Campaign: All Work And All Play

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With a campaign that is part philanthropic, part testimonial and completely broadcast-free, Nike's brand Jordan is declaring that just because school's out for summer it doesn't mean that kids stop working. The campaign eventually introduces a new shoe-the Work'm-but the primary focus of the campaign is to formally declare the role of the public basketball court in American cities as a place where kids practice to become better players. The campaign also gives those city courts the makeovers they deserve, with nets that provide the thrill of the summer hoops swoosh. Wieden + Kennedy/N.Y. creative directors Todd Waterbury and Kevin Proudfoot explain that the idea to put the focus on the courts came from Michael Jordan himself. "Jordan believes that having access to courts-real courts like YMCAs, parks and rec centers-offered him the opportunity to work on his game in the off-season," Waterbury says. "He believed that getting back to the game was the thing that let him improve as a player for the next season."

The campaign comes in phases. The first part is a letter from Jordan himself in the summer issue of Slam, the streetball magazine, that declares, "There's work to be done." Wildpostings that feature the same copy, show bare rims and introduce the double meaning of the line. In early July, street teams put colored nets up in hundreds of courts in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Atlanta, along with illustrated postings that introduce spokesplayers and the design of the shoe. Street teams will continually replace the nets when they are taken down. "It's a gesture on the part of the brand to give back to the essence of what the game means and the pleasure of playing on courts in the summer," Waterbury says. Nets will also be packaged in color-coordinated boxes, available in stores where the shoe is sold. "Ultimately, the attention is drawn to the shoe," says Proudfoot, "but we wanted the right context. This brand is showing respect and showing up in a way that does something."

Client: Nike Agency: Wieden + Kennedy/N.Y. CDs: Todd Waterbury, Kevin Proudfoot AD: Stuart Jennings CW: Greg Kalleres Illustrator: Urs Althaus/Hausgrafik Shoe Photographer: Timothy Hogan (Net-less Rims) Photographer: Lisa Kereszi Art Buyer: Michelle Chant

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