Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Nike’s ‘Lunar Runs’ Encourage Chinese to Run at Night

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Nike has rolled out a new ad campaign in China that  calls on people to run, even at night. Nikes effort to challenge Chinese, especially from big cities, to put on running shoes is reinforced with a new web video featuring runners who talk about why they run. A highlight of the video is the story of Salad, a stressed-out 25-year-old office worker who lives in noisy Shanghai and decides to run at night.  

The video asks people to submit their own reasons, says Ad Age. Runners submitted their stories to Nike’s microblog account on the Sina Weibo platform, and the AKQA, the agency behind the campaign created a collection of professional videos based on the best entries.

The idea behind the campaign is to show running not as a painful and poor initiative but to demonstrate its cheerful and dynamical nature.

“We wanted to make sure it wasn’t necessarily Nike telling [consumers] why running is good, so the whole entry point with the communication is really leveraging stories of the few runners who are out there,” said Johan Vakidis, exec creative director at AKQA in Shanghai.

As part of the campaign, Nike hosted ‘Lunar Runs’ in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Wuhan. The nighttime events featured fitness instructors, live music and a few celebrities, to remind college students and young professionals that running is a fun activity that can be done at night, after classes or work. The event also promotes Nike’s Lunar Glide running shoe. The ‘Lunar Glide’ campaign also goes on in the USA calling on Americans to ‘never stop running’. The maximalistic slogan coincides with another Nike’s current campaign ‘Basketball never stops’.

The campaign seems to raise interest in running among young Nike’s audience as Nike engaged with more than 35,000 potential runners during its Lunar Runs and during a four-day Festival of Sports event in Shanghai.


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