CategoryA02. Creative Innovation (incl. business solutions in association with a brand or creative campaign)
Media Agency MINDSHARE CHINA Shanghai, CHINA
Entrant Company MINDSHARE CHINA Shanghai, CHINA
Media Agency 2 MINDSHARE CHINA Shanghai, CHINA


Name Company Position
Ananth Devarajan Mindshare China Director, Digital Innovations
Joey Kang Mindshare China Partner, Strategic Planning
Selina Li Mindshare China Manager
Gary Zhu Mindshare China Associate
Tiffany Yang Mindshare China Executive

The Brief

What do you do when you sell running shoes, but the environment where you sell your running shoes will literally kill runners? That was Nike’s challenge to us at the end of 2014 in China, where air pollution levels have skyrocketed to levels considered ‘unsafe for laboratory experiments’*. Our mission was to provide runners with the confidence and opportunity to run without the fear of death. How hard could that be? *Source: ‘Under the Dome’ documentary, aired Q1 2015 on Youku in China, currently available on Youtube:

Nike set us out with one clear goal – encourage runners to run while demonstrating how and where they could do so safely. From the brand’s perspective the campaign was a resounding success. Over the course of three months, Nike was able to deliver their message of how and where to run safely over 313 million times – nearly the population of the United States – at exactly the times and locations where runners would be most concerned. Even more critically over this time, the Nike Running Integration on the PM2.5 app more than 2 million times, clicking through multiple screens of content and driving downloads of the Nike+ Running app. Most importantly for Nike, runners across the country were unanimous in their appreciation, spreading their words of encouragement to get out and run across the social landscape. These runners have now been recruited into the Nike+ Running app, where Nike is able to further instruct and encourage the running movement in China in a safe and responsible manner.

Running in China was already uncommon before the pollution. While Nike has had success growing this community with their Nike Running platform, it was clear from the data that the speed of growth has begun to taper off. To solve this impossible task we turned to the humble smartphone, big data, and an elegant targeting system leveraging one of China’s most popular app platforms. We negotiated an industry first cooperation with AQI PM2.5 – the most popular app for checking air pollution levels across China. With over 2.8 MILLION daily active users, PM2.5 has become the go-to resource for all netizens – a platform they check multiple times per day, before they go outside. This cooperation was unlike anything seen before in China – when runners would check pollution levels, Nike would be integrated right then and there, providing guidance on how they could exercise safely. If the pollution levels were deemed safe, Nike would deliver right there on the screen a recommendation on where and how they could get out for a run in their city. If the pollutions levels were deemed unsafe, then Nike could encourage runners to exercise indoors, at their neighborhood gym. Moment and location based targeting across all of China, delivered in real-time based on local market conditions. The execution was elegant in its simplicity from the runner’s perspective. If pollution levels were within safe limits, Nike would encourage them to get outside and go for a run! If the pollution was simply too dangerous, Nike would suggest working out indoors, leveraging the Nike+ app. Actually creating this execution required an in-depth cooperation with the creators of PM2.5, leveraging their location-based pollution readings across China, and developing an entirely new targeting technology that needed to be integrated into their app.