The world-famous Nike slogan “Just do it” was indeed inspired by a murderer who said “Let’s do this” minutes before execution by firing squad. The revelation was made by the advertising executive who gave birth to the slogan, Dan Wieden.
“Just do it”
Wieden, co-founder of advertising agency Wieden+Kennedy, has revealed he was pressed for a deadline to come up with a log line for Nike’s marketing campaign in 1988. He said he was asked to tie all together five different television campaigns already made for Nike.
But the challenge was that the five commercials each have different tones. In dire need for a tagline to pull the five TV campaigns together, he recalled a man in Portland.
“He grew up in Portland, and ran around doing criminal acts in the country, and was in Utah where he murdered a man and a woman, and was sent to jail and put before a firing squad. And they asked him if he had any final thoughts and he said: ‘Let’s do it,’” Widen told the Dezeen Magazine.
The man was named Gary Gilmore, who in 1976 was executed for charges involving robbery and murder of two individuals.
“And for some reason I went: ‘Now damn. How do you do that? How do you ask for an ultimate challenge that you are probably going to lose, but you call it in?’ So I thought, well, I didn’t like ‘Let’s do it’ so I just changed it to ‘Just do it,’” Wieden recalled.
Wieden said Nike co-founder Phil Knight was skeptical at first, saying Nike did not need a tagline.
“I said ‘Just trust me on this one.’ So they trusted me and it went big pretty quickly.”
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Nike Golf Lifestyle Collection And Pastel Hues Nike Basketball Easter Collection
Nike’s ‘Just do it’ slogan helped the brand grow to the billion-dollar company it is today. On Dec 2014, the company reported a revenue of $7.4 billion for its second quarter ending in November. The brand alone has achieved a revenue of $7 billion, up by 17 percent on a currency neutral basis.
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On March 18, the company launched its Nike Golf Lifestyle Collection endorsed by Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Thorbjorn Olesen, Michelle Wie and Cheyenne Woods.
The Nike Golf Lifestyle Collection consists of apparels in which performance and personal style go hand-in-hand, Nike’s vice president and creative director of golf Kelly Tweeden said.
“You train in the gym, you go to the course, you practice, and then you come home and hang out. Why should you have to change five times?”
The company has also launched its Easter collection, comprised of the KOBE X, KD7, KYRIE 1 and LEBRON 12 in pastel hues and graphic designs.