Nike’s Mental Health Sneakers

I’ve been hoping for a while to see more big brands get behind the mental health movement that’s taking place. You’d think the MH space would be a goldmine for brands – both from a social responsibility standpoint & even a sales/marketing perspective contributing directly to their bottom lines.


Off the heels of Burger King’s promotion we highlighted a # of months ago w Mental Health America, centered around meals named after the diff feelings we ALL have, I want applaud Nike for this latest attempt at normalizing the conversation, benefitting AFSP National.


The Nike swoosh is recognized arnd the world, & here, in a collaboration w the influencer Liz Croft, they designed a shoe where that swoosh is wavy, to show that when it comes to MH, healing is not linear. Though Nike has championed some controversial campaigns as well, I believe w this is one where they nailed the execution & verbiage to bring ppl together – you can read underneath “In My Feels.”


Why aren’t more brands doing this? I can personally tell you from experience being in the room w decision makers, that brands hear MH & they think MI. They, sadly, are afraid if they get behind a campaign like this, customers/prospects/partners/the public, will think their employees/execs have MI “problems” in their offices.


Is this sad? Yes. But please look up at what Liz wrote in her explanation about designing the sneaker. While I love Nike/Liz’s design, in the explanation about the cause, the terms “1 in 5” & “stigma” are used again. Those terms further perpetuate the idea of a “sick” & a “healthy” group in society. Why can’t we just come TOGETHER, in acknowledging the reality that we ALL face challenges – ones represented by this wavy swoosh? Maybe then more brands will not “Just Do It,” but instead, “Get it.”

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