January Third


Resolutions Instagram Campaign


New year’s resolutions are easy to make but hard to keep. Nike has two apps for that.

The holiday season is a tough time to make healthy choices — and an even tougher time to stick to a workout routine. There’s the parade of holiday parties. The hours spent at the airport for just a day spent with your parents. There’s the Amazon shopping, the late-night present wrapping and the eggnog. For most of the country, even the weather conspires to make working out least inviting at just the moment when you need it most.

For our Instagram-first campaign for Nike, we built creative around all of the challenges in December that keep us from being the athletes we want to be in January. Inspired by that simple idea, we wrote, produced and edited an artful and effective suite of (literally dozens) of Instagram Story ads — each just ten seconds long.

Our series of Instagram-first ads do what the best Nike ads always do: they inspire us to believe that we can be our better selves. Our creative showed Nike fans that they can defy odds, the weather and the couch. And beat the holidays in the process. Our rallying cry for a healthier holiday reminded Instagram that we only need 20 minutes to tackle one of 100 different workouts.



In a single day of on-location shooting in Brooklyn, we captured the footage that would become 6 different ads for two different apps.

Together with production company Curfew and director Jason Evans, we set out to shoot 6 ads worth of content in one 12-hour day. In one spot, in particular, we had a challenge. The Nike Training Club app makes it possible to get personal-trainer-like results without leaving the house. To underline that point, we needed to demonstrate that while it might be a blizzard outside, it was still a “perfect day” to tackle a challenging workout inside. Even inside an (authentically tiny) New York City apartment.

So, we needed whiteout-level snow outside the apartment window but New York wasn’t cooperative. With the help of visual effects executed in-house by January Third, we were able to open the spot on the howling wind of a once-in-a-century blizzard before panning over to reveal our hero in the midst of a workout — weather be damned.

On location with a small, female-led crew.


One part art, 216 parts science.

We wrote, storyboarded and shot 6 different ads — 3 for each Nike app. Because we built the ads as an extensible systems, not one-offs, though, we were able to produce more than just 6 finals edits. After writing 6 different variations of the headlines for each ad unit, Nike ultimately produced 36 ads. These ads competed against one another to see which performed best with a test media budget. Once a winner had been crowned, that ad unit received 95% of the total media spend.

Nike’s versioning didn’t stop there. The ads were ultimately translated into 6 different languages and run across the EU. In total, there were over 216 ads run on Instagram.

THE BIG IDEA:Highly quotable
We all feel an urge to be better come January. We drafted on that visceral desire to inspire app downloads in December.


What feels better than looking in the mirror and seeing the results of hard work?

It wasn’t easy. But the systematic approach to building and testing dozens of variations of creative themes netted some real results — and sometimes counter-intuitive learnings. For instance, the creative that received the highest click through rate (CTR) often didn’t always net the highest install rate once users landed on the App store download page. While the more narrative and holiday-themed units did a good job of holding viewers interest (as demonstrated in the completion rate) they did less well at netting new users. Viewers that saw more transactional creative clicked less often but were more likely to download.

The most effective creative, however, was very effective. One ad unit boasted an app install rate of 39 percent. That means of the users who saw the ad and clicked, more than ⅓ of them took the time and effort to install the iPhone or Android app. 39 percent? For this collection of seasoned trainers, that's a new personal best.

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