Client story: Just do it Japan, Nike

Our assignment was to understand how the idea of “Just do it” could be made meaningful in Japan. 

The challenge of taking the American idea of “Just do it” to Japan was a significant challenge due to profound cultural differences. 

Cultural insight: things that were inspirational in the USA could be provocative in Japan. America was exciting to young Japanese people. As a “fashion brand” Nike was American but as a meaningful and positive global brand Nike was about inspirational athletic performance.

Strategic Direction: Do not try and fit in, aim to be provocative in a way that is true to the inspiration that comes from athletic performance.

A TV commercial featuring a blind long jumper in a culture that was unused to elevating the achievements of “disabled” people was both provocative and inspirational. “Just do it”, Japan, was born and the Nike brand has endured as an icon in Japan.

With: W+K, John Jay, Larry Frey

Where: Japan