NEWS: Nike launches largest press drive

Nike is to unveil its biggest press campaign across Europe next week.

Nike is to unveil its biggest press campaign across Europe next week.

The campaign, which was devised by Wieden and Kennedy in Amsterdam to

run only in vertical press executions, is the first to omit the Nike

name and simply use its trademark tick.

In a further departure, the ten executions shun the use of sports stars

dressed in Nike clothes and concentrate solely on the product itself.

The ‘product leadership’ ads, which break in the UK on 17 February, will

appear in style magazines ranging from Loaded to Vogue and in the review

sections and magazines of quality national newspapers.

Written by Giles Montgomery and art directed by Robert Nataka, each

execution focuses on the specific features of a particular sports shoe

and carries a different, provocative strapline in typical Nike fashion.

One ad, for the tennis shoes worn by Andre Agassi, declares: ‘Some

people take tennis too seriously. We make shoes for them.’ Another, for

the Air Max Light running shoe, states: ‘Before Nike, people walked.’

A third execution, for the Zoom Super Light running spikes, reads:

‘Designed so you can’t walk in them.’

The words and pictures appear in stylised colour against a plain white

background. Photography was by Hans Pieterse.

‘We wanted [the ads] to be the next best thing to actually holding the

shoe in your hand,’ Montgomery said.

The campaign will run in seven countries across Europe. UK media is

handled by Manning Gottlieb Media.

Wieden and Kennedy has managed the Nike account since the brand’s launch

in 1982, apart from a three-year gap in the mid-80s when the account was

with Chiat Day.

The agency recently opened new offices in Paris, Barcelona and Milan in

order to service its flagship account more effectively.