It’s the start of a New Year, and the launch of a new you. Time to start digging out your long-forgotten lycra whilst you contemplate braving a gym packed full of new recruits.
As ever, brands have been courting controversy with attention grabbing images as they urge us to reinvent ourselves in the New Year. Here we take a look at some of the latest health campaigns on offer this year to decide which one is working out for us.
1. Protein World: Beach Body Ready
Credit to Protein World
Protein World rocketed to fame last year with the controversial ‘Are you beach body ready?’ slogan plastered over the tube. The relatively unknown company quickly gained international notoriety with its guilt-tripping ads, sparking a spate of retaliation campaigns as they were accused of flagrant body shaming. Cue the defacement of posters, outraged protests and the defiant hashtag #everybodysready on Twitter.
This year, Protein World has divided opinion again with the launch of their first ever TV ad. Slimline bikini clad models dance and wiggle whilst downing protein shakes in a predictably similar moving version of its print ads.
Arguably, the £2m raise in sales and huge publicity gained for the brand was worth the controversial tagline. Although perhaps the supposed bomb threats to Protein World’s head office were not.
Upmarket gym chain Equinox has come into the spotlight this January with its provocative campaign urging people to ‘Commit to Something’. Looking more like an image for a glossy fashion magazine than a fitness club, each striking visual of the campaign attempts to address different social issues.
Bold and eye-catching, the strong images have gained attention for their controversial content. A haughty mother challenges you with a raised eyebrow as she feeds her twins in a restaurant, adding fuel to the public debate on breastfeeding in public.
Whilst the visuals have perhaps a tenuous link to the gym, the message for commitment is still strong. Don’t just buy one cat, buy 15.
Credit to Equinox Gym
3. Sports England: This Girl Can
Credit to Sports England
For a more body positive campaign, last year’s ‘This Girl Can’ ads by Sports England gained widespread acclaim for its fresh and honest approach. In the short video, women were encouraged to take up sports by telling it like it is. Full of sweat, jiggling and laboured breathing, the ad was defiant in its show of the reality of working out hard. Woman proclaim they are ‘sweating like a pig, feeling like a fox’ as the pumping music inspires viewers to throw themselves into exercise without fearing judgement.
This year, ‘This Girl Can’ continues its momentum with the launch of their new active wear range sold exclusively in Marks and Spencers. With the ad watched over 37 million times on social media, the focus on honesty over perfection seems to be working.
4. Glacéau’s Smart Water
Credit to Smart Water
After a hazy night of half remembered antics, the staff Christmas party has many offices vowing to undertake a ‘dry January’ this year. Coca-Cola brand Glacéau Smartwater has jumped on the dry January bandwagon, with its tongue-in-cheek suggestions that consumers should ‘hit the bottle’. Supposedly brimming with the benefits of electrolytes, Smart Water is certainly a good alcohol alternative – although whether it really tastes of clouds is anyone’s guess.
5. Kwik Fit
Credit to Kwik Fit
Kwik Fit has ventured into the world of fitness this year with their new ‘FitKwik’ campaign. Poking fun at those of us squeezing into luminous lycra, they have launched a ‘no frills’ free fitness class at your local KwikFit store. Using nothing more than old spare tyres, FitKwik promises to ‘shift that spare tyre with our spare tyres!’ using simple exercise videos that you can follow at home. Whilst the experts in automotive parts repair might have nothing to do with fitness, the funny video and uncomplicated exercises work together to make an amusing campaign.