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Nike / Go On, Just Do It

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

Sportswear brand challenges joggers to get outside in nasty weather

To encourage customers to take note of the new Air Zoom Structure 18 sneakers during the rainy Polish autumn, Nike launched a series of app-based challenges designed to get fans running in spite of the dreary weather.

Working through the Nike+ app, users were encouraged to join a mysterious event, called Plan the Unexpected. Over the following week, those who had opted-in received push notifications detailing surprise running challenges that would force them out into the cold weather. The challenge set a time limit or distance to be completed, and participants could share their Nike+ activity on the app.

Those who were the quickest to accept the challenge (or the fastest, or who ran the furthest) received thermo-active letters, informing them that they had won limited edition versions of the Air Zoom Structure 18 trainers.

The brand worked with 180heartbeats + JUNG v. MATT, Warsaw, to push the challenges across Nike Running Poland’s Facebook page and other social channels, making use of weather responsive banners to promote the campaign (i.e. banners that acknowledged what the weather was doing outside at that particular moment).


Contagious Insight / 

On brand / This campaign exemplifies Nike’s Just do it positioning. Instead of letting the participants stop training, the brand is forcing them to grit their teeth and brave the unpredictable weather conditions. For runners, completing an in-promptu challenge will undoubtedly bring a sense of achievement, which might help to build affinity for the brand. And the lure of new trainers gives them a reason to get up and run immediately, rather than procrastinating or hoping that the weather will improve the next day.

We’ve seen campaigns do the exact opposite before - Vitasprint, for example, released an alarm clock that would only wake you for a run if the weather was pleasant. But by turning that logic on its head, Nike is positioning itself as a brand that pushes you to your limits, and helps you keep fit at the precise moments throughout the year when motivation can be at its lowest. It also encourages people to realise that weather doesn’t have to be a barrier to exercise (as shown by the ‘change attitudes’ business objective), and if people are running all year long, that can only be a good thing for Nike’s business.

Nike Running Poland


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