campaign is a clever move for a brand operating in a crowded category. The dominance of stalwarts such as Adidas and Nike makes it hard for smaller footwear brands to carve out a niche. Hi-Tec’s strategy is smart - it lets market leaders fight over athlete sponsorship and sports, focusing on what it knows best: walking.

Overcoming the brand challenge / While Hi-Tec has a stronghold in the walking community, the act of walking can be perceived as boring and uncool. The agency told Contagious that there was a need to lift the category, inspiring more people to walk, while establishing Hi-Tec as a walking brand.

This content does exactly that, with the brand taking a step back (literally) and letting the content speak for itself. The stories are interesting, well-told and on-brand. They are a far cry from the hyperbolic athleticism of competitors, but still manage to frame walking in a youthful, urban-centric way.

Of course the videos also showcase the product: if you’re going to be walking seven miles a day with a 100 pound camera strapped to your back, you’re going to want a sturdy shoe.

The Walkumentary Series


This story originally appeared on Contagious I/O. Contagious I/O is our bespoke trends, inspiration, insight and analysis service, providing daily innovative marketing intelligence across a comprehensive range of sectors to brands and agencies across the world. For more information about Contagious I/O contact