Nike proves once again that pushing boundaries builds champions in both the sports and marketing world.
The iconic brand just debuted a new ad promoting its recently-launched maternity line on Instagram. The new spot features pregnant and breastfeeding athletes in a way that viewers have likely never seen before. The ad arrives on the edge of International Women’s Day and in total, depicts over 20 mother athletes including Serena Williams and Nia Ali, during various stages of pregnancy and postpartum. Also of note, each respective shoot was directed via Zoom, resulting in a total of 22 hours of footage which was then trimmed down to produce the final ad.
The ad is especially resonant because it signifies Nike’s progress as a global brand. Back in 2019, Nike’s attitude towards pregnant athletes was heavily criticized after a New York Times opinion piece called “Nike Told Me to Dream Crazy, Until I Wanted a Baby” written by an Olympic runner formerly sponsored by the brand went viral. One public outcry and several months later, Nike announced a new maternity policy for all sponsored athletes. The brand, which has banked the top spot in Gartner’s Digital IQ Index: Activewear for two years in a row, boasts some of the largest social audiences across platforms and apps. The new line and bold new ad echoes not only the evolving consumer, but an evolving brand.
A brand is only as good as its audience believes it is, and when you have an audience as vast and varied as Nike’s, listening to an answering the consumer cry could not be more crucial.