Under Armour’s #RULEYOURSELF Seeks to Inspire First, Sell Second
Under Armour’s #RULEYOURSELF totally sets out to inspire and then sell.
In his 2008 bestseller, Outliers, Malcom Gladwell posits that it takes 10,000 hours to be an expert in a concentration, whether it be basketball, linguistics, or crocheting. On the one hand it is nice to think of expertise in such an objective manner, one may think, “I really can do this! It’s going to take a lot of time and hard work but I can log my hours and eventually I will reach a whole new plane of existence; that of an expert.” Others who are more inclined to drink from the half empty glass may find the number daunting and an unattainable. That is until now…
What if you had an army of yourself? Thousands of you to help log those magical 10,000 hours, how many more would take the challenge?
Under Armour’s new stunning visual #RULEYOURSELF campaign allows the viewer to visualize that army of one. Through high profile and diverse athletes (American Ballet Theater Dancer Misty Copeland, PGA Golfer Jordan Spieth, and NBA MVP Steph Curry) Under Armour is able to capture the precision and repetition that is essential to reach the golden plateau of expertise and stardom.
The audio of the spot also captures the power of repetition. There is an acapella chanting “1,2,3,4,1,2,3,4,5,6…” as the cadence is kept by Curry’ dribbling and Spieth’s marching across the green. In Copeland’s silence we find beauty in her shadows as they mirror her every move; one may even consider her shadow to be extra soldiers helping her to reach excellence at an even further accelerated rate.
The commercial ends with the tagline, “You are the sum of all your training”, reminding the viewer that greatness is possible yet it must be earned through blood, sweat, tears, dedication, and of course repetition.
Athletes will love seeing the focus on training and sport rather than product; as the old adage goes function over fashion. That being said product is the nature of Under Armour’s business so where does it fit in? After all the counter to previous adage is, “Look good, feel good, play good.”
“Under Armour provides the footwear, apparel and equipment the athlete needs to push through a tough workout. But we also want to give them that extra inspiration to improve every day, to keep building their inner army, and to stay focused on success even when the going gets tough,” Peake added.
Inspiration? What is this? A multi billion dollar company cares about inspiring and not selling product. Are the two independent? I believe it is a genius marketing move on Under Armour’s part to focus on the sport and the athlete first and product will fall in place.
Under Armour has recently shown a commitment to putting its athletes first. This is highlighted in their February purchase of nutrition Apps Endemondo and MyFitnessPal.
The company is taking a holistic approach to athletics and is and will continue to reap the benefits; they are now the second biggest sports brand in the United States, trailing only to gold standard in American athletics, the iconic Swoosh.
Howard Davidson Arlington MA