Ad of the Day: Nike Rips Into TV and Social Media in Ads About Getting Outside to Run

W+K's 'Time Is Precious' wonders if you're spending it wisely

Headshot of Tim Nudd

Television is enjoying a golden age, and social media is empowering and entertaining us like never before. Unless they're actually slowly killing us, Nike seems to suggest in this stressful, claustrophobic campaign from Wieden + Kennedy—encouraging us to get away from the screens and go for a run. 

TV, movies and social media are, deep down, kind of a waste of time, the campaign suggests. The ads are text-only, with a rapid-fire Siri-like robotic voice giving blow-by-blow accounts of the stupid and sordid details of our screen-based lives. 

The spots excoriate specific entertainments—there are not-so-veiled references to everything from The Real Housewives to Game of Thrones to The Walking Dead—as well as celebrity culture and the feedback loop of social media generally.

"Are we running today?" the ads ask at the end. The implication is clear: Try a little self-betterment in place of modern life's relentless self-debasement. 

It's a dark message, to be honest—and thus, quite in tune with the times—but done in a lighthearted way presumably designed to be inspirational and not depressing. It is, though, produced in such a way to be more than a little anxiety-inducing. 

Which is quite clever, actually. Aren't ads, after all, just part of the problem? You're watching them on a screen, and they're agitating you. Wouldn't you feel better if you turned off your phone or computer and went running? (Indeed, the anthem spot above wastes no time in implicating itself as a culprit—it does so in its opening seconds.) 

It's also just fun to see Nike and W+K, known for such big-budget blockbuster advertising, create something so simple, streamlined and no-budget. 

Check out a bunch more executions below.


Client: Nike

Project: Time Is Precious

Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, Ore.

Creative Directors: Chris Groom & Antony Goldstein

Creative: Stefan van den Boogaard

Creative: Tim Arts

Executive Producer: Matt Hunnicutt

Producer: Amy Berriochoa

Account Team: Anna Boteva, Luiza Prata Carvalho, Alyssa Ramsey

Strategic Planning: Zack Kaplan, Henry Lambert

Media/Comms Planning: Lisa Feldhusen, John Furnari

Business Affairs: Anna Beth Nagel

Project Management: Andrea Nelsen

Studio Designer: Leslie Waara

Studio Manager: Leticia Barajas

Motion Designer: Alex Bernard

Editorial Company: Joint

Editor: Eric Hill

Assistant Editors:: JB Jacobs, Kevin Alfoldy, Mimi Bergen, Dylan Sylwester

Post Producer: Sarah Fink

Post Executive Producer: Leslie Carthy

Mix Company: Joint

Mixer: Noah Woodburn

Audio Assistant: Natalie Huizenga

Audio Producer: Sarah Fink

@nudd Tim Nudd is a former creative editor of Adweek.