Cannes Lions

adidas Z.N.E.


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Our task was to transform global Z.N.E. 3.0 “Born Ready” in an approachable manner without losing the sports credibility of the brand. The standout product feature of the Z.N.E. jacket – a fast-release zipper openable by only one hand – was not highlighted in the global campaign. Knowing the hunger for innovation and novelty Chinese consumers have, it was paramount to create product consideration of Z.N.E. beyond a brand attitude to meet our business targets.

1. OUTHYPE THE HYPE: Create excitement and increase the desirability of the Z.N.E.

2. TAKE OVER: Achieve same levels of campaign recognition as a brand campaign despite one tenth of the media budget.

3. BUSINESS: Achieve a 20% increase in sales with Z.N.E. compared to the same period last year across key sales channels.


The standout product feature of the Z.N.E. jacket was a fast-release zipper openable by only one hand. Knowing the hunger for innovation and novelty Chinese consumers have, we saw an opportunity to connect this to our stylish athletes. A single-minded focus on the unique product feature of the fast-release zip to make the product stand out in consumer minds.

The idea: RIP, UNLEASH.

When you RIP open a Z.N.E., you UNLEASH what you were born ready for. Building in an attitude, product demo, and call to action all in a single-minded message.


*Bring product to life

The fast-release zip was best brought to life on dynamic, not static media. The idea of RIP,UNLEASH was a tangible attitude and call to action for the fans to participate and share their own born ready attitude. The single-minded message and simplicity of the action made it easy to kickoff and participate.

*Spectator to Participant

Today’s fans are savvy ad-avoiders, they seek authentic experiences to connect with brands, to be a part of the culture that they love. We needed to curate an environment that entertained them, and they, in turn, could create content to entertain others, empowering them to influence and shape authentic, not commercialised UGCs.

With these two pillars at the core of our strategy, we soug out an innovative new media partnerships with TikTok, focusing on creating synergy to product feature to gain exposure and spark organic experiences.


To launch the product into the sportosphere and catch the fans attention, we featured 4 of our most recognisable celebrity athletes. In animation style, RIP, UNLEASH. was visualised, demonstrated by the athletes’ unique personal attributes, creating talkability and increased relevance among sport fans.

Next we empowered the fans—a social challenge with an easy-to-remember hashtag with high viral factor, enabled fans to be creators too. The simplicity of the action made it easy to create authentic content, that 20+ KOLs to kickoff. This created an organic influence and turned RIP, UNLEASH. into social currency that was on the pulse of culture that the fans embraced. Fans adopted and reinterpreted the hashtag it in their own way, personalizing and amplifying it with our brand and product at the center of it all.

The TikTok partnership was fully integrated, from opening page, challenge page, feed ads and banners that linked to social commerce.



On digital, we exceeded estimated impressions and clicks at 1783% and 41808% respectively. TikTok was a core driver, generating an astounding 13.3% CTR from the social ads, versus benchmarked 0.5%.

On PR, 941.7m impressions and 7.93m media value, exceeding campaign benchmark targets by 188% and 158% respectively.


The TikTok challenge generated over 2 billion views, 46.8Mil engagement & 295k UGC that was organically reshared on Weibo generating a further 76.9m views and 119k engagement, awareness levels of a brand campaign, despite no TVC and a tenth of the media investment


The social challenge and impactful creative and programmatic grow e-commerce sales value up to 71%. In-store activation attracted an average daily traffic of 63.8k that converted to an incremental 21.5% sales. Consumer demand for Z.N.E., drove purchase in-store and online, contributing to an overall net sales value growth of 52% versus the previous year.

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