An Epic Video for an Epic Slogan: Nike’s “Just Do It” Turns 25

As we all know, Nike doesn’t need an excuse to go big with its advertising efforts—but give them an opportunity, like their famous slogan’s 25th birthday, and they’ll blow it out of the water.

This celebratory spot from ad agency Wieden + Kennedy features an all-star cast with LeBron James (the NBA’s 2012 and 2013 Most Valuable Player), Serena Williams (the world’s first ranked female tennis player), Gerard Pique of the FC Barcelona soccer team, and boxing sensation Andre Ward—and these sports legends don’t stand alone. They’re joined by actor Chris Pines who appears in the sequence and Bradley Cooper who narrates the spot. The video launched today on YouTube and already has over 66,000 views and 20,000 social shares.

Basketball fans in particular have another reason to be excited about this spot. The closing shot shows LeBron James participating in a staged dunk contest. If you aren’t a huge basketball fan, you may not think this is a big deal…but it is.

LeBron has never entered the NBA dunk contest. He’s been the judge of a few Sprite Showdown contests and teased fans a few times over the years saying he was going to do it, but he never has. The video raises a lot of questions, thus generating conversation among viewers. Is this a hint? Will LeBron enter the contest in 2014? Only time will tell. Either way, it was a brilliant marketing move by Nike and W+K.

The video is epic, and it makes people believe they can be epic too. It encourages viewers to move beyond physical limits by challenging some of the world’s greatest athletes. We’ll see what other advertising efforts Nike has in store for its slogan’s birthday—if the rest of the campaign is as successful as its first spot, we have a lot to look forward to.

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