UFC star Conor McGregor takes on a yeti and a killer clown in Reebok's first work from Deutsch

Brand takes 'Toy Story'-like approach in latest spot from 'Sport the Unexpected' campaign

Published On
Jan 13, 2020

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Reebok is starting the new year with a return to the unexpected in a new spot starring Ultimate Fighting Champion athlete Conor McGregor. The 45-second commercial gives McGregor the "Toy Story" treatment by turning the fighter into a sneaker-wearing action figure battling an intensive bedroom cleanup. The spot, which is the latest in Reebok’s “Sport the Unexpected” campaign, was created to market Reebok’s new Zig Kinetica sneakers coming to stores in late February.

The spot is the first work from Deutsch, which the Boston-based brand chose last year following a review to handle its creative branding. Reebok kicked off “Sport the Unexpected” to great fanfare last March as it sought to reignite its brand, now owned by Adidas. A later spot in the campaign starred Cardi B as a visitor to a trippy hair salon. Reebok has been marketing classic styles like the Club C to attract both younger consumers and older customers who formerly wore the 62-year-old brand.

On a recent earnings call, Adidas executives praised the brand’s recent turnaround efforts, noting that Reebok returned to profitability in 2018. The brand also streamlined its logo at the end of 2019 under one “vector” design as a way to improve recognition, Kasper Rorsted, CEO of Adidas, said on the call. For the third quarter, Reebok revenue was up 17 percent in North America, though it faced declines in Europe and China.

“We're happy with the progress that we made on the Reebok brand, and we will move into 2020 to continue to have sustainable growth and a sustainable profitable growth for Reebok,” said Harm Ohlmeyer, chief financial officer at Adidas, on the call.

The new work, which was spearheaded by Matt Blonder, VP of marketing and digital brand commerce at Reebok, will run on social, digital and connected TV.

Interested in hearing more about fitness brands? Attend Ad Age Next: Health & Wellness on Feb. 6.