Let’s talk about ads, baby.
Let’s talk about real sto-ries. Let’s talk about all the good things, and the bad things that may be.
Tell me you’ve seen the latest Nike ad.
ICYMI, you’ve been served (yes, pun absolutely intended): here it is on youtube in wide format, and on instagram in vertical format (take note – they repurposed the same exact video for both formats!). FYI – it’s garnished 4.5 MILLION views in just three days.
Don’t worry, I’ll meet you right back here.
OK. So. Here’s why this is one of the best ads of the year, if not of all time. (And no, it’s not just because it made me cry happy tears)
1 – It’s authentic.
It gets you in your feels because it’s real! It’s 2018, which means by now we are all experts at spotting fake news, the ultimate detectors of bullshit. So when you present something real, something relatable, this creates an automatic connection between you and your viewers and keeps them engaged.
2 – It’s grade-A storytelling.
This is not a piece of fiction. It is a real story, about hard work and perseverance, something we can all relate to. Nothing beats a story of a heroine, especially when we’ve all watched Serena grow, been with her through her ups and downs, and supported her queendom.
3 – It’s emotional.
Yes, I really did cry not just during, but also after the ad. This ad talks about connections. Connections to yourself, your dreams, and in Serena’s case, the connection to the game, and between her and her father/coach. As someone with a very strong and meaningful relationship with my father, I really appreciated seeing this. I am a dancer, and growing up I had a dance dad. He was my first fan, my first cheerleader, my first coach. Nike really knew how to pull at the heartstrings on this one.
4 – It is truly inspiring.
“Just Do It” – a thirty-year-old slogan still rings true. This slogan is not only simple and memorable, but it is also commanding and powerful at the same time. In this, it helps establish a personal connection between the consumer and the brand. In just three words the consumer has this confidence instilled within them.
5 – It is NOT obnoxious, in your face, product-pushing.
I totally forgot I was watching a commercial. I thought, “hey, they aren’t trying to sell me something!” I watched it again and paid more attention to the copy:
“It’s only crazy until you do it.
Just do it.”
Little did I know…It was then that I discovered, they actually are selling something to me, but nothing material: they are selling me to believe in myself and my dreams. That was a huge realization/game-changer, as I have never felt that sentiment after watching any ad.
In the end, I’m really proud of Nike for being all “you know what, I’m not even going to talk about consumerism at all for this one, let’s just be real here.” As a content creator, I really appreciate another content house not wasting my time thinking they can outsmart me with a hidden ad. Nike has won me over with brand loyalty, at least until (or if) I can ever stop thinking about this one.
Be like Nike, drink the Gatorade.
What we’ve learned:
– real seals the deal: air on the side of being authentic; otherwise you’ll have the last laugh
– tell, don’t sell: no one is here for your pitch, they are here for stories
– less is more: don’t be all up in the consumer’s face. not with copy, not with ad-selling. you shouldn’t have to try that hard.
– let them come to you: (I know, I sound like my mom giving me dating advice.) But really, you know you have made a great ad when people are writing articles about it and googling it to watch it over and over again.